Winter 17/18 – Even in Pai time does fly

A Trip to the Mountains

Pat wanted to take Brigitte for a ride to the Burmese border. He asked us if we wanted to come. Mailin went with Mark on his bike, Addye on her Scoopy and I got a Yamaha for the day.

My ride today: A 115 cc Yamaha Semiautomatic
My ride today: A 115 cc Yamaha Semiautomatic

"Fall" is almost the best time in Pai
The beginning of "Fall" is almost the best time in Pai. It is dry and everything is green. The best thing: There is still not too much burning and the air is clean and blue!

Extensive farming cuts a lot of roads into the mountains
Extensive farming cuts a lot of roads into the mountains

There is a small stream coming down the mountain
There is a small stream coming down the mountain – it does fuck the road

One pipe could easy fix this in the dry season
One pipe could easy fix this in the dry season

Some Bee construction
Some Bee construction. Not sure if the farming honey here.

Burma in the distance
Burma in the distance

Up on the hill in the middle is the Myanmar Army base
Up on the hill in the middle is the Myanmar Army base

The last Village before Myanmar

The last village before Myanmar
The last village before Myanmar

This is where the road ends. A small hamlet in the middle of nowhere. Last year the government build a new school for the kids from this village and the other ones around. For the opening they Thai Princess flew in. Must have been the biggest day ever for this village.
There are a few basic shops and an army outpost on a hill next to the school.
They even have a solar field to generate some power.

Like everywhere here - dogs greet you when you enter a village
Like everywhere here – dogs greet you when you enter a village

A solar field on the right and the new school up the hill on the left
A solar field on the right and the new school up the hill on the left

Most of the houses look like this
Most of the houses look like this one. A super basic construction with a tin roof.

This woman is over 100 years old!
This woman is over 100 years old!

View from the Thai Army base
View from the Thai Army base. Pat knows a few guys here so we could drive into. Got some water and chilled a bit in the shade.

The new school
The new school

On the way back some sad remains of the big trees that stand here before
On the way back some sad remains of the big trees that stand here before

It looks green but some sort of farming is going on all over the place
It looks green and unspoiled but some sort of farming is going on all over the place

More fun on the way back
More fun on the way back

The best time - blue sky and almost no smoke
The best time – blue sky and almost no smoke

Nice rocks in between the green
Nice rocks in between the green

On the way back I stopped at the little temple
On the way back I stopped at the little temple

There was only one monk sweeping leaves. Quite peaceful.
There was only one monk sweeping leaves. Quite peaceful.

More rocks and the start of all evil - cows
More rocks and the start of all evil – cows

Time to head back before it gets dark. The light on the bikes are not really good at night.
Time to head back before it gets dark. The light on the bikes are not really good at night

Empty roads and Myanmar somewhere in the distance
Empty roads and Myanmar somewhere in the distance

Our trip today
Our trip today. I switched it on a few kilometres after Pai

Music Nights at Mojo

The new place in town if you want to hear loud handmade music. The pictures are from a few evenings.

Back at Mojo - Supaporn Santi on the guitar
Back at Mojo – Supaporn Santi on the guitar

Wiriya Wiseatkun - the Pai Multitalent
Wiriya Wiseatkun – the Pai Multitalent

Always nice to listen to her
Always nice to listen to her

Only one song but nice
She sang nly one song

Open mic - everybody can come on stage!
Open mic – everybody can come on stage!

Kittideis Bunthanom
Kittideis Bunthanom

Evenings like this!
Evenings like this!

And there was this guy! Tepraksa Aekchai
And there was this guy! Tepraksa Aekchai

He is 110% full power all the time
He is 110% full power all the time

Full power
Full power

There you go!
There you go!

The base players usually prefer this corner
The bass players usually prefer this corner

Rock' n' Roll it is!
Rock' n' Roll it is!

The other bass man in the back
The other bass man in the back

Nate
Nate

The one and only KOB Drummer
The one and only KOB Drummer

Jason long hair
Jason long hair

Mr Base
Mr Base

One of the house drummers
One of the house drummers

And the usual Pai Days

Breakfast is included with the bungalow at Twin Hut. They stop serving before 11 so you have to set the alarm at 10:50 and order at last. I have only a fruit salad and black coffee every day and so the day starts.
You meet everybody at the breakfast tables and sometimes you sit here and chat till way after midday.
After that it is usually email and internet and before you know it is time for the sunset beer. From time to time somebody might visit, you might need something from town. The days fly and so do the weeks.
Evenings usually are filled with music or a birthday party or something like that. Some evenings we are too lazy to go out and hang at our campfire. If I am lucky somebody does a BBQ.

In the begin of the season one is about 0,50€
In the begin of the season one is about 0,50€

Sundowner in the hammock
Sundowner in the hammock

Fresh from the tree in front of the bungalow!
Fresh from the tree in front of the bungalow!

The Twin-Hut gang
The Twin-Hut gang

Fat Cat Vegetarian Burger
Fat Cat Vegetarian Burger

Woah - even the filter is golden
Woah – even the filter is golden

Monster Khao Soi Tofu
Monster Khao Soi Tofu

Laundry day for Children Day
Laundry day for Children Day. Great idea! The kids collect their old toys and they get donated to kids that have no toys. recycling at its best!

In the night they got moved under the roof
In the night they got moved under the roof

Khao Soi again!
Khao Soi again!

White sleeps and sleeps
White sleeps and sleeps

Nice colours
Nice colours

Winter 17/18 – Back in Pai

The big question every year – how much more fucked up is the town. How many new buildings, how many new bungalow places and how many old places are gone. And I am surprised by the change every year. Some buildings do not even survive one year. And let’s not talk about businesses. In the daytime, I only care about the view from my bungalow of course. Still OK but was so much better a few years ago.
 
View from my bungalow - more empty bungalows over the field
View from my bungalow – more empty bungalows over the field

Guess I have to use the hammock this way. I see more green but less mountains
Guess I have to use the hammock this way. I see more green but less mountains.
Breakfast at Twin-Hut is still the same. I have coffee and a fruit salad every day.

White - still sleeping
White – still sleeping

Pai Walking Street

Rahel never used her new camera in the night so we went to walking street for a few shots.

Pai Thai Tapas
Pai Thai Tapas

Pai Crêpes
Pai Crêpes

The master at the wok
The master at the wok

A bit like a show kitchen
A bit like a show kitchen

But why not?
But why not?

Doing what they do best
Doing what they do best – every stall tries hard to get some biz. Some do better some not. There was a time when you could not walk in walking street in the main season. It was too crowded. Now you find days where not even the hawkers come out and sell something on the street.

Preparing jummy food
Preparing jummy food

Sure thing you have a Shushi guy
Sure thing you have a Shushi guy

Rolls and since a few years Potato Twist as well
Rolls and since a few years Potato Twist as well

We do not have the white ones
We do not have the white ones

And the fat street dogs waiting
And the fat street dogs waiting

Me need discount!
Me need discount!

Swiss perfection
Swiss perfection

He he
He he

Relax at the tables
Relax at the tables

Mojo Bar

The transformation from a Pizza Place to the new music hot spot in town. Mojo became my favorite music place for this winter trip. I sure hope it stays that way for long!

The best man at the drums
The best man at the drums

Stay cool
Stay cool

The Master
The Master

You are my pride and joy
You are my pride and joy

The second Bass Man
The second Bass Man

Supaporn "Boy" Sunti on guitar
Supaporn "Boy" Sunti on guitar

The Swedish house mafia
The Swedish house mafia

Other than that – my favorite food place is gone as well. Rent got so high that they could not make any biz anymore. That was the worst of news on this trip.

A new Khao Soy place
A new Khao Soy place

Still sleeping
Still sleeping

Breakfast at Twin Hut
Breakfast at Twin Hut

Time for a shower
Time for a shower

Clouds do make for better sunsets
Clouds do make for better sunsets

At THE walking street coffee place
At THE walking street coffee place

A few Days in Phố Châu

Charity Work with Mr. Trần

Mr. Trần Đình Trợ is not an ordinary man. He is out there to help others. And he does it every day! I use Mr. Trần here so you do not confuse him with my friend Trần! Mr. Trần usually wears a hat so it is easy to know who is who!

Mr. Trần and me
My friend Trần took me to meet Mr. Trần. We went to the English School he is running on the side. They collect books for the children. Fixed a few computers and provide internet in the classroom. But the main purpose of the building is giving free English class to kids that could not afford it otherwise.

Mr. Trần gives the contributions and sits for the proofing picture
One day he went out to give donations and money to people. Trần asked if I want to ride along. Gitte and Gieter stayed at the same hotel so we took them too. Mr. Trần collects donations and gives them to those who are in need. This picture is from our second stop that day. We went to a home where the parents take care of their son. His hip is open and he has multiple other problems. Money and supplies where dropped and a picture to proof that the family got the donation is taken. On the green paper you see a list of names and the amount they gave. This way everybody can be sure that the money they gave reaches the people.

On the way to the next house - Heenezy and Maria protect us!
On the way to the next house – Heenezy and Maria protect us. You do read right: Heenezy! The car is not from the organization. Somebody drove us with his car so we could go from house to house. Since some people get not only money we needed a car to transport the other things.

House and household goods donated
House and household goods donated. A guy from the local government was also there and a few neighbors to celebrate.

Counting the donation money
Counting the donation money

Group photo
Group photo. You can see how much they got on the wall. Not sure if you really need to have a banner like that all the time but that is the way they do it.
I was hoping for the food they prepared but we went on to the next place after the picture.

Another House
Another House – this one still under construction. We stopped at a few more places and where back at our hotel in the late afternoon. Quite a day different from the others. And very interesting as well.

The Green Food Place in Phố Châu

Food place in Phố Châu

Food place in Phố Châu
Nothing special but I liked the green walls and the contrast with the orange and red plastic.

Photo shooting at the Temple

Trần is into Photography and one of his friends is a Photographer. One afternoon we tagged along with him to a temple where he took some pictures of an old man. I took the opportunity to get a few pictures as well. But the guy had my lens so I only could use the 50mm and of course I had to stay back and could not get the best angle.

Temple Roof

Reading at the temple
So this is staged – not like the usual pictures I take

Happy old man
He does look like a happy old man!

Do you like my pictures?
Not sure why but they put me there to show him the pictures so they could get some shoots with us.

At the Chinese Temple

Tree at the temple

Sunset at the temple
Sunset at the temple – not really – only some clouds.
We went to another small temple far from the main road.

Baby Goat
Baby Goat

Kids on a bike
Kids on a bike

Bringing home the buffalo
Bringing home the buffalo

Can I have a picture with you?
Can I have a picture with you? Sure enough word spreads fast when a tall white guy stands in the fields. So everybody stopped and they waited to see what we do.

Everybody came over to see what we do

Even he came over for a selfie with me
Even he came over for a selfie with me

Back in Phố Châu

At the butcher shop
At the butcher shop in the morning

Song Hà - a famous Vietnamese writer
Song Hà – a famous Vietnamese writer. He offered me a drink and we took a picture together. He put me on his Facebook for a while and I never saw that many likes for a picture in one day.

Picture with the monk
Trần took me to a temple. They wanted a picture with me as well.

Dinner at the temple
Later another monk came over and walked us round the temple. He invited us to stay for dinner. Great – only vegetarian food here. One of the monks worked in East Germany before and could speak German. So he was happy to talk to me in German. He still has his former wife and kid over there in Germany and visits every year. Small world!

Dinner with friends of Trần
Nice dinner – not too much food for me but the beer was cold

And a picture with the girls
The next evening we went to meet some of Trần’s friends. A picture with the girls – why not?

At the Wedding Shop
At the Wedding Shop

Phan Chau Trinh School

Strange things happen everywhere. More or less this school is in the middle of nowhere and a German guy helped to build this school and another one in Quang Nam. Rudolf Walther gave 500.000€ the German World University Service gave some and the rest of the money was from the province government. The school can also be used as shelter if the province gets flooded.

Schoolboard
The school board

The School Guard
The School Guard

Phan Chau Trinh School
Phan Chau Trinh School

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