Monday, November 30, 2009



Cooler weather is back in Chiang Rai. We had a quiet weekend. The street fair is over, more lights and decorations are up all over town, and I finally put more photos up on the Flickr site.

I know it was a reach, but Cousin Trudye and Frank knew it was "Young Blood" by The Coasters. And now it's time for 'Easy Monday'. It's a song by a group from the 60's who also had a song that referenced someone named Alice. "When the truth is found to be lies, and all the joy within you dies. Don't you want __ __ __...?" Clue: It poses a musical question, and statement at the same time. Hmm.

Since you have 'songs' on your mind, I have to tell you about a little something I'd like to try. Our Friday song was definitely 'Old School' R&B but it was a tough one. Lisa told me no one would know it, except 'older people'. Well, that may be true, but those were the days. So, for awhile, Friday's will be 'Old School Fridays' and I'll go into the vault and pull out some gems.

Our town is really lit up at night. Between the King's birthday this coming Saturday and some early Christmas decorations, it looks like a wonderland of tiny bulbs. Apparently any occasion is a reason to put up lights. It's fascinating that so many places put up colored lights even though it's not a holiday they celebrate. As one Thai person told us, 'It's just fun'.

Speaking of lights, tonight I saw a new twist on the use of LEDs on a vehicle. There was a row of lights on the grill of a car and they were red, white, and blue in the configuration of the Thai flag.

The street fair that I told you about is over and done. It ended last night. We've come to the conclusion that it was a neighborhood thing. It's not uncommon for a village or a neighborhood to put on a street fair for a week. It brings everyone together with a common focus: food and fun.

Today I went searching for some fine grit sandpaper. Hmm. I found it at the second hardware store. The first one was the biggest and I was sure they'd have what I needed. They have an interesting take on store promotion. At the entrance to the store, which has is entirely open on the front, they play music through big speakers and have young women in sundresses and/or disco outfits to greet the customers. I guess they figure since 90% of there customers are men, it might be an attraction. Not sure - I didn't buy anything. (Ha)
I did find the sandpaper at the next stop where it was no frills shopping. It's interesting to me that both of these stores are run by women.

Be sure and check out the new batch of pictures at the Flickr site. You can see the sights from the Doi Chaang adventure. Even the 'scary' bridge. More to come soon.

Have a Great Week.


"Undertake something that is difficult;
it will do you good.
Unless you try to do something beyond
what you have already mastered, you will never grow."
~Ronald Osborn

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday Funnies


The forecast for tomorrow is 82 with scattered clouds. So now we're in what I call 'winter/summer'. Today there was a ballet class, the car got washed, and I had some more driving insights.

The answer to the math question is: "Nothin' From Nothin'" by Billy Preston. Here's a favorite of mine for the weekend. "I saw her standing on the corner, a yellow ribbon in her hair. I couldn't stop myself from shoutin', 'Look a-there, look a-there, look a-there, look a-there! __ __, __ __, __ __, I can't get you out of my mind." Clues: The title is two words. It's an old-school word for someone of lesser years. The group is named after something that rolls down a hill. Hmm. By the way, this is really old so don't feel bad if you don't know it.

This morning I exercised the dogs. This is something that Lisa usually does, but today I did it. There's not much to it really. Give BamBam the green squeaky toy and she runs around with it and Daku chases her. Sometimes she'd bring it back, I'd throw it, and the chase would begin all over again. There was also some training mixed in but near the end, their attention got scattered. BamBam loves to run. Daku will run if motivated. They each have distinct personalities and working with them together can really make that clear.

This afternoon, while we were driving to ballet class I mentioned that driving was like running an obstacle course. Kind of like a driving game where things pop up and you have to avoid them. After we finished laughing we decided to give the term 'pop up' to all the things that seem to come out of nowhere. It eases the tension when I can add some levity to the situation. While we're on the subject of driving, we've been noticing more and more variations on the colored light theme. The blue LEDs seem to be the most popular, followed by green lights under the car. Today we saw blue, purple, and green on the same vehicle. We're going to get some blue lights, just not sure where they'll go.

After I dropped Lisa at ballet, I went to the car wash. While the car was getting washed I went to a pharmacy run by a couple who speak pretty good English. He studied in Switzerland and has been a great resource. On my walk back to the car wash I had a brief conversation with a police officer who was controlling traffic. It was the usual 'where are you from' thing and he got very animated when I told him I'd been here two years. Oh, controlling the traffic means that he changed the duration of the signals manually. This really seems to keep the flow going during rush hour.

Now it's time for the 'Funnies', sent to me by my friend Alan. Have a Fabulous WeekEnd.


I was walking down the street when I was accosted by a particularly dirty and shabby-looking homeless woman who asked me for a couple of dollars for dinner.

I took out my wallet, got out ten dollars and asked, 'If I give you this money, will you buy wine with it instead of dinner?'
'No, I had to stop drinking years ago', the homeless woman told me.

'Will you use it to go shopping instead of buying food?' I

'No, I don't waste time shopping,' the homeless woman said. 'I need to spend all my time trying to stay alive.'

'Will you spend this on a beauty salon instead of food?' I asked.

'Are you NUTS!' replied the homeless woman. I haven't had my hair done in 20 years!'

'Well, I said, 'I'm not going to give you the money. Instead, I'm going to take you out for dinner with my husband and me tonight.'

The homeless Woman was shocked. 'Won't your husband be furious with you for doing that? I know I'm dirty, and I probably smell pretty disgusting.'

I said, 'That's okay. It's important for him to see what a woman looks like after she has given up shopping, hair appointments, and wine.'

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, November 26, 2009



The weather has done a turn around, at least in the day time. It's actually hot again. The nights are cool, but not cold. We stayed home all day, but had a visit from our seamstress, and our insurance man. There was also a lot of watering.

I only got two responses to our current song. Surely somebody else remembers this mid 70's hit by a guy who recorded with The Beatles. "__ __ __ leaves __, you gotta have somethin' if you wanna be with me (repeat)."
Clue: Here's a giveaway: what happens when you subtract zero from zero? You should get this just by doing the math. That extra blank is there so I don't completely give it away. (Ha)

For those of you in America, Happy Thanksgiving. We didn't find a turkey dinner, but we were thankful for the shrimp and rice dish that Boot served us. Yum. Have a wonderful day.

Lisa spent most of the day in her studio, working on another masterpiece. I watered the north forty (back yard) and also made sure the waterfall got it's daily misting. We haven't had rain in a long time so now we have to water on a regular basis.

This afternoon Ghan, our expert seamstress friend, came by to pick up some things that needed fixing and also to start on another bag for me using the material that Daku enjoyed the other night.

We also had a visit from Khun Surachet, our insurance guy. He brought us a check for the repairs on the front gate motor. We sat and had quite a chat with him about business and his recent trip to Phuket. We were all in agreement that Chiang Rai is the best place to live in Thailand.

This evening I went downtown and on my way back, I passed the street fair I told you about. The street is blocked off and I could hear music and merriment as I made my detour. Chiang Rai knows how to party.

I leave you with a few quotes about Thanksgiving.


"Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action."
~W. J. Cameron

"Feeling grateful or appreciative of someone or something in your life
actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value
into your life."
~Northrup Christiane

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest
appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them."
~John Fitzgerald Kennedy

"If a fellow isn't thankful for what he's got,
he isn't likely to be thankful for what he's going to get."
~Frank A. Clark

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, November 25, 2009



Today was a warm day. I'm not complaining a bit. We had a pretty mellow morning. There was school, ballet class, and more signs of the coming festivities next month.

One of the cleverest answers to a song yet came from Sandy up in the Bay Area: "(It) Hurts So Bad" that I have "...Tears On My Pillow, pain in my heart caused by..." Little Anthony and the Imperials! There you have it. "Hurts So Bad" was the tune you were searching for. Now it's Wednesday and it may not be so easy. Do you know this?
"I'm not tryin' to be your hero, 'cause that zero is too cold for me. I'm not tryin' to be your highness, 'cause that minus is too low to see." Hint: There's a little simple math involved here. The title is in three words, two of which are the same.

This morning we woke up to discover that 'Daku the Destroyer' had been at it again. He pulled down a piece of material that I'd just picked up at the Night Bazaar, for a waist bag. The edges had been chewed and ripped and it was over by his toys. Fortunately it's still usable, but I'm keeping an eye on Daku and everything that's mine. (Ha) He's now 10 months old. Waiting for the 'mellow age'.

This afternoon we had another Thai lesson. We learned that there are four different applications for the word 'Hai' and that the word that sounds like "cow" can be pronounced four different ways, with as many meanings. It's also a trip to realize that going from English to Thai, fewer words can get the same meaning across. Hmm.

After school we had enough time to relax a bit and then head out for the ballet class. I took an alternate route for part of our drive to avoid a bottleneck we discovered earlier. There is a section of street in front of a large school complex that has been transformed into a street fair. There were musicians setting up on a stage, booths selling food and other items, and cars and bikes going in all directions. Looks like it's going to be a fun time. We have no idea how long it will go on, but if it's for the Kings birthday, it will be through next week.

We've been trying to find out if any place will be serving turkey on Thanksgiving, but so far it doesn't look like it. We will be missing BBQ turkey on the 5th because we'll be in Chiang Mai. Our teacher, Janya and her husband Barry are having a party. She said she'll save us some 'bird'.

I think it's going to be a Wacky Wednesday.


"There are those of us who are always about to live.
We are waiting until things change, until there is more time,
until we are less tired, until we get a promotion,
until we settle down -- until, until, until.
It always seems as if there is some major event that must occur
in our lives before we begin living."
~George Sheehan

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, November 24, 2009



Chiang Rai weather is being a little unpredictable right now. Last night it was really cold, today it was warm. Today we hung out at a pharmacy visiting a friend, and hit the Night Bazaar in the evening.

Well, it was kind of an 'Easy' tune. I did get responses. Maybe the bridge into the chorus will help you sing it.
"Why don't you stay, and let me make it up to you. Stay, I'll do anything you want me to. You loved me before, please love me again, I can't let you go back to him. Please don't go, please don't go, __ __ __, don't make it __ __ __..." Hint: We clearly have a man in pain and she's the only one who can stop that.

This morning we started our day outside the compound with a trip to the bank. When we arrived, we didn't see Khun Bobby, our young friend who takes care of us. Instead, his boss, Khun Jutiporn offered to help us. She's helped us in the past, but not the same as Bobby. First of all, she doesn't speak English. Not that it's a big deal, but when you're dealing with your money, you want to be understood and understand. She quickly pointed out what to fill in on the forms and that's when we had our chuckle. Bobby never makes us fill them out, he does it for us. We laughed at how spoiled we'd become at the bank. The service we get is very special. Anyway, we got the forms filled out, and then Bobby came to the desk and took over, like the cavalry riding to the rescue. We had our usual small talk with Bobby and our visit was complete. He always makes a point of asking us something personal and remembers things from the previous visit. He'll go a long way in the biz.

We left the bank and drove across town to a small pharmacy that's owned by Tye's sister, Dtu. Dtu and her husband have gone to Nepal and India on a pilgrimage to the sites of the Buddha's birth and death. They will stay at a temple and live like the monks. Tye is watching their shop for 11 days, thirteen hours a day. During the time we were there, people came in about every 3-4 minutes to get something. Tye enjoyed the company and we'll probably do it again.

It was so warm today that after lunch we sat on the front porch for half an hour and baked in the sun. Daku hung out with us, in the shade. Then we all went upstairs for nap time. Daku takes the first part of his nap with us and then continues outside in the pen. He's a growing boy.

This evening we went downtown to the Night Bazaar to pick up some things we'd ordered, and do a little shopping. It looks like business is picking up with the influx of tourists. It's very interesting to watch how this segment of the community is affected by the seasonal tide of tourism.

Looks like it's time for a Happy Tuesday.


"Believe as a child believes
and the magic will find you."
~Teresa Langdon

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, November 23, 2009



The weather finally made the big jump into winter. We went to a party where mostly English was spoken. I also grieved the loss of a friend.

Our weekend song was only known by two of you. I don't believe it. Lisa and Eileen knew how to "Boogie, Oogie, Oogie". That was by Taste of Honey. The last time we used this song, more of you knew it. Hmm, brain fade?
"I know you, don't no what I'm goin' through, standin' here lookin' at you. Well, let me tell you that it __ __ __, it makes me feel so sad..." Hint: It's a ballad in three words. This little guy has had some pretty big hits. He shed tears on his pillow.

We had to make a definitive wardrobe shift this weekend. The thin cotton just got moved to the rear of the closet and the thermals have taken center stage. The thought of wearing a jacket used to make me cringe, now I don't leave without it. From all we can tell, it's coming down from China and it happened like this last year. The temps in Chiang Rai are very close to the numbers in Los Angeles. It's not really that cold to some people, but when the drop is so drastic, it feels like a deep freeze. Actually, it's warm in the sun, but it will go away and then Mr. Chill will come out.

Saturday night we went to a birthday party for our new friend Nate. He and his wife Rachel live in a wonderful wooden Thai house that they're renting. It's on a compound that makes you feel like you're in the woods. There were lots of 'young' people there, mostly from the U.S. and Canada. There were also their Thai friends from the language school and some other members of different volunteer teams. We had a great time talking about everything you could imagine. Now we have more new friends and our circle is getting even bigger.

Chiang Rai has started putting up decorations in preparation for the celebration of the King's birthday. There are also huge posters of the King, colored lights, and stages where various events will be held. Even though we'll miss the actual celebrations of the day, I'm sure there will be festivities for a few days.

Saturday also brought news of the passing of a friend. I have mentioned 'my dear friend' Lois many times in my messages. We had been friends for about 25 years and she was one of the early readers of this 'blog'. She loved the songs from the 50s and 60s and, as she put it, was in love with Mr. August. She hounded me about putting the stories about August into a book. She will definitely be missed.

Have a Great Week.


A young but earnest Zen student approached his teacher, and asked the Zen Master:
"If I work very hard and diligent how long will it take for me to find Zen."
The Master thought about this, then replied, "Ten years."

The student then said, "But what if I work very, very hard and really
apply myself to learn fast -- How long then?"
Replied the Master, "Well, twenty years."

"But, if I really, really work at it. How long then ?" asked the student.
"Thirty years," replied the Master.

"But, I do not understand", said the disappointed student. "At each time
that I say I will work harder, you say it will take me longer. Why do
you say that?"

Replied the Master, "When you have one eye on the goal, you only have
one eye on the path."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Funnies


We spent most of today around the house. We got word that the art shipment arrived in Bangkok, plans were set for another trip to Chiang Mai, and I took a stroll in the business district.

Well, it looks like the song was a bust. That's too bad because you missed singing "The Night Has A Thousand Eyes" for two days. It was a hit for Bobby Vee. For the weekend I think I'll give you a break. This is from '78, so you'll need your dancin' shoes. "Git up on the floor, cuz we're gonna __ __ __ til you just can't __ no more." Hint: Yeah, it's about dancing and it's three words, two of which are the same, and not really words anyway. The other blank is there 'cause it would just give it away. (555)

Our adventures in the art world continue to escalate. It was quite a relief to find out that the four art pieces arrived as promised. We will visit the showroom when we go to Bangkok on our way to America. After we return, Lisa will give a presentation on the cast acrylic process to the staff so that they can explain it to their clients.

December 5th is the King's birthday and it's referred to as 'Father Day'. There will be a major art fair in Chiang Mai beginning on the 5th and our friend Nat has invited us to come and see the fair and visit her booth. She would like for Lisa to show some of her paintings next year. The big treat is that we'll be staying at a somewhat elegant boutique hotel for that night. It's run by a friend of Nat's and we think it's her treat. She told us it was sold out and the only available room is the honeymoon suite. So, well be going on a little honeymoon. Nice.

Today was a ballet class day and while Lisa was teaching, I went in search of printer ink. I stopped at a fairly new store we noticed on the way to class and ended up committing a social goof. I hadn't noticed all the shoes by the door as I went in. It wasn't until I was getting my change that I noticed someone taking off their shoes at the door. A quick look around and, with the exception of one woman, everyone was barefoot. Oops. I'll remember next time.

My search for ink wasn't over. I still needed one more so I headed up to what I call the business district. Friday traffic was slow and messy but I finally got there. I checked a couple of shops and then just started walking. I counted five barber shops in one block. Hmm, all but one had customers so I guess it didn't matter. It's a Thai thing. I found the other cartridge, learned more about what's on the street and felt a sense of accomplishment. (Ha)

Now it's time for the 'Funnies', sent to me by my friend Marty, who lives in Pai, Thailand. Enjoy.

Have a Wonderful WeekEnd.


Jokes to Exercise By

It is well documented that for every mile that you jog..... you add one minute to your life. This enables you at 85 years old to spend an additional 5 months in a nursing home at $5000 per month.

My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was 60. She's 97 now and we don't know where she is.

The advantage of exercising every day is that you die healthier.

I joined a health club last year, spent about 400 bucks. Haven't lost a pound. Apparently you have to show up.

I have a philosophy about exercising to lose weight. I don't think you should punish your legs for something your mouth did.

I have to exercise early in the morning before my brain figures out what I'm doing.

I don't exercise at all. If God meant us to touch our toes, he would have put them further up our body.

I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.

If you are going to try cross-country skiing, start with a small country.

I don't jog, it makes the ice jump right out of my vodka tonic.

I am in shape. Round is a shape.

Not afraid of heights -- afraid of widths.

Practice safe eating -- always use condiments.

I plan on living forever. So far, so good.

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, November 19, 2009



Life in Chiang Rai continues to be an adventure. Today I went back to the dentist, Lisa went to a Thai silk store, and we had a visit from an Amway dealer. Hmm.

The song appears to be a mystery to many of you. Cousin Trudye got the song, and two of you picked songs with six words that were not the right song, but had the word 'eye' in them. Very interesting. Maybe this will help:
"'Cause __ __ __ __ __ __, and a thousand eyes can't help but see if you're true to me. So remember when you tell those little white lies that __ __ __ __ __ __." Hint: I practically gave you the title. If it's still a blur, there's a time of day involved. Who sang it?

My new denture device has been working out pretty good. I forgot what chewing on both side of the mouth was like. The only problem was that I was biting the tip of my tongue on occasion. The dentist wasn't busy when I arrived and went right to work making alterations. I think things are better now and I appreciate how quickly he helped me.

While I was getting my mouth in order Lisa was on an adventure of her own. Our friend Jen had invited her to go to one of her friend's shop to see her silk garments and accessories. They spent quite awhile at the showroom, looking at dresses, suits, scarves and purses. She came home with a beautiful black silk bag that's dressy and practical. Jen showed me a shirt that she had in her car and it was incredible. Maybe someday.

The remainder of the day was rather uneventful until late afternoon. BamBam started barking and wouldn't stop, then Boot started calling for Lisa. At first we thought something was wrong, until Lisa went downstairs and noticed two motorbikes coming into the yard. It was Jinda and some friends. Jinda sells Amway products, among other things, and we had committed to a bottle of floor cleaner for our laminate floors. Her 'boss' was with her and he went into his pitch (in Thai), trying to sell more products. I stayed upstairs while Lisa fended off the sales pitch.

This evening I spotted a dozen bicycle riders with helmet lights, heading out for an evening ride. They were on a mix of road and mountain bikes, and they were wearing the 'outfits' just like the tour pros. I think there are three or four clubs in Chiang Rai. I guess they know which roads are safe to ride, considering the condition of some of the pavement around here. Amazing Thailand.

I have to go downtown to Doi Chaang Coffee now, in order to send this message. Our internet has been out all evening. If it's not back in the morning I'll have to call my buddy Khun Nucha for an explanation.

Have a Fantastic Thursday.


"Perfectionism is the highest form of self-abuse."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, November 18, 2009



Tuesday in Chiang Rai was a day for errands and dancing. I ran the errands and Lisa taught the dancing. Looks like rain but it never happens. Wednesday was shipping day. Stay tuned.

Your 'Easy' song this week was "Johnny B. Goode" by Mr. Chuck Berry. You should have known. A few did.
"They say that you're a runaround lover, though you say 'it isn't so'. But if you put me down for another, I'll know believe me I'll know...'Cause __ __ __ __ __ __...." Hint: This is from the season of '62/'63 and it was a hit single. I guess that would mean that the 'eyes' have it. (Ha)

The air was cool on Tuesday morning. I dropped Lisa off for a hair appointment and headed over to the highway for a series of stops. First stop was Sinthanee to order a new battery for the PC laptop. We actually took the battery to Chiang Mai on our trip and went to a store at Central that was listed on the internet. Yes, they were a dealer, but since the laptop was an 'older' model (3 years) we'd have to order it from Bangkok. They suggested going to a local outlet for that. The service at Sinthanee is always first rate and this time was no different. They confirmed that the battery was done and said they'd call me when they found a new one. An hour later they called to say a battery was on the way. It might take a month, but it's on the way. Hmm.

Big C was my next stop. With a list in hand I conquered the 'C' and did a pretty good job. I think I got everything on the list. The bulk of it was drinking water. My cart was loaded down with cases of soda water and two sizes of drinking water. This can make for a heavy cart. As I approached the exit conveyor escalator I braced myself just in case the wheels didn't lock. They didn't and as I gripped the hand rail, one of the cart workers dashed onto the belt and stood in front of the cart. I was impressed and the people in front of me got to ride down without getting run over.

The last time Lisa taught the girls ballet was about a month ago, right before their 'summer vacation'. It felt a little odd, driving down to the building as the sun was going down. All four girls showed up and they had a good session. They appeared to be happy to return to class with Lisa.

This morning (Wednesday) we went over to the frame shop to see Lisa's paintings in their finished state before they got packed up for their trip to Bangkok. The four works looked incredible and it was sort of sad to realize that we would not be seeing them at home. In the afternoon we returned to pick up the 'crates' that Khun Noy had constructed. They were very special containers that showed a lot of care. He packed them into the car and we took them to the shipping company downtown. Khun Nut had called to tell them we were bringing the paintings and the manager was standing out front waiting for us. This was the smoothest operation of this kind that we've ever encountered. Everything just 'worked'. The four pieces will arrive in Bangkok tomorrow afternoon. We'll see them again mid December on our way to America.

We got up super early this morning (to the delight of Daku) in hopes of seeing the meteor shower but we were covered with clouds. Our day began a half hour early. That won't happen again. (Ha)

Late this afternoon Tye and Napa came over to visit with Lisa. Boot joined them and the four of them had quite a time on the back patio. This hadn't happened in quite a while and I think they had a good time.

Feels like a Wacky Wednesday.


"Opportunities multiply as they are seized;
they die when neglected.
Life is a long line of opportunities."
~John Wicker

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Three Things


Sunday in Chiang Mai we went to a huge book store, I got some tendon relief, and we bought orchids on the highway. Today I shopped for supplies, and ballet classes resumed.

I can't believe only two people got this. This is classic stuff. 'Mabeline', 'Rock & Roll Music' and this song were included in his induction to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. This song might have been about himself. "...he never ever learned to read or write to well, but he could play his guitar just like a-ringin' a bell."

When we entered the dining room at the Mae Ping hotel, we didn't know what to expect. Since the hotel was apparently full, it was understandable that there would be lots of people in the room. The test would be to see what they were eating. It turned out that the menu was extensive. There was Thai food, Chinese food, and western food just to name a few. It was way better than our former hotel.

After breakfast we got a Tuk-Tuk driver to take us to a bookstore we were told about. He agreed to wait for us, which was very nice. Inside we found a huge selection of books as well as stationary items. Upstairs there was a section with books in English. Unfortunately, most of the books were wrapped so browsing was impossible. Lisa found a book that wasn't wrapped and it turned out to be a good read. Our driver took us back to the hotel and we just had enough time to get ready for my appointment.

Our friend Ten picked us up at the hotel and we went back to his place. The physical therapy session was two and one-half hours long, and most of it was not uncomfortable at all. He explained that there are tiny little tendons that can have an effect on our muscles if they get enflamed or too tense. I must say that today is feeling better than yesterday. Hmm.

As we headed out of Chiang Mai, without lunch, we realized it would be some time before we would find food on the road so we stopped at one of the ever-present 7-11s. We got some munchies to hold us until we got to our half way spot. Since is was Sunday afternoon, the traffic was lighter than usual and there were no big trucks to deal with. There were the occasional slow drivers but we took our time and always waited until it was safe to pass. Not everyone was of the same mind. We stopped at the hot springs and shared an order of food, had some coffee and hit the road. We made it back to town in good time and Boot had dinner waiting.

On Monday, Boot's sister Tan returned to Rayong to take care of their grandmother, who is 90 years old. It was sweet watching Boot make sure her baby sister had everything she needed for the trip home. It was her first long distance bus ride alone. I could tell that Boot would miss her.

Looks like I'm still a day behind, but tomorrow we'll bring it all together.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in action and in thoughts, you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things
Compassionate towards yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world."
~Tao Te Ching

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, November 16, 2009



We spent the better part of the weekend in Chiang Mai. There was walking, shopping, and an unplanned Tuk-Tuk ride.

Well, our weekend song was an early one from Neil Diamond. "Solitary Man" should have been on your mind. Now it's time for 'Easy Monday' and this one should be a snap. "Deep down in Louisiana close to New Orleans, way back up in the woods among the evergreens, there stood a country cabin made of earth and wood, where lives a country boy named __ __ __ ..." Hint: It's a name and if you're real good, I might even have more clues tomorrow. (Ha)

Saturday morning we got up bright and early (what else?) and packed our bag for a trip to Chiang Mai. We had two main goals for the trip. Lisa wanted to see the ballet class that her little group takes every week, just to see what they're learning, and I wanted to get a special treatment from our friend Ten, since I'd been having trouble with one of my knees.

The ride down was very nice. We found a new spot on the highway for coffee. They also had some delicious rice cakes that we had to force ourselves to stop eating. We were the only patrons in the place and it was relaxing. Back on the road we enjoyed what may be the last of the vivid shades of green before the dry seasons turns everything brown. The mini jungles in the mountain passes were a sight to behold.

We stayed at a different hotel this time and it was a step up from our usual hang-out. The Imperial Mae Ping Hotel has an English speaking staff, two pools and a dining room that serves a breakfast buffet with tons of choices. Our room was smaller than we usually have, but it was set up quite well. There was a little problem with the internet connection but it really didn't matter because we weren't in the room that much. Plus the fact that we don't get much mail on the weekends anyway. (hint)

We started out with an adventure at The Airport Central, the largest shopping center in the city. We end up there every time we visit Chiang Rai and we're still learning the place. We'd never been there on a Saturday and it was amazing to see so many people buzzing around the place. There was a big talent contest on an outdoor stage, with singers, dancers and rappers all wanting 'To Be The One'. That was the name of the contest. Inside, there was what could best be called a 'Little Princess' competition. Oh my.

Late in the afternoon Lisa got picked up at the hotel by one of the ballet mothers and they went to the studio to watch a class. I stayed at the hotel and just relaxed. After she returned we went back to Central for dinner. We ended up eating at a Sizzler. Yep, the same Sizzler. We ordered an old favorite, the Habachi chicken. As soon as I took my first bite I realized this was not my Culver City Sizzler. It was spicy! After removing much of the sauce I enjoyed my meal. Another reminder that we're in amazing Thailand. After dinner we went to the Night Bazaar, Chiang Mai style. Although the goods being offered seemed to be repeated for blocks and blocks, we did find some beautiful silk items and almost bought a carving of two elephants set in piece of wood.

Well, that's the first day of our trip. I'll continue with the rest tomorrow.

Have a Great Week.


"The wisest person is not the one who has the fewest failures,
but the one who turns failures to best account."
~Richard R. Grant

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday Funnies


It was another day of activity around the compound. The garden crew came and did their monthly thing, we had an extended business lunch, and Lisa went on an expedition. Hmm.

Our last song was quite popular. "I Can't Get Next To You" by The Temptations was being sung all over the place. For the weekend, a song that may come easy to some, and may stump a few: "Melinda was mine till the time that I found her, holding Jim, loving him...I'll be what I am, a __ __." Clue: First of all, it's a really sad song. Used to be one of my favorites a long time ago. It's a great 'I just got dumped' song. The singer sits alone playing cards with himself.

We stayed close to home this morning. The yard was crawling with people grooming the place and Lisa worked on a new cast acrylic print. I don't even remember what I was doing. Hmm. We were having our friend Nut over for lunch, and to discuss the paintings Lisa has been doing in a 'modern' Feng Shui concept. Nut called and asked if she could bring Pui and of course we said yes. Pui and Nut are childhood friends and he's part of the 'Family' that welcomed us to Chiang Rai.

When Lisa took Nut up to her studio, she loved the pieces and the conversation moved to the next level. What's going to happen is, Nut is going to take four of Lisa's works to Bangkok where they will be on display in the showroom of the Feng Shui decorating business. To that end, after lunch Lisa, Nut, and Pui took the paintings to the frame shop to start that process, and then went to the shipping company to make arrangements to have them crated and shipped to Bangkok. Instead of one day in Bangkok before we head to America, we're taking two so we can visit the building, see Lisa's work on display, and get a feel for the whole operation. There's more to tell but it can wait.

Now it's time for the 'Funnies'. You will recall, last week we heard from the dog's diary. This week it's the cat.

Have a Mellow WeekEnd.


Day 983 of my captivity...

My captors continue to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine lavishly on fresh meat, while the other inmates and I are fed hash or some sort of dry nuggets.

Although I make my contempt for the rations perfectly clear, I nevertheless must eat something in order to keep up my strength.

The only thing that keeps me going is my dream of escape. In an attempt to disgust them, I once again vomit on the carpet.

Today I decapitated a mouse and dropped its headless body at their feet. I had hoped this would strike fear into their hearts, since it clearly demonstrates what I am capable of. However, they merely made condescending comments about what a 'good little hunter' I am. Bastards.

There was some sort of assembly of their accomplices tonight. I was placed in solitary confinement for the duration of the event. However, I could hear the noises and smell the food. I overheard that my confinement was due to the power of 'allergies.' I must learn what this means and how to use it to my advantage.

Today I was almost successful in an attempt to assassinate one of my tormentors by weaving around his feet as he was walking. I must try this again tomorrow -- but at the top of the stairs.

I am convinced that the other prisoners here are flunkies and snitches. The dog receives special privileges. He is regularly released - and seems to be more than willing to return. He is obviously intellectually challenged.

The bird has got to be an informant. I observe him communicating with the guards regularly. I am certain that he reports my every move. My captors have arranged protective custody for him in an elevated cell, so he is safe. For now!

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, November 12, 2009



It was a busy day in The Rai. There were visits to Toyota, Big C, and the bank. Time was spent pondering the flow of water in the pool, and we had a visit with new friends in the afternoon. Whew.

A lot of memories went to work on this one. I got lots of right answers to a song who's title is hard to hide.
"I can turn back the hands of time, you better believe I can. I can make the seasons change, just by waving my hand. I can change anything, from old to new. The things I want to do the most, I'm unable to do. Unhappy am I with all the powers I possess, 'cause girl you're the key to my happiness, and __ __ __ __ __ __." Hint: This Detroit quintet really wants to have a relationship. The hook involves a slang phrase for having someone beside you. Hmm.

This morning I went to Toyota early, to get the Vios serviced. It was our 5,000 kilometer check-up. They told me it would be done in an hour and this time they were right. While I waited, I went through old email on my phone and tried to watch the Thai version of The View. They called me when the car was done and I was quite surprised when they told me it was only 95 Baht (about $3), and that included a car wash. Wow.

My next stop was Big C for some printer ink. It's so interesting to go there early while things are still being set up for the day. I got what I needed and it was totally painless. From there I dashed home, picked up Lisa, and we headed to the bank to meet with Khun Bobby (his nickname).

After lunch, we were hanging out upstairs and I was just getting into that siesta mode when I got a call from Johan. He'd be at the house in a few minutes. We walked around the pool and discussed the waterfall and tried to figure out why the water was going from the pond to the pool and not the other way around. We concluded that the pump for the falls was stronger than the drain could handle so it flowed into the pool. It doesn't hurt anything, just changes a little trick that I was hoping to achieve. Oh well. I turned down the flow a little but it's too soon to tell if it will work. It's still pretty amazing.

Right after Johan left our afternoon guests arrived. Nate and Rachel are the couple from L.A. that I mentioned in a previous post. They're here for a year working on a foundation that they created to help educate kids that are at risk. The primary purpose is to help put a stop to practice of young girls and boys being caught up in the sex trade. The children are given scholarships that allow them to have what they need to attend school, learn English and see the possibility of a brighter future. They have scholarships for 54 right now and they have a waiting list of 90 more kids who want to go to school. Rachel produced a documentary on the subject and it's being shown around the U.S. and they also sell it on-line. You can learn more, and watch a trailer for the film at:

Have a Wonderful Thursday.


"Nothing is good or bad, but thinking makes it so."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, November 11, 2009



It was another one of those days. Clear sky, warm air, and a faint breeze. Plans were changed, new words learned, and we discovered a new Chiang Rai treasure.

The 'Easy' song was "Shining Star" by Earth, Wind and Fire". Today's song may be a challenge for some:
"I can turn the grey sky blue, I can make it rain whenever I want it to. I can build a castle from a singer grain of sand..." Clues: The title is in six words (although it sounds like 5 when I sing it). Don't be tempted by their imagination, these guys have a serious case of unrequited love.

The plan to drive down to Wat Rong Khun got changed. Boot and Tan got invited to go to Mae Sai with Boot's friend Nowaan instead. We spent the morning dealing with the final stages of the waterfall and explaining to Kek that stones in the flower beds were not OK. He's supposed to come and remove them tomorrow. It's a lot of temptation for the dogs. Better to have them gone.

Since Boot was in Mae Sai, that meant we had to get our own lunch. There were none of our usual supplies so we splurged and went over to the Dusit Island Resort for lunch. The dining room looks out on the Mae Kok river and the lush green foliage on the other side. The grounds are nicely kept so it's fun to just look out. The place was empty and that was a little weird. Actually, it's always empty at lunch time. Most of their guests are out doing tourist things at lunch time. We thought back to 2001 when we stayed there on our first visit. It was like a dream, and now we're neighbors. Hmm.

We went to school this afternoon and learned all about telling time. It's very different than how we do it in English. We had learned some of this before, but today's lesson was the first time we had it all presented the way people really talk. We also are learning that there are certain words that have formal and polite forms, depending on who you're talking to and where you are in the country. It's a slow process, but we're in no rush.

After class we went over to Doi Chaang Coffee to refill our supply. While standing at the cash register we noticed a sign stating that they had a new antique shop next door. Just as we entered the shop, the owner appeared from the rear. It was Khun Newt, who manages Doi Channg and is married to Khun Wicha. We had a magical time having her explain the origins of the many things in the shop. Most of the items are Akha antiques from her private collection. It's a treasure hunter's paradise. Since only duplicate items are for sale, the shop is more like a museum. I would definitely add this to the list of 'must see' places in Chiang Rai.

We just got home from having dinner with Boot and Tan at Leelavadee (Plumeria). It's actually pronounced with the v as a w, in case you're working on your Thai. (Ha) We had a fun time during dinner. It's nice to just spend time together. We got to learn a little more about Tan from her big sister. There was lots of laughter and plenty of food. Our waiter teased me because every time we go there I order the same thing. That's because it's not 'spicy'. He had everyone laughing about it though. I guess that means he likes me.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"The beginning of wisdom is a firm grasp of the obvious."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, November 10, 2009



We just keep having these beautiful, hot days in Chiang Rai. Where's winter? I went back to the dentist, we cruised the talat (market), and Lisa hung out with a friend.

It's nice to see that 'Easy Monday' is back to easy. I got quite a few correct answers. I think the chorus will pull it together for those of you with doubts. "You're a __ __, no matter who you are, shining bright to see what you can truly be." Hint: Are you serious? (555)

When I arrived at the dentist office this morning, I assumed it would be for some kind of preliminary fitting of the device that would give me two rear molars. To my surprise, it was finished. Twenty minutes later I was done and I left with this thing in my mouth and doubts as to whether I could live with it. He told me it would feel strange for a few days. Hmm, I think he's right. I've had two meals and I've done pretty good so far. I just have to remember that I can chew on the left side. My mind/mouth is conditioned to use the right side. The weirdest thing about it is literally having a new palate. The human body is very adaptable so I suppose it will get better with time. Hmm.

Before lunch, Lisa and I made a run down to the talat. It was a brave thing we did, going into the market place at lunch time. We lucked out and found a parking place and headed for the 'everything store'. This is one of those stores where you walk around and say, 'Oh, this is where those come from.' We got a small shoe rack for outside of Boot's door, and some small trays. There's lots of basic stuff that can make life nicer. Some is made domestically and many things are from China. All of it is quite affordable.

Our next stop was in the maze that is the market. Fortunately, we have certain 'streets' inside where we do most of our shopping so we tend not to get lost anymore. Just before we entered, my sunglasses broke. Right inside there was a woman selling sunglasses. Hmm. I saw a pair that I liked, they had a good fit, and I got them. A good fit is important when you're investing in sunglasses. They cost $1.80 and I wanted them right. (Ha) Down the same 'street' we stopped at one of the shoe stores we frequent and Lisa got a pair.

The afternoon consisted of a trip to the bank and then a visit from Sutheera. She and Lisa visited downstairs for a while and Daku and I crashed upstairs. In the evening he and I walked around the yard having 'garden appreciation'. He likes to smell the flowers and the bushes that have them, even when they aren't blooming. There's one little flowering tree, however, that he likes to nibble and we're still dealing with that. He doesn't get to it often, but when he does, he loves the little flowers.

Tomorrow I'll take Boot and Tan (pronounced Tahn) down to Wat Rong Khun since Tan has never been there. In the evening we're taking them out to dinner. It's turning out to be another eventful week.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"I'm not young enough to know everything."
~Oscar Wilde

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, November 9, 2009



Chiang Rai is having beautiful weather these days. Wish you were here. Saturday we went to the opening of an art exhibit, Sunday Boot came home (Yea), today we traveled north to Mae Sai, and the waterfall is done.

Our weekend song was "Cold Sweat" by "The Godfather of Soul", Mr. James Brown. Today is 'Easy Monday' so here's your chance to shine. "When you wish upon a star, dreams will take you very far. When you wish upon a dream, life ain't always what it seems..." Hint: Uplifting tune by a group named after three elements. You'll find the title in the night sky. Hmm.

It's always a treat to visit Le Meridien Hotel. Saturday we went there for the opening of a photo exhibit for five artists. All of the works were in black and white and were displayed in hallways near the lobby. We had seen most of the photographs already, when we went to check out the set up with the curator, Khun Jaffe. There was a presentation by the manager of the hotel, a few words from Jaffe, and the official opening by a man we didn't know. Hotel staff circulated with trays of beverages and there was lots of conversation. We made some new friends and connected with people we knew. The same setting will hold an exhibit in January and Lisa will be showing some new works. Later this month they will host another opera and we plan to attend.

Early Sunday morning we got a call from Boot that she, and her sister Tan, had arrived at the bus station. She's very happy to be 'home' and the dogs were overjoyed. BamBam did her usual 'singing' and Daku got a little crazy. After they calmed down, they had a warm reunion. Tan will stay for about a week and then return to Rayong. This is her first visit to Chiang Rai. Tonight (Monday) we had our first dinner by Boot, and it was wonderful.

Today we drove up to Mae Sai for our visa check-in. It took longer than usual since we counted our days from our annual visa renewal and they counted from our last check-in. After the dust had settled we had to pay them some money but all is well. We left immigration and went into the shopping district by the border. We lunched at a big hotel and then set out to look for some unusual gift items. Mae Sai has a lot of goods from China which can be fascinating on one hand, but not the traditional 'Thai' shopping that we were looking for. We did find some gift ideas and decided to head home. A stop at Tesco-Lotus, a Target type store, was on our agenda. They have many 'Western' items and it's always nice to find things we can't get in Chiang Rai. I managed to get a new Bluetooth headset from the 'sale bin' and we found some household items we'd been needing.

This morning, as we were leaving, the landscape crew was just getting started on the final touches on the waterfall and surrounding grounds. When we got home, Boot told us they had finished. We now have a water feature that looks like something you'd find at a resort hotel. There are tall palms surrounding the falls and orchids peak out at various levels. There is a sprinkler system to water all the new plants and two flood lights illuminate the whole thing at night. I'll take some pictures in the morning when the light is right and get them posted on the Flickr site.

Have a Great Week.


"Don't try to reason with your heart
or feel with your mind
for just as the heart knows no logic,
the mind can't lead you to your soul"

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, November 6, 2009

Friday Funnies


We had another beautiful day in Chiang Rai. Most of the day was spent at home, but there was a trip to the market that was memorable. Tonight the falls got lights.

The actual name of the song you all seem to know, was "Play With Fire" even though the hook is 'Playing with fire'.
It was, of course, by The Rolling Stones. For the weekend let's get funky. Here's one of many from the master:
"I don't care, about your past. I just want, our love to last. I don't care about your faults. I just want to satisfy your pulse. When you kiss me, when you hold me...I break out __ __ __ __." Clue: He felt good in his new bag. This one describes a physical condition. (Ha)

This morning was spent trying to stay one step ahead of the house. With Boot still gone, we have chores to do, and everyday our appreciation grows stronger. Lisa worked on her latest print, and I researched Bluetooth headsets.

This afternoon we went to the downtown market. We got what we went for and decided to stroll around and just take in the sights. It was a little after 4pm and things were set up for the 'dinner crowd'. The central street to the market gets a second row of vendors who line up in the street. In affect, there are three rows of carts down one side of the street. Every kind of food you could imagine and a bunch you wouldn't. It was a nice reminder of where we are.

It's time for the 'Funnies'. I'd like to thank Eileen for sending these. The second time around can be so different with two dogs in the house. Next week we hear from a cat.


What Pets Write in Their Diary

Excerpt from a Dog's Diary.....

8:00 am - Dog food! My favorite thing!

9:30 am - A car ride! My favorite thing!

9:40 am - A walk in the park! My favorite thing!

10:30 am - Got rubbed and petted! My favorite thing!

12:00 pm - Lunch! My favorite thing!

1:00 pm - Played in the yard! My favorite thing!

3:00 pm - Wagged my tail! My favorite thing!

5:00 pm - Milk Bones! My favorite thing!

7:00 pm - Got to play ball! My favorite thing!

8:00 pm - Wow! Watched TV with my people! My favorite thing!

11:00 pm - Sleeping on the bed! My favorite thing!

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, November 5, 2009



Today was clear, cool and sunny here in Chiang Rai. We had more pool consultations, went to the market, got a massage, and I witnessed a parade of Tuk-Tuks. Today was a good day.

A few of you remembered the song. The next verse should make it clear that this took place in England. Hmm.
"Your mother she's an heiress, owns a block in St. Johns Wood and your father'd be there with her, if he only could. So don't play with me 'cause you're __ __ __." Hint: Three words, although the first word of the actual lyric is not the same as the title. Hey, it's only Rock & Roll but we like it. You really should know this song.

This morning, right before we got up, I heard a sound coming from the area where Daku was sleeping. It was a kind of rattling sound that didn't sound like any of his toys. When the alarm went off he jumped up and came over to me like he always does. He had something in his mouth. I grabbed his head and told him to 'drop it', which is something he hears a lot. He complied and my Blue Tooth head set fell out. Ugh. Upon closer examination I found that the little rubber part that goes in my ear was missing. He was still chewing but refused to give it up. I think he swallowed it. Now I have to get another one. I also have to make sure that there is nothing on my bedside table within reach of the monster dog. He's tall enough now that he can very quietly steal things.

As we were preparing to go to the market for veggies and fruit, Johan arrived. We discussed the modifications to the channel that runs around the outside of the pool. It seems there are cracks on the far side so a plan has been set in motion to put a layer of cement inside the channel with a gradual slope to aid in water flow. It should also take care of the cracks and stop some of the water loss we're still experiencing. Oh my.

Morning at the market is a fascinating time. There is lots of activity and all the fresh produce is neatly arranged. We have a 'favorite' vendor we go to for most of what we need. Today we bought some fresh noodles which Lisa used to make a delicious soup.

After lunch we watched as more beautiful plants were set in place around the waterfall. Every day it becomes even more amazing than the last. It is now quite lush and the 'jungle corner' is really happening. I think they have one more day of planting and then they begin the clean up.

This evening, as I was driving over the bridge, I saw a string of 9 Tuk-Tuks coming out of the fair grounds. It was really something to see, with all their various lights bobbing up and down as they made their way to town. Now I'm curious as to what it was all about. I will never know. That is a common occurrence around here. "You know something's happening but you don't know what it is..." Amazing Thailand.

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


"Happiness is not in our circumstances,
but in ourselves.
It is not something we see, like a rainbow,
or feel, like the heat of a fire.
Happiness is something we are."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Happy Life


The weather in Chiang Rai is the coolest it's been in a long time. The waterfall is getting ready for it's close-ups, we returned to school today, and Loy Kratong is over.

We just had the best 'Easy Monday' song yet. So many of you got it, you should be proud. It was "My Guy" by Mary Wells. Nobody got the bonus points. There was a hit called "Canadian Sunset" and the first line of the verse is the same line you hear at the end of each verse in 'My Guy'. Oh well, now that's in my head. Try this one: "Well, you've got your diamonds and you've got your pretty clothes, and a chauffeur drives your car, you let everybody know..." Hint: Early ballad by R&R legends who are still at it. It's a cautionary tale. Pretty hot stuff.

It was bound to happen. With the arrival of winter, could cooler temperatures be far behind? The answer is yes. We've had some cool overnight weather, but today it stayed cooler all day. In town it was a bit warmer, but on our side of the river it was quite pleasant. I even pulled out a long-sleeved T-shirt. Hmm.

More planting was done on and around the waterfall today. Just when we think it can't get any better, it gets better. Later this week I promise to post some pictures of our new water feature.

We went back to language school today and got more info piled on us. Certain things are coming together and yet there are things we still don't understand. It's going to take a lot of drilling and repetition to really absorb all the rules and exceptions. Today we started working on tones and tone markers. There are five tones we have to memorize. There are some words in Thai that can be used with any of the five tones and have a different meaning. Get a tone wrong and one could seriously embarrass oneself. I will study the tones.

The festival of Loy Kratong is over and done. It was quite an assault on the senses and the quiet is almost eerie.
There are no more explosions, no thumping bass and the traffic has returned to normal.

Have a Wacky Wednesday.


"A happy life is just a string of happy moments. But most people don't allow
the happy moment, because they're so busy trying to get a happy life."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, November 3, 2009



Today things got planted, we were sleepy, and things are a little less crazy across the river. The weather is cooling, and the wind has been blowing. What next, rain?

I just love getting email from you when you know the song. Even when you get it half right, it's cool. Here's more:
"As a matter of opinion, I think he's tops, my opinion is he's the cream of the muscle bound man could take my hand from __ __." Hint: The song was written by a miracle, sung by, well, you have to guess that, and it came from a famous spot in Detroit. The bonus point question has new clues: The first line of each verse in the song is the same melodic line you'll find in our current song, at the end of each verse. Somebody help me. Oh, it's about a ski trip north of the border. Hmm.

This morning the waterfall landscape crew arrived with several trees and a bunch of flowering plants. Most of the morning was spent cleaning up the aftermath of the construction. I was happy to see the care that was taken so when the water starts falling, debris won't fall with it. In the afternoon they planted about four trees and it changed the whole look. We're seeing Kek's vision of a jungle and we love it.

The party across the river went really late last night. Even after the music stopped, the fireworks continued. It's happening again tonight, but with less intensity. Last night we kept BamBam in our room, along with Daku. Things went pretty smoothly, considering. We knew that they'd wake up early, and we were right. Some time in the middle of the night, BamBam licked Lisa on the tip of her nose, and then went back to sleep. Daku usually does something similar by resting his chin on the edge of the bed and then plopping down in a heap. They seem a lot calmer this evening and that means we'll probably have a mellower night.

Yesterday we met with our friends Jaffe and Martin over at Le Meridien Hotel. Jaffe is curating a photo exhibit that opens this Saturday and wanted us to see the space. In January he's doing a show of expatriot artists living in Chiang Rai and Lisa will be in the show. Looks like we're in for another thrilling adventure in the Thailand art world. This show will draw a different audience and broaden Lisa's exposure as an artist in the country. More on this as it gets closer.

Say 'Hello' to Happy Tuesday.


"Fame or integrity: which is more important?
Money or happiness: which is more valuable?
Success or failure: which is more destructive?
If you look to others for fulfillment,
you will never truly be fulfilled.
If your happiness depends on money,
you will never be happy with yourself.
Be content with what you have;
rejoice in the way things are.
When you realize that nothing is lacking,
the whole world belongs to you."
~Lao Tzu

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, November 2, 2009



Today it was blue skies here in Chiang Rai. Perfect weather for Loy Kratong. We lunched and shopped at Big C, I had a good meeting with the dentist, and the night sky was filled with lots of amazing sights.

Well, the weekend song was a bit of a stumper. I'll admit it was obscure, but someone should have guessed it. There was one close call, but the song was the theme from "The Greatest American Hero" by Joey Scarbury. It was from a TV show of the same name that aired from 1981 to 1983. Look up the 'Wiki' to find out more about this show that fed lots of fantasies. (Ha)

Our 'Easy Monday' song is a little more down to Earth. "Nothing you can say that can tear me away from __ __. Nothing you can do 'cause I'm stuck like glue to __ __." This is a classic that you all should know. Maybe I'll give you a hint tomorrow. For extra special bonus points, name the hit song whose musical hook was used in our 'Easy' song at the end of it's verses. Have fun with that.

Late morning found us at Big C for lunch. Then we went upstairs and did the weekly supply shopping. We got there just before the rush and it made it easy to find things. As we were leaving, the cars and trucks were streaming into the lot. I suspect it was 'holiday' shopping.

I met with the dentist today and asked him if he was still having trouble with his back. After stating that it was a little bit better he jumped right in and told me he'd make impressions today and send them off to Bangkok. Wow, that was easy. So, I go back next Monday for stage two of the process. This will be a whole new experience for me. As his assistant was preparing the mold mix, I had a flashback to when I was 11 years old and had to get a retainer to straighten out a front tooth. Those were the days when they used a plaster type mixture to cast the impression. That's when I discovered that I had a very sensitive gag reflex. The poor staff in the office quickly learned that extra pans and towels were in order when I came in. This time there was no problem. Oh, the wonders of modern science.

Tonight, as I write to you, the whole city seems to be celebrating Loy Kratong. It sounds like a war zone with all the fire crackers (which sound more like bombs). The sky is full of balloons held aloft with little fires inside, fireworks displays of every description, and traffic like we've never seen before. I think this is the biggest celebration yet. Our street is a gridlock of cars, trucks and motorbikes, all trying to get to the main road and across the river to the fair grounds. We can hear the thump of the bass on the main stage throbbing under all the other sounds. The Samlor drivers have their tops down so riders can see the sights in the night sky and many homes and businesses have rows of candles burning across the front of their property. It's all quite a sight to see.

The dogs got a little freaked out by all the explosions, but now they've settled down and are relaxing upstairs with us.

Have a Great Week.


"Stupidity is not a Super Power."
~Andi Harrington

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style