Towards the end of 2016 we were invited to a Shan village in Northern Thailand for a homestay experience. Cost us less than $20 bucks a day and that included the local cuisine. We slept on a mattress on the floor in the living room. Our hosts along with their two young daughters stayed in the only bedroom.

In order to survive, this small village has found a niche in the market. They farm using the old style traditional way, offer limited homestays (I was the 1st foreigner to stay at my host’s house), they also sell organic rice, vegetables and fruit. I meandered around the village, trampled through the rice and corn fields watching the cows, chickens and pigs eat. Much like growing up in rural Missoura.

It all started about 100 years ago when a Shan tribe migrated from Burma to settle here. Elephants were used to clear the land and tigers roamed the mountains. Today there are over 500 descendants living in the village. The money earned goes into a pot and they divvy it up somehow. The village has a Wat, school and a hospital along with a handful of shops. And the kids have phones.

Homestay? Great experience, but sometimes it’s great to stay at home…

A member of the Shan tribe in Thailand enjoying a morning smoke.

Morning Smoke

A nurse from the Shan tribe in Thailand is making her weekly rounds.

The local nurse is making her rounds.

A Shan father and daughter enjoying the cool morning air in Thailand.

Walking with Dad

An old Suzuki motorcycle in northern Thailand.

The rooster and his motorcycle.

A Shan woman shopping at the local market in the village in northern Thailand.

A New York minute does not apply in Thailand.

There is That Look again.

Young boys playing with a smartphone in northern Thailand.

Smartphones. 

A Thai husband helping his wife to lose the grey.

No More Grey Hair

A Shan lady is cooking dinner for her guests.

Cooking Dinner

Guests enjoying dinner at a Shan homestay in northern Thailand.

Sitting at the Dinner Table

Two Thai boys washing their clothes at a temple in northern Thailand.

Monk novices, cleaning their clothes.

A Shan villager talking about medical problems in Thailand.

Having a cup of coffee in the morning. She had a sad story. 

A Shan family in Thailand gets ready for the day.

The lady is drying her hair after taking a shower.

A teacher in Thailand shows students how to lay blocks.

A Thai teacher showing students vocational skills.

This type of back affliction is common among the poor farmers in Thailand.

 This type of back affliction is common among the poor farmers in Thailand.

 

Women seem to have it the most.

The cows in Thailand are bedding down for the night.

The cows have come home.