Saturday, November 26, 2016

Ziiiiiiiippppppp Liiiiiiiinnnnnneeeee!

 Sunday, Nov 20.  Early start today!  Zip Lining!!  We had along drive up, up, up into the mountains.  Cooler than in town and gorgeous.  Then we geared up and off we went!   I was with a group from Germany, several of them had never zipped before!
Absolutely gorgeous up in the mountains.

  Another drive even higher up, then a short hike to the first platform.
Zip lining away... zip lining awa-ay!

Beautiful blue skies... can you see the moon in the center?


Oh my... we had to walk across this...
Check out the website.  At the bottom is the map of the site.  Zip lines and skate board, bike, walking ropes, blocks... not just the normal zips!  What a blast!
Yep, a skateboard!!

Very well run and safe.  Their motto: No Empty Promises, Just Pure Simple Fun!  And it was!
Supposed to cross facing the ropes... I walked on the cable like a tight rope!!

Then it was followed by a very nice buffet lunch.  Another wonderful adventure!

Returned to the hotel, took a shower and a rest then off to the Sunday Night Market!  Stopped for dinner at a burger place.  WOW!  It rivels anything in the US! 

 Then the Sunday Night Walking market.  OMG.  Can not even walk.  It is PACKED like 
sardines.  Totally Crazy.  Hundreds of booths selling arts, crafts, clothes and food.  Lots of street musicians.  Just crazy.  Stayed a while then headed back to the hotel.  Too difficult to get around.  But quite an experience.

My last night.  Got some packing done.  Leave in the am.
Good night!

Thai Cooking Class!

At the local produce market.

The rest of Saturday: a Thai cooking class.  We were all picked up at our hotels then we were taken to a local produce market to look around and learn about the local produce we would be using.

Snooky teaching us about the produce and spices we would use.  And
some shortcuts!
 Then off to the cooking school.  It was a GREAT class!  Our teacher, Snooky, was a hoot!  There were folks from Great Britain, South Africa, Ireland and one other American. We got to choose our appetizer, soup, curry paste and main dish that we wanted to cook.
The wash stations at the cooking school.  Aren't they awesome?

Our cooking stations for 10 students.
 The class is very well run.  The prep area and the cooking stations are set up very well.
Our prep area.

Snooky showing off his example.

My first creations: cashew chicken and shrimp sweet and sour soup.
And afterwards, we got to eat everything we made!  
And it was all SCRUMPTIOUS!! 
 And at the end we were given a recipe book with all the recipes in it.  Definitely an excellent way to spend the afternoon/evening!
Snooky explaining about steaming rice (the woven basket is the rice steamer!)
and sticky rice.  

Cooking at stations.

Fresh spring rolls, egg roll, mango sticky rice and Chiang Mai noodles
made with Khao soy paste.

Decided to take a tuk tuk back to the hotel.

Great day.  More tomorrow!

Temples and Tails in the Old City

Wat Phantao

 Saturday, Nov 19.  Aaaaahhhhh, it was sooooo nice getting to sleep with air conditioning!  And: no barking dogs!
After breakfast I headed back into the old town to wander and see some temples.  I visited Wat Chiang Man and Wat Phantao and both were nice.

Pups need the serenity of Buddha as well.

The monks care for the dogs at the temples.

Wat Chedi Luang

Most of the temples are incredibly elaborate.

Fascinating ruins.

Then I found Wat Chedi Luang and it is fantastic!  It is one of the most popularsites.  My favorite part was the ruins behind the main, modern, temple.  Reminded me of the ruins in Siem Reap, Cambodia that we visited last year.

 At noon I met Naomi, a friend of Shannon (my executive assistant) who is traveling with her 13 year old daughter, Sarah.  They were blogging about life as they camped around the USA for six months, then spent a month in Italy and have been living in Chiang Mai since January!  What an incredible adventure for this mom and daughter!  We had a nice visit over a wonderful fruit smoothie.

The monks accept donations to care for the dogs.

Back to the hotel to clean up, then off for my Thai cooking class!
Watch for that on the next installment of this blog!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Greetings from Chiang Mai!

Friday, Nov 18.  Got packed this am for a couple of days in Chiang Mai.  Have reservations for a room, a cooking class and zip lining.  But, morning work first!

Got Mary, one of the moms, spayed today.  Yay!  Only four to go!  But they all keep escaping and going back to the puppies.  Hard to get them dried up if they keep nursing!

View from my room in Chiang Mai.  I am on 4th floor.

Camping on the roof of the building across the street!  It has to be baking in there!

Monks heading to the temple or morning prayer services.

The apartment building across from my hotel.  Can see the tent on the roof in the
upper right corner.

Finally got to jump on the shuttle van to go into the city.  It is about a 90 minute drive.  Got dropped off at my hotel, settled in then managed to catch up with Dr Vicky (staying one more night) and Andrea, a friend from Aberdeen that just happens to be in Chiang Mai at the same time!  We are all staying in very different parts of the city, so we met at the ENP office then walked to a Mexican restaurant for dinner!!!!  LOL!
Dr Vicky, Andrea and Stacy!  

 I really like the food we have at the park... but I was ready for a change.  Mexican hit the spot!  We had a very fun visit, then trekked back to our respective abodes.  CM really comes alive at night.  Probably because it is so hot during the day.  No worries walking on our own once we separated.

What a fun evening.  Later!