Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sunday Hiking

Together with some of my Burmese friends. we hiked and explored some of the hills surrounding Mae Sot, Thailand. This border city has a lot of hills which are very suitable for hiking.

Weather wise, the cool and breezy December was a big plus in our adventure cum exploration of the hilly side of this border town.

Even the locals here are incredulously surprised about the current weather with the mercury going down to 9 degrees Centigrade in the morning.

But as I said, the weather is very suitable for hiking. And for someone who came from a "real" tropical country, the real surprise was cold weathers could also be humid. Or maybe we were just too high above sea level that oxygen is thin?

Below are some of the photos I took while hiking. The views from the hills are incredible. Some are even heart-stopping. Enjoy.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Mae Sot Burmese Monastery

I took these photos inside a Burmese temple in Mae Sot, Tak Province in Thailand. Mae Sot is a border city between Burma and Thailand. The two countries share a very long border line.

If you will study the Burma-Thailand history, you will see that Mae Sot was occupied by Burma in the olden times and this is the reason why there are Burmese monasteries in the city.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Routine routes at Mae Sot

I usually use the routes in these photos going from my place to the school where I teach here at Mae Sot, Thailand.  I never get tired negotiating these rolling, bumpy, potholed roads on board my trusty second-hand bicycle which I named "Isko". These routes are longer to negotiate compared to two other roads to reach the campus. But these roads have fantastic views and eerily ambient. Most of the times I am alone in these tranquil trails, the peaceful ambience of which is disturbed by the melody of chirping birds and breeze which softly caress the trees, leaves and grasses punctuated by my loud singing of whatever is playing in my MP3 device.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Mae Sot random photos

As the title suggests, this is a collection of random photos which I gathered here in Mae Sot, Thailand, wherein I am involved in a Burmese political school.

Most of the photos were captured during my "exploration" of the city which borders Burma.

There are several monasteries in the city built by the Burmese and Thais not only because the place is a border town between the two peoples but because history will show that in ancient times the place was ruled by warring monarchies of Thailand and Burma.

Last full moon for 2013

I have been experimenting on "shooting" the moon. So far I have no luck except for this photo. This is the last full moon for 2013 which I was able to photograph last Dec. 17. I edited the photo using GIMP. Surprisingly, I was able to come out with the photo above. I took the photo from the balcony of my room here at Mae Sot, Thailand.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Lazy afternoon

LAZY AFTERNOON.  Even the trees feel lazy with the cool December breeze softly embracing the town of Mae Sot in Tak Province, Thailand. 

Monday, December 9, 2013

After the harvest

This is a view from one of the rice paddies of Mae Sot in Tak Province of Thailand after farmers harvested their crops. I took this photo from my phone's camera while walking with some of my friends.

I edited the photo using GIMP and was really surprised with the outcome. Enjoy,

Sunday, December 1, 2013

#Sunset in Mae Sot (2)

Here are another group of photos about Mae Sot sunset. I took the photos when the Sun was almost behind the hills. Because of the very low light I was afraid that I may not be able to produce good photos. But lo and behold, I was able to capture, I think, very good photos.

By the way I am assuming that the white speck on the left upper side is Mars. It may look like a star but it is not blinking so I assumed it is Mars.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

#Sunset in Mae Sot

I always love sunsets. Fortunately, Mae Sot in Tak Province of Thailand provides stunning views of the Sun setting down from the mountains. I also think that the almost unpolluted atmosphere in this part of the Southeast Asia helps in producing some of the stunning sunsets I've seen.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Mae Sot's Memorial Park for its revered warrior

Inside Mae Sot's Science and Knowledge Park is a huge memorial for a Thai warrior. But since most of the signs in this park were written in Thai and Burmese, I am lost as to the hero's name.

I searched and found the place on Google Map's street view but there was no review regarding the place.

Nevertheless, Thais' respect for this warrior can be seen through their daily visits to the memorial and through their offerings.

Thais offer incense and candles.

Others offer several amounts of Bahts which, I believe, are used to maintain the place, which has a lot of cock statues. Hopefully, before I leave this place, I will learn the history behind the hero.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Chiang Mai's scorpion tail river cruise

If you are looking for an alternative way to enjoy Chiang Mai, Thailand, then the Scorpion Tail River Cruise is a must.

Visitors to this ancient city can learn and appreciate its history on a different lens as the guide shows how the river and the city changed with the times.

Rivers are the highways of the olden times and learning how the waters of the Chiang Mai River rose and subside through its glorious history is very interesting.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Gate of Triumph inside the Patuxay Park in Vientiane, Laos

A trip to Vientiane, the capital city of Los, would not be complete without a visit to Putaxay (or Putaxai) Park where the Lao version of Paris' Arch of Triumph can be found.

Compared to other parks in most capitals in the world, Putaxay Park is small but it has grandeur because of the Arch of Triumph.

The Arch was built as a proud remembrance to the patriotic history of the Lao people who fought French colonizers.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Wat That Foun (Vientiane, Laos)

The newly-built temple and a pagoda.
There was so much to see in Vientiane, Laos. But due to an unfortunate and major "hiccup" in my travel itinerary, I arrived in the Lao capital almost a day behind my schedule.

But still, I enjoyed the sights this old city has to offer.

I may have failed to visit other temples but Wat That Foun has a very interesting history.

A Lao couple whom I met in this journey said that the temple was a crematorium. And as such it was located at the edge of this ancient city.

However, due to the intense modern development of Vientiane, the temple which originally was located at the edge is now at the center of the Laos capital.

There was indeed a crematorium inside the compound and a newly-built temple.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Phat Tich Temple (Vientiane, Laos)

I  was in Vientiane, Laos recently on a visa run as my stay in Thailand will end on Oct. 16.

I decided to visit Vientiane because I have heard a lot of stories about the former French colony.

Vientiane is a beautiful city with beautiful people and of course beautiful Buddhist temples, an example of which is the Phat Tich Temple.

Here are some of the photos which I took inside the Vietnamese temple during my very short visit.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Wild life in Mae Sot

CLINGING FOR HIS LIFE. Mae Sot, in Tak Province, Thailand is one of the places where you can actually discover and enjoy wildlife. I found this lizard clinging to a guava tree after a 24-hour uninterrupted rain. The lizard stayed attached to the tree until the rain eventually stopped.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sunset in Mae Sot

The title says it all. This is a collection of photos shot just when the Sun is setting. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

Mae Sot Pagoda photos

Buddhism's influence in Southeast Asian nations like Thailand and Burma can be seen in the people's daily life. The culture, most specially, is influenced by the teachings of Buddha.

However, there are differences in the Pagoda's built by the peoples of these two nations.

Thai pagoda's have a small umbrella compared to those of the Burmese.

An example of such are the pagodas in Mae Sot, where Buddhists and visitors can see the difference.

Here are some of the photos of one of the Pagodas inside the city. This is a Thai Pagoda.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Celebrating Asalha Day 2013

Last Monday, Buddhists all around the globe celebrated one of the most holiest days in the religion's calendar - the Asalha Pja Day ("Dhamma Day").

According to Wikipedia, "Asalha Puja means to pay homage to the Buddha on the full moon day of the 8th lunar month (approximately July). It commemorates the Buddha's first teaching: the turning of the wheel of the Dhamma (Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta) to the five ascetics at the Deer Park (Sarnath) near Benares city, India. Where Kondanna, the senior ascetic attained the first level of enlightenment (the Sotapanna level of mind purity).'

I was lucky to celebrate the day with some Burmese friends and students here at Mae Sot in Tak province of Thailand. The celebration was like a fiesta. People wore their best dresses for the event, prepared their offerings and pray to their Gods.

Here are of the photos which I took during the celebration. Enjoy.