24.4.11: Sunday Walking Street

At 5.30 pm, we hailed a tuk-tuk from the hotel. There were 7 of us altogether (5 adults and 2 kids) and was quite surprised when the driver asked us all to go into her tuk-tuk. I thought she was kidding and checked with her whether it could fit all of us, and she nodded her head. The tuk-tuk felt like an oversized motorbike. I certainly didn't feel secure sitting in it, without any helmet or seatbelt (but it wouldn't have worked anyway). Some motorcyclists don't wear helmets. When the traffic light turned green and we were about to go, a motorcyclist with a pillion rider suddenly came from across, cut in, in front of us and stopped the motorcycle to let the pillion rider off. Luckily our tuk-tuk driver stopped in time, or else there would have been an accident. I was surprised the tuk-tuk driver didn't even tell off the motorcyclist, as it was the motorcyclist's fault. Maybe it is their culture there. 

Halfway during the short tuk-tuk ride, E fell asleep. The driver dropped us opposite the Thapae Gate and a policeman stopped the traffic to allow us to cross. We saw a number of policemen in Chiang Mai, some at the night market area and some on this Sunday Walking Street. The presence of the policemen helped us feel safe  unlike back home where we had to be very vigilant for fear of snatch thieves and such. 

Carrying the sleeping boy
I was surprised to find the place jam packed with people, as though it was a  festive occasion
Resting awhile while waiting for E to wake up. 
There were many different types of handicraft sold, reminding me of the Hari Kraftangan Kebangsaan that I attended in Kuala Lumpur, but with more stalls.

A man selling a wooden top. 

I bought a wooden tuk-tuk each for the boys at 100 baht. It's a fixed price. 

Left: Blind musicians. Top right: Senior citizens' band
We had our dinner at one of the "coffeeshops" there and it was a very long wait for the our food, although not many people were there when we arrived. We were rather impressed that their night markets and the Sunday Walking Street are clean from beggars. Unlike the night market back home, sometimes there can be up to 10 beggars sitting there, most of them have one limb missing - either they have a hand, leg or arm missing, and the authorities don't seem to be doing anything about it. Hence, we were impressed to see the night markets in Chiang Mai clean from these sights. The authorities here must be doing something right.    

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