I’m still in Thailand and am a bit stronger in my geography as of this moment. The country of Thailand, its students are taught) is in the shape of a “small ax.” I was misguided as to its handle and was confused as to where I was; it happens when you’re clicking countries like street signs. (smile) Chaing Mai is in the mountains above sea level and the air is cooler than Bangkok. I didn’t need to go through customs as my Thai visa sufficed. Once here I immediately hit the ground running and (with guide and driver) went to the infamous temple on the hill (3500 ft about sea level). The road was as winding as the one up the street from me leading to Mt Diablo, and equally as treacherous. Of course, we were going fast just to make the story fun and my stomach queazy. At that point I was far too tired to be afraid. I was glad I had not eaten.
My guide, Tang, is a Buddhist, pro-king, and quite communist. The conversation was lively and seasoned regularly with his editorial comments on my questions to the driver. His English was fair to midland.
(break – need to head out – will write more later).