You sick sick people! Come on! Can’t believe you guys! Still….don’t worry to satisfy your cravings we took a close up picture of it 🙂 (ps Kish and Meera this elephant post is dedicated to you guys btw :))
Before we get to that, let me tell you where we are…we’re in Thailand, in Chang Mai, the land of the elephants!
So after arriving through our flashpacker methods (flights)- we decided the best way to start is to go and see ourselves a Muay Thai boxing night!
To give you an idea of the atmosphere at the boxing stadium, there’s a ring in the center of a massive warehouse kinda room with concrete flooring all around, foldable chairs on 4 sides of the ring, and a drinks bar and food stalls surrounding. Bookies are moving around shouting and trying to push people into betting against them, and there’s some crazy clarinet style instrument playing constantly in the background, even while the fights are on. Completely raw and pretty cool!
Me and Anj had reserved our seats and had center view to watch a total of 7 different fights! As we watched each battle in the run up to the main international fight, it was crazy to see how intensely each of the fighters went at one another…
A few fights stood out though. A junior match involving probably 12 year olds where one got seriously injured is one. People were taking photos, cheering and shouting abuse, but to us, it seemed pretty bad to be making money off two kids brawling in a ring! But that’s competition I guess!
Anyway another special fight was set up for fun, where it is like a royal rumble – 4 fighters in a ring with a referee, but here’s the kicker the 4 fighters were all blindfolded. They all went at each other like mad men, but the funny part, because they couldn’t see each other, the person who got beat on the most was the referee! Lol… Too funny, hmm maybe it’s one of those you had to be there moments!
Finally we arrived to the main event; an international fight with Spain vs Thailand. The Spanish fighter had his massive entourage supporting him in the corner as he entered the ring looking pretty confident.
Now, before each fight starts the fighters do a little warming up and some dance to the music. The Thai fighter did his bit pretty quickly and went into the corner…the bigger Spanish fighter though took literally 10 mins as his entourage cheered him on. He was so cocky, he decided to start showing off with his dance moves and trying to psyche his opponent out!
Finally he finished, the bell rang and the fight began….and yep within a minute the spanish guy was down on the floor, writhing in pain! So funny – A First round knockout! And that ended our night!
The next day was our elephant jungle trek! This involved us taking bamboo rafts down the river, seeing a beautiful waterfall, trekking and the piece de resistance; riding on elephants within the jungle up and down hills.
This part was amazing. We arrived to find 6 elephants waiting for us and one baby elephant. It was sooo cute and would follow you around.
So after our little play time, we got on these sort of thrones which sit on the elephants backs to be taken into the jungle. This is no normal elephant ride. Its hilly and the elephants are inclined to do their own thing, like suddenly stopping to eat random trees or sniff at poop on the floor. We were literally getting thrown all over the shop and holding on tight for dear life…
Then our ‘driver’ asked me if I would like to sit on the head of the elephant, where he was sitting…there was no way I was gonna turn down the opportunity (as none of the other people with us were given this chance), so on I got whilst the man went and sat at the back, on the throne, next to Anjali!
The next 40 mins were insane. I was holding onto the elephant’s head with every muscle in my body and honestly did think I would fall off. Anj I think was scared for me, which is really cute :), but I kept my cool and held on. However, a couple of times, Anj did nearly fall off herself and kicked me in the backside! Thanks Anj! 🙂
Anyways whilst I was on the head, the elephant in front kept pooping big lumps of mushy poo and farting like a trooper (as Anj says) in my face. Serious case of diarrhoea. I would like to say I turned away and closed my nose, but noooo I took a massive whiff and Anj took a picture…NICE…yep we enjoyed every minute of it!
Afterwards Anjali got the chance to feed the elephants bananas…it was so much fun and we kinda bonded with the big guys…gonna misss them…Then again we have our own pair of Hathis at home ;)!
Finally the last day of our action packed Chang Mai experience involved a Thai cooking class at the Asian Scenic School (Mitan, or as Anj calls him Moogle our very own SE Asia Google guide, convinced us on this one). We went to the food market, learnt about what types of veggies to pick out and the main thing, how to make Thai food like spring rolls from scratch, papaya salad, pad Thai (even though the dish “raad na” sounded interesting), green curry, massaman curry and veggie tom yum soup.
A really enjoyable and tasty experience, though I was a bit slow! Anj on the other hand smashed it; her papaya salad and soup were incredible! Know who’s doing the cooking at home when we get back! 🙂
Well…what a great end to Chang Mai…next is Phuket and our luxury part of the trip, the Kho Phi Phi islands! On and away with our flash packer trip – yep we taking a flight again! Bring it on!