Thailand Day 11

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Thailand Day 11

After breakfast we stopped by a local shopping mall for supplies.  I tried to find a good iced chocolate.  What I found was KFC’s Thailand iteration which not only sells iced chocolat, but iced coffee, ice cream and something that mixes corn and ice cream called a Kream Ball, which you couldn’t pay me to eat.  I’m not sure if this is a full-on tongue in cheek embracing of Chinglish or not, but they had signs that said “chicky meal.”

At the mall we also checked out some cars for sale.  There is a 300% import tax (or something high, internet evidence is contradictory) but there are maybe five big brands that have factories in Thailand.  Regular cars still cost a bit more than in the US, but not unbelievably more.  However, cars that are common here, like the Accord, cost about $50,000 in Thailand because there is no market for large sedans.  Either you drive a tiny city car (the Honda Fit and Mazda 2 were everywhere) or you drive on the country roads and have a truck.  However, these were all the smaller trucks, there was no equivalent of the F-250 in Thailand.  If you’re even better off you can afford one of the few SUVs available.

Our first big stop for the day was Doi Inthon National Park.  Our first stop was wachirathan waterfall.  The base of the waterfall was so wet that I had to use my waterproof housing for my camera just to take any photos at all.  We were all instantly soaked.  It was also so wet that I slipped and fell on my right side.  I got pretty muddy on my right side, but my left foot hurt so bad could barely walk.  Sam’s sister slipped and fell on her right side as well and ended up with a nasty bruise on her right knee.  As you’ll see in comparison of the video below and our photos the waterfall was much stronger on this day because of the recent rains than it is normally.  This also made all the rock paths more dangerous to walk on.

We went from the waterfall to the stupas at the top of the mountain for the king and queen.  It was raining when we got there and there were many many steps.  I was convinced at the time that I had a hairline fracture in one (or more) of my toes, but I hobbled up and down the steps (one of the escalators was broken, of course) as I didn’t want to miss the stupas at the top of the tallest mountain in Thailand.  There was no view from up there though, as the mountain is so high that it is above the first level of rainclouds (or fog) for the entire rainy season.  In the video below you can see what the stupas look like in March and then the marked difference in our pictures below.  The foggy atmosphere was somehow more fitting though, in my opinion, for such a holy revered place.  It gave the impression that we really were floating in the clouds.

The little lady below greeted me at the male restroom, which, of course, was down another flight of stairs.

Then it was time for lunch at the gift shop.

After eating lunch at the base of the stupas we went to the other side of the mountain for Siritharn Waterfall.

My foot was hurting badly at that point and so I didn’t mind that the next destination was about two hours away.  On the way the sun peaked out many times and gave us some beautiful views of the northern countryside.

When we arrived at the hot springs we were all underwhelmed, but I was secretly happy we’d be riding in the car for another few hours instead of walking.

When we returned to Chiang Mai we visited the tàlàat tôh rûng, or “till dawn” market for dinner and desert.

Really cheap (and good) duck with sauce and hard boiled egg:

Thai deserts.  Ginger broth with bread balls (or something) and fried dough sticks with herb dipping sauce.  I liked the dough sticks much better than the ginger broth.

Dragonfruit smoothie:

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