Well, I've been in Chiang Mai for about a week and man its been intense so far. So many new experiences it's impossible to list or even think about all of them. At the moment I am living with a host family, haha which is interesting because my Thai is very poor. But its cool. I get to eat authentic home made Thai food every morning and evening, cant complain much. Though the language proficiency will be changing soon because I am taking an intensive Thai language class over at Payap University every morning.
The first few days were a bit too vivid but I am getting used to everything now. It's funny how comfortable with traveling a person can get, most things don't even phase me anymore, like grabbing a red truck or negotiating with the market vendors. Didn't have much time to get out and see the city until a few night ago when all the staff went out to Mae On, a small village east of Chiang Mai, for the Low Kratong festival. It translates to something like the "lantern float" festival. The festivities include a copious amount of fireworks and a lantern competition. Everyone gets a shot at making their paper lantern through a ring about 5 meters off the ground. And of course Pi Josh and Pi Kat took away the 500 baht prize. It was also a great place to meet the climbing community around Chiang Mai and Thailand in general, plus we met the Mayor of Mae On. Last night everyone went down to the river to watch the little offerings be pushed off into the river. There was a lot of beer involved and a bottle of whiskey of course.
|Some of the Loy Kathrong crew|
|Katie and Pi Tune getting ready for flight|
|Katie and Pi Tune about to not win the competition|
|Katie and I letting one off, it didn't win either|
|The grand pu-ba|
The other half of my days are spent over at Chiang Mai Rock Climbing Adventures (CMRCA) working on various projects. This weeks project was developing emergency protocols and evacuation plans for a number of locations. We actually were just out at Crazy Horse Buttress this past weekend teaching the protocols to everyone and running through some practice scenarios to test it out. It has definitely been a learning experience. My goal by the end of my time here is to produce a guides manual, which will help facilitate a high standard of guiding practices. Uber excited about it.
|Crazy Horse Buttress|
|Teaching everyone about the new emergency protocols|
| Pi Taw filming the tyrolean set up|
Pi Josh had an accident