Given our age and interests, it's never the case that our vacations are fast-paced and physically demanding. We love little more than poking around markets and walking around town, because what we're after when we travel is the feeling of a place. Obviously we can't have a real sense of what it is to live in a place, we don't fool ourselves into thinking we've gained that, but we do develop our sense of the differences from one town, one region, one country to another. Even so, coming to Mairood is low-key, even for us. The only walking we can really do is through the alleyways and piers around the fishing village, and there isn't a local market, per se. So we wander, we poke around, we respond to children's happy hellos, we relax by the pool, we take naps, we lounge, I read, we eat all three meals that Chin and group prepare, we go on mini-jaunts with Chin and/or Judy, and we look at the sky.
This makes for a dreamy bit of vacation, but it doesn't leave much storytelling to do. This is really the nature of this entire vacation -- partly because we are returning to two places we've recently been, and partly because of the nature of the two specific places -- but maybe that's OK this time, because the tremendous stress and horribleness of the election really wore on us. Getting away this year was a different experience; we were hoping we could just leave it all behind, be here, and we've done our best with that but I think we are both still so flattened by it.
So, no stories except in picture captions:
|There's Chin, the owner, petting Yaya. She nosed the gate open and came up to get a head rub|
before lumbering off to the kitchen for her buttered, sugared toast. Chin said she was grumpy until she got her toast.
|breakfast always begins with a fresh fruit bowl, and good, strong coffee|
|Although I also love their homemade yogurt and muesli, we both really adore this|
rice soup, with lots of fresh ginger and toasted garlic, and parsley. This bowl has pork.
|ingenious use of shells for weights -- you use what is available|
|The village extends far beyond these homes on the water, but they're all we ever see, so to us this is the village|
|they haven't opened their windows yet|
|just so few boats. :(|
|it's like a boat ghost town|
Last year, I asked Chin about all the half-sunk (or mostly-sunk) boats we saw everywhere. He said the villagers are too poor to fix the boats so they leave them to sink. We wonder why they don't at least salvage materials, but maybe that is not the best use of their time. So hard for us to know, but we saw lots of sunk boats again this year.
|we see this one when we're on our porch|
The property is so quiet, although it's jam-packed with all kinds of animals -- so many dogs and cats, and cages of birds, and roosters and there were turkeys but a wild dog ate them.
|the beach on one edge of the village|
|orchids everywhere, and birds of paradise|
|yeah, that's a cat on a hot tin roof (underneath are kept chickens and roosters and turkeys)|
|Marc relaxing on our lovely, lovely veranda/porch...|
|from which this is the early morning view......|
|a very nice pool|
|Saturday morning coffee before we head over for breakfast. This is the first trip where I've brought my own|
coffee gear, and it's WONDERFUL!
|so here's Yaya, the pig, who has the run of the place. She's pretty hilarious and wonderful.|
|...and LARGE. Chin thought he was buying a potbelly pig.|
|These brilliant yellow flowers are everywhere.|
|These are mysteriously called "big eye fish." No idea why. :)|
|Chin buying the fish he would later cook for our dinner|
|We watched a woman brilliantly filleting these small fish, and these bits will be|
sent to the cat food factory.
It was a pretty routine market, cement floors and inside a building -- about as far removed from the tiny one in Nong Khiaw as it could be.
A couple more days here, this may be the only post from Mairood because it'll just be more of the same. More of the lovely, relaxing same.