Arrived safe and sound in Luang Phabang, Laos. As usual had many people trying to rip me off at the airport :( but found a reasonable guest house and as usual only got slightly ripped off for the ride into town from the airport.
I have been out searching for a better place to stay. One good prospect, but I'll still look some more in the morning. Any suggestions from you crazy travelers would be welcomed :) Not sure if it's a Sunday thing here, but most of the shops are closed... very strange feeling, I hope the town "wakes up" tomorrow!
Chiang Mai has been really lovely! Spent a couple of days roaming the city, then 4 days learning to cook Thai food... yum! I've also been to the zoo, several markets (including a buffalo market this morning... thanks Caroline!), have visited several temples (including Wat Suthep), went to a Monk Chat and got Laos and China visa sorted out... A really great eight days!
I ran into a couple of the beautifull people from Koh Tao (Jamie and Kathy, hope to see you both in Laos!) Also met two women from England who are working in Thailand teaching English (Caroline and Niki, I really enjoyed meeting you!)
I'm still missing all the folks from Koh Tao, I definately appreciated meeting up with Jamie and Kathy here... What a small world! I've also been jonesing for diving, so it was really great to hear that the weather has been carp on Tao since I left :) Just kidding... Congrats Marie on becoming a DM!!! Hope the 6-way snorkel test is a blast for the current DMTs! You are all bastards for seeing turtles and leopard sharks, but I forgive you ;) Ahem...
Tomorrow afternoon, I'm flying to Luang Prabang in Laos. Not sure if I'll travel around much or just hang there for a couple of weeks. Sounds like there are lots of lovely day trips... and the town sounds like a great place to just be for a while... If it's anything like Chiang Mai I'll be really happy!
I'm also thinking about going into China overland from Laos and not using my flight from Bangkok to Hong Kong.. Will probably head up to Yunnan for a few weaks then wind down to Hong Kong, then up the east coast to tour tea estates. Dragon Well, here I come!
Loads of Love to you all!!!
Just a quick note to let you all know that I'm on the road again. I'm leaving for Chiang Mai today. Will stop for the night on Koh Samui and then fly up north tomorrow morning.
I feel really at home here and I'm going to miss a lot of people :( I'm also feeling ready to get on with the journey, to explore strange new worlds and brave new people ;) I'm really looking forward to taking a Thai cooking class and doing a little treking before heading over to Laos.
Lots of love to you all!
Just a short update: I'm nearly done with the divemaster course. Expect to be done sometime next week. I feel like I have learned so much over the last few weeks. I have quite enjoyed the diving and the school here and I'm really looking forward to diving in Australia when/if I get there.
Will probably head for Laos and the Chang Mai for a few weeks each and then for Hong Kong and the rest of China (having deja-vu, did I say this in a previous post? :) Had a really nice chat with some other travelers last night who highly recomended china and gave me some good advice, yay!
I finally got hold of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix today, so am working my way through this humungous volume! On this account I may not be checking email for the next few days :)
Tons of Love to you all!