We have found a place to call home for the next month or perhaps longer. We are still assessing. But it feels more peaceful in our new abode, set away from the often noisy streets.
We don't hear any traffic - only the sounds of insects and creatures in the forest or nearby dogs barking. It's nice to be surrounded by nature. But this comes at a cost. I'm frequently removing spiders and scorpions and various other bugs/insects. But that's life. We got used to that in Brazil, where the critters were tarantulas, bats, rats and monkeys.
Slowly, we are settling in to Thai life again, minus all the pollution that convinced us to leave several months ago. We have a car at our disposal, which allows us much more freedom to explore. Getting around in rickshaws and taxis is fun to begin with, but, in the heat, soon loses its appeal, especially when you have young children.
Chiang Mai isn't so large that getting lost presents a problem. If you have a sense of direction, you can easily get back on track. Kuala Lumpur would have been a nightmare to drive in. I'm finding my way around Chiang Mai quite quickly and easily, though you always have to have your wits about you with so many scooters around.
With our own wheels, we can check out the rich variety of organic produce they have in Chiang Mai. There is a big initiative here to provide pesticide-free goods and our diet has improved substantially. Each day (for about £1 per kilo) I buy Jamie a durian (she's addicted).
We eat in much more. Our garden has jackfruit, mango and banana trees and an organic garden. We have purified water from the tap. The children have space to stretch their legs and play and raise their voices heartily.
Jamie has slowly started her yoga again and I'm happy back at Crossfit Chiang Mai. Each week we try to have a Thai massage (it's painful, but great - and only £11 for two hours!)
We're working on finding outlets for Zenchai and have made contact with several groups in town who are educating their children in a way we'd like to have Zenchai learn about the world and life. We'll see how that goes.
So far, so good.