Chiang Mai

Published on November 27th, 2013


New Country, New Digs: a.k.a. “I Always Wanted a Summer Home in Asia”


Smith Residence, nice but… more than TWICE the price of my “Summer Home”

I’ve now been more or less settled here in Chiang Mai, Thailand for – goodness, nearly two months! Upon arrival at the tail end of September (following 6 weeks skipping ’round Nepal, Malaysian Borneo and Brunei) I grabbed a monthly place at Smith Residence on the south edge of the CM moat, just a block outside the “Old City” – conveniently within steps of the legendary streetfood sensations at the Night Market, as well as the amazing weekly “Saturday Walking Street” market.

Smith Residence is a favorite goto for newbie farang (foreigner) arrivals here in Chiang Mai – very nice, clean studio rooms with fridge, TV, maid service, a/c and wifi (well… the latter a bit wonky but still) at a very nice price of about 8,000 baht (about $250) plus water and electricity (the latter extra fees uniformly additional at most any rental in CM).

But there are lots better long-term rentals to be had here, and thanks to a stray posting on the “I ♥ Chiang Mai” Facebook page (thanks Steven – I still owe you a beer!) I found a great place (brand new, all modern, spiffy clean, and above all – q.u.i.e.t.) in an equally good location (albeit difficult to locate – none of the tuk-tuk drivers seem to know the address and I got lost twice on foot trying to get there) – just off the northwest corner of the Old City, a 10 min. walk to uh… that SALAD BAR I mentioned previously.

Best of all… the tab? An unbelievable 3,500 baht per MONTH! That’s little more than a hundred bucks for a very nice little place to call “home” here in Asia. Of course I opted to upgrade a tad (a room with 2 windows plus a balcony with sliding glass doors – lots of light, making the place seem lots bigger) plus rented both a fridge and a flat-screen TV – all for but an additional 1,000 baht ($30). Bringing my monthly digs tab (incl. free wifi) to all of $137 plus electricity/water.

In short, I now have a perpetual “summer home” here in Asia, where I can keep my extra clothes and paraphernalia (you know, the laptop, iPhone speakers, etc. – the few “luxuries” I keep to make my nomadic life a bit more comfy than that of a perpetual backpacker) whilst I traipse off to exotic lands like Myanmar et al…

…for less than $200 per month.

Shoot, that’s less than some in my native land spend monthly on LATTES!

And while it may not be Nantucket, nor certainly no Hyannis Port,  leastwise I have my own little summer home here in Southeast Asia.

Then again – though I’ve been enjoying the 5-kinds-of-lettuce ‘n such here in Chiang Mai, and g-knows there’s TONS of farang-ish stuff to do… I must say – The Land of Smiles just isn’t quite doin’ it for me.   So not sure how long I’ll continue to stay.

Nonetheless, the digs price is surely right, and I’m keeping all my options open.   So meanwhile – just thought I’d post some pics of where the TL is presently calling “home”.

(Click on any of the thumbnails to start the slide show…)

About the Author

Off-the-beaten-path travel is my passion,and I’ve always lived life “like-a-kid-in-a-candy-store” – eager to sample as many flavors as I can. Indeed, my life motto has long been: This ain’t a dress rehearsal, folks!

5 Responses to New Country, New Digs: a.k.a. “I Always Wanted a Summer Home in Asia”

  1. MCRT says:

    Sounds like you’ll enjoy your time there and then the question is where to next. Looking forward to the next chapters.

    • Dyanne says:

      Yes Mike, Chiang Mai is a nice enough place to hang out for awhile, but Thailand doesn’t siut me so I’ll be moving on soon. Indeed, likely a wholly new CONTINENT so stay tuned… 😉

      • MCRT says:

        I’m rooting for Africa, but South America wouldn’t surprise me. Maybe you can go to Australia and teach them how to spell and the when you kick a round ball around a field you are playing soccer.

  2. Talon says:

    Thailand was like that for me as well. Really enjoyed the food and people, but it just didn’t do it for me. How are you liking Chiang Mai? I avoided it like the plague because it seemed too heavy on farang.
    Talon kindly contributed to world literature by posting…Prejmer’s fortified medieval churchMy Profile

    • Dyanne says:

      Yes Talon, likewise Thailand just doesn’t seem to be my cup of tea. But that’s o.k. ‘cuz clearly there’s plenty of other wondrous corners on this Big Blue Dot – no doubt someplace to suit everybody’s unique tastes.

      And Chiang Mai? Don’t get me wrong – it’s a perfectly fine place to hang out (esp. if you fancy 5 kinds of lettuce) 😉 But I’ve tried my derndest now for more than 2 months and it just doesn’t tickle my toes. Just too many farangs per capita I think, and I guess I didn’t drink the kool-aid. 😉

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