I flew out on August 1 from Atlanta to Narita, Japan (about 14 hours), had a few hours in Japan before connecting to Bangkok (6 hour flight). Overall, by the time I checked into the Novotel by the airport I had been travelling for over 24 hours. I showered and set my alarm for four hours later to awaken and travel on Thai Airways to Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai from my room at the Lotus hotel:
The view from the front of the hotel:
After meeting with hotel folks and Habitat for Humanity folks during the day, that evening we went to a Thai cultural center called Khum Khantoke.
We had a great dinner of Northern Thai cuisine while being entertained by the music and dancers:
I even got in on some of the dance action:
The next morning, I had breakfast in the Lotus. My favorite thing was a rice flour and coconut milk mixture that was fried into a half sphere. Very tasty.
For lunch, I had a local specialty called khao soi:
That afternoon, we went to the Maesa Elephant Camp, where I got to ride and feed an elephant. The ride was about 30 minutes long, and it is scarier than it looks. I promise.