Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Gai = chicken
So far that's one of my new Thai phrases, a basic hello. I can also say "chicken" and almost count to five. I arrived yesterday morning in Chiang Mai after a remarkably easy, if rather long, journey. Two highlights were a few hours in Tokyo, and a lovely foot massage in Bangkok. Arrival in Chiang Mai was right on time, and my luggage actually arrived. A super nice security guard let me use his phone to reach my friend Laura, who was wandering around looking for me at the airport, and then we were on our way. The time zone is 12 hours ahead of my normal east coast reality. Wheeeee! In a few more days I expect to stop wanting to pass out in the late afternoon.
Chiang Mai is an old city in the northwest of the country (although the name means "new city"), surrounded by mountains and including an inner city circled by a moat and fragments of old wall. It's too early for many impressions, except for lots of color and walking and extremely tasty food absolutely everywhere. I met the folks I'll be working with and am excited about my projects (field guide illustrations, etc). Here's a photo from a wat (temple) we walked through today, with monk robes drying in the background.