Boon Krong Guest House
nr. Chiang Mai
January 1st 1986
I return to the UK this year. No more do I say in a blasé way, “Oh, I get back some time next year.” I’m looking towards the end of my happy trails.
For now, I have another trek with Pinan to eulogise over. Admittedly, I had forgotten the very cold nights which combined with an uneven floor ensures an interrupted sleep. The sheer sensuousness of the scenery can only be a faint memory. A shared moment and the overall ambience are recalled with pleasure. I remember the glow felt in the evening just before descending to the village of the last night; the welcoming glow of the sunset warming the forest as we heard the cries of happy children and playful dogs. I remember too the pleasure of each meal; eating al fresco enhanced what were good meals by any standard.
Perhaps of greater importance was that as a group we were less concerned with our personal pleasures. I linked up with Christa and Patric who have a house in the southern foothills of the Massif Central in France. First met at the Boonbundan Guest House in Chiang Rai where we shared the Christmas meal, we have formed a good bond. Then there’s Peter, aged 55, venturing out for the first time with a valued naive curiosity as a non-package tourist. Karin and Bearice from Sweden unexpectedly joined us, and en route to the village where the customs of a Lawa village were to be observed we took Ilsha in tow.
Our discussions with Pinan were somewhat more philosophical than on my previous trek. For example, we discussed the long-term effects of our brief visits to these peoples. Placed in the context of Pinan’s discourses on the cultural customs of each tribe, we were able, by understanding and curbing our own interests and motivations, to strike a happy rapport with most of the families we stayed with. We tasted the newly brewed stomach and potency potion made by the Red Karen wife for her husband. A child in a Lawa village gave us a grapefruit type fruit to share.
We were given and smoked home grown tobacco and other leaves.