Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Tuk Tuk


Tuk Tuk
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
Here is a picture of me defying death by Tuk Tuk. I lost my hat shortly after taking this shot. :( These three-wheeled gas powered scooters are driven by madmen. Most of my time walking around was spent either trying to avoid be killed by one or by trying to tell a persistent driver "no" to a ride.

Wat Umong


Wat Umong
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
Wat Umong was the coolest of the temples I've visited so far. The atmosphere was neat because it was in the jungle outside of Chiang Mai, they had a prayer and sermon playing continuously over a PA system throughout compound, and much of the Wat consists of underground tunnels! These were built for a monk who was clairvoyant. The tunnels snake through the hillside and end in little shrines or deadend with blank walls. It was really creepy walking around underneath the jungle floor!

Buddha


Buddha
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
This was a cool Buddha in the jungle outside of Wat Umong. What was interesting about this one was that it had no food or drink placed before, just incense.

Toilet paper?


Toilet paper?
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
All of the temples have public restrooms, but most of them are rather spartan. Who needs toilet paper when you have a "fresh" basin of water and a bowl?

Happy Doggies!


Happy Doggies!
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
I found this outdoor restaurant near the river and stopped in for a bite. Most of the plates cost less than $1.50, so I've been happily snacking along throughout the day. While sitting down I noticed that about half of the 30-odd tables had dogs asleep under them! While eating my meal and watching the doggies I noticed that they were all exceptionally clean, had their nails trimmed, and were FAT. It turns out that the owners of the place rescue dogs and find homes for them.

Night Market


Night Market
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
The night market is this multi-block affair that lines the streets and occupies a four story building. It goes from 6:00 pm until midnite. The silk and cotton goods are beautiful, but the variety of food that is for sale is spectacular. Unfortunately, it is hard to photograph due to low light and my poor photography skills.

Banana Roti


Banana Roti
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
I went to the night market and totally pigged out on random food. This was a banada chocolate roti made by a Malaysian lady. The street vendors rock!

Spirit Houses


Spirit Houses
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
Thais build little hosues outside their buildings for the spirits to live in. The idea is that the spirit houses are nicer than the real houses so the spirits will live their and leave the human occupants alone. Every morning fresh incense, food, and drink is provided for the spirits.

Morning Service


Morning Service
Originally uploaded by buckyreed.
There is a temple near my hotel that was filled with monks listening to a service yesterday. There is a religious holiday this week celebrating the Buddha's birth, enlightenment, and death. There is a lot of activity around the temples and the monks are eager to talk about it.