On Lee's birthday we arrived back from elephant trekking exhausted and dirty and decided to have a beer in the bar. We were contemplating what to do for the evening when a guy walked over, boldly introduced himself and asked if he could join us for a beer. I'd seen Mike around the hotel already, chatting to everyone and everyone, it would seem. At first, his teenage, baseball cap wearing demeanour put me off, but I soon walmed to this nutty Canadian film maker, whose laugh was incredibly infectious. He nearly fell of his chair in hysterics when we recounted the story of the day, of Lee and the blind guy on the elephant. After finding out it was Lee's birthday, Mike, who'd been to Chiang Mai many times before, suggested the Muay Thai boxing. So off we went, and as I've recounted before, had a wicked time. Mike and Lee couldn't stop laughing for the next few days about the 'main event' French boxer Dennis, who looked totally camp on the flyer, and got completely annihilated in the ring.
You must wonder why I'm telling you this, so I'll get to the point.
On Monday, Lee went to get in touch with Mike on facebook, only to find a barrage of "You will be sadly missed," and "R.I.P" messages on his page. We still don't know what actually happened, but one thing is for sure- he died in Laos.
I felt compelled to write about this for a number of reasons. I know that we only knew Mike for a short time, but it is still a horrible thought that he is dead, at 29. And here we are following his trail to the place where we were supposed to meet him; the place where he died. Also I didn't think I could whole heartedly write about anything else until I got this out of my system. It just seems so wrong.
So anyway, sorry for such a depressing entry, I guess I just needed to say Mike, you were great and we will miss you.