Saturday, January 27, 2007

Wandering Mae Sod

I've been riding around Mae Sot on my friend Patch's motorcycle. It looks like a scooter, but it actually shifts gears and goes pretty fast. I had it up to 70 or 80 kph at times. It's really fun to ride. All the motorcycles squeeze past the cars and line up at the stop lights. When the light turns green there might be 15 - 20 motorcycles all taking off at once. It feels like a race!

Just been wandering around Mae Sot today. Went to breakfast at the muslim breakfast place again. Mmmmmm... Then walked around the market looking for some flip flops that would fit me. Got lots of smiles when I pointed to my feet and said "Yai", Thai for big. Eventually, I found a shop that had a pair of flip flops that were nearly big enough for me and bought them. That was my feat for the day (bad pun intended).

Visited a few of the Wats (Buddish Temples) in Mae Sot. Here's a couple photos. They are quite magnificent.

Here are a couple pictures taken by a Taiwanese friend who was living in Mae Sot and shared some photos of town with me.

My friend Patch and I will be heading up north to install a micro-hydro electric project. Though, it sounds like there may not be much work for me to do there. There are going to be many many people there to work, but, even if I don't get to work, it will be an interesting trip and I will learn a lot about renewable energy.

I'll be returning to Bangkok on Feb. 10th and hope to be able to post some photos then. Will be playing in an ultimate frizbee tournament there, which will be really fun.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Guest House and Muslim Breakfast

This is the nice guesthouse in Mae Sot where I'm staying for a few days before heading out to the village.

There is this place called Muslim Breakfast in Mae Sot. They have awesome food. It is more Indian food than Thai. The staple is naan. A really tasty and elasticy thin bread that is cooked in a wood fired oven. You can tear off a small piece of naan and use it to "grab" some curry or chick peas. Samosas are a good side dish, as well as, some sweet milk tea. Mmmmmmm...

The naan dough is flattened and then stuck to the roof of the oven to cook.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Fairbanks to Seattle to Bangkok

Just arrived in Bangkok last night. I was here in 2000. It is fun because I still remember my way around a bit. I'm on my way up north to Mae Sod tonight on an overnight bus. I catch the bus at 10:30 PM and arrive at around 6 AM. Hope I can catch some zzzzz's along the way.

I haven't taken any photos yet, but when I do, I'll try to post them. I hope to capture some of the work that will be done while i'm here to install a micro-hydro electric project in a refugee camp along the burma border with Thailand. Should be a pretty neat project and will take approximately 2 weeks to complete. I'm excited to learn more about renewable energy.

Also, I just got to spend the weekend in Seattle with some of my favorite people around. It was a great weekend. Wish I could see those folks more often!

I had forgotten how there is so much crap in the air in Bangkok. You can walk around and see the air pollution. So many interesting, nice, gross, smokey, and food smells all at once. Overwhelming to the nose at times. The only thing to do is to try to isolate one of the smells and focus on it, cause otherwise, it's just too much all at once.

Also, just soooo many people. Maybe I noticed this is because I live in Fairbanks where there aren't that many people. But, really, I think there are just a whole lot of people here. I've enjoyed people watching and just wandering around. I'm getting excited for my next meal too. I've already eaten a number of my favorite things and am looking forward still to eating some pineapple, some curry, and some pad thai. I also remember a fried thing with bananas, condensed milk, and chocolate syrup that was pretty yummy, but I haven't been able to find that yet.

I hope to add photos soon.