Last week i had three days off. I looked forward to spending this time recuperating since it is not uncommon for me to work all day every day, then spend my evenings editing or writing some more of my book.
However by the time Thursday came around (the second day) i realised i had lost sight on why i had come to Asia in the first place; it wasn’t to work myself into the ground and look at the mere pennies i had earned in the process, it was to travel and explore the world. I kept saying to myself that i didn’t need to travel now since i will do my around the world trip when i am 30, but what if circumstances beyond my control change my fate and i missed out on travelling because i said to myself “Maybe later…”?
So i promised myself that the next day i was going to cycle to Lamphun, the closest town to Chiang Mai, and spend the day there doing tourist things. I had just bought a new bike that actually works as opposed to the wheels not turning properly like my previous bike so i had no excuses on that end.
I woke up at 10 and set off at around 11. In case you don’t know this is the burning season in Northern Thailand, and by that i mean the farmers are burning all the rubbish they have up in the field. The knock on effect of this is there is a nasty smog covering Northern Thailand until the end of March. An hour into my bike ride i realised that cycling through the smoggy weather in 30+ degrees weather wasn’t the smartest idea i had ever had, nonetheless i was over half way through my journey to Lamphun, and felt it was pointless to turn around now…
another hour and 25 odd kilometres later i arrived at Lamphun. I cycled round looking for something to eat because i was shattered and needed to build up my energy again. I found a tiny noodle shop and freestyled in Thai at the owner and she whipped out some pork noodle soup for me. WIN!
Then i went to the national museum. I wasn’t allowed to take my phone in with me so i couldn’t take any photos of the exhibits. It wasn’t anything special really; there were some cool ancient weapons there and a few cultural exhibits there. Nothing to write home about, however if anyone asks i’ll lie and say it was amazing because i want to sound cool….
Then it was time to do some temple hopping. I hadn’t played tourist for literally years so it was nice to do what the tourists usually do. I took a few pictures for you to admire because i’m a legend like that…
Finally it was time for me to head back. It was already 2:30 in the afternoon and i was ready to pass out. The plan was to get a blue truck (a cross between a bus and a taxi. The blue trucks go from Chiang Mai to Lamphun) back from Lamphun since i was extremely tired, but most of the blue trucks were full so i decided to cycle for a little bit and catch one that wasn’t as packed along the way. Unfortunately it didn’t work out how i planned, and i noticed that i had cycled half the journey back without catching an empty blue truck. So i thought to myself that i might as well cycle the rest of the way as well.
I got back into Chiang Mai at roughly half past four. Feeling a sense of achievement as i got back home. It may not seem a big deal to most people, but you would be surprised how easy it is to get stuck in a rut here and forget the reason you came here in the first place. So many people come here and work their arse off (mainly because you don’t earn a lot of money here…) and forget why they chose to leave their home country. Sometimes you need to take a step back and ask yourself, “What am i doing?” before committing to working every day just so you can afford to eat at a nicer restaurant as opposed to eating street food every night. I was happy because i saw the bigger picture; it’s not about me working to feel a sense of importance, it’s about me taking advantage of the fact i am living in a different continent and that i should absorb the culture as much as i can before it’s too late.
Anyway, in summary, nice trip. I need to do this more often…