Friday, January 21, 2011

Sight Seeing and Eating

After 10 days of solid training, we were lucky enough to get a rest day to do whatever we desired, so we decided we would finally get out and do some sight-seeing.

The resort bus dropped us off in the heart of Chiangmai, were we went straight into a McDonalds for a Big Mac & fries. I never thought I would see the day when I said I was sick of Thai food but here it was. Back home, Thai food is something you went out for and savoured but on this day, I was looking forward to a burger.

We then ventured behind the walls of the old city of Chiangmai. We all started snapping away with our cameras at the traditional temples and buildings but 3 cafe stops and 8 temples later, it dawned on me... Unless you are into getting drunk very cheaply or getting a traditional Thai 'massage', there is not really much to do in the city.

Every ten metres was an advertisement for 'massage' or a bar but that was about it. Eventually, all of the temples looked the same and I was beginning to get a little disheartened by our trip.

We walked around for about 3hrs and finally stumbled on some more family friendly attractions. We found the flower markets which was hundreds of stalls selling fresh flowers and then some fruit markets with every fruit you could imagine for sale. Here, I ditched the cavendish banana for her more sweeter cousin, the lady finger. Better still, is the battered and deep fried version from the stalls in the street.

We moved on to lunch in a market place that made your mouth water as soon as you walked in. BBQ meat, fresh donuts, fried chicken, noodles and custard filled pancakes. I was in heaven. The best part of it was... for about $10 Australian, you could eat until you vomit.

In Australia, eating out is somewhat of a luxury as you could make the same meal at home for less than half the price you would pay in a restaurant. In Thailand, it is quite the opposite. There is no way that you could buy fresh ingredients and prepare a meal for less than what you would pay at a stall or restaurant so you are much better off eating out. This suited me just fine.

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