I went on a walking tour this morning of several traditional markets in Chiang Mai. A local guy organizes the walks through Meetup. I have been on a couple of these now – fun and informative, and a great group of fellow walkers on both occasions.
Many of the shops in these markets are owned by Chinese families that came to Thailand in the past, often many years ago. Today, these Chinese-Thais are assimilated into Thai society and are largely indistinguishable from other Thais. Nonetheless, originally from southern China, Guangdong and Fujian for the most part, these families continue to be a part of the vast Chinese trading networks that have long played a major role in the business and commercial worlds of Southeast Asian countries.
This photo shows a Chinese tourist doing what Chinese do best: shopping and bargaining!
This photo was taken in late May when I visited the Temple of the Emerald Buddha in Bangkok. Passed right by this image the first time I looked at the pictures I shot that day, but a second look got me to reconsider. The roof moving off into the distance on the right, I think, makes the composition very dynamic. This movement really sets off the two people—the woman in her lovely rainbow colored serape—framed by the white columns as they escape the blistering hot sun for a few moments.
This is the first time I have ever posted an image from my phone. Technically it leaves more than a little bit to be desired – the subjects sitting in shade with bright noonday sunlight hitting a white wall behind them. Difficult lighting for the best of cameras, of which the phone’s is not one.
Still I love the image — Friends sitting at a table and not saying a word while they all stare at their phones. It’s a scene that makes me feel old. And one that I did not have to travel to Thailand to come across.
I went on a photo trip this morning to a place called Wat Ban Den, a huge, well-known temple complex a few kilometers north of Chiang Mai. These girls were on a school field trip to the wat. They said hello to me and introduced themselves in English that was not at all bad. And after our mini-lesson was over, they were delighted to pose for a picture.