After basking in the generosity of Chiang Mai, we had one more day left on our bicycle rental, so Karen and I set out for the 700 Years Stadium. No, it hasn’t been there for 700 years, but it is a stadium, surrounded by a pool, tennis courts, velodrome and much more. The perfect place for the fitness-minded Thai… except for the choking haze rolling in from the hills where farmers are burning their crops.

700 Years Stadium

There were some brave souls in the stadium, enjoying the equivalent of a family picnic, with three-legged races and the like.

Hazy games

This is the largest sports venue in town... so of course there are desks piled outside the main entrance (?)

What caught my eye, though, was the Playground That Time Forgot.

There it was, a playground full of old-fashioned equipment. By “old-fashioned,” I mean the kind of stuff we grew up playing on. The rusty metal slide, the unprotected pinch points, the copyright-infringing Disney characters- all there for the modern Thai child to enjoy. And enjoy it they did: while we were there a couple youngsters gleefully ran and slid and swung in the Chiang Mai haze.