Chiang Mai Flower Festival

Yesterday, after another awesome lunch in the neighborhood and lesson planning for Monday at Thai Freedom House, we decided to go check out the flower festival!  Which is kind of like the Rose Parade in miniature (complete with floats), along with a judged competition of different flower entries, a market to buy flowers/plants, and tons of food stalls.  There were plants we’d never seen before, like this:Image

and literally TONS of different kinds of orchids.  Big orchids, little orchids, pink and yellow and purple orchids, orchids in pots, orchids growing on branches, orchids grafted to pieces of wood and other plants.  More orchids than I had ever seen in one place. Image

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The floats were decorated with small detailed paintings (done on seeds) as well as with larger sculptures covered in flowers.  My favorite, as always, were the dragons.  I think I’m becoming a little obsessed with them, and Kyle makes fun of me when I take pictures of them at every single temple/Thai monument we visit.

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After we finished exploring the festival, we went on our first expedition to Warorot Market.  This place rivals some of the huge marketplaces we saw in Egypt, minus the haggling and yelling (in true Thai style).  It’s full of anything you could possibly want to buy, from food to clothing to fabric to flowers, shoes and toys and knick knacks exploding from every corner.  It fills a three story labyrinth (the center of which is pictured below) and sprawls into the surrounding streets and buildings.  I’m sure we didn’t see a fraction of what they have, and we’ll definitely be going back if we’re ever in need of something we can’t find closer to home.

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Today we’ve just been recovering at home.  As it turns out, riding a bike ~ 12 miles around the city in 90 degree weather (not to mention that it’s turned pretty muggy in the last week or so) can take a lot out of you.  I slept for almost 12 hours straight last night, which I never do, but might as well as long as I can!

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