Friday, July 1, 2016

A Day in My Life: Chiang Mai

sunset from my rooftop
When I started this blog as a way of cataloging my travels and my life, I didn’t intend to make it a diary. and record a play-by-play recap of each day. That would be both too personal, and too ordinary. But after living and traveling to so many places, I now see the value in recording the events of an ordinary day, because they are so revealing of  the place, the time, and the stage in my life. Even if I went back to Chiang Mai again, I could never recreate the life I lived there in early 2015. 
The moment has passed. 
Chiang Mai is different now, and so am I. 

My time in Chiang Mai was special because I had no responsibilities other than to myself. Because of this, I had to design a schedule that allowed for both productivity and leisure. Before arriving in Chiang Mai I recorded the projects I wanted to work on and allocated time to each of them. I never followed my schedule exactly, but it helped me stay focus and accomplish something each day.

my favorite breakfast

Here is how I spent most days in Chiang Mai.

Mornings begin at 9:00 am, where I awake in the sunlight streaming through the white curtains of our east-facing balcony.

By 10:00 we are having breakfast at our favorite place in the city. I still don’t know the name, but I always order the same thing: Mama Noodles, and Tom-Yum Eggs. My partner usually chooses between 2 or 3 noodle soups and we share a drink. Our total bill is $3 USD. 

After breakfast we head straight to a café. Sometimes it’s Marble Arch, or 9th Street, or Artisan (our old favorite), or Chang Nong (our new favorite), or CAMP (if it’s a week day). I either work on blogging or editing my novel for two hours, typically from 10:30-12:30.

We break for lunch and eat something small. Zood Zood is a cheap and good choice, or the noodle place beside Beta House, which serves amazing Butterfly Pea tea and Pandan tea.

Around 1:30 we head back to the condo, to avoid the hottest hours of the day. I either continue writing/editing, or I read a book on the balcony, until around 4:00 pm.

In the late afternoon we head to the gym. I start with cardio, alternating between the treadmill and the elliptical. After 45 minutes of cardio, I stretch and do some isometric exercises, spending a total of one hour, or an hour and a half, at the gym. After showing and changing clothes, it’s close to 6:00 pm. 

The sun sets consistently between 6:00 and 6:30, so we like to view it from the rooftop of my apartment, where we can see a full view of the mountains and city.   

We like to eat an early dinner to avoid the crowds and noise, and we try to dine off the main drag of Nimman because at this point we’ve tried everywhere nearby. We have a couple favorites, like Hong Tuaw or Beast Burger  just down the street, but we also try new places like Huen Muan Jai or places at the Think Park. If it’s a weekend and restaurants are too busy, we grab street food and eat at home.

I usually like to go out to another café after dinner, but the options are limited since many cafes close around 6:00pm, and the ones that don't are packed with college students in the evenings. Often times we just go home and watch movies together on our couch. I then read in bed for about an hour or so, and fall asleep just before midnight.

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