Friday, February 26, 2010

Friday Funnies


Today began earlier that expected, we made stops on hardware street, and I solved a watering problem. Tomorrow we go to the dentist, and the Olympics are almost over.

The song you may have been singing over the last few days was "You Keep Me Hanging On" by The Supremes. Now it's time for 'Old School Friday'. Who knows this song? "__ just a little bit longer. Please, please, please, please, tella me you're gonna. Now your daddy don't mind, and your mommy don't mind, if we have another dance, yeah just one more (one more time) Oh, won't you __ just a little bit longer..." Hint: It's had many covers, but the original was by a singer with a group whose name is in the stars. Words like linger come to mind for that one blank spot, but that's not it.

This morning Daku started stirring around 5am. Over and over we chanted 'Go lie down', but still he paced. From one side of the bed to the other, he was "annoying" dog. We discovered later that Boot couldn't sleep so she had gotten up and started cleaning and Daku heard her. In the future, she will come upstairs and let him out so we can go back to sleep.

Bus Station Street is also 'Hardware Street' a little farther to the east. Today we went by Sahapaiboon so Lisa could talk to our friend Jaa about a painting. While she was doing that I went across the street looking for a connector to attach my new sprinkler to the hose. 'Mai Me' (no have). We stopped at the next store with the same result. Finally, at the last stop it dawned on me that I could make what I needed out of fittings and a piece of hose. The handyman is in the house. I put it together later and it's going to work.

Tomorrow we have our first dentist appointments at Dr. Nan's new clinic, 'New Smile'. We're going in for cleaning and I think I'll take the camera and get some shots of the most beautiful dentist office we've ever seen.

The Olympics are winding down, but for us they're just getting started. We have tons of events to watch and I've been avoiding the news so I don't know the outcome of various events. Since we usually watch in the evening, late, this should go on for quite some time.

Time to dip into the archives for the 'Funnies'. Have a Wild and Wonderful WeekEnd.


What Ever Happened To Proof-Reading?

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers

Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant

War Dims Hope for Peace

If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures

Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges

Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge

New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks

Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, February 25, 2010



It was another fantastic day for weather here in Chiang Rai. There were farm chores, a visit to Big C, a massage, and Daku lost his privileges at Boots house.

It seems like maybe this should have been the 'Easy Monday' song. Got lots of responses and they were right.
"You say although we broke up, you still wanna be just friends. But how can we still be friends, when seeing you only breaks my heart again. And there ain't nothin' I can do about it." Clue: This tune was originally done by a supremely popular trio, and then covered by a group that could be called a real 'confection'.

We haven't had rain for a long time. It would be welcomed at this point. In order to keep the yard looking nice it means we have to do a lot of watering. I'd hate to have to replace all the beautiful plants. Boot takes great joy in watering the gardens and trees. I have become the designated sprinkler guy. With two big lawns, it takes several changes in the location of the portable rainbird in order to cover it all. I got a little gadget that spins around and it can take care of the smaller areas. I tried it out today and it's great.

Late morning found us back at Big C for another adjustment to my glasses. This time the main guy was there and he got the glasses closer to where they should be. We also stopped by the big stationary store for some art supplies and basic mailing stuff. The place is huge, and is also a major depot for school supplies, musical instruments, and sports stuff. Amazing.

This afternoon we went to our old favorite for massages. Pai massage is one of the best in town and we made appointments with our usual operators. Lisa got Nong, but Ploy wasn't there so I ended up with Coy. She did a wonderful job on some problem areas and I may use her again. Afterwards we felt like jello, all loose and relaxed.

Since Rene's arrival, Daku has been a real handful in Boot's little apartment. She finally told us she couldn't handle him in there so he spends more time with us. That's fine, he's my buddy. He still has a bit of a puppy brain and thinks everyone is there to play with him. He's getting better at calming down, if he's had some exercise in the yard first. At least he has people to play with and his own yard. There's a little dog that lives in the street, right on a curve in the road leading into town. He's either lying in the street with his head on his paws watching the traffic, or he's napping. All the cars give him a wide berth and he's a part of the landscape. A true 'street dog'.

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


"It would be so nice if something would make sense for a change."
~Alice in Wonderland

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, February 24, 2010



Today was one of those 'stay around the house' days. Rene arrived from France last night, Lisa taught ballet class this afternoon, and this evening we went to the Night Bazaar.

It seems that the 'Easy' song wasn't so easy after all. You really should have remembered "Native New Yorker" by Odyssey. It was a hit in 1977 and is still going strong. There's a 12" vinyl LP on the market. I heard the long version when we were in America, at Ross of all places. This one should be really easy: "Set me free, why don't cha babe, get out my life why don't cha babe. 'Cause you really don't love me, __ just __ __ __ __, you don't really need me, but __ __ __ __ __." Hint: Once again, we're in the '60s, with big hair and fabulous gowns. Someone's tired of being on a string.

Last night Boot got a phone call from Rene, her boyfriend. He had returned to Thailand and was in Chiang Rai. She dashed off to meet him. He'll be here for at least a month. It's nice that he's back. He really wants to move here, but that can be complicated. BamBam remembered him and Daku was his same old excited self.

This afternoon Lisa taught her ballet class. Lately it's just been two girls, but they're both at about the same level so it makes it fun for her to teach them.

After dinner we went downtown. The Night Bazaar was our first stop. We were looking for some material done by the Akha Hill Tribe. There are signature stitches used by each of the tribes so we had guidelines. Blue sent us a couple of photos of Akha stitching so we'd know what we were looking for. There is a distinctive triangle motif that they use. We found some beautiful material among the many booths selling fabric.

One of the small frustrations of shopping is that sometimes we'll think we found just the right item, but then discover a flaw. Tonight we were looking for a new wallet for Lisa. There were several nice ones, but they all had the same problem, the money didn't fit where it was supposed to go. It just dawned on me that they were probably made somewhere that uses smaller money. Hmm. She got a wallet that took Thai Baht, but the credit card slots are too small. Oh well. Life in The Rai.

It looks like all of our March visitors will arrive within a few days of each other. It's going to be a fun time at the Big Brown House.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"It is one of the most beautiful compensations
of this life that no man (person) can sincerely
try to help another without helping himself (themselves)."
~Ralph Waldo Emerson (sorry Ralph, I had to edit)

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, February 23, 2010



For some of you this may seem late. We had friends over for dinner and the conversation was great. Earlier today we had lunch out, Daku saw the vet, and Lisa got art supplies for a project with some kids.

I only had one response to this one. Either it's too easy or you just don't remember. Hmm, this might help:
"And love, love is just a passing word. It's the thought you had in a taxi cab that got left on the curb, when he dropped you off at east 83rd. Oh-oh-oh, you're a __ __ __, you should know the score by now you're a __ __ __."
Hint: Not sure there's any room left for a hint. You should know by now. (Ha)

This morning we went to the art supply store to get some oil pastels and colored pencils for the little project Lisa is going to be doing at Sahapaiboon on March 6. About ten kids will be drawing pictures and getting some tips from our resident artist. While browsing through the store, we also ran across the usual soccer balls, weights and conga drums.

Daku was due for another vaccination so he got to ride in the car today. He took to the whole thing much differently than the last time he rode. Instead of lying on the floor, he sat on the seat and stuck his head out of the window, big dog style. He was a handful in the lobby, trying to make friends with two little dogs across the room. After his injection we put him on the scale and he weighs 76.5 lbs.

We had lunch at Black Canyon since Boot was preparing food for the dinner party this evening. We had our favorite lunches and went up to the eye store. I got my glasses adjusted and they're almost right. Hmm.

This evening we had Nate, Rachel, and Rachel's father Jeff over for dinner. Rachel is co-director of the Sold Project here in Thailand I've written about them before. You can go to their website and maybe even become a sponsor. They still have 90 kids waiting to go to school.

We hung out on the back patio while the sun was still out, and the dogs got acquainted with everyone. BamBam takes a few minutes to calm down. She barks like crazy until she realizes there's no danger. Daku just comes on like a train, although he is getting better with his 'social skills'. Boot cooked one of her amazing, delicious dinners which included a chicken dish of her creation, tom yum goong, and a vegetable plate. Oh yes, there was watermelon and pineapple for dessert. We had a great time sharing experiences living in Thailand, and our revelations on the culture.

Many businesses are just beginning to reopen after all of the days of celebration of the Chinese New Year. We didn't realize that it went for a week and a half. That explains some of the fireworks over the weekend, and the singing across the river.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience;
we are spiritual beings having a human experience."
~Wayne Dyer

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, February 22, 2010



I survived my weekend in Pattaya, had an airport foot massage, got my new glasses, and Daku ate BamBam's bowl.

So, our 'Old School Friday' song was "My Prayer" by The Platters. It's a classic that you should know. Now it's time for 'Easy Monday' and we've played with this one before. It's a song that still sounds good today. Sing it.
"You grew up riding the subways, running with people, up in Harlem, down on Broadway. You're no tramp, but you're no lady, talkin' that street talk, you're the heart and soul of New York city..." Hint: There's a major clue in the first verse. What do you call someone who's born and raised somewhere? Hmm.

My friends Martin and Blue both corrected me on the location of Pattaya. It's on The Gulf of Thailand, not the Andaman Sea, as I mentioned. So, get out your maps and check it out. The weather was hot and humid. Sunday morning there was actually a little rain, for a few minutes. I had a great time at the convention, seeing old friends (if you can call friends of two years 'old'), and making new ones. There were 31 countries represented. Many people came before the convention began and vacationed in different parts of Thailand. One thing that I found interesting was that there were no Tuk-Tuks in Pattaya. The most common way to get around is in a Songthaew (pronounced: Song-Tau). It's a pick-up truck with a bench on either side of the bed. Songthaew means 'two rows'. They're very inexpensive to ride in (10 Baht/$ .29), but you have to allow for lots of stops for people getting on and off.

Pattaya has earned a rather negative reputation as a city of wild parties and loose morals. I'm sure it's not true for the whole town, but there are areas where it seems like anything goes, and it does. I stayed at the hotel except for a ride to the beach on Sunday. The beach was covered with umbrellas and lounge chairs. The sand was not very inviting as it was coarse. The water in the bay is not very clean, but that doesn't stop people from playing in it. Sunday there was a big jet-ski racing event and I watched a bit of that. Across from the beach there are lots of restaurants and shops with all the same tourist stuff we saw in Krabi. The expat population is very large so there's a curious mix of people on the streets. A lot different from Chiang Rai. I'm looking forward to next year, when the convention may be in Phuket.

Since I had some time before my flight from Bangkok to Chiang Rai, I got a foot massage. It's always a treat, especially since I'd been on my feet a lot over the weekend. I finally got home around 9:30 Sunday night and Daku went wild. He'd been going to my side of the bed over the weekend, looking for me. It took a few minutes for him to calm down, and then he had to inspect everything that I unpacked. At one point he took a pair of socks and carried them to his cushion. He followed me around for most of the evening.

My new glasses are taking some getting used to, but for the most part, I can see clearly. (Ha) I have to go back for some minor (I hope) adjustments. They came with clip-on sunglasses that don't clip on at all, they use tiny magnets. Very cool.

This evening, after the dogs had their dinner, Boot went out to water and didn't pick up their bowls. This is a rule in the kitchen because Daku used to chew on BamBam's bowl. Well, he very quietly got her bowl and worked on it for quite a while until I heard a noise from the kitchen and found that he'd chewed away most of the bottom. Dogs do the craziest things sometimes.

Have a Great Week,


"Once we know people's stories, we feel compassion instead of judgment.
Today, practice remembering that everyone has a story."
~Mary Manin Morrissey

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Funnies


Today was a travel day, kind of. I'm writing to you from Pattaya. It's been a day of agitated dogs, fake sandwiches, and a view of the Andaman Sea that I hadn't expected.

The song that several of you knew was "I'm Not In Love" by 10cc. See how those clues worked? Now it's time for 'Old School Friday'. If you know your oldies, you should know this one by the intro: "When the twilight has gone, and no songbirds are singing..." Or this opening line to the first verse: "__ __ at the end of the day..." Hint: It's by a group whose name was a slang word for a record. Sometimes people put their hands together to do this, but they're not clapping.

This morning I moved the alarm time to 6am, to give me time to get myself together for my morning flight. Daku was a little confused by this, but still ready to go downstairs. The night before, while I was packing, he sensed that something was going on. He paced around the room, sniffing everything I put in my bag, and basically wanted to know what was up. This morning was no different. I had to be at the airport at 7:50am for an 8:50 flight. Everything went well, which meant I got to sit in the Chiang Rai airport for about 50 minutes.

After take-off, a flight attendant brought me a sandwich that they said I had ordered. I know I ordered dinner for the return flight, so it was a bit of a surprise. I looked at the package and it read 'Ham & Cheese'. I don't eat either one so I waited until she came back down the aisle. I tried to explain the problem and she finally told me that it was chicken made to look like ham. Oh. I pealed the cheese off and ate it. Hmm.

Normally, arriving in Bangkok means either taking a cab into the city, or checking in for another flight out. It was odd not to be doing either. I had looked up the company that has transportation to Pattaya so I knew where I was going, sort of. The airport was teaming with energy. Some say we're at the end of the 'High Season' but you couldn't tell by the number of big groups making transfers and arranging ground transport. I found Bell Travel and checked in. I had an hour wait so I went and got coffee and watched people.

The trip to Pattaya was pleasant in the air/con bus. The scenes from the bus changed from country to rural to business, and back to country. When we got near the junction to Pattaya, the bus pulled over and the driver and his wife got out to talk to a couple driving an oil truck. I'm guessing they knew each other because nothing was wrong with either vehicle, they smiled and talked for a few minutes and we were on our way.

The first thing that struck me as we entered the city was that there were no Tuk-Tuks. There is a flavor similar to Krabi, in that it's a major tourist town. After checking in, I went out on the street briefly, found a 7-11, and got a sense of the neighborhood. Busy is the only word I can think of. On the way to the hotel we drove past the beach and it was full of umbrellas and lounge chairs. There were people in the water, and out in the bay I could see three parasails floating over the water. Jet skis were buzzing around, and it was obvious that this was the major attraction. I'll have to check it out tomorrow and take some pics.

That's it for now. I'll have much more on Monday. Have a Wonderful WeekEnd, and enjoy the second part of 'Badly written ads'.


Badly Written Ads Part 2

Stock up and save. Limit: one.

We build bodies that last a lifetime.

For Rent: 6-room hated apartment.

Man, honest. Will take anything.

Wanted: chambermaid in rectory. Love in, $200 a month. References

Man wanted to work in dynamite factory. Must be willing to travel.

UsedCars: Why go elsewhere to be cheated? Come here first!

Christmas tag-sale. Handmade gifts for the hard-to-find person.

Wanted: Hair-cutter. Excellent growth potential.

Wanted. Man to take care of cow that does not smoke or drink.

Our experienced Mom will care of your child. Fenced yard, meals,
and smacks included.

Our bikinis are exciting. They are simply the tops.

Auto Repair Service. Free pick-up and delivery. Try us once,
you'll never go anywhere again.

Illiterate? Write today for free help.

Girl wanted to assist magician in cutting-off-head illusion. Blue
Cross and salary.

Mixing bowl set designed to please a cook with round bottom for
efficient beating.

Semi-Annual after-Christmas Sale.

And now, the Superstore--unequaled in size, unmatched in variety,
unrivaled inconvenience.

We will oil your sewing machine and adjust tension in your home for

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, February 18, 2010



Today there was a prediction of rain for tomorrow. Hmm, we had what felt like Santana's in the afternoon, and then clouds came. We shopped at the talat (market), and picked up leaves, to the frustration of the dogs. Tonight I pack for my weekend trip.

"I keep your picture, upon the wall, it hides a nasty stain that's lyin' there. So don't you ask me, to give it back, I know you know it doesn't mean that much to me. __ __ __ __, no no, it's because... Ooh, you'll wait a long time for me. Ooh, you wait a long time." Clue: The singer is obviously conflicted.

The morning began like any other, blue skies and mild temps. Boot didn't feel well so we went to the talat and got some essentials. Lisa created a delicious noodle soup 'Thai Style' for lunch.

This afternoon the front yard was covered with teak leaves. The big winds just carried them across the street and over the wall. Armed with a giant trash bag, we went out and 'harvested' the leaves. When I took the dogs out for an afternoon run, they stood and surveyed the lawn. There had been lots of leaves in the morning. What happened?
They managed to find a few strays and munched away. They had to settle for chasing the ball.

As the weather warms up, we're hoping the pool does the same. This morning I put our Solar Sun Rings back on the surface of the pool to help the process. They're 5 feet in diameter and have two layers of thin vinyl that trap the heat of the sun and send it into the water. They also cut down on evaporation. We'll see in a few weeks, when the nights get warmer.

Tomorrow morning I have a morning flight to Bangkok, and then a bus ride to the city of Pattaya, to the south. It's a beach resort town. I'm going to a convention of Recovering addicts, and it's turning out to be an international affair. I'll fly home on Sunday evening. I'll be posting the Friday message from the Erawan Hotel.

Have a Thoughtful Thursday.


"Most people never run far enough on their first wind,
to find out if they've got a second.
Give your dreams all you've got and
you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you."
~William James

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, February 17, 2010



I guess you know how the weather was today. Same as it ever was. We made a little vet run in the morning, and had a brainstorming meeting in the afternoon. Oh yes, and last night we had a plumbing incident.

A lot of you figured out that the 'Easy Monday' song was "My Funny Valentine". I have no idea who first recorded it, but I love the way Sarah Vaughn sings it. It was written by Rogers and Hart. For some mid week fun, see if you remember this one: "__ __ __ __, so don't forget it. It's just a silly phase I'm going through..." Hint: it's from 1975, by a group from across the pond. Their name is a measurement. It's a song of denial. Hmm.

Last night, as we were settling down to watch more Olympics, there was a loud hissing sound that came from the bathroom. We dashed in to find hot water running out from under the sink. When the doors were opened, it sprayed out into the room. At first I couldn't tell where it was coming from due to the steam and spray. I finally got my wits about me and went out in front of the house and turned off the water. The bathroom floor was a pool of water, but thankfully there's a drain so it had somewhere to go. While I was turning off the water, Lisa was busy trying to rescue all the things that are stored under the sink. The only thing that didn't survive was some Charmin toilet paper we brought from America. Oh well. With the water off I located the shut off valve for the hot water under the sink. After mopping up we took a deep breath. Khun Pet came over this afternoon and took the offending hose with him. He'll return tomorrow and replace it.

This morning we finally met our vet Dr. Arnon's wife. She was working in the store side of his complex and she knew who we were once we made the BamBam association. We picked up some flea medicine for the dogs, along with some treats. The monthly treatment we give them seems to keep them free from pests.

This afternoon we met with Third and his assistant at Doi Chaang Coffee for an 'idea' session centered around the big dinner boat. About half way into our discussion, Khun Jaffee came in for some coffee. He had seen the boat from Le Meridien on Saturday night and was interested in using it. We all ended up having a very inspired, productive little meeting with lots of great ideas. As things unfold, I'll fill you in.

On the way home today, on our road, we passed a man pushing a big cart full of bags of some kind of crop, with two small children riding on top of the bags. It was such a contrast to everything around them. Amazing Thailand.

Time for Wacky Wednesday.


"Do not withhold your gift from others.
Do not make the mistake of
thinking that you have no gift to give.
Everyone has a gift.
But don't compare your gift to the gifts of others,
or you may not value it sufficiently."
~Paul Ferrini

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, February 16, 2010



The pace mellowed a bit today. Chiang Rai rhythm continues, but we sat out the afternoon. The busy part was a massage and errands in the morning. Oh yes, the dogs got baths, and the Flickr site has new pics.

Now that the American holiday is over, some of you can get down to the business of telling me what the 'Easy' song was. Here's a little more of this song, written by songwriting icons: "Is your figure less than Greek? Is your mouth a little weak? When you open it to speak, are you smart? But don't change a hair for me, not if you care for me, stay...." Hint: You really shouldn't need one by now. Any more lyrics would give it away.

After a wild weekend plus one, it was nice to move at a slower pace today. Not that running errands is a slow pace, but I took it slow and it felt nice. I dropped Lisa off for a massage and went to Big C for a few items. While I was there I got an eye exam and ordered some progressive lense glasses. Until I can get more info on the progressive contacts I've decided that some days would be easier just wearing glasses, instead of using reading glasses all the time.

I managed to get everything done and arrive at Pai massage with a few minutes to relax. We got home, Boot was washing BamBam. We had lunch and then Lisa and Boot washed Daku. Then there was some relaxing with the Olympics for awhile. So far, we've been enjoying speed skating, ski jumping, and figure skating. Are there any curling fans out there? I became fascinated with curling during the last Winter Olympics. It just seemed like such an odd thing to do, until I started watching the technique, and strategies. What's your favorite winter sport? Do you care? I'd like to know.

At the park we went to yesterday they have a big Teak exhibition. All about teak and its use through histor and from the brief glimpse we had, some beautiful artistic examples. (Daku and BamBam would love it) We're going back and check it out. Maybe I can get some photos of some of the carvings we saw.

Speaking of photos, I uploaded a bunch of pics to the Flickr page. Mostly the two boat trips.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"Things which matter most must never
be at the mercy of things that matter least."
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, February 15, 2010



It's been an amazing three days since I last wrote to you. The art show opened, we went to a dedication, had dinner with friends, and went to an art festival.

'Old School Friday' song must have been easy. Lots of you knew "Sixteen Candles" by The Crests. For 'Easy Monday' we pay tribute to what happened on Sunday. (Ha) The title is three words but I'll have to blank one of them so as not to totally give it away. "__ __ __, sweet comic __, you make me smile with my heart..." Hint: It has to do with something that is celebrated all around the world these days. Some blame it on greeting card companies. As far as the artist goes, choose your favorite. Hmm.

Saturday evening we got dressed up and went to Le Meridien Hotel for the opening of 'Farang Rai', the art exhibit that featured four expat artists. Lisa was one of those artists. They each had eight of their works on display and the show will be up until March 6. We had a great turn out and saw lots of people we knew and made tons of new friends. Many of Lisa's friends brought flowers. After the show, Khun Jaffee arranged a dinner for the artists, at the hotel. We sat in an outdoor Italian restaurant right by the river. Good company and great conversation had us there way past our usual bedtime.

We were invited to a Sunday morning dedication of a new project being launched by our good friends at Sahapaiboon. They're now in the house building business and the event began with a ribbon cutting by the owner, the governor, and a monk. We learned that the monk had given them the name for the project, "Treasure of the King". It will be a planned community, and they had models for the four homes one could chose. After the ribbon cutting there were speeches and then refreshments. Floral arrangements were brought by many people and they were hung in front of the showroom. It was quite a display.

Sunday evening we went to Boron Art Kitchen with our friends Alan and Ten, who were in town from Chiang Mai. We had another delicious dinner and more good conversation. Alan has been in the country for a little over a month, and will return to America in a few weeks.

This afternoon we went to a beautiful park that we'd never heard about. It's called Rai MaeFarluang and it was the host facility of the Sixth International Art Festival Workshop in Thailand. Approximately 130 artists, 27 of them from foreign countries, spent three days creating works of art in their respective disciplines. Today was the closing day and we attended at the urging of Jaffee and several other members of the art community. As we entered the area where things were happening, we heard what sounded like a gong, and a stringed instrument. When we got closer we saw a man standing before the audience holding the instrument that was making all these sounds. It had several strings and what looked like a bowl at one end that he held to his chest. It's hard to describe how he played it, but it was very hypnotic and the movement of the bowl would change the gong sound. I spoke to him after he finished and he called it 'playing from the heart', since that's where he held the bowl. He made this device and I'd really like to try it myself. Maybe someday. All around the big pavilion were easels with the work that had been created. It was almost too much to absorb. There were paintings, and sculptures. One artist created a traditional type dance piece and it was performed in a courtyard by four dancers. We left feeling inspired, in awe, and grateful that we got a chance to see all that we saw. I even had a long conversation with an artist named Mark, from Los Angeles.

Have a Great Week.


"Love doesn't make the world go 'round.
Love is what makes the ride worthwhile."
~Franklin P. Jones

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friday Funnies


Today began like any other day. Woke up at 6:30, took the dog out, or should I say he took me out, set out the vitamins, had breakfast, read mail, and then it hit me. Today was my birthday. Stay tuned for the road trip.

If you were rocking in your mind to David Bowie's "Fame" then you were one of the elite who got the song. Did you know that John Lennon was one of the writers on that song? Also listed is Carlos Alomar, Bowie's guitarist. Hang on to your hats, it's time for 'Old School Friday' and you don't have to be old to know this one. Well, I don't think so.
"Happy birthday, happy birthday baby, oh, I love you so. __ __ makes a lovely light, but not as bright as your eyes tonight..." Hint: Hey, it's all about the birthday. Something to do with things you'd find on a cake. Two words. Deep Hint: My cake has a lot more.

After making sure that the dogs had plenty of water and toys, we hit the road around 10am. We've been to Chiang Saen many times, but I've always been a passenger in the back of a van. I had a pretty good idea where I was going and remembered the obvious turns. It turned out I was right. We got there without any problems. An hours drive and we were on the shore of the Golden Triangle. There were several staircases leading to the docks and they all offered the same deal: 500 Baht for the boat ride. So, for $15 Dollars the four of us got a water tour of the triangle, cruising up the Mae Kong to see a big casino in Burma and then over to the Laotian coast and down to the spot where we would go ashore. We were given half an hour to visit a 'shopping village' of the Donsao Hill Tribe. At least there was a sign mentioning this tribe. The people all spoke Thai and there was nothing unique about the village, except that it was clearly there for the tourists.

Back on the boat, we continued to enjoy the shoreline, this time on the Thai side. For the second time in a week, we've traveled on water and viewed familiar places from the river side. The giant Golden Buddha that sits on the shore has a whole different effect from the water. You can clearly see that it's sitting in a giant boat. The perspective is much more obvious. It was lunch time and we already had our spot selected. There's a small cafe that serves Doi Chaang coffee and we'd eaten there on our last trip.

One does not go to the Golden Triangle and leave without something to remember the visit. I picked up a T-shirt in Laos, which was mandatory, but I needed a birthday 'thing'. While we looking at womens' clothing, I spotted a vest. The first time we came to the area, in 2001, I got a vest and wore it the whole trip. Today I got a new vest. Much nicer than the first one. Later I picked up a bracelet made with pieces of coconut shell. Lisa and Boot also got 'presents' on my birthday and we all had a big laugh about that.

We had noticed a place in the parking lot that was offering foot massages. We had been walking around a bit so Lisa suggested we check the place out. We were taken down a flight of steps, to the back side of the building, which faced the river. As we went down the steps I thought it would be really cool if the massage area was outside. That's exactly where it was. On a giant, covered porch there was a row of massage mattresses and next to them, four chairs for foot massage. Two women and a young man began by cleaning our feet and asking where we were from. When Boot told her women where we lived she exclaimed that she knew our house. She used to work at the Rimkok Hotel down the road. From then on, it was like Boot had made a new friend and we were treated as locals. It was a very blissful experience, leaning back, being attended to while gazing out at the river. Lisa and I dozed off briefly. When we were done we went and got coffee for the trip home. We were all ready to take a nap.

It took longer to get home due to traffic and slow trucks. Not long after we got home, Tye and her son Tay, who is 15, came over. Tay gave me a small flowering plant that was from him and his sister Napa. I was surprised. Then the real surprise came as Boot and Lisa emerged from the kitchen with a small chocolate cake with my name, and the date in icing. There were two sugar roses and some candles. Under my name there was some Thai writing which translates to 'honey or dearest'. This has been a truly wonderful birthday. We just got back from the pizza place downtown. The joint was packed but we managed to get our cheeze-less BBQ chicken pizza. What a day.

Now it's time for the 'Funnies'. Have a Wonderfilled WeekEnd.


Badly Written Ads - Part 1

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Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Ice Cream


It was another beautiful day in The Rai. We had a visit from Johan, went on a bread hunt, finally got the air purifier machine, and the anticipation of Chinese New Year is in the air.

It would appear that there's no fooling some of you. Many players got the song right away. You could be next.
"Is it any wonder I reject you first? __, __, __, __. Is it any wonder you're too cool to fool, __." Hint: It's a one word title. Though not based on the song, the word has been the title of a hit movie, and now a musical. Hmm.

We hadn't seen our friend Johan for several weeks. He came by today with a sample light for displaying the waterfall at night. The lights that were originally installed were dangerous and he had concerns. The one he brought is water-tight and uses less power. We'll set it in different places and see how it looks before final installation. I also learned more about pool building and ground shifting. Hmm, it's more than meets the eye.

After doing some banking, we went over to our bread connection for some whole grain bread. We were told that they wouldn't have any until next week. As we were leaving I wondered if it had anything to do with the coming celebration. We've noticed many shops are closed and thought that maybe the whole grain supplier was one of them. Our next choice was the place where we used to buy bread. They were out of the loaf form, but had some rolls so we got those. While we were there we saw Jonathan, a big, friendly English Golden Retriever.

This afternoon Tye came and picked up Lisa and took her to the Amway store and arranged to get the air machine. Lisa is now a card carrying Amway member and we got a bit of a discount. They set it up so all we had to do was plug it in. It's called 'Atmosphere' and it has three different filters. It also has an automatic mode that senses when the air needs to be cleaned. That will be nice when we're away for awhile and want to return to a clean, smoke free room. One never knows when someone will burn something in the 'hood' and stink up the place. Speaking of that, Tye said she noticed a few signs around town about not burning. Maybe there's hope.

Everywhere we go we're hearing Chinese music. For some reason this year has a different vibe about the coming New Year. Lots of decorations, people taking little trips, folks coming to town to celebrate, and fireworks being set off days in advance. Sunday should be very interesting.

Tomorrow is adventure day. Have a Fantastic Thursday.


"My advice to you is not to inquire why or whither,
but just to enjoy your ice cream while it's on your plate."
~Thornton Wilder

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, February 10, 2010



We had another sunny day today. The temperatures seem to be getting warmer during the day; a sign that March, and the hot season, is not far away. Lots of ground was covered this morning, taking care of more 'business'. A road trip was planned, and company's coming.

Our 'Easy Monday' song was "My Girl" by The Temptations. I know, you were too busy to answer.
"__, makes a man take things over. __ lets him loose, hard to swallow. __ Puts you there where things are hollow __." Hint: The song is about a thing many people seek. The singer had an alter ego whose name began with 'Z', from another planet. Hmm.

This morning we traveled all around town, doing this, picking up that. We found the air purifier we want at a store closer to home. Our friend Tye had told us about the store, and we're going to meet with her and pick it up this week. The DVD recorder couldn't be fixed, at least not at the shop I took it to, so we had to pick it up. During our travels we stopped at another appliance center to see if they sold them and we got the same answer: Mai Me (no have). They did have a DVR recorder with a 160GB hard drive which sounded very attractive, but expensive. We still have our VHS machine that we got when we moved into the rental house, and I hooked it up today. It works, but it's recording in black and white. Somehow the Winter Olympics will not be the same without color. Hmm.

Friday, number 12, is my birthday. We're going to drive up to Chiang Saen, at the Golden Triangle, and take a speed boat across the Mae Kong River to visit Laos. We've never done this before, in fact, I've never driven up there before so this will be a double adventure. We've watched the boats ferrying people across many times and wondered what it would be like. We'll soon find out. There is a little tourist village that we can visit with a 'day pass', and without visa complications. Boot is going with us and she's as excited as we are.

March will now be known as 'visitor month'. Cousin Sam, of the Valley Cousins, and his girlfriend Emma will be arriving during the first week of the month. We just heard from Blue and he'll be arriving on the 8th, coming directly from the Java Jazzfest. Boot got word from Rene that he sold his house in France and is coming back to Thailand some time in March. It's going to be a wild and crazy time. Stay tuned.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"It takes a long time,
to learn to be young."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, February 9, 2010



Today in Chiang Rai, the weather did its usual thing. Cold morning, warm day, cool evening. We took care of ourselves, and took care of business. Who knew this life would be so busy?

OK, for those who didn't know or thought they didn't know, here's the part of the song where everybody always sings along: "I guess you'll say, what make me feel this way? __ __, talkin' 'bout __ __ (__ __)." Clue: Smash by a tempting vocal group from the motor city who had a ton of hits through the years.

This morning we to Arisara for a massage. Lisa was very happy with the technique of Nid, and I was hoping to find someone with a little more experience. We got there just as they were opening and actually had to wait for a second masseuse. It was worth the wait. When Nok (bird) came into the room the first thing she asked was 'do you want medium or strong?'. I'd never been asked that before. I went for medium and it was a good choice. I really dislike leaving a massage feeling all tense from the pain that's been inflicted. Just doesn't make sense. Today we both left feeling better and we'll go back again next week.

We got a call on the way home, from Khun Jaffee. He had some files for the art exhibit he needed to get printed and needed us to burn them to a CD. We got back to the house and the files were waiting. Lisa burned them to a CD, Jaffee stopped by and the printer got the work in time. Modern technology is grand when it works.

Since ballet classes are now on Monday and Wednesday, we had to move our Wednesday Thai lesson. We had one today at 2pm, which is not the best time for us. When it was at 3 it gave us a chance to regroup after our lunch/nap combo. Today we didn't have that luxury and we were a bit sleepy. We got through it, and even learned something. Did you know that there are letters put at the end of certain words that make it clear that they are not Thai words? When a word is adapted to Thai, it gets the little designation, which is unspoken, but there in writing. From now on, we're going on Friday morning, with fresh smiling faces. (555)

As we left our language class Lisa got an email from Jaffee. We were to meet him at the hotel to put info cards on the art work. We had a little time so we went to Chiang Rai Mall to price DVD recorders. To our surprise, they didn't have any. Oh well.

When we arrived at the hotel Jaffee was putting the cards on his works. He had devised a system so he put them on Lisa's as well. We talked a bit more about the show opening on Saturday. Le Meridien Hotel is a beautiful resort that sits on the Mae Kok River. I have been intrigued by an aroma that catches me every time I enter the open lobby. I keep looking for some exotic flower, but I've found nothing. Today I asked about the fragrance. The young woman at the front desk told me it was a special scent made for the hotel and it's sent (pun intended) into the air by a small pump and nozzle. She showed me where the device was located. I was surprised that she'd tell me the whole thing. I sort of wish it had been a real flower though. You'll just have to come and smell for yourself.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"The purpose of life is a life of purpose."
~Robert Byrne

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, February 8, 2010



This weekend we went rollin' on the river, and also did a lot of hanging out. Today we watched football, American style, and got a new sink for the art studio.

'Old School Friday' turned out to be an easy one for many of you. It was "Dedicated To The One I Love" by The Shirelles. Now it's time for 'Easy Monday' and you'll be humming this one all day:
"I've got sunshine, on a cloudy day, when it's cold outside, I've got the month of May..." Hint: Two words that describe someone. Everybody should get this one.

Saturday afternoon we got a call from our friend Third, asking if we'd like to have dinner on his boat. Of course, we said 'Yes'. He came by the house around 5:30 and we followed him to a boat dock we didn't know about. We were expecting to see the boat we'd seen before. Third manages Mae Kok River Rafting and we'd seen one of their boats on the river. The boat we 'met' on Saturday was much bigger and had tables and chairs set up like a restaurant. He told me it could seat 50 for dinner. There were eight of us for this trip and once we were on board, we headed out on the river. There's a roof on the boat, but the sides are completely open. We enjoyed the scenery as we cruised along. Then they started bringing out the food. It was a little banquet. We sat around the front table and ate, talked and laughed. Occasionally I'd jump up to get a better look at something we were passing on the shore. It was amazing to be slowly traveling on the water as the sun set. Before long it was dark and the whole thing became kind of eerie. At some points, there were no lights on the shore so it was just darkness outside the boat. Then the big T.V. monitor at the front of the boat lit up with a Karaoke screen and the singing began. It should be noted that watching the words in Thai can be quite a trip. There were two cordless mics on board and they got passed around during the songfest. They kept trying to get me to sing and I kept telling them I didn't read Thai. Suddenly, the intro to 'Hotel California' came on and I had no choice. It turned out to be a lot of fun. We got back to the dock around 8pm and we can't wait to do it again.

The Super Bowl was shown live in Thailand, starting at 6am. We started watching around 6:45, while eating our breakfast. The only thing that was weird, aside from watching the game so early, was the fact that they didn't show any of the commercials. That's half the fun of the game. When the Saints scored on the interception in the fourth quarter, we were cheering like we were there. I knew my mom was watching by herself so we called her and had a 'Skype Super Bowl Party'. It was big fun.

After the game we went into town to Sahapaiboon, the big home furnishing store, and got a new sink for Lisa's studio. Before we bought the sink we met with Ja, whose family runs the place, and discussed a charity event they're having in March. They want Lisa to do a little art workshop with some kids from one of the homes for children that will be benefitting from the event. The kids will draw pictures relating to the environment and there may be a little contest. The Chiang Rai Youth Orchestra will also be playing at the event.

Have a Great Week.


"The most influential person who will talk to you all day is you,
so you should be very careful about what you say to you!"
~Zig Ziglar

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, February 5, 2010

Friday Funnies


Today we had an early surprise, did some shopping, visited friends, found the air purifier we've been looking for, and still had time for a nap.

The song that baffled you was "Trench Town Rock" by Bob Marley and The Wailers. Oh, you shoulda known. For 'Old School Friday' let's go back to '61. "While I'm far away from you my baby, I know it's hard for you my baby, because it's hard for me my baby, and the darkest hour is just before dawn....And tell all the stars above, __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __." Hint: It's by a major 'Girl Group' in the pre-Supremes era. Title is about something kids would do on the radio, through a DJ.

This morning the doorbell rang at 7am. It could only mean one thing, Boot was home. Sure enough, just as I hit the button for the gate to open, I heard a Tuk-Tuk roar off. Boot had arrived early and rode all the way home, in the morning cold, in a Tuk-Tuk. She was cold but happy. We took the dogs downstairs one at a time so they wouldn't overwhelm her. She said she cut her trip short because it was so hot down in Rayong. She got to see her family and that was the main thing. That and the blessing from the monk. Then she had to leave a little later for a doctor appointment. She didn't get back until late afternoon.

We got to Big C around 10am, before the Friday crowds. As we were going into the store we spotted our friends who own Sawasdee Restaurant in the Night Bazaar. After our shopping we had lunch at Black Canyon. The manager there is training one of her workers to do every job in the place. So far she's waited tables, been the cashier, served as barrista, and is now cooking in the kitchen. Very smart move considering the manager/owner works seven days a week. She will have someone to fill in for her before long.

With the art show a week away, we've started taking catalogs around to invite friends to the opening. Today we went by the tractor store and visited with Jen and Nu. We hadn't seen Nu since he returned from his honeymoon with his new bride Nan. He and his mom pulled out pictures and told us who all the people were. Then Jen gave us two pictures of the wedding party. She also gave us a calendar for the new year. It's very cool, it's from a tractor company. Something for my room. (Ha)

I had read something on a Thai forum about an air purifier being sold at Amway stores. We went to the local store, on the highway and checked it out. They didn't have any brochures in English, but the manager said to go on the internet. I did and it looks like a winner. One of Boot's friends is an Amway person so we'll have her sell it to us so she can get the credits.

Driving in Chiang Rai: Today, as we approached the Amway store I pulled over too soon. The store was about 100 yards ahead so I crept along in the motorcycle lane until we got there. As we got out of the car, it struck me that no one would be mad at me. What I did was perfectly OK here. I was out of the driving lane, didn't hit anything, and going slow is totally acceptable.

It's time for the 'Funnies'. Trudye sent this one. Have a Wonderful WeekEnd.


A Dress Story

Jennifer's wedding day was fast approaching. Nothing could dampen her excitement - not even her parent's nasty divorce.
Her mother had found the PERFECT dress to wear, and would be the best-dressed mother-of-the-bride ever!

A week later, Jennifer was horrified to learn that her father's new, young wife had bought the exact same dress as her mother!
Jennifer asked her father's new young wife to exchange it, but she refused.. ''Absolutely not! I look like a million bucks in this dress, and I'm wearing it,'' she replied.

Jennifer told her mother who graciously said, ''Never mind sweetheart. I'll get another dress. After all, it's your special day.''
A few days later, they went shopping, and did find another gorgeous dress for her mother.
When they stopped for lunch, Jennifer asked her mother, ''Aren't you going to return the other dress? You really don't have another occasion where you could wear it."
Her mother just smiled and replied, ''Of course I do, dear.....I'm wearing it to the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding.''

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, February 4, 2010



Today was a day of lists. Things to do, errands to run, and people to see. Sometimes paradise can be a busy place.

Our current song may be a stumper, but Cousin Trudye knew it. She's a big fan of the artist. Here's more lyrics:
"__ __ __, give the slum a try, __ __ __ never let the children cry, __ __ __, 'cause you got to tell Jah Jah why, groovin', groovin'..." Hint: This artist, with his group whose name is synonymous with a plaintive cry, became a world wide staple for their brand of music and he's still considered a legend. Hmm.

This morning, while I did some 'fill in' watering of the odd spots on the side of the house, Lisa made up a poster for the art show using the pages of the catalog. After lunch we had a meeting at the hotel with all the players and we wanted to show them a possibility for a display. We slowly addressed the little things that would make it a smooth event. Lisa noticed that one of her paintings was hung sideways. The framer had put the hanger in the wrong place. Jaffee was going to have it taken care of, which was a big relief. We had a meeting in the sala, an outdoor sheltered area. The hotel is cooperating to make the show a success. February 13 is the opening, and it's also Chinese New Years Eve. This should be interesting.

We left the hotel and drove to the airport to pick up a ticket I had ordered online. I'm going to be going to Pattaya on the weekend of the 19th for a convention. I'll fly to Bangkok and then take ground transportation to Pattaya. It's a beach city about an hour's drive south of Bangkok. I've never been there and this will be quite an adventure. More on this later.

At 3 o'clock we met Atom at her workplace so she could go with us to the Chiang Rai Mall to check out a line of air purifiers they have for sale. We needed an interpreter since all the literature is in Thai. Funny thing though, all the controls are in English. Atom is going to do some research to help us get the best price, and also find out if there are any other devices available with good follow-up service. We're learning how to shop Thai style.

After dropping Atom off at work it was time to pick up some bread, go by the little grocery store for juice and chips, and then head home. It was a very full afternoon. Tomorrow Boot comes home.

Have a Fantastic Thursday.


"No pessimist ever discovered the secrets of the stars
or sailed to an uncharted land
or opened a new heaven to the human spirit."
~Helen Keller

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, February 3, 2010



I had a rather full morning, and a busy evening. In between, a sink sprang a leak, the gardens got watered, some wood got a makeover, and Boot called with news from Rayong. Stay tuned for another episode of 'Driving in Chiang Rai.

Just so you know, the 'Easy' song was "Sunshine of Your Love" by Cream. If you thought that was hard, get a load of this one: "One good thing about music, when it hits you feel no pain (repeat). So hit me with music, hit me with music. Clue: The singer was from an island country, the song is about a place, and the rhythm will make you sway.

Today was the day we got our patio furniture refinished. We found a guy to do the work through Boot's friend Jindah. She introduced me to Toon. Toon and a friend showed up this morning to sand, re-stain, and coat the wooden chairs and table on our patio. I wanted something stronger as a final coat so while they were working I went out to pick up a clear, polyurethane product. Normally they use shellac but it doesn't last and it yellows. They actually finished the whole job in one day and it all looks great.

While I was out, I dropped off a misbehaving DVD recorder for repair. With the Winter Olympics coming in a few weeks, we have to get ready. Some events will be broadcast here in Thailand through a deal with ESPN Sports. The only problem is, they start at 12:30am. So, hopefully, I can just put in a disc, record until we wake up and then change the disc.

While Lisa was working in her studio this morning, she suddenly noticed water on the floor. It was coming from her sink. After a quick mop up, I tried to determine the source. I tightened a nut but it didn't help. I asked Toon, by way of a telephone call to Tye (he speaks little English), if he could take a look at it. He came up and made a new washer for a connection and we thought that fixed it. The water stopped leaking where we'd seen it before and started running down the wall from the edge of the sink. We were both baffled and he had me call Tye so he could tell her that we'd better get someone else to take a look. We're just hoping they won't have to go into the wall. Oh my.

We got a call from Boot today, telling us that she'd be coming home on Friday instead of Sunday. Joy filled the house.

While Lisa was teaching her ballet class, I watered the gardens. It takes about an hour to go all the way around the yard. Boot usually does this over a couple of days.

We got a call from Khun Jaffee, before ballet class, and he wanted to go to dinner and discuss the upcoming show opening. He picked us up around 7pm and took us to a beautiful restaurant on the highway, just north of Ban Du, with an Indonesian motif. The ambience was unique and the food was delicious. We'll add it to our list of places to eat. I had sauteed chicken with mixed fruit. A definite departure from the norm and quite tasty.

Driving in Chiang Rai. It's not uncommon, when sitting at a long traffic light, to see Tuk-Tuk and motorbike drivers turn off their engines. Not only does it save fuel, it's a little cooler. Also, it's apparently OK, if you're on a motorbike, to turn into opposing traffic if you just going up to the next street. I mean, why bother crossing the traffic two times when you can just go right around the corner? Hmm. Amazing Thailand.

It's gonna be a Wacky Wednesday.


"People are the way they are,
not the way I want them to be."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, February 2, 2010



It's winter in Chiang Rai. That means warm days, cool nights and not a drop of rain in sight. Today we went marketing, and washed the dogs. Outside the walls, portions of the city continue to prepare for New Years.

I got a bunch of mail regarding the 'Easy Monday' song. I know you know it. This should make it real easy:
"I've been waiting so long, to be where I'm going, in the __ __ __ __." Hint: The verses of this song have a very strong musical 'hook' and the guitar solo is classic.

For about a week we have been changing the time on the morning alarm, trying to get Daku to sleep later. It's working out great. As he matures (Ha) he seems to adhere to routine better. We've gone from a 6am wake up to 6:30 and he's doing fine with that. He wakes up sometimes, but plays quietly until he hears the sound of the alarm. Then he leaps to his feet and expects the same from us. What a kid. With Boot out of town, BamBam has been sleeping in the kitchen. Our new wake up time is what she's used to so it all works out.

This morning we went to the market to get fish, chicken, and vegetables. Boot had mentioned to us that the fish guy and the chicken lady had been asking about us. She assured them that we'd be back. Today I was greeted with big smiles from both of them. We're getting pretty good at this shopping thing. We split up and while Lisa is selecting veggies, I put in our order for the fish and poultry. I join Lisa for more browsing and then go back to pick up the order.

We had delicious tuna sandwiches for lunch. A Thai classic (555). After lunch we washed both dogs. Actually, Lisa did the washing and I held the leash. BamBam does pretty good with having water on her. Daku is getting better at tolerating the whole thing, but the look he gave me was so pitiful that I almost dropped the leash and helped him escape. What's funny is how we get them all clean and then they run around and roll on the grass. They still smell much better.

The first year we were here, we knew when Chinese New Year came, but in the village we lived in it wasn't celebrated much. Now that we're more mobile, we're seeing how big the celebration is in different parts of town. There are decorations going up, and there will probably be an influx of visitors for the actual weekend. Chiang Rai is a holiday destination for many Thais. Lots of tradition is observed in Thailand, and there is strong Chinese heritage here in the north.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart.
Who looks outside, dreams.
Who looks inside, awakens."
~Carl Jung

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, February 1, 2010



Sunny weather prevails here in Chiang Rai. There were art show happenings, bus station happenings, and ballet class resumed.

Our 'Old School' song was "Goodnight Sweetheart" by The Spaniels. This 1954 hit was by a group that was said to be the first to have the lead singer on a separate mic from the rest of the group. Now it's time for 'Easy Monday'. I think this one should be a snap for most of you. "It's getting near dawn, when lights close their tired eyes. I'll soon be with you my love, to give you my dawn surprise..." Hint: By a trio from across the pond. First word is something that was missing in California for a while.

Our Saturday plans got cancelled so we spent the evening at home. We watched some old TV shows, and kept up with the Australian Open. If you'd have told me two years ago that I'd be into tennis and football (soccer), I would have laughed in your face.

Sunday was a busy day. In the morning I drove Boot to the bus station to get her ticket for her evening trip to Rayong. I had a brief time at the house and then it was off to help our friend Martin transport his paintings to Le Meridien Hotel. He uses large pieces of wood as his canvas. Some of the works are done in acrylic, and some are done with stain. They're quite amazing. We ended up with a caravan of one car and two pick-up trucks. We padded the paintings with quilts and dog beds. Everything arrived at the hotel safely and once again, having a truck paid off.

Sunday afternoon we took Boot to the bus station and said our good-byes. She'll be gone a week and did a great job of setting things up for us so we can take care of ourselves. She will miss the dogs and they are missing her.

Today we went back to Arisara Massage for another treatment. Lisa got a new operator who tuned in on a few things and she had a great session. The whole thing was very relaxing. After our massage we went to Big C and had lunch at Black Canyon Coffee. When we were shopping at Big C on Saturday we ran into the manager of Black Canyon in the aisles and she asked where we'd been. She had also asked her staff if they'd seen us. We hadn't been there since before our trip to America. It was nice to be missed.

Ballet classes began today, in a new location. Through our friend Tye, we learned that another mother had parted company with the local ballet school and that she has a studio at her home. I haven't seen the space yet, but Lisa really likes it. A big plus is that it has air-conditioning.

Have a Great Week.


"Help your brother's boat across,
and your own will reach the shore."
~Hindu proverb

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style