Thursday, September 20, 2018



There was rain today, in places where we weren’t.  Downtown it did not rain, but northeast about a mile, the streets were wet.  

This week’s ‘Zany Day’ song has a few long-time friends.  Here a little more:  “Open up the window, let some air into this room.  I think I’m almost chokin’ from the smell of stale perfume.  And that cigarette you’re smokin’ ‘bout scared me half to death.  Open up the window, sucker, let me catch my breath.  __ __ __ __ __ __, __ __ __ __ __ __, she said, that ain’t the way to have fun, son, that ain’t the way to have fun, son.”  Clue:  Sometimes it’s best to heed advice.  Group name is a way of ranking temperature in the Oz outback in winter.  Hmm.

This morning we went downtown to get our vitamin injections.  We had made a plan with Cat to meet her across the street at the Honda dealer when we were done.  Her bike was making ‘bad noises’ and needed a diagnosis.  At the clinic, they took our vitals, interviewed us briefly and then we got our B12 shots.  Next week we go back for vitamin C.      

Meanwhile, across the street, we got there a few minutes before the technician came in with the news.  They would need to keep the bike for 3 days to complete the work.  Something inside the engine needs to be replaced.  We took Cat to Work@Home where we had coffee and she had hot milk.  Then we discovered that they no longer rent motorbikes.  We were told where we could find rentals and went there.  Cat is now riding a newer bike without bad sounds.  She’ll be able to get to her classes and her teaching jobs without missing any appointments.  

This was the day we had to do our Immigration check-in and get our re-entry permits.  When we walked into the office, there was only one person being served.  While our papers were being processed, we talked to the person who helped us the last time.  We talked about her golf game, laughed about needing more practice, and then watched her interview an African woman about her braids.  It was like a little party.  I mentioned that we had seen one of their co-workers who had retired to Nan and that we hung out at the art exhibit.  They thought that was so cool.  For what used to be a dreaded event, going to immigration just got a whole lot better.  We know when to go, and everyone is a ‘buddy’ now.  We even got tips on the new photo regulation for the next time we renew.  

Feeling like we had just accomplished something major, we stopped by The Wanderer for a little reward.  Tea and cake/cookies were the order of the day.  We got to see the family and learned that when Lisa orders chicken, it’s referred to as ‘Khun Lisa’s chicken’ in the kitchen.  Kwan wanted to be sure of what chicken Lisa likes, so Lisa told her which chicken and now it’s clear.  As we were leaving, I noticed a big, orange spiny fruit on the counter.  It’s our photo of the day.

This fruit is called ‘Gac’ and has lots of vitamins and is good for you, even though the little spines are sharp.

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


“Every writer is a frustrated actor
who recites his lines in the hidden
auditorium of his skull.”
~Rod Serling

Wednesday, September 19, 2018



We had a pleasant weather day, even though the sky was threatening for most of it.  In the afternoon the rain came again.  It didn’t last long, but soaked everything.  I’m sure there will be more.

‘Easy Monday’ was The Temptations singing “My Girl”.  See, you did know that.  On to another ‘Zany Day’ tune:
“Want some whiskey in your water, sugar in your tea?  What’s all these crazy questions they askin’ me?  This is the craziest party there could ever be, don’t turn on the lights, ‘cause I don’t want to see.  __ __ __ __ __ __, __ __ __ __ __ __, that ain’t the way to have fun, no.”  Hint:  About a party the singer was warned about.  

The nastiness continues, nose blowing, coughing a little, and feeling very sluggish.  This morning we went to Work@Home for coffee.  We were hoping to see Katai and Towan and just as we finished our coffee, they showed up.  We had a really good visit.  It had been weeks since the four of us had been able to talk.  We talked about how we’re doing and eventually, the conversation turned to how they are doing since the passing of Towan’s mother last week.  It was a good talk for all of us.  Then we talked about dogs, of course, and what makes it difficult to get another pet after being so invested emotionally in the last one.  Another deep conversation.  At the end of it all, they told us about a doctor they go to for vitamin injections that really help when they’ve been sick.  We found the office and will go in the morning.  A boost will be welcome.

This afternoon I went down the hall to turn off the light in the guest room and realized it had become Nitchanan’s new playhouse.  The big bed is perfect for playing with the animal set, plus, she doesn’t have to sit on the hard floor.

Today’s photo was taken at The Wanderer.  We have had them living in our yard for a few months.  I don’t know which flower they like, but we’re glad they live here too.    

Lisa and Chopper have a special relationship these days.  Today, while she was talking to Natcha, Chopper came over to her and kept insisting that she pet him.  That’s major progress.  He really seems to be evolving, getting mellower.

Feels like a Wacky Wednesday.


“If you aren’t in over your head,
how do you know how tall you are?”
~T.S. Eliot

Tuesday, September 18, 2018



We were awakened by a 5am storm that turned into a steady rain for a few hours.  Then the sky cleared and it was beautiful.  We’re not sure when the next wave will come.

‘Easy Monday’ was so easy most of you just neglected to say anything.  Michael resisted the temptation and answered anyway.  Here’s the rest of the first verse:  “…when it’s cold outside I’ve got the month of May.  I guess you’d say, what can make me feel this way?  __ __, (__ __).  Talkin’ ‘bout __ __ (__ __). “  Clue:  First of many hits from this 5 man vocal group from the motor city.

This morning, after the sky stopped dripping, we drove up to Shong Cafe and met Cat for coffee and breakfast.  Now that she’s in her third year as an English Education major and is also teaching, we have lots to talk about.  She has a teacher who is what is called a ‘native speaker’ of English, but who has a heavy regional accent.  We discussed the problems with trying to learn the language and the dialect and how it could impact teaching to others.  Her powers of observation are getting very sharp as she learns and teaches at the same time.  

We’re still not over this crazy flu thing.  Today was a little better for me and a little worse for Lisa.  We think that maybe the rabies shot yesterday had something to do with the change in symptoms.  The afternoon was spent mostly taking care of ourselves and relaxing.

Natcha and Nitchanan are still sick so we went out for dinner.  Cat came over and we went to Sombroso for Mexican food.  Today was ‘Taco Tuesday’, which meant 50% off on tacos.  The place was really busy with what seemed like a lot of regular customers.  We learned that the people running the place are Americans.  Cat’s order took a long time because they ran out of sauce.  After making more, the owner came to the table, apologized and told her the order was on the house.  Now if only I could just get them to make a special sauce without the green chilis.

Today’s photo was taken at Big C last week.  I’m not exactly sure what’s in the baskets so I simply call it ‘Mounds of Food’.  I do know that there was rice involved.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


“Life is a lot like jazz,
it’s best when you improvise.”
~George Gershwin

Monday, September 17, 2018



Our weekend was hot and sunny.  This afternoon (Monday) we got smacked with a storm containing all of the weather elements of this region:  wind, heavy rain, thunder and lightning.  It lasted about an hour and was gone.

The ‘Old School Friday’ song was “Georgia” by Ray Charles.  The song was written in 1930 by Hoagy Carmichael and Stuart Gorrell.  It became a major hit in 1960 when Mr. Charles recorded it.  For many years, Ray Charles would not perform in Georgia because of the racism he experienced there.  It’s time for a real live ‘Easy Monday’ and I’ve got just the tune for you:  “I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day….”  Hint:  Really?  Title is in two words.  I’m tempted to give you more lyrics, but those should get you started.

This virus thing we have just won’t leave us alone.  Imagine having a bad head cold, a persistent chest cold, and no energy and you have a vague picture of what we’re dealing with.  Every time we venture out, we return exhausted. Staying at home has proved to be the sanest thing so far.  Sunday we had take-out from The Wanderer since it’s the closest and easiest menu to negotiate.  When we got our dinner order, there was a container with a note stating that it was a special soup they make at home when they're feeling sick.  It was quite delicious. 

Out in the world the Chiang Rai marathon was held on Sunday.  We knew something was up when we heard a woman’s voice over a P.A. system at 5:50am.  They must have started at 6am because it was endless for about one hour.  We left the house later in the morning and we could see people slowly making their way back to the start/finish line.  Our friend Joaqim at Chivit Tamma Da said his wife did the 5k and he heard that there were about 1000 people participating.  It’s very festive whenever there is a walk, run or ride event.  I guess it’s like that around the world.  

Today’s photo was taken from the porch at Chivit Tamma Da.  I call it ‘Chivit In the Morning’.

Daku gave us a bit of a scare this morning when he jumped over a hedge in the front yard.  When he landed he was limping and we feared he had done something permanent to his hip.  We kept him downstairs for the day and now he is doing just fine.  I had a talk with him about curbing his boyish enthusiasm when it came to the stunts.  I think we reached an understanding.  

At Overbrook hospital this afternoon, Lisa got another injection of the rabies series, with one more to go.  Nurse Pay told us there are a lot of people with the flu coming to the hospital.  The annual flu shots will probably come out next month.  Our doctor have her something to help with the stuffy head and one of the cautions said: ‘May cause sleepy’.  We just had to laugh.  We tell Daku to ‘go lie down, go sleepy’.  Hmm.

The weekend heatwave warmed the pool to 92 degrees.  Needless to say, we dipped into the 'spa' and just hung out for about 30 minutes.  I’m sure the afternoon storm cooled it off a bit.  Some form of rain or storm is predicted for the rest of the week.  Too bad, Gong washed our dirty van this afternoon.  

Well, I’m done here, time to put my head down and rest my eyes.  

Have a Great Week.


“Magic is believing in yourself,
if you can do that, you can 
make anything happen.”
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Friday, September 14, 2018

Friday Funnies


Today was hot and muggy.  No rain in sight, although the Bangkok Post said is was raining here.  Hmm, a simple phone call could make things so much more accurate (555).

The ‘Zany Day’ song was “Purple Haze” by Jimi Hendrix.  Here’s an ‘Old School Friday’ song that should be easy:
“__, __ the whole day through.  Just an old sweet song keeps __ on my mind (__ on my mind).  I said __, __, a song of you (a song of you) comes as sweet and clear as moonlight through the pines.”  Hint:  It’s a name.  Could be a person or a place.  

There are days when you wake up and you just know you are not 100%.  This was one of them.  Both of us were feeling lousy, flu symptoms shifting in intensity.  It’s amazing what one can do on sheer will power.  We did the Daku exercise thing and then regrouped and went to Big C.  The dogs have to eat, and so do the people.  After shopping we took a brief break for coffee and then cruised the fruit market.  By the time we got home I was getting that 'creepy skin' feeling.  As I suspected, a very low-grade fever upon me.  Needless to say, the rest of the day was a long nap for both of us. 

Here in Thailand, some people still have landlines in their homes.  This phone is hanging on the wall at The Wanderer.  It’s there as an antique.  I wonder how many young wanderers know how it works. 

I just realized that there is a theme to today’s message.  The song is old, the photo is something old, and, well, when you read the funnies you’ll understand.

Have a Wonderful WeekEnd.        Don’t forget the ‘Funnies’, and Formula 1 is in Singapore for a street race.  Zoom


Thursday, September 13, 2018



It was a beautiful day in Chiang Rai.  Scattered clouds couldn’t keep us from seeing the blue sky and feeling the sunshine.  I hear thunder in the distance, we may get to test the new driveway drainage after all.  There is a storm heading for the Philippines that could possibly bring us left-overs, but that's a few days away.

This week’s ‘Zany Day’ song might be considered a R&R standard from the Summer of Love.  Still remembered.
“Yeah, __ __ all in my eyes, don’t know if it’s day or night.  You got me blowing, blowing my mind.  Is it tomorrow or just the end of time?  Help me, yeah, __ __!”  Clue:  By now you’re wondering if he’s singing to a woman or a drug, or both.  Hmm.

Basically, we spent another day moaning and groaning, reviewing symptoms and napping.  Natcha and Gong took Nitchanan to the clinic again so we had to get lunch outside.  We tried the new Mexican restaurant called Sobroso.  We arrived just after they opened so it was empty.  After checking out the menu and determining that they had food we could eat, we ordered lunch.  I ordered chicken tacos and Lisa got the enchiladas.  My plate had four little tortillas set up in open-face style.  It was a good sized meal for me and the taste was quite good.  When you can’t stop eating, that’s when you know.  Lisa had a similar experience with her order, except that they had to redo the who thing.  When you say no cheese, some cooks take it upon themselves to alternate with something else.  Her order came with cream on the enchiladas.  Who does that?  They replaced the meal and it was good without cream (555).  We will be going back to Sobroso for sure.  Oh, and they played a variety of Mexican music that really added to the experience.  

Mr. Chopper is getting better with age.  He still has some areas where improvement is needed, but he’s more fun to be around these days.  The more social interaction he gets, the more he seems to cooperate.  Everybody needs love.

Today’s photo was taken in Bangkok by an unknown friend of Tatt’s.  Tatt was rehearsing for his graduation in October.  We will be going to Bangkok for that weekend.

Here’s hoping everyone who needs to, reaches higher ground out of the path of the hurricane on the east coast of the U.S.  

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


“You wander from room to room
hunting for the diamond necklace
that is already around your neck.”

Wednesday, September 12, 2018



The forecast told us that it was raining in Chiang Rai, but that didn’t really happen.  This afternoon we had a ‘Thunder Concert’, but no real rain.  The driveway entrance drain system was completed, but we couldn’t tell if it worked.  Maybe tomorrow (5).

The ‘Easy Monday’ song was “Never My Love” by The Association.  It’s time for a ‘Zany Day’ song, from 1967.
“__ __ all in my brain, lately things don’t seem the same.  Actin’ funny but I don’t know why.  ‘Scuse me while I kiss the sky.  __ __ all around, don’t know if I’m comin’ up or down.  Am I happy or in misery?  Whatever it is, that girl put a spell on me.”  Hint:  There is a color involved.

This was an ‘off the grid’ day for us.  Since there was nothing needed from ‘outside’ and we were both feeling ‘under the weather’, we just stayed at home and chilled.  Lisa has what seems like the flue without the fever.  I’m on the outer fringes of something that seems like a bad cold.  So far, I can breathe and sleep isn’t a problem.  Small favors indeed.  We have been exposed to a lot of potential ‘donors’ lately so we just have to ride it out.

Nitchanan is still battling a similar ailment and has missed school due to a fever.  Today they went to the clinic at the government hospital, but it was too crowded so they have gone to see the doctor at his private spot.  This is the practice here.  Doctors work at one of two hospitals during the day, and then have their own private clinic in the evenings.  Even though Nitchanan isn’t feeling well, she was still up for visiting while we had dinner.  She brushed Daku (sort of) and brought us pillows for our backs.  She also tried to slip upstairs after dinner, but Natcha convinced her that she needed her to help close the curtains.  

Monday, when we went to Polar, a funny thing happened.  As we were about to pay the bill, the manager came out to give them a price and we had this moment.  She asked if we had met, thought she’d seen me before.  I said maybe, and then she said she wanted to take a photo with me, that she thought I might be famous.  Well, of course you can take my picture, and I am quite famous in my mind (555).  Lisa and I took a photo with Pim and now we’re celebrities at Polar (555).  

Today’s photo was taken at Polar.  There’s a whole jungle growing around this tree.

For those of you who keep track of these things, we have booked all aspects of the Winter Visit.  We’ll be arriving in Los Angeles on December 23, and returning to Thailand on January 10.  One thing I can say, with certainty, is that it’s always different when we get there.  That keeps it interesting, to say the least.

It’s gonna be a Wacky Wednesday.


“No need to think outside the box,
simply realize there is no box.”