I met Martin, 59, from Germany (or how he likes to say from Bavaria) in Nan, where we mostly shared an entire Guesthouse. I am amazed at how he travels and how he turns the most basic things into adventures. Remember, you don't need much to make moments special !
13 November 2017
I woke up very early so I could start hiking for 1h30 (mostly to avoid the heat) to catch my bus in Chiang Klang to go back to Nan city. In the dead of the night (mostly with no street lights whatsoever) I've never seen so many wild dogs barking and following me as I did this day. Also: Thai people are easily scared in the dark, especially from foreigners 😂
11 November 2017
She took me hiking for a few miles along the Nan river...WOW !
10 November 2017
I met this very nice Peace Corps volunteer on my way from Chiang Mai to Nan. She invited me to her place, in a small village in Nan Province. Doesn't it look amazing ?
9 November 2017
6 November 2017
Nan (North Thailand) is such a beautiful place. You will see 3 or 4 foreigners, everybody is going to look at you, ask you to take their pictures, sneak a picture or ask you, talk to you...nothing like the other big touristy places ! Definitely worth a few days ! You'll also see some of the most beautiful temples there are in Thailand !
5 November 2017
Just got a job to photograph for an elephant sanctuary brochure. These creatures are majestic. Even tough they don't let people ride elephants and make medecine, take mud baths, baths with the tourists it still remains a big business industry and didn't really enjoy the feeling.
3 November 2017
The place to be ! A wonderful sight seeing people lighting up the lantern and sending away all the bad luck.
2 November 2017
If you go to Thailand plan your trip so that you can see the Loi Krathong festival ! Simply amazing ! The first day at the three kings monument these girls perfomed traditional thai dance. Amazingly beautiful to watch.
31 October 2017
Chiang Mai ! Beautiful city, laidback feeling, crazy expensive touristy activities (elephant sanctuaries, hill tribe and hiking tours), where you'll fall in love with the sounds of the girls ending their sentences with "djaaaaoooo" ! You'll find plenty of temples, messages anywhere are to be found, a lot of chinese tourists, monks that speak English, expensive restaurants, inexpensive food and very good markets ! Without any doubt a must see for every normal tourist !
22 October 2017
Day 2: people go to the temple and walk around it and throw the same things to the people and it still is a happy ceremony. After they have given the offerings to the temple they pray.
21 October 2017
Day 1 of the ceremony: driving around the village in the car where they display the offerings (food, money) and also the picture of the deceased person. This is a HAPPY ceremoney where people sing and laugh and drink. They throw little paper flowers, little coins and sweets on the street. Young and old fight for it and couldn't have more fun while collecting ! At the end of the day young kids have entertainment on the premise of the temple and older people enjoy live music and drinks.
20 October 2017
During the preparations for the ceremony I helped making banana rice cakes rolled in banana leaves for half a day. It is amazing how people gather and help each other. You can find it anywhere in Thailand and they taste delicious !
19 October 2017
Nong Muen Than, in At Samat, the Province of Roi Et (Northeast Thailand). Here I will spend 5 days in total to help out and assist in a traditional Thai ceremony of a deceased person.
18 October 2017
Aren't Thai grandmothers the cutest ?
Isaan is famous for rice fields. In villages people have big fields that can feed entire families for an entier year. October is the perfect time to go and see. Working in the rice fields is no easy task, but definitely worth it. Villagers are very proud about their rice and really like telling you how much they own ! Some also sleep in the rice fields, be it for a nap or at night.
Surprisingly in Ban Ba Yaow (and other small villages) you will find many people (even monks) going to university.
Temples in very small villages are nothing like the temples you'll see in the touristy areas. They are very basic, especially the forest temples. It really is something to see.
17 October 2017
Grandma Yai wakes up at 4 a.m. every day to prepare the food for the monks. She prepares the rice the traditional way (because it tastes better). Mostly eldery people go to the temple every day.
16 October 2017
People tend to say that Thailand cannot be"off the beaten track" anymore. Well...go to Isaan (Northeast Thailand). Drive through some villages and you will see traditional Thai life. People will be surprised to see you and a simply wai with sawatdii krap will get you some points ! No English, no 7 Eleven, no eating out. Nothing ! Just pure normal life ! They also speak predominantly Isaan and not Thai.
Ban Ba Yaow is 35 km west of Khon Kaen in Isaan. Beautiful rice fields, unpaved roads, bananas everywhere, it just feels like paradise !
9 October 2017
Wat Saket, Bangkok
8 October 2017
In Thailand, where religion plays a very important role, you will be amazed at how young and old take it seriously to go to temples and pray. Buddhism is omnipresent in their lives.
4 October 2017
You get a culture shock when you arrive in Bangkok you say ? How many people eat pork blood, pork intestines and fried pork skin as a first meal when they arrive at 8 a.m. in Bangkok ? Well if you get to stay with a local and you just say you eat everything, chances are high you get something you usually wouldn't eat at breakfast ! Maen didn't really spoke English, nonetheless spending 4 days with him and his family was not only a culture shock (food, bathroom, drinking etc.) but also a great experience to learn how to communicate and also to understand a different language ! Everybody should experience this !