Posts/August, 2008/

Huay Tung Tao Reservoir

Friday, August 15th, 2008

The weather has been wet here, validating the name of the season. J. and I had planned on going on a scooter drive on Wednesday, but it was raining for most of the day.

Instead, we postponed our journey until Thursday. The clouds were still ominous, but at least they hadn’t started crying. Instead of exploring aimlessly on untested streets, we headed northward along the canal road to Huay Tung Tao Reservoir. Chiang Mai’s canal road is a pleasure to drive. It’s two lanes each way, plus shoulder, separated by a flowing irrigation canal. Generally, traffic is light and cross traffic is rarely a concern.

The drive was around 30 minutes from door to gate. Admission was 20bht per person. Once inside we were treated to beautiful scenery. As there was no traffic on the road, J. and I took off our helmets to feel the wind and dragonflies in our hair. We scouted the area first by driving east along the road that encircles the large lake. The road passed by numerous huts along the waterline. Each grouping of huts had a little restaurant. Further along, the road passed between lake and rice fields. On the western, mountain side of the lake the road passed by a few vacant buildings and a paintball course before entering the woods. From there, it continued on a levee before joining the beginning of the loop. Along the water, people had parked their motorbikes to go fishing.

Huay Tung Tao Reservoir is a popular destination for Thais to relax. But Thursday around lunch time the area was fairly empty. We parked in one of the main areas and walked along the mushy grass to find a suitable hut. We found a nice one by the water, took off our shoes, and ordered some food and drink.

After eating, it was time to read and relax. If Eskimos have many words for snow, I have many words for relaxation. Being on an extended trip is relaxing overall, but in the day to day there are things that add even more relaxation. The added calming quality of a massage is different than a good meal, just as both are different from sitting by the lake, or reading a book in the park.

Yesterday, I experienced “lake-book-relaxation.”

The road leading to the gates of the park.

Subdivision being built in an empty lot near the park. All the developers seem so optimistic and childlike. It isn’t hard to see the numerous skeletons of projects that have failed. Thailand is prospering and rushing to build the same type of surburbs that America is beginning to find a burden.

Looking north to the lake.

Our hut.

More huts. Notice the Sprite bottles being used as buoys.

Our lunch: a spicy minced pork salad and papaya salad with sticky rice. Prices were reasonable for being able to lounge around all day. The meal and beer was 160bht($5). Hahahahaha.

To drink: beer on the rocks. It’s the Thai Way.

Me.

The mat we were sitting on inside the hut.

Bathroom building with a tree growing through it.

Weird abandoned building.

Elephant ears growing in a jungly area along the road.

Woman fishing along the levee.

One look back before heading home.

But yesterday was more than just sitting in the sun/shade getting no work done. Brain deep in PHP, I busted my hump working on the new version of my blog. If you’re looking at this text, it’s probably on the new version. There’s still a lot of work to go, but now I’m posting through WordPress. Goodbye Blogger. It’s been a great 6 years.

Days like yesterday have perfect balance. Equal parts personal productivity, scenery, reading, eating. And all in the company of lady.

Note: A few photos came from J.’s blog.

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