Lately, we’ve been getting an increasing amount of questions about our daily life, living in Isaan. Some of them seem to imply we live in poverty, others in the bush or even in an alien world. After a few days of feeling under the weather, I was up for a day out-and-about an we decided to hit the city. Perfect for another glimpse.
Korat’s biggest night market (SaveOne) has just released a beautiful aerial promotional video, titled Night Life @ Korat (available for viewing here). It is probably made with a drone and shows the beautiful lights from up above. Saveone is a must-visit when you’re in the city of Nakhon Ratchasima and are hungry or want to go on a shopping spree. Have a look at pictures here. Map and directions available here.
Looks like the current development of the city of Nakhon Ratchasima (short: Korat) is going to shift in an even higher gear. The city closest by my Thai residence already was in a growth spurt, with one mall drastically expanded, a second about to open and rumours about a third and a forth going ’round. A high-speed train connection between Bangkok and Korat has already been planned previously, now a second to Khon Kaen will be announced, as well as a nog highway to Bangkok. The local real estate market already grows about 10-15% every year, which will more than likely even accelerate. Impressive.
Last week Khwantippa and myself were invited to join her friends Nong Shompoo and Pee Add to visit Khao Yai National Park, one of the local sites we had not yet been to. The trip is the perfect opportunity to tell you about the slightly lesser-known nature preserve and a suitable vehicle to point out cultural differences, similarities and habits of the Thai middle class. A story in-between, on many different levels.
This afternoon we visited Korat city center and went to pay respect to the statue of Ya Mo, the patroness of the region. According to local belief, the reason I have been able to stay here for 3 months, was by her grace. We burned some incense, offered her flowers and added some gold leaf to a small statue of hers, after wich we walked through Chumpon gate. Let’s hope it works another time. Afterwards a local fortune teller had a few things to say about my future. An interesting experience, let me tell you all about it.
Phimai remains a village that choses to divulge its secrets at a slow pace. From the secret hipster bar, past the hidden big-box retailer, to the hard-to-find gym, the town has much more to offer than one would assume at first glance. My latest discovery is Manatsana Massage. Like most of the hidden treasures, it is located slightly out-of-the-way and no website or Facebook presence is available. To make Manatsanan Massage easier to find, I have included a map at the bottom of this post. Here is my review.
Salapao, or steamed buns, are often sold by the side of the road and are offered in both salty and sweet variaties. It is a Chinese-Filipino treat that the Thai have made their own, and I was tempted to try by fellow blogger Manon, who visited us a little while ago. Thanks for the tip, I have a new favorite local snack. For visitors to Phimai: the nice lady and her cart (below) are right next to the Tesco Lotus, close to the clock tower. Today’s choice: charcoal and cream.