Stranger in a Strange Land (Where I Met Someone I Knew…)

I took a minibus to Pai (a small town secluded in the mountains, about 3hrs north of CM) yesterday afternoon and am staying at the Pai Circus Hostel. It’s not as awesome as pictures led me to believe, and last night I was feeling incredibly lonely and couldn’t bring myself to talk to anyone.  I was wondering if I had made a mistake booking a week here.


On my way to find the Circus Hostel


Bamboo Bridge


“Magic Games” – apropos for walking to a Circus hostel 🙂

This morning I awoke to the sounds of clucking chickens, buzzing insects, and one very insistent rooster.  I began to walk into town, and realized it was further than I thought.  About 15 minutes after trekking in the sun, a local man with a cart attached to his motorbike asked if I wanted a ride. Gratefully, I accepted. (And cue check mark #1 for random local kindness experience 🙂 )

I hadn’t eaten anything besides a handful of sunflower seeds since the afternoon before, and I knew much of my malaise was due to hunger. I stopped into a cute little cafe for a coconut pineapple smoothie and a look at my map of Pai. I was already feeling my mood lift, when who should I look up and see but someone I know from New York!! Not only from NY, but part of my Queen of the Night family 🙂 My heart soared – a familiar face and one with updates. It was such a blessing.   

After exploring the town on foot, I decided to screw my courage to the sticking place and rent a motorbike. My friend, Jorg, had taught me how to ride in Chiang Mai, but traffic there is CRAZY, there was no way I was going out on my own.  But Pai is much quieter, and I knew I could do it.



Cows here have awesome horns. Found this herd on my way to find the Mae Yen waterfall


While I wasn’t able to find the waterfall I set out to find this afternoon, tomorrow holds more adventures. Though I may take the bike back to exchange it – not only does it have crap storage space, the key actually flies out of the ignition while I’m driving – but this doesn’t seem to effect the driving capabilities.  And that, my friends, is motorbikes in Thailand.

About juliamenn

Performer. Artist. Author. Lover of food and travel. Animal enthusiast. Avid reader. Globe-trotter.
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6 Responses to Stranger in a Strange Land (Where I Met Someone I Knew…)

  1. grandpatim21 says:

    Hey Jules! Your scooter is like my old 1947 Harley – held together with spit and baling wire! Love the pix from your great adventures:))


  2. Nancy Menn says:

    Isn’t that incredible to go a small town on the other side of the world and both of you be on the same 10sq. feet of space at the same few moments of time. WOW!!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Sunny says:

    Wow! Loved reading this 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jonathanmenn says:

    That’s my girl! Motorbike and all!! I’m proud of you, daughter!!! (And thank you, Lord, for that little bit of extra-grace in sending a familiar face to a stranger in a strange land.)


  5. julie says:

    Pai was really nice 🙂 i spent 1 night at the circus, but hen we changed for another, Cozypai thailande, which has nice bungalows and a lovely owner, Nathalie. She ‘s thai, and really really nice ! although you can go to ganesh guesthouse, a bit out of town but close to a waterfall, and they have a peaceful tears outside, where i got my 1st tattoo !! Have fun 🙂


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