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I’ve been a bit remiss posting to GNA. Since I last posted, I moved to Tha Ton…Thaton…either is acceptable...and refused the house I thought I would rent due to general condition of the property.

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I did rent a small efficiency at Areeya Phuree, a run down but pleasant old resort on the riverfront. It is run by Ai with the help of Mem…his mother and some staff who seems to come and go as they please and kinda keep things going. I paid 6000 baht a month which comes to about $180 US as a longstay rent but short stay is whatever you can get them to agree to and seldom more than 300 baht a night which is about all this old place is worth. They moved me to a bungalow after about a week and the price stayed the IMG 5264 1024x768same.

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 I spent the next month riding Scoot over the mountains and through the hill tribe villages, as far  south as Fang and then northwest and circling back to Mae Ai and Thaton.

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The countryside is lovely and there is much to see and do. There are many Wats (temples) and hill tribes and, of course, the river.

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I made a friend who lives at Ban Mae Mok Cham and went to visit him several times. He’s an Aussie and a good guy and has a lovely home. There was also a little place where I could stop and have soup and watch the river go by.

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I spent a month in Thaton and developed an affection for several people there including a gorgeous Shan lady by the name of Khum who is a friend, married to a Canadian ….and a beautiful Chinese woman, Lin Na, who lives west of Fang where she runs her mother’s store. I smiled a lot when in the company of either of these two lovelies.

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Lin I would ask Lin to marry me but since I don’t speak Chinese and she doesn’t speak English….and since we’ve only had one date….and since I’m old….and poor….and bald…and she’s 45 and lovely and not desperate….why get all excited over nothin? LOL Anyhow...

There was a fellow by the name of  Eric I liked and rode with several times and one of my buddies from Chiangrai is also named Eric and another great Scooter companion along with Captain Bill.

I tried the food at many places in the area and found a couple of spots I liked a lot including Sunshine Cafe in Thaton.

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Mae Ai is only about 7km from Thaton and has a lot more to offer and Fang is 22km and truly worth the visit to shop or get a haircut or buy clothes. There is a bypass around Fang which has one traffic light and if you turn right (going south) and then bear left when the road forks (away from the hot springs) you will wind first through some villages and residential areas and then come to citrus farms and then on to a beautiful ride in a big loop over the mountains and back to Mae Ai. There is a lovely orange plantation and gardens with a restaurant back in the mountains. It’s easy to find. Just ask for the Orange Palace.

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I dropped Scoot off in Chiangrai then took the riverboat back to Thaton, picked up my luggage and took the boat back to Chiangrai, where I stayed a couple of days, before boarding a minivan for the border crossing into Laos which I’ll cover in the next post.

I met many nice people along the way and made some friends…like John in Chiangrai who saved my bacon when my legs acted up. I had the opportunity to say goodbye to them and I will truly miss them. We had dinner and a few beers before I left and I was sad to take my leave but such is life. Making friends and saying goodbye seems to have become my calling card.

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Guess that’s it for this one.