Typical Thai Yai house and resident, Mork Jampae, Mae Hong Son
Sometimes Mae Hong Son can appear as if it’s stuck in a time warp. A considerable amount of the people here still speak the local dialect, eat the local cuisine and dress traditionally, many even wearing the kup tai (a conical hat). Likewise, most villages here appear to have changed equally little in decades. This is particularly the case with Thai Yai villages such as Mork Jampae, shown above, located about 12km from Mae Hong Son. The vast majority of the houses in Mork Jampae are made from wood and many still feature roofs made from bai tong tueng, a type of local leaf. And as is the case in other Thai Yai villages across the province, the houses are almost always incredibly tidy with a wooden or bamboo fence out front, upon which flowers and/or vegetables are grown. The only obvious concession to modernity is that instead of the tho, a clay vessel of water traditionally situated in front of the house for passers by, most houses now have modern water filters with a tap.