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The Rest of Chiangmai (beware! It’s book length)

cat1

Because of the extreme love I have for my oldest child, I agreed to take her to a cat cafe, Catmosphere.  If you could see the snarl of disgust on my face right now, you would have no doubt of how I felt about this particular activity.  There were cats everywhere.  The menu, yes we actually consumed food while these shedding, furry, temperamental animals roamed around our table, had a disclaimer that they would not replace our food or drinks if a cat had a little taste.  If that isn’t enough to deter you from eating, the hair should be.  cat2

My girls were in cat heaven.  It is no secret that Cam and I aren’t cat people.  I prefer animals that do not shed those little pesky hairs that fly up your nose making you want to snort when they are around to dislodge the tickles.  Faith is bothered by cat dander, so she stayed outside at first, but the kind owner offered her some allergy medicine that he kept handy to share with patrons (that is a little weird too), so she too could enjoy the pleasure of dining with cats.  And, much to my surprise, she wanted to try it out.

Y’all.  I just can’t even write about it anymore.  It was gross.

Gracie is now dreaming of opening her own cat cafe with her cat loving friends when she grows up.  That, my friends, is ambition in its purest form.
celadon

Our hotel offered a tour of a few local factories, so a group of us got together and decided to go.  We got to tour a pottery factory that makes a Thailand exclusive pottery called Celadon.  It is all either green or blue, and is gorgeous!  I came home with a few new pieces that make my mornings happy.silk1

Next up was the Thai silk factory.  We saw the silk worms in every stage of life.  Their last stage, wrapped in the cocoon of silk, is when they meet their boiling hot death in a pot of water.  You see, if they break through the cocoon, the strands of silk are compromised.  The first picture you see is the wooden machine used to unravel the cocoons of silk.  It is then washed and allowed to dry.  The middle picture shows how they dye the silk using ingredients from nature such as fruit and flowers.  The last picture is of the weaving process.  It was tedious at best and required loads of concentration!  She had to count each stitch to know when to change colors all the while pumping her foot to make the machine work.  The whole process was fascinating and opened my eyes to the many reasons why real silk isn’t cheap.umbrella1The last place we toured (we also went to a silver factory but it was basically just a really expensive jewelry store) was a paper umbrella factory.  I use the word factory lightly here because it was such a small place without a lot of workers.  I’m not sure if there was more behind the scenes, or if this was just a touristy spot for us all to spend money!

They took tree pulp and washed it in a vat of water, then sifted it out with that blue thing that looks like a wash board.  The next step was to pound the pulp with a mallet into flat sheets.  Once it is dried, you have paper.  I could’ve missed a few steps in there somewhere as it wasn’t incredibly organized (or in fluent English).  We did a couple ladies making the framework for wooden umbrellas.  They worked really fast and without thought, a mind-numbing job I suppose.
umbrellas

The best part was getting the umbrellas that we purchased (for a mere $2) hand painted with whatever we chose.  These guys painted amazing art faster than I could blink!

Maybe the best part was actually the Sour Cream & Onion Lays I found in the little store…waterfall2

Our last major adventure was to a waterfall nature park.  The girls got to climb and slide down rocks, play in the mud, staining all their swimsuits, and swim to their hearts content.waterfall1

It was a beautiful place!  It was cool and natural and the kids had the opportunity to just be kids.  To get dirty, scream, run, jump, and wear themselves out.  This, hands down, won the coolest adventure award (except if you ask Gracie and that nasty awesome cat place would probably win)!MISC

All of the students and their families were invited to a jungle location to experience a dining experience like none other.  The venue was gorgeous!  It looked like we were literally inside a jungle, with waterfalls and rivers and trees planted inside.  There were no walls to be found and the bathrooms could win awards for their creativity and awesomeness.

Cam ordered a fish.  A whole fish.  And he made a face when I wanted a picture, so I am posting the goofy look he gave me as punishment.  I am sure it won’t deter him from making the same face next time…

His fish wasn’t good.  My Pad Thai, however, was great!  The mango salad was SPICY and full of baby, whole dried shrimp.  We wasted that dish.  Gracie ordered cashew chicken, and we all tried to steal it, it was so good!

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Ellie enjoyed her barbecued ribs.  Multiple times.  I’m not sure how much actually made it into her mouth, but the waiters got a big kick of her messy face and hands.

So did we.

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2 thoughts on “The Rest of Chiangmai (beware! It’s book length)

  1. Wow – quite a full experience. I loved all the tours you went on. A CAT CAFE?????? I’m nearly speechless. I’ve not seen that in any of the countries I’ve been in. I bought some beautiful pieces of Celadon in South Korea. Of course, there, they tell you they are the only ones who make it. It’s beautiful….and regardless of where it’s made it’s certainly a fun piece of Asia to take when you leave the country – many spouses have huge collections. I just got a little tray set, a big platter and a few other things……I let the kids use the Y100 plates but not my Celadon. LOL The umbrellas are BEAUTIFUL! I’m so glad you all had time to just play and have fun at the waterfalls! Sounds heavenly.

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