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Pai has a reputation for music and other forms of art, and many folks come with their instruments or their work and share it with others.

Sometimes, during the tourist high seasons of 2003-2008, it seemed that there are more farangs in the center of town than Thais.

However, Pai is surrounded by small rural farming villages where the farang population varies between 0% and 2%.

Pai is pronounced exactly like the word 'spy' without the 's': more of a popping 'b' than a 'p' (you can learn about Thai sounds here).

Pai is located about at the green star on this map, stolen from the Lonely Planet website: As described in a previous journal entry, most which I will repeat and elaborate on here, Pai is a small, rural mountain town with an interesting mix of Thais, short-term Thai and farang (non-asian foreign) tourists, and long-term expatriate foreigners.

You can go floating down the river in an inner tube, white water rafting, hiking in a canyon, or take very long, hellish motorbike rides or multi-day treks to remote hill tribe villages (most of which are much less commercial than the common treks available outside Chiang Mai).

Someone has also built a swimming pool near town and charges 40B entry; it's an interesting mix of scantily clad farangs and teenage Thai boys trying to make it seem as if they didn't come to stare at the scantily clad farangs.On December 21st, 2003, I board the ancient, solid-steel, fume-spewing third-class bus which plies its way through the steep, windy mountain roads of northern Thailand from Chiang Mai to Pai.I switch out of tourist mode and stay in Pai for years, renting a house long-term and taking only occasional trips out of town.It would be easy to dismiss the place as a white hippie haven and look no further.However once you get here, the place begins to challenge your assumptions.The Philippines, being a country archipelago of islands and seas, have naturally wonderful beaches, some of which are famous the world over.