Life in Chiang Mai
Why I love Chiang Mai
Written by: Sydney Moss for
Chiang Mai Mail
I visited Thailand back in 1974 and ever since then I wanted to
return and spend more time here. This came to pass six years ago when my
wife, two sons and I left America for Thailand. We were fortunate to get
music teaching jobs in an international school in Chiang Mai and during our
five years here we lived in a gated community surrounded mainly by Thai
middle income families.
I was fortunate to meet and cultivate some long lasting relationships many
of which are with Thai nationals. The people I have come to know over the
years are filled with compassion and always ready to help. As a result I was
able to successfully initiate many student focused and community based
projects that helped integrate us ‘Farangs’ with our Thai hosts and I thank
them for this.
Instead of boring you with the details, let me just say it was possible,
with the help and support of my Chiang Mai friends, to successfully
establish the very first Chiang Mai IDOL and Challenge of the Bands Inter
School Music Talent Competitions that showcased the rich talent and skills
focused on school aged children. This developed into an annual tradition
that lasted four exciting years and I hope motivated many children to
develop their musical gifts.
As a result of my friendships I was also offered to host the Sunday weekly
Jazzamatazz Live broadcasts on FM 93.25 from the Helping Hand Studios of
Radio Thailand. This grew into the popular Jazzamatazz Live Parties that
were a weekly event at the Playhouse Entertainment Complex downtown.
Among a host of other projects, during this time I met Khun Boong Chaladlam,
President of the unique Chiang Mai Friends Group and as Vice President
contributed my skills to help grow this organization that focuses on
integrating Thai’s and Foreign Residents by involvement in a variety of
community based projects. This group of friends meets regularly every last
Wednesday of the month and usually invite informative guest speakers who
speak to a variety of topics. http://www.chiangmaifriendsgroup.com/ and
Living and working in Chiang Mai is an experience that created a multitude
of very precious memories. Chiang Mai continues to be my number one city of
choice. I like to describe it as a city that offers to match any mood with
plenty to offer so life is never boring.
The many fresh-markets all over the city are packed with vegetables, fruits,
meats and fish and other groceries often cheaper and healthier than the
supermarket produce. This is hard to come by in the west and an amazing
opportunity to get a better insight into the local life styles. Not to
mention the colorful night-markets that display local, traditional and
Hill-Tribe handicrafts. Most of these are really a bargain especially as
much of what one sees is not so readily available back home. Add to this the
rich music and culture that is strewed all across this magic city that was
once called The Rose of the North and it rapidly becomes clear, Chiang Mai
is not a city that one can claim to have really visited inside of three or
Remember, reaching out is the best way to accumulate experiences and there
are so many people of all nationalities ready to help you discover the magic
of Chiang Mai.
I am now on assignment in Hanoi with my family but my love, admiration and
connection to Chiang Mai will always remain as strong as ever. I do not miss
an opportunity to go back and visit my friends and ‘tank-in’ the beauty,
friendliness and uniqueness of Chiang Mai.
|The Chiang Mai Mail is publishing a series of
articles on residents’ experiences of life in Chiang Mai. If you
would like to contribute please email [email protected]