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Thread: Whats in Pai ?

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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Whats in Pai ?

    Heres another ride on went on back in August of 2011, my mate and myself decide we would make an early start and head up to Pai, didnt look that far on the map, different story when you are riding there, they must of been chasing a snake when they put this road in 555

    Here is a bit of history : Pai (Thai: ปาย) is a small town in northern Thailand's Mae Hong Son Province, near the Myanmar border, about 50 miles/80 km north of Chiang Mai on the northern route to Mae Hong Son. It lies along the Pai River. The town has thesaban tambon status and covers parts of the tambon Wiang Tai of Pai district. As of 2006, it has a population of 2,284.

    Pai was once a quiet market village inhabited by Shan people (ethnic Tai whose culture is influenced by Burma; see the History section below), but nowadays Pai primarily thrives on tourism. Well-known among backpackers for its relaxed atmosphere, the town is full of cheap guesthouses, souvenir shops and restaurants. In the proximity of the town are spas and elephant camps. Further outside of town, there are several waterfalls and a number of natural hot springs varying in temperature from 80 to 200 degrees Celsius. Some resorts tap the hot springs and feed hot water into private bungalows and public pools. As Pai lies at the foot of the mountains, many tourists use it as a base for trekking and visiting hill tribes like Karen, Hmong, Lisu and Lahu. Another notable attraction is the town's excellent Wednesday Market which brings large and colorful crowds of local villagers and tribal people from all around the Pai Valley.

    Recently Pai has appeared on the Thailand tourist map and has received major infrastructure upgrades including an airport with several daily flights, three 7-Elevens, several small- to medium-size luxury resorts, totaling more than 350 accommodation properties,[2], several live music clubs, beer bars and two sets of traffic lights. This has done little to dampen the small and peaceful spirit of the town out of season. However, it has led to a recent influx of business investment and land speculation by both farang (non-Asian foreigners) and big city Thais. While some hail these sweeping changes as a new age of prosperity for Pai, others point to the loss of Pai's traditional customs and culture.[3][4]

    In the tourist high season of November through March there are large numbers of tourists. Prior to 2006, foreign tourists predominated, but now Thai tourists make up the vast majority, particularly after Pai was featured in two popular, Thai-made romantic movies, The Letter: Jod Mai Rak (Thai: จดหมายรัก, 2004) and Ruk Jung (Thai: รักจัง, 2006). During high season, tourist numbers swell to the point where Pai experiences traffic jams, as well as shortages of electricity, water, and petrol. [5]

    Pai has music festivals regularly as well as staging an International Enduro Champions





    The day we left was a bit overcast but no rain was in site, we board our Honda PCX's and off we go with our TG's sitting behind us.......







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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    With the threat of rain coming upon us we keep riding through the mountains, only slowly mind you as the road is very windy and with the road slightly wet I am hesitant to push the bike to hard 555. Probably like most TG's my girl is a great passenger, talks to me most of the way and if not talking she is shoving some type of fruit into my mouth, or pea nuts as I have grown a liking to there beer nut type peanuts. About halfway to Pai now and the rain is no longer a threat, it is raining, not to hard but enough to make it uncomfortable so we look for a lunch stop, a few kays down the road we find a shop/shelter so we pull in, the girls are happy because they can eat again .......













    Here is a pic of the peanuts I like, my TG says she will go buy some more peanuts for me so I gave her 100Baht, she came back with all 10 packets they had in stock 555
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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    After about 1 hour the rain had stopped and off we go again, something about riding through the villages and mountains, just relaxing IMO especially not know what is around the next bend. Like most of country Thailand the people are super friendly and always smile and wave, I forgot to mention the shop we were at, the old lady doing the cooking takes a rest and out TG's cook there own lunch with the shop keepers supplies, you would never see that back home. Here is a few more pics I took on the way ........


















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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Well now our luck has changed, the rain has gone from an annoying mist to bucketing down, I put my jacket on with my poncho squeezed on over the top, I was keeping half dry only but battled on, i came around the corner where there was a couple of locals resting on the edge of the road, my mate was stopped there so I pulled up, He said he was turning around and heading back to Chiang Mai, I asked my Tg what she wanted to do and she said "upto you". We were only 30 Km from Pai so I said I wanted to head on, worst come to worst I will stay the night in Pai. So we each went in differet directions.


    Here are the locals taking a rest in the rain ............





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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    The rain kept coming down all the way to Pai, then it stopped, we were both soaked and all my Tg can do is laugh, we wet together 555 I said I think we stay Pai one night, maybe rain Finit and tomorrow good she says. The entrance to Pai is beautiful and so are the locals, these two girls were the first to greet us in Pai.........





















    ^^^ Here is Wabbits in Pai 555
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    ประเทศไทยเพื่อน Founding Member Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน jontymate's Avatar
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    Nice pics Rivo. Long year ago Chiang Means City of. So Dao tells me. Chaing Dao....City of Stars .... sounds like a good story when she said it.
    BWT is that trials bike a hybride? A Suzonda
    "Man cannot discover New Oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore" 
      
       
       
         
       
      
     

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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Well we had arrived at Pai and it was about 4pm now, was bigger than I expected and even has one set of traffic lights, there are alot of hippie type people around and I think I read Pai is very popular with back packers. While riding around I was keeping an eye out for accomadation. We stopped and had a drink at a 7/11 and my TG got talking to a local. We must go see Buddah now, bring good luck for us, I thought to myself well I am soaking wet, would love a hot shower the a beer but no, lets go see Buddah so off we go 555














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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jontymate View Post
    Nice pics Rivo. Long year ago Chiang Means City of. So Dao tells me. Chaing Dao....City of Stars .... sounds like a good story when she said it.
    BWT is that trials bike a hybride? A Suzonda
    Yes Jonty, the bike was abitsa, a bit of everything, looked good though 555
    A Wise Man Once Said "Nothing"

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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    The clouds seemed to be getting lower and looked great IMO. Went riding around the back streets now keeping a keen eye out for some accomodation. Right next to the river which had some bars nearby there was a sign Accom 300 Baht per night or 500 Baht with air cond. I let my TG talk to the boss lady and she said one night 300 Baht with air cond for us, I though what the hell $10 it is, no breakfast but, i dont want much do I 555


















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    The artist formally known as Wabbits Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน wabbits's Avatar
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    I looked at that bike and thought trials too but not quite.

    Hey Riv you wound the entry to wabbits secret world.55555

    Nice pics and for me remind me what LOS is when away from the smoke and makes me want to be there more than than anything.
    .

  11. #11
    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    This bar was my local for the night, great name, the "TING TONG BAR"..............


















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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Here is my missus negotiating a room, I thought for 300 Baht it would be much but was pleasantly surprised, nice and clean, hot shower and soft towels. We had no change of clothes and were still wet so we hung our clothes infront of the aircond and went and had a long hot shower together. Fond memories for me 555. This day was my birthday eve so I wanted to go and have a few drinks, after my clothes were dry of course 555

    I went into the Ting Tong Bar and ordered a couple of drinks, it was about 8pm now, my TG spotted a hairdresser across the road so went over to look, she came back and said she wanted to get her hair done, no problem I stay have drink you go hairdresser. She had 2 girls working with her hair, wash, dry cut and was there for over an hour, she came back and said I must pay 100 Baht 555 I said here extra 50 Baht for good job, 20 Baht good tip she said 555

    Today was Big Mama Day I was told and Ting Tong Bar had free shooters every hour, washed down with my Heineken of course, stayed here until about 10pm and then went looking for a feed. I found a small restaraunt that had woodfired pizza and Thai food for the Tg so I grabbed a seat and ordered. Stll one of the best Pizza's I have had, and I have had a few 555











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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Here is some interesting things about Pai and there Police......

    Although it is a sleepy town in the mountains, Pai has over the past decade generated an unusual amount of controversy (even for Thailand) concerning the conduct of its local police, as well as the conduct of Thai drug enforcement police operating there. This is partially due to the proximity of Pai to drug routes from the Shan State in Burma, however given the post-2000 rise in incidents involving foreign tourists, it is evident that other factors are also at work. Some examples of this clear long-term trend in Pai include:

    On December 24, 2001, the local Pai police arrested and jailed the owner of Bebop bar, with the rather dubious explanation that he was "letting people dance in a place of business not officially licensed as a ‘disco.’"[10] After this event, both Bebop and Mountain Blue received additional discriminatory treatment in the form of illegal, or uneven, application of Thailand's closing-time laws. The so-called "dancing ban" by the Thai Police became a famous and well-known joke which business owners are still talking about in 2008.
    Also in 2001, and again in 2003, Pai district officials and police began enforcing several illegal measures ostensibly aimed at increasing "safety" for the local tourists, specifically "a ‘recommendation’ via illegal denial of permits whereby all guesthouses must have walls made from a solid material, such as wood, gypsum, compressed fibre or cement"[11] rather than the cheaper and more traditional bamboo favored by many guesthouse owners and low-budget backpackers. Most locals suspected other motives were involved, including both a desire to "weed out" low-budget tourists and to encourage higher-priced construction that would generate higher construction kickbacks. Several locals pointed out uneven enforcement of these laws for different businesses, depending on personal relationships with the police or district officials.
    The so-called "War on Drugs" launched in February 2003 by former (now deposed) Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, in which "more than 2,000 people in Thailand were killed as the government effectively declared 'open season' on those accused of involvement in the drug trade,"[12], took a heavy toll on Pai district and downtown Pai in particular. Many locals whose family members were murdered without investigation now take an extremely skeptical view towards any police action here.[citation needed]
    In 2006, the Pai Police purchased a new mobile drug testing vehicle, and there have been numerous reported instances of the police entering bars and other establishments and randomly urine-testing foreign tourists. In many of these cases it is apparent that the searches were not performed legally. In Thailand, "when requesting urinalysis for drug identification purposes, at least one member of the Narcotics Suppression Police must be present. Regular Thai police do not have this right, nor do the Tourist Police. Second of all, there must be probable cause."[13]. In most cases, apprehended suspects are detained in Mae Hong Son jail for a few days, then released with a "fine" typically on the order of 5,000-10,000 baht.[14]
    On January 5, 2008, Pai made national and international news when an off-duty police officer, Sgt-Major Uthai Dechawiwat, fatally shot Canadian tourist Leo John Del Pinto, and shot and wounded a second Canadian tourist Carly Reisig, fleeing the scene immediately after the event.[15][16] Nearly all involved believe that both the policeman and suspects were drunk at the time. Official police reports differ widely from eye-witness reports and it is expected that the officer will be acquitted by the Thai Justice system. In an extremely unusual development which highlights the deep integrity issues that exist with the Pai police, reporter Andrew Drummond published an editorial in The Nation where he expressed his regrets for publishing views from all sides of the story in his earlier Nation article because:
    "While the facts presented were true, they have been wrongly taken in a malicious way by many...What the journalist cannot convey sometimes is his opinion of whether the witnesses are telling the truth or show immediately what links these witnesses have to the police....I am very concerned at several aspects of this case:

    The police claiming that Reisig was pregnant and this had angered a jealous foreign boyfriend.
    The claims by the police shooter that he had been out of town before the shooting, when other witnesses were saying the officer was drinking heavily that night in Pai.
    The threats to prosecute Reisig for assault on police.
    The automatic bail for the police gunman.
    The fact that local police are investigating themselves.
    The claims that the gun had discharged three times accidentally."[17]
    In a January, 2008 editorial published in Chiang Mai CityLife (submitted in December, 2007),[18] anonymous author "A Tourist" eerily anticipates the January, 2008 shooting in his/her strongly worded objection to excessive police actions in Pai:
    "I have noticed another significant change over the last year, which is the reason for writing this letter. The method of law enforcement in this small town needs to be seriously examined....I accept that changes are necessary. I also agree that noise pollution should be carefully monitored and controlled, as should drug abuse and any other illegal acts or unpleasant kinds of behaviour, but we ought not to be scared to leave our homes (or guesthouses)! ... One Saturday in particular remains in my memory, where several police officers decided to inspect a party at a bar in town. I believe that they were looking for drugs. I along with many other tourists was especially shocked to see that one officer was carrying a machine gun...This kind of behaviour is likely to scare tourists and leave very negative impressions on them with regards to Pai town as a holiday destination...The police are also actively confiscating other vehicles, testing individuals at random for drugs and alcohol abuse, detaining owners of restaurants and bars for remaining open past the agreed time, and generally making a lot of noise in a relatively quiet town that did not appear to have many problems beforehand....The increased police presence is clearly visible and does not, in my opinion, make Pai town look like a place one would like to visit. There is also a general feeling of unrest here and I feel that it is quite obvious to the tourist travelling through. The police are unapproachable and menacing. This has a strong negative impact on the atmosphere here in Pai town. The previously friendly and welcoming town appears to have changed into a place where everyone is afraid to even walk down the street in case they are accused of doing something wrong. Should the police not be employed to protect civilians? Should they not be approachable in case I or someone else requires some help? They are certainly not even close to doing what a police force is meant to do."
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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Woke up about 7am this day, my birthday, 48 birthdays now and this one was the best, got out of bed about 830am and had a shower, looked outside and the blue sky was out 555

    We handed our key back and jumped on the bike, I wanted to ride a further 60 odd km's to some caves I had read about, these are bat caves and are supposed to be spectacular, you go through the cave by canoe with a guide, I thought this would be great. We grabbed some food and headed off.........








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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    About halfway to the caves we got to the lookout and the rain came back, not heavy just an annoying mist, I had to make a decision to carry on or turn around, I decided to turn around and head back to Pai.

    Whilst we were at the look out i could here this buzzing noise of bikes in the hills so i thought we will wait and see them. I was thinking a bike club or something, I could see there head llights through the windy roads down below us. To my surprise 12 X Honda PCX's turned up, half of them brown in colour the same as ours 555 They parked with my bike, took there helmets off and nodded, i tried to talk to them but they had no English, they looked Japanese to me.






















    Last edited by Rivo; 24th December 2011 at 10:00.
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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    We got back to Pai about 11am and the rain had stopped, I stopped the bike and let the missus eat again as there was now much between Pai and the Main Highway back to Chiang Mai. We rode up and had a look at Chinatown whilst we were back in Pai, only 2 km. Had no rain now and it was a great ride back through the mountains, stopping every now and the for a pic and drink. Thats one good thing about the Honda, they have little pockets everywhere and a huge space under the seat. We can put both our helmets under the seat if we want. My camera fits perfect near my left knee in a small pocket with cover.
















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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wabbits View Post
    Nice pics and for me remind me what LOS is when away from the smoke and makes me want to be there more than than anything.
    Some of my best memories of Thailand are out in the villages, I would love to be able to go for weeks touring or have a ute with a bike in the back, just exploring 555
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    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    On the way out of Pai I stopped at the bridge over the river, there are two bridges, one in use and an old bridge, interest history to the old bridge. I took some photo's of the history of this bridge that was originaly used over the Ping River in Chiang Mai.
























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  20. #20
    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
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    Just before we got back to the main hwy I saw a snake on the road, still alive but had been run over, we turned around and had a look, killed it and threw it off into the bush. It was sunny and warm now and I pointed the bike towards Chiang Mai to head home. My TG had been making quite a few phone calls today, she had organised a surprise birthday party for me at the 69 bar(Thanks Nan). I had a rough idea what was happening so just went with the flow, when we got back to CM my TG went wissing for an hour or two. We went to Stewarts 69 Bar about 8pm and I couldnt believe the trouble they had gone to, balloons, cake with candles, happy birday singing, beers, food, it was a great night and I must thank Stewart and his girls for allowing it to happen. Thai Girls do love a Party 555555




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