Several months ago I put the exact amount on the counter and asked for a motorbike. "You know how ride," she says in broken English, making hand motions as if I didn't understand.
"Nope," I respond without hesitation.
"ok, deposit and passport." she says smiling.
I find myself out front trying to kick start my motorcycle and I think to myself how much I wish my dad was here, in Thailand, to teach me how to ride this thing. When I was younger I was afraid to try and drive a car, my father would just pull over and yell fire drill to force me in the driver's seat. I didn't want to take the highway for the first time in the rain, but he tricked me on to the exit n I screamed when trucks drove by. But as usual he just sat calmly, reading a newspaper, and occasionally making loud jerking noises when he feared for his life, or I just needed to turn. About 8 years later I stare into the lawless chaotic streets of Chiang Mai, watching as the motorbikes weave through cars and thought about how this might be the day I die. But it reminded me of when my father threw me in the pool for the first time to teach me how to swim. So I pulled back on the acceleration too hard and went straight into traffic, started making a jerking noises while fearing for my life, and kept missing my dad.