Follow footsteps of my BELOVED KING – King Bhumibol the Great (เดินตามรอยเท้าพ่อ)

October 13, 2016 we lost the greatest king of our country. I cry, moan, feel sad, feel lost. But we need to go on, continue living and make contribution and yet follow my king’s footprint (เดินตามรอยเท้าพ่อ). The video below shows how to say condolence in Thai.

You may know he initiated/worked on many social projects for Thailand. I cannot explain all of his great projects here as I do not know them all. But I can explain the one project that I have grown up with (Sufficiency economy – เศรษฐกิจพอเพียง and new agriculture theory – เกษตรทฤษฎีใหม่).

I come from a poor but self sustainable family. This was because of my father. Since I was born my father was the head of the village (ผู้ใหญ่บ้าน) of some 400 villagers. I did not understand that much of what my father did but I saw a lot of books where our king was on the cover. The book covers stated “Sufficiency economy – เศรษฐกิจพอเพียง” or new agriculture theory – เกษตรทฤษฎีใหม่.

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Example of the new Agriculture Theory

Image from https://toonbkb.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/newtheory32.jpg

The “Sufficiency economy” for my father is or what he told me is: to be independent (try to do things on your own first before asking for help), be satisfied of what I have. And so I am now. As kids I wore only second hand school uniform.

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I was maybe 7. Look at the skirt. It was extended so that it looks longer 😀

I got second hand school books. But I was never ashamed of it. It was not the thing that I worried. I think maybe because of my warm-heart family, good friends. And it was what matters for me. I smiled and laughed a lot and it continues until now!

We had three different lands for different purposes.

  1. Our house – 800 sqm with herbs garden, fish pond, duck coop, chicken coop, short time living trees – see images below 🙂
  2. Fruit garden – 1600 sqm with trees like banana, pineapple,coconuts
  3. Rice fields – 10000 sqm

We can live on our own. I will show you an example. Our regular dishes are steamed fish with steamed vegetables. Sometimes we have eggs soup as well.

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steamed fish – ปลานึ่ง

Image from http://www.siamfishing.com/content/view.php?nid=137412&cat=recipe

  • Vegetables are grown in the house area. We grow papaya, chili, lemon, pumpkin, other herbs for cooking. We can make papaya salad with all ingredients from our garden!. And all of them are free of insecticide! They are all organic. When we have too much left after our own consumption we sell. My father normally sells banana, coconut, papaya 🙂
  • Fish are in our fish pond. It is organic as well. The fishes eat plants in the pond.
  • Next to the fish pond, there were the duck coop and chicken coop. My responsibility was to feed them every evening after school. The ducks and chicken ate vegetables like water spinach, rice brand. (we don’t have them anymore as my father is old and cannot take care them)
  • Eggs were from the chickens and ducks. We got an egg almost everyday. The chickens were raised on the ground. They found their own food. But every day when we had some cook rice left over we gave the rice to the chicken.
  • Rice. We have rice field that we rented to other people for the rice. So we do not get the money for the rent but rice!. Every year we get rice that we can live for a year. The rice is called “ข้าวหอมมะลิ” or jasmine rice.
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My dad was selling fresh coconuts from our garden. Year 2006

I feel satisfied. I feel that there is nothing I miss. My parents, a dog, (chicken, ducks), fishes, Our family is never shorten of food. All about how this works is written in all the books I saw when I was kids. It is incredible that only a small land you can live on your own. For me now it may take sometimes to have money to buy land, build house but when the time comes, I will blog about it.

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Our family loves our the greatest king of Thailand

My biggest dream is to do the same as my father, to be an independent, to live in a self-sustainable economy … to follow my beloved king’s theory, king Bhumibol the Great.

 

3. Visa Run – Chiang Mai – Mae Sai with motorcycle

Another three months passed and the process of doing Visa Run came. Normally we took the bus of the Green bus company from Chiang Mai to Mae Sai. Then, the Songtaew from Mae Sai Bus Station to the Border – then vice versa. This time it was a bit different. We drove to Mae Sai by ourselves.

We did a big cycle as we had German friends visiting us and we went first to Doi Angkhang, then to Mae Sai, then back to Chiang Mai with our 125 cc motorcycle. I definitely recommend to do so as well. The view and landscape is amazing!

This is my blog about Doi Ang Khang. After having spent time about two nights there we got going. The road has a lot of curves and it is downhill (see the picture and video below).

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We passed many villages, filled our fuel contained in an alcohol bottle. 🙂

We did two stops. First we stopped at a temple called: วัดท่าตอน พระอารามหลวง (Wat Thaton Phra Aram Luang). The temple is several hundreds years old. It has several buildings that are divided into nine steps. At step 8 you can take pictures and have a high view to the river and to the villages.

Then we stopped at an orange plantation. Of cause we drank fresh pressed orange juice!

It took us about four hours to arrive at Mae Sai. To enter Myanmar for a Thai person, I needed to pickup a border crossing card from ที่ว่าการอำเภอ, pay 30 bahts. As easy it was, I left Thailand, entered Myanmar, stayed there for 2 hours.

We had a Burmese lunch. It was not my favorite but it tasted quite good!

About at 4 pm we left Mae Sai. 250 kilometers was waiting for us. We did one stop as my butt hurt like hell. About 100 kilometers we were again going out of fuel. It was about 7 pm, it was raining, the road was slippery, I was scared so much that we could not make it. The landscape around were only trees and mountains. There was no one at the check points so that we could ask for help. There was only us and cars passing by.

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Then, it came a village located near Chiang Mai about 70 km. There was an old fuel station. We filled up our fuel for 50 baht so that we could arrive in Chiang Mai.

At last we made it. Then 5 minutes after we arrived it started storming… I was glad we arrived home safely. I would recommend if you want to do the same, please leave Mae Sai earlier. You can then enjoy the view and the road.

 

Doi Ang Khang – A motorcycle trip from Chiang Mai. แว้นไปดอยอ่างขาง

Other digital nomads work and travel to different places in the same time. For us, we work and sometimes travel. We can travel when we get visitors 😀 This time we took three days off and traveled to Doi Ang Khang – north of Thailand and it is at the border to Myanmar.

We decided to go there with our 125 cc motorcycle. This was the route we took:

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Chiang Mai – Doi Ang Khang

About half way we drove on the high way. The street is quite large and good.

We drove about 60 – 80 km/h. We took several stops for lunch and sight seeing. It took about 4 hours to arrive.

We went there last week – end of September which was during off season. We could book a hotel room at the Royal Project Foundation – Sathani Luang Doi Ang Khang (สถานีเกษตรหลวงอ่างขาง). We got a cheapest double room for 650 baht per night – without breakfast. However, we could enter the Royal Project site for free. The food in the restaurant is not that expensive as well. You can pay about 50-60 baht for fried chicken with basil 🙂

We visited a strawberry plantation, tea plantation and the garden within the project site. We saw how people manually plant and I was really impressed. 🙂

In the city of Ang Khang there are not many places to visit. We just went to the school and two villages. They have Chinese ancestors and the food is a bit different than you can have in Chiang Mai. In this village on the way to Thai – Myanmar border we got a noodle soup 🙂

We really enjoyed the trip and the time for not working ^_^!