Chiang Mai, Thailand (Post #2)

After a full day of cooking, we were hungry, hungry for some trekking/elephant riding/white water rafting. So at 8am we hopped in the back of a truck and began getting acquainted with the other 10 individuals who had joined the tour. These people, as they always do, defined our experience. We opted to skip breakfast – to up our irritability index – but within 10 minutes, four American girls had offered us their food. It was such a kind gesture and we appreciated more than they knew (perhaps this was a hidden reminder for how to treat strangers? If so, message received).

Hanging

Hanging

The tour began with a trek to a waterfall and then onwards to the highly anticipated elephant ride. Have you ever ridden an elephant? It’s harder than you might think. Elephants are so big that their shoulder blades shift several feet back and forth when they walk and you have to struggle to hang on, clamping your thighs around their neck (which feels like a rough carpet). But the day would not be complete without some river rafting (right?), so after a quick dip, we ran the class five rapids of the Southeast Asia’s calmest river to finish off a full day … or one that had only just begun.

Riding Giants

Riding Giants

Riding Giants

Riding Giants

We made plans to rendezvous with the group at Holland bar, on the night of Holland’s world cup match. Did we mention that the Dutch Kurt Russell was also on our tour? He was. We have about 30 pictures to prove it. The game began and the epicness of the night was just starting. Somehow within the hour, everyone at the bar was a friend and when Holland scored (and eventually won), cheering erupted and did not stop. We all poured out onto the streets and danced and sang into the wee hours. Videos were taken. It was one of the best nights of the trip…so far.

Holland!!

Holland!!

Chill Zone: High

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About Clark & Noel

Welcome to Looking for the Chill Zone, our attempt to escape from the hectic life of San Francisco to find peace, serenity and utter fulfillment in the rainforests, beaches, temples and cultures of Southeast Asia. Yes, our quest to become bikram yoga instructors, live in an ashram and find our spiritual center point is finally here. This blog is co-written by Noel Rosencranz-Engelmann and Clark Stephens, or Clark Stephens and Noel Rosencranz-Engelmann, depending on the entry. Bonus points for those who can tell who wrote which entry. Bonus points for people that cannot.
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