May 15, 2004

Inaugural Chiang Mai Piercing?

Today we flew into Chiang Mai, a historically rich town in Northern Thailand. The day before we met Willow, fellow Californian living in Santa Cruz, and convinced her to fly rather than take the two day slow boat (which was not that hard given a) the slow boat is a bit nightmarish and b) she still recovering from a moped spill...lesson, never get on a motorbike in SE Asia). Willow digs dave Matthews and is a Yoga instructor so Janet and she had nothing in common ;-).

After settling in, Janet -- who had always wanted to get her navel pierced -- suggested that we three celebrate our meeting and arrival with a bonding event of the piercing variety. Cosmic coincidence of fate would have it that there was a dingy tattoo parlor a few meters from our guesthouse.

While Willow and I had considerably less enthusiasm (and beer) prior to the bonding experience, Janet was fired up. However, her enthusiasm was nearly conquered by her fear of the pain she'd heard was involved. Yoga breathing and the staunch support of her two compatriots brought her through w/ shining colors:

A stunning shade of turquoise, no?

I was up next. Janet attempted to convince me to get my nipple pierced, but I had more than a few concerns about that one. So, I opted for an ear. The Thai fellow who performed the procedure spoke very little English, but he did know "accident", which he blurted out in a panic after trying to poke the needle through for what seemed like 20 minutes. All turned out well in the end, though my lobe is a little worse for wear:

Jim, getting a little concerned after his piercer shouts "accident!"

Next came Willow who, after my minor ordeal had second thoughts to say the least. Group pressure won her over in the end and she was satisfied by the result:

Later that night we continued the celebration at "Forrest Drunk" which, despite its cheeky name was a pretty chill place, reminiscent of the southern beaches more so than the city.

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