Wednesday, March 31, 2010



Today I'll conclude our Chiang Mai adventures. We're back at home and it feels great. This morning we saw a pink Tuk-Tuk, drove the streets, saw some sites, got lost, and then found. Before the highway we had a semi-working lunch with a friend of ours and talked art business. The dogs were super happy to see us.

That elusive 'Easy' song was "So Much In Love" by The Tyme. Denny wrote that it came out around '63 and he thinks he loves it because of the seagulls in the background. Oh yes, there were birds. So as not to leave the dance crowd out of the mix, I offer this club classic for your remembering: "Now, I lay me down to sleep. ooh, I just can't find a beat. __ __ (ohh, I will never dance) __ __ (x3).... __ __, Red light, neon light, stop light..." Clue: Even though it's hard to translate dance lyrics to print (and have them make sense) I think you get the idea here. One of them might help in the dark. The jam is by a group named after a body of government. Hmm.

We had breakfast at a little place around down the street from our hotel. It's on a busy little corner with no traffic controls at all. Cars, trucks, motorbikes, bikes, and Tuk-Tuks all converge on this intersection and it all seems to work out. Amazing. While watching all this we noticed a pink Tuk-Tuk sitting across the street. At first we thought it belonged to a woman who was sitting by the sidewalk. It's operated by a guy, and he thought I wanted a ride as I approached to take a picture of the Tuk-Tuk. Once again, pink is just a color. (Ha)

Plans had been made to have lunch with our friend Natty, who spends most of her time in Chiang Mai, but also travels to Bangkok a lot. We were lucky that she had just returned to CM and wanted to have lunch. She told us the spot for lunch and we told her we'd find it. Since the map had served us fairly well so far we figured we could find the place. Well, not quite the case. I did negotiate around the walls and canals of the city pretty well, and got us in the right direction, but the map we used isn't to scale and some things aren't there. Anyway, we missed a major turn, but got to see a university and almost ended up in the zoo. See, these side trips will help later when we want to go to these places. (he keeps telling himself)

We found the restaurant, after numerous phone calls to Natty, and had a delightful, productive lunch. Then we followed her to a place called 'GongDee', which means Good Drum. It's a huge house that is a gallery/showroom. I walked away with many ideas and the wheels are still turning.

We drove through a brief rain storm on our way home. It was going south as we drove north. There were two storms in Chiang Rai while we were in Chiang Mai. Everything in the yard is nice and green. Boot did a great job of looking after the house during the rains. The air was very humid when we returned, which is possibly a good thing.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"Worrying about the future is like trying to eat the hole in a doughnut.
It's munching on what isn't."
~Barry Neil Kaufman

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Today we spent the whole day out and about in Chiang Mai. We found destinations, got lost, read maps, turned wrong, turned right, and had a pretty full day.

The 'Easy' song was good for some of you. Maybe these lyrics will help you join the chorus. "__ __ __ are we two, no one else but me and you, __ __ __, __ __ __ __." Clue: The title is in four words. It's been covered a bunch and it happened way before All4One.

This morning, after we had breakfast, we set out to find Carrefore/Home Pro. It's one of the bigger shopping complexes for home furnishings, along with a big Target style store. Some of the highway signs have English translations, some don't. We were trying to follow the highway numbers, and did pretty well until we discovered that off-ramps for right turns are often on the left, and only in Thai. After seeing a lot of countryside, we found the complex and hoped our efforts would be rewarded. We were not disappointed. There's a trunk full of loot to prove it. I even found marshmallows. A rare find in the north of Thailand.

We tried to find an art store Lisa had been to once before, but we didn't see it and since the traffic was building up, we headed back to the district where we're staying. A coffee break was in order so we relaxed for a bit before moving on to Pantip Plaza. This is a tech center that is a collection of vendors. The one in Chiang Mai has lost some of it's luster, but still has lots of little things. We bought some of those little things, like lap-top speakers, and little 'feet' for cooling the lap-tops. We almost bought another printer but thought better of it after our dinner break. Better to buy certain things closer to home, just in case.

We ended up having an early dinner because the power went out in part of our hotel and rather than hang out in the lobby, we decided to eat early. Just before our food arrived, the hotel called to say that the power was back.

It's been a busy day, and it's not over yet. As soon as I send this, we're going down to the street for a few last minute things since it's our last chance to hit the Bazaar before going home.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"A bit of fragrance clings to the hand that gives flowers."
~Chinese Proverb

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, March 29, 2010



I'm writing to you from Chiang Mai, Thailand. We've been to the ballet, shopped at a super market, and dined by a pond. We're extending our trip one more day so we can do a few more things. The internet is sketchy so this will be brief.

The 'Old School' song was "Dream" by The Everly Brothers. I got lots of interesting takes on the reference to 'Susie'. For 'Easy Monday' let's try this: "As we stroll along together, holding hands walking alone..."
Hint: The group name is a play on a word.

Sunday morning we got up early and prepared for our adventure. We left Chiang Rai around 8:30am and drove straight through (with one coffee stop). We had time to check into the hotel, relax for a minute, and then dress for the show. The ballet was being presented in a theater on the 5th floor of a shopping center. We'd been there before, for shopping, but had no idea there was a beautiful theater in the building. We met our friend Tye and her sister after a quick lunch in the food court.

After the usual wait for 'front of house', the lights went down and the story of Sleeping Beauty was told in English and Thai. At one point we fell into hysterical giggles when I thought I heard the narrator say that 'The four suitors came bearing gifts of raisins'. It has become a source of instant laughter for us. The show was basically an exposition of the entire dance school. To accomplish this, the story had to be altered just a bit to include jazz, hip hop, and flamenco dancing along with the ballet. When the curtain went up the stage was full of tiny little girls, mostly around four years old. Most of them remembered their routine and it was really cute. As the story progressed, so did the ages. The staging and costumes were great. The visual was dazzling. The whole thing lasted 3 hours, with another half hour at the end for the presentations of flowers, acknowledgements, etc. We had dinner with our dancer friends and came back to the hotel. Later we went to the Night Bazaar, which is right by our hotel.

Today we ventured out to find a market that everyone has been telling us about. It's the Rimping Supermarket and it was a combination of Whole Foods, Pavillions, and Trader Joe's. Lots of imported foods, fresh vegetables, and a bakery. We got some items we can't find in Chiang Rai that will probably hold us for quite some time.

The afternoon was spent with both of us getting a two hour treatment from Ten. Afterwards we took him to dinner at a nice little outdoor place next to a big pond. As we walked in, the sound system was playing "Dream". The food was good and the guitar playing singer was cool.

Have a Great Week.


"Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the
good we might win, by fearing to attempt."
~William Shakespeare

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, March 26, 2010

Friday Funnies


The day began with the kind of wind that feels like rain. No rain appeared and then the haze cleared a bit and it was warm and dry. We shopped for the color pink, paid the bills, and bought the bread.

The song we've all been pondering was "Norwegian Wood" by The Beatles. Now does it makes sense? For the weekend, I'll go easy on you. Our 'Old School Friday' song is by a couple of brothers who are really brothers.
"When I want you in my arms, when I want you and all your charms, whenever I want you all I have to do is __ (__ __ __ )." Hint: It's what must have happened when they fell asleep with Susie. Hmm.

This morning we went out in search of pink clothes. There's an open air 'mall' with mostly clothing stalls that we tried first. After going through about three shops, I found a shirt/dress for Lisa that's perfect. We were trying to find garments that we'd wear again after the ballet concert. Then it was off to find something for me. There were plenty of pink men's shirts, but they were either long-sleeve dress shirts, or unattractive polo shirts. We decided to try over at Big C.

After looking through all the areas where men's clothing is sold at Big C, we went downstairs to check out the independent stalls. The first one we came to had the shirt. It's pink, but has some thin black stripes. It's kinda big, but in a cool way. So, we're ready for the show. We'll have someone take our picture at the ballet so you can see us all pretty in pink. (Ha)

The bakery was out of bread this morning, but said they'd have more after 5pm. That's when we headed out to get bread and pay the water bill. As we were leaving we saw the power bill so the timing couldn't have been better. The bakery still hadn't received their delivery, but called and told us 10 minutes. That was enough time to go over to the 7-11 next to our new favorite grocery store and pay the bills. Once the bills were paid, we picked up some juice and went back for the bread. Now we have 'provisions' for next week. It's nice to come home from a trip and not have to go get essentials.

Speaking of trips, tomorrow we'll start packing the little bit we'll take for our Chiang Mai adventure. We'll drive down early Sunday morning. The show is in the early afternoon so we'll have time to prepare. Monday we're going to get together with our friend Ten, for some massage therapy, and dinner. We also have to do a little shopping and looking. That's what you do when you go to the big city. What an amazing turnaround in life, to come from a big city to live in a small city. Hmm.

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


Morris, an 82 year-old man, went to the doctor to get a physical. A
few days later, the doctor saw Morris walking down the street with a
gorgeous young woman on his arm. A couple of days later, the doctor
spoke to Morris and said, "You're really doing great, aren't you?"
Morris replied, "Just doing what you said, Doc: 'Get a hot mamma and
be cheerful.'"
The doctor said, "I didn't say that. I said, 'You've got a heart
murmur; be careful.'"

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, March 25, 2010



There is rain in the forecast. We paid a visit to a friend, made a new one, said goodbye to Rene, and the dogs are respecting the new barrier. Life is good.

Oh yes, lots of response to this one. Maybe the last line of the song will wake up the memory. It happened in 1965.
"And when I awoke, I was alone, this bird had flown. So I lit a fire, isn't it good, __ __?" Hint: There a reference to a country in the title. Hmm.

We went out this afternoon to visit our good friend Tye, who's been watching her sister's pharmacy. While we were there I was standing near the entrance, checking out the traffic, when a man walked by with bags of groceries. He was obviously not Thai so I gave him a nod of acknowledgement, as I often do with fellow expats. He stopped and started to walk towards me. Then he smiled and said, "I know you, you're Danny Moses". Hmm, I didn't know him. It turns out he's a friend of Boot's and she had told him all about us. She'd even given him my CD and he said he enjoyed it. He met Lisa and we decided that we should get together sometime. The circle continues to grow.

While we were at the pharmacy, Tye showed us on a map, where the dance concert will be held in Chiang Mai. It doesn't look too hard to get to, based on the map. More will be revealed. She pointed out that on the tickets, it asks that everyone wear pink. Hmm, don't have any pink but we'll look into it. This should be interesting.

This evening I was following a motorbike that had a red LED tail light that went around in a circle. Fascinating, and totally distracting. Cute, but maybe not the best idea around. The light show is still happening on the street, with more creative uses for lights on vehicles. I've been seeing more motorbikes with lights glowing from underneath, just like the cars. We're still wanting blue lights on our car. What fun.

Don't forget, this weekend is the Australian GP of Formula One. I just know you can't wait. (Ha)

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


"Friendship is like a bank account;
you cannot continue to draw on
it without making a deposit."
~Nicole Beale

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, March 24, 2010



The day was sunny and bright. Most of it was spent here on the compound. We went to the frame shop, and drove across the new bridge. Sometimes cheap thrills are all you need. Another farewell dinner this evening.

Looks like 'Easy Monday' was not so easy for some. The song was "Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" by Crosby, Stills, and Nash (CSN). That's right, you knew that. Now try this: "I once had a girl, or should I say, she once had me..." Hint: The title is in two words, and relates to the decor of a room. Another sad love song by four guys we all remember (Ha).

The most direct way to get to the frame shop is to go through a small village north of town. It's called Ban Mai and we sometimes go to the Talat there. Today we were driving through and we came to the intersection that connects to the new bridge. They have installed a traffic light so we figured it must be close to completion. While sitting at the red light, we noticed cars and trucks coming from the direction of the bridge. We decided to investigate. When the light turned green we also got a green arrow. Normally one would take that to mean you get a free turn. That's not the case here. The arrow is saying that you can turn if you think you can make it. I waited for the oncoming traffic to clear and then turned. We drove over the new bridge, and we were impressed. It's nice and smooth, and it has a pedestrian path on either side, separated by a retaining wall. It's not officially opened yet, but it was pretty cool going across. Now I'll have to find a reason to go the other way.

This evening we took Rene and Boot to dinner. He leaves tomorrow for France, by way of India. We ate at Barong Art Kitchen up in Ban Du. We talked about travel, the economy in France, and skirted around the issue of when he would return. On this trip he proposed to Boot. We knew he would come back, but we thought he would stay here. He wants her to return to France with him and live there. Hmm. Now the plan is very uncertain, but it left an elephant in the middle of the room and it had us a little crazy for a few weeks. Rene may return in August, but he's not sure. Meanwhile, we hope life will continue as it has been.

Feels like a Wacky Wednesday.


"Behold the turtle.
He only makes progress when he sticks his neck out."
~James Bryant Conant

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, March 23, 2010



Today we went to the market (Talat), visited a friend, and enjoyed bluer skies. The yard got 'done', and plans were set for a weekend adventure.

Our 'Easy' song had a bunch of correct answers right away. My guess is, it was easy. Here's a little more for you:
"I am yours, you are mine, you are what you are, you make it hard." Clue: That was the chorus to this complex tune in four parts. One of the earliest performances of it was at Woodstock. Oh, three guys who became initials, and a title in four words.

Yesterday I forgot to mention that we went swimming. It wasn't quite as warm as we'd like, but it was bearable. Not Polar-bearable though. (Ha) Things are looking up. Now we just need the wind to stop blowing all the little seed puffs into the pool.

This morning the garden crew arrived and the yard got its monthly all day grooming. It's very frustrating for the dogs because they have to be on a leash every time we take them out. They manage, and when it's all over, they have to inspect everything.

We went to town before lunch. We had a couple of errands to take care of. The first stop was at Sahapaiboon, to show Khun Jaa a print that Lisa made for her. It was a commission and it was time for her to see it. She liked it, so the next step is to get it framed. It's not the kind of subject matter Lisa usually does, but she managed to put her style on it and it works.

Our visit to the Talat was mainly to get some little coconut treats that Lisa loves. They're cooked in little iron dimples and the ones she gets are just coconut milk and sugar. The man that makes them is only there two days a week and everyone knows him. They usually put corn, or onion in the mix, but he'll do it plain if you ask. Yum. Since we had to wait for them to cook the treats, we went to get a broom for Boot. That meant passing the stand that has my favorite little raisin bread treat. It also meant passing a clothing store, a shoe store, you get the idea. We browsed a bunch, got the broom and went back to the treat man. They forgot to make the plain ones so we went down the street to the art supply store. The owner is a very sweet woman who is a strong supporter of the arts community in Chiang Rai. She bought two of Lisa's prints at her first show. She bought a painting at the show we went to on Saturday. She showed us in the catalog. It's always nice to patronize the patrons. When we got back to the treat man, they were ready. Then it was home for lunch.

Lisa spent the afternoon in her studio, working on a new cast acrylic print. Next February she's going to have another show at 9 Gallery and the owner wants her to do a solo show. He feels it's time for her to make her 'statement'. He's encouraging her to move up to the next level in 'the game' so to speak. It will mean long hours doing what she does, but the magic that comes out is wonderful.

This Sunday we're going to Chiang Mai for a ballet concert presented by the school that Lisa's students attend. They've been rehearsing for weeks during their school break and it's a big deal for them. It's on Sunday afternoon so we'll stay in town for a couple of days and return on Tuesday.

It's time for Happy Tuesday.


"Be patient with yourself. Self-growth is tender;
it's holy ground. There's no greater investment."
~Stephen Covey

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, March 22, 2010



The air in Chiang Rai was pretty good today. The sky was kinda blue and the afternoon breeze was slightly cooling. We had a busy Saturday, a laid back Sunday, and today the dogs got baths. Oh, there was another visit to the bamboo lady.

Well, our 'Old School Friday' song was "Jamaica Farewell" by Harry Belafonte. I got a few responses, but there should have been more. Oh well. Let's see if the 'Easy Monday' song can rattle your memory. "It's getting to the point, where I'm no fun anymore, I am sorry. Sometimes it hurts so badly I must cry out loud, I am lonely..." Hint: A sweet song(s) about someone, with a reference to the color of their eyes. Hmm.

This time of year the air gets a little funky from some of the farmers burning the left-overs in their fields. There's also trash that gets burned. The recent rain was a big help, and there have been articles about the powers that be getting involved. All I know is, it's getting better and we're getting our sky back.

Saturday morning a friend of mine rode his motorcycle from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai. We met at Doi Chaang and hung out. I had shown him pictures of the house and he wanted to see it so he followed me and we gave him the tour. It turns out he's an artist and he and Lisa talked art. We told him we were going to an opening that evening and he decided to stay in town.

The 9 Art Gallery was hosting a special exhibit by The Chiang Rai Art Collective. It's a group of 24 local artists. Their teacher had recently passed and they wanted to do a tribute to him. My friend Mark came to the house and we all rode over in our car. As with all openings at the gallery, it was a festive occasion, with food and drinks on the sidewalk outside, a band, and a couple of guest speakers. This time the speaker was Khun Chalermchi, from Wat Rong Khun. He gave a very animated talk about art in Chiang Rai, and was very cordial with all the artists. After the ribbon cutting we all went in and walked through the range of work on display. There were many incredible pieces, some very traditional, some in a more modern style. We met one artist whose work we particularly liked. It turns out this is his first time showing his work. He's a policeman by day and artist by night. We saw many friends from the community and had a great time.

Our friend Khun Jaffee was also at the show and had invited us to go to another affair that same evening. It was the annual Chaing Rai Cultural Expo. It was being held on the grounds of the flower show and it was a gathering of all the Hill Tribes in the Province. We arrived just as they were having a big presentation by the Akha Tribe. We couldn't understand what they were saying, so we wandered around and looked at the little displays that had been built. Each tribe had set up a representation of how they lived. It was very enlightening to see the many styles of shelters and habitats. There was one tribe we'd never heard of and Jaffee told us that their numbers are declining. It was also interesting to see all the different traditional costumes, and the different instruments. The Expo was not advertised and it's a shame. We might have gone earlier, there was so much to see.

Today Rene and I went to the bamboo lady to pick up material for a barrier he's going to build to keep the dogs out of what we call 'The Bali Corner'. It's going to be a series of bamboo posts in varying heights in front of the corner. We came home with 12 very long poles that cost us 150 Baht ($4.50), which shifted in the back of the truck, but didn't spill. I'll take pictures when it's done.

Have a Great Week.


"The joy is in the journey.
The destination is always changing."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday Funnies


In yesterday's message I mentioned that we could hear thunder off in the distance. Well, a few hours after I sent the message it started raining really hard. There was thunder, lightning, and wind. This morning our front yard was covered with 'Teak tree trash'. We had a wonderful lunch adventure with friends, and a quiet evening at home.

The last song we were trying to remember was "Castles Made of Sand" by Jimi Hendrix. See, you knew that. Now, for 'Old School Friday' we're goin' way back. This song is from an album that introduced a form of Caribbean music to popular culture. "Sad to say, I'm on my way. Won't be back for many a day. My heart is down my head is turning around, I had to leave a little girl in Kingston town." Hint: The title is in two words and they're not in the lyrics. You should know this even if you're not old. (Ha)

In the aftermath of last night's storm, there was a mess this morning. There are little clusters of branches on teak trees that contain seeds about an inch in diameter. The dogs like to eat anything from the tree and a few weeks ago BamBam got one of these little branches stuck in her mouth. Even though the ones this morning were wet, we didn't want to take any chances. That meant cleaning up the entire yard. Not an easy task. Lisa and I, plus Boot and Rene went out and began raking and picking up by hand, all the tree waste. I cleared a big portion and had sit out the rest of the game. They finally finished and let the dogs out. There is still lots to sniff and investigate so they're happy. They might have gone mad if we'd let them out in the teak yard.

Our friends Atom and Jenny invited us to lunch today and took us someplace we'd never been. It's a Vietnamese style restaurant we'd heard about. Walking in, we were struck by the motif of the place. It's operated by a local artist and he's decorated the place with lots of his work, wooden assemblages with mirrors, and interesting hanging things. In Thai style, it's open on the sides yet has a very warm feel. As we studied the small menu, we realized we were really digging the music. They were playing a compilation of Bossa Nova versions of Stevie Wonder and The Beatles. Very smooth. Atom and Jenny helped us navigate to the non-spicy dishes on the menu. In this place, spicy means very hot. We had to special order one dish just to make sure there was no chili in it. At one point the owner came towards our table carrying the brochure from Lisa's first show. With a big grin on his face he said, "I know you." That broke the ice for another level of communication. He's going to have some work in a show that opens tomorrow night and we let him know that we'll be there. We'll be going back to this place for sure. The food, the vibe, and the sights are all very appetizing.

Have a Cool WeekEnd. On with the 'Funnies'.


PS This is the 700th post of this Blog. Whoopee.

The following was published by an insurance company for internal distribution. These reports were submitted when policy holders were asked for a brief statement describing their particular accident:

The other car collided with mine without giving warning of its intention.

I thought my window was down but found it was up when I put my hand through it.

The guy was all over the place. I had to swerve a number of times before I hit him.

The accident occurred when I was attempting to bring my car out of a skid by steering it into the other vehicle.

I was driving my car out of the driveway in the usual manner, when it was struck by the other car in the same place it had been struck several times before.

I was on my way to the doctor’s with rear-end trouble when my universal joint gave way, causing me to have an accident.

As I approached the intersection, a stop sign suddenly appeared in a place where no stop sign had ever appeared before. I was unable to stop in time to avoid the accident.

The telephone phone pole was approaching fast. I was attempting to swerve out of its path when it struck my front bumper.

My car was legally-parked as it backed into the other vehicle.

An invisible car came out of nowhere, struck my vehicle and vanished.

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, March 18, 2010



Today we got the car washed, had a photo session, laughed a lot, and said farewell to a friend. Now the house seems quiet.

It appears that a few of you knew our current song. It's not a happy tune, but maybe these lyrics will shake your memory. "There was a young girl whose heart was a frown 'cause she was crippled for life, and she couldn't speak s sound, and she wished and prayed she could stop living....But then s sight she'd never seen made her jump and say 'Look, a golden winged ship is passing my way' and it really didn't have to stop, it just kept on going...And so __ __ __ __ slips into the sea, eventually." Clue: Children sometimes make them at the beach. The singer is no longer with us, but he changed the way guitars are played.

This morning we went to 'Work At Home' for breakfast. Jonathan, an English Golden Retriever, joined us for a bit and then left to visit others. While we ate, we had the dirt from our mountain adventure washed from the car. After breakfast we drove our clean car out to Khun Ghan's house to pick up a couple of waist bags she made for us. They feature an Akha pattern on the pouch and came out very nice. Now Blue and Ming can wear a bit of Thailand around their waists.

After lunch Blue took some 'Family Photos' of us and the dogs. Daku was a pretty good subject, but BamBam was still chewing on a rawhide bone and couldn't be bothered. She would not let it go. We did get some good pictures of her anyway.

When we arrived at the airport, Blue discovered that the plane that was to take him to Bangkok would be late. We had some coffee, talked about the visit, and walked around the airport looking in all the shops. They finally posted a departure time so we said our final goodbyes.

A nap was in order so we did just that. We had scheduled a 3:30 massage downtown, with a catch. Lisa's favorite operator was not working so she would have to take whoever was available. Sometimes there is a lack of sensitivity on the part of the masseuse and it can be too aggressive. That was the case today. We'll wait until Nong is back before booking another session.

Tonight we've been hearing what sounds like thunder, off in the distance. It would be so nice to get a little rain. The air has been 'smoggy', in addition to the fact that we haven't had rain for about three months. Time for the rain dance.

Have a Fantastic Thursday.


"Wherever you go, go with all your heart."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, March 17, 2010



Everything is calm in Chiang Rai, in spite of what you may hear about Bangkok. Life goes on. Today we went on a big adventure to the south, into the mountains. This evening we had 'last night' dinner with Blue. He leaves tomorrow.

Our 'Easy Monday' song was "Addicted To Love" by the late Robert Palmer. I thought you knew. Try this one out:
"...He cries 'oh girl you must be mad, what happened to the sweet love you and me had?' Against the door he leans and starts a scene, and his tears fall and burn the garden green. And so __ __ __ __ fall in the sea, eventually."

We have a friend named Libby, who lives in an Akha village in the hills south of Chiang Rai. Today we went to visit her and see where she works. She's a nurse and has been living with the Akha since 2008. We followed her directions and just before we lost our phone signal she called to see where we were. At the end of the call, I pretty much knew what to do for the rest of the journey. We did encounter one fork in the road that we had to think about. When we arrived in the village, I slowed down hoping to see a sign of what to do next. Just then a young man rode up on a motorbike and we told him we were looking for Libby. A big smile crossed his face and he said 'Khun Ribby' and motioned for us to follow him.

We got a tour of Libby's humble setting and then she took us on a walking tour of the village. This is the first time we have been to a Hill Tribe village that was not dependent on or based on tourism. Most of the people on the hill were able to get their citizenship papers because they stayed in the same place for a prescribed number of years. By tradition, the tribes were nomadic and so permanent residence was not their way. There are about 100 families/300 people in the village and it's spread out in a meandering arrangement. We met some of the women of the tribe. A few of them know some Thai. Libby speaks Akha and it was beautiful to hear her talking to her friends. It's a soft, bouncing language that is much different sounding than Thai. We were shown a bird trap by a women with a great personality. She made these traps and tried to get us to try our hand at setting one, but we declined. Almost all of the women we met had black teeth from chewing Betel nuts. There is a stimulant effect that probably helps while working in the fields. Hmm.

We found it quite interesting that someone could come to this country and live with this tribe without anyone to talk to until you learned the language. Libby has friends in town, but on the mountain, she lives as an Akha. She has a clinic and provides medical care and also teaches the children English two nights a week. It's a very brave thing that she does and it was a real treat to see this place we never knew existed. A whole world was opened up to us and we'll probably go back and visit again.

This evening Blue took us to dinner at the Night Bazaar and then we strolled around a bit. We made a stop at Tops for our favorite cookies before returning home. Tomorrow we say goodbye to our dear friend.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches,
but reveal to them their own."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, March 16, 2010



Once the morning haze burned off, it was a pretty nice day. We still don't have clear skies, but it's bluish. Today we met a friend for lunch, exploration continued, and we visited a friend on her birthday.

For some, this song was 'Easy'. If you haven't thought about it, maybe this will bring it into focus. It's irresistible.
"Whoa, you like to think that you're immune to the stuff, oh yeah. It's closer to the truth to say you can't get enough, you know you're gonna have to face it, you're __ __ __."

Our day got off to it's usual start. I've noticed that the mornings have been cooler, which is a mixed blessing. It means cooler days, but it also means a cooler pool. Hmm.

Blue, Lisa, and I went downtown late in the morning to look for used books, and odds and ends. Lisa found a couple of books at a tiny little shop we check out from time to time. They wrap all the books in plastic, which makes it difficult to browse but today the person working the desk was willing to unwrap a few. We had a 1pm lunch date with Khun Jaffee at Big C, and had some time on our hands. We strolled over to Connect Cafe and had refreshments, stopped by the herb store, and the health food store. On our way to the car we shopped at Boots and the pharmacy warehouse. I guess we got a lot accomplished.

We arrived at Big C early so we wandered around looking at this and that until time to go to Black Canyon for lunch. Today I tried something different and it was quite good. It was bow-tie pasta in tomato sauce and I had them use chicken instead of ham. Blue and Jaffee discussed the concept of having a show of Blue's photos here in Thailand and also doing another version of his book on the Hill Tribes. There was lots of positive energy at the table and they're meeting again tomorrow.

We got an email from Sam and Emma telling us they were in Bangkok. They'll leave tomorrow for Phuket and then go to some of the islands.

This afternoon Blue went back up to BaanDam (The Black House) to take more photos. He also drove up to a village that's fairly new and saw some old friends. Tomorrow he and I will drive down to an Akha village where our friend Libby lives. Another adventure into the unknown. We were told that we should come in either a truck or a motorcycle. Hmm, sounds like something we've heard before. Stay tuned.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"Character is the governing element of life, and is above genius."
~Frederick Saunders

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, March 15, 2010



We had a busy weekend here in Chiang Rai. There was an elephant party, a temple tour, street walking, a party, and a visit to an amazing compound.

Our 'Old School' song was 'Misty' by Johnny Mathis, back in 1959/60. Many new members in the 'Hall of Almost Fame" (Ha) Now it's time for 'Easy Monday' and I just know you know this one. "...You can't sleep, you can't eat. There's no doubt, you're in deep. Your throat is tight, you can't breathe, another kiss is all you need." Hint: The title is in three words, and there's no rehab for this one.

Saturday morning I took Sam, Emma, and Blue to the boat dock for their trip to the elephant village. While they were gone, we did more prep for the party. When they got back, we found out that it was a 'holiday' for the elephants so there were no rides. The giants animals had the day off. Sam and Emma fed the elephants, watched them play, and had a good time.

In the evening we had dinner by the river and then went to 'Walking Street'. Once we got going, we all had a great time checking out all the crafts, food, and people. It was a chance for our guests to see the whole community out and about.

Sunday morning we went down to Wat Rong Khun. Sam and Emma took lots of photos. The temple complex is a work in progress and there were many changes since the last time I was there. For our visitors, it was a real treat. After we left the temple we went to Big C. It's almost like an attraction since there's so much to see.

The party was set to begin at 4pm and our first guests arrived a few minutes after that. It was soon rolling full steam and within a few hours we had 20 guests eating, and visiting in various parts of the house and back yard. Johan had installed the floodlights for the waterfall that morning and when dusk came and I turned them on, it was magical. The whole thing was a huge success, new friends were made and lots of good times were had.

One of our party guests urged us to go and see what is referred to as 'The Black Temple'. We decided to go and see it this morning, since Sam and Emma were leaving in the afternoon. It's the work of a noted artist named Thawan Duchanee. The main structure was originally a Lana Thai house that looks like a temple. It's painted black with natural wood accents, along with all the other structures on the grounds. There are rock gardens, a building that looks like a huge fish, small houses with unique shapes, and many places to just sit and contemplate. We didn't have enough time to take it all in so we plan to go back. Here's a link:

"Imagine what a harmonious world it could be if every
single person shared a little of what he is good at doing."
~Quincy Jones

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, March 12, 2010

Friday Funnies


Today was super busy, but fun. We went to a Hill Tribe village, The Golden Triangle, and the Night Bazaar. The dogs got baths, and the sky was almost blue.

The last song was "Walk Away Rene" by The Left Bank. 'Old School Friday' should be fun for you. (Ha)
"Look at me, I'm as helpless as a kitten up a tree..." Hint: Oh, that's just too easy. Tell me who had the big hit in 1959 and you may make the 'Hall of Almost Fame'.

This morning Blue, Emma, Sam, and I set off on an adventure. We started with a visit to the Mixed Hill Tribe village north of Chiang Rai. There were many faces that I remembered from our last visit and some of them remembered me. Blue took prints of some of the photos he took on his last visit to the village and passed them out. The looks on their faces as they saw themselves was priceless. Sam and Emma got their pictures taken with some of the women. We got the usual 'shows' from three of the tribes, looked at their crafts, and then relaxed over cool drinks and discussed what we just experienced. Then it was time to go.

The drive to Chiang Saen was smooth and uneventful, just the way I like it. As soon as we turned onto the road that runs parallel to the river, we saw the level of the Mekok River. It looked like it shrank. There were no barges, only long and short tail boats. There were no tourists around and the whole thing seemed a bit eerie. When we got to our destination, we walked around, took pictures, and visited with a man who collects Buddhist relics. He literally had a museum in his little shop. Artifacts that were hundreds of years old were gathering dust on various shelves in his humble little store. He told us the origin of everything and in most cases, their ages. He told me that the pendant I have came from Laos about 100 years ago. He sleeps in his shop, washes his clothes under a faucet across the street, and lives a very simple life.

As we ate lunch, tour buses began arriving and I realized that they were somewhere else eating lunch when we first got there. All of a sudden, there was activity where it had seemed like a ghost town. After a few more pictures, we headed back to the highway. On the way home we stopped off at Maefarluang University to check out the campus. It's a huge complex of buildings and grounds set on a hillside. The gardens are beautiful and the buildings have wide, open hallways that keep the air moving. Important during hot weather. Sam and Emma both thought it would be a great place to go to school.

We got back to the house by late afternoon. After a little down time, we got ready for dinner. We ate at our 'spot' at the Night Bazaar and had a wonderful time talking, and laughing. We cruised around after dinner and showed our guests some of our favorite stalls and shops. It's been a great day. Tomorrow we ride the elephants.

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


Note to Teacher:
"Please excuse Jennifer for missing school yesterday. We forgot to get
the Sunday paper off the porch, and when we found it Monday, we
thought it was Sunday."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, March 11, 2010



Today was a productive day. We had hair appointments, ran errands, ate good food, took a nap, and Sam and Emma arrived.

There were many responses to this song. That tells me that more of you know it but aren't really sure. Hmm.
"Just __ __ __, you won't see me follow you back home. Now as the rain beats down upon my weary eyes, for me it cries." Clue: The name of the group is a creative hangout in the 'City of Lights'. If it's not right, what's Left? There's a girls name in the title.

So, I've pretty much covered the high points of the day already. This morning, while Blue and I were walking down the main business street, we saw an old abandoned classic Thai house that was covered in Morning Glories. He took some pictures and I hope to post them soon. The property was huge and it's a mystery to us as to how it just sits there.

We have a cell phone that we keep for guests when they're in town. I charged it up so Blue could use it, and discovered that the SIM card had expired. Blue took it in to get a new card and phone number and the whole process cost about $1.50 USD. What can I say? I guess that why we see so many phones all over town.

This evening I went down to the new bus station to pick up Sam and Emma. On my way, I spotted a Tuk-Tuk with green neon tubes down the length of the running boards and along the back. I thought that was pretty cool until a pick-up truck came up next to me with a blue glow in the cab. When we got to the house, BamBam knew there were new people inside and began barking. When we let her in, she did her usual cautious thing, but very quickly warmed up to Emma and now they're buddies. Of course, when Daku came in there was no waiting period. If he sees you, you're his friend.

Sam and Emma will be with us until the first of next week. Tomorrow we'll go to the mixed Hill Tribe village, and then up to Chiang Saen to see The Golden Triangle. That's just the beginning. Stay tuned for the adventures.

Have a Thrilling Thursday.


"Spiritual growth results from absorbing and digesting truth
and putting it to practice in daily life."
~White Eagle

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, March 10, 2010



Today's Chiang Rai weather can be summed up in one word: wind. It keeps feeling like rain is coming, but it never arrives. We had some brief moisture, but it didn't even wet the whole driveway. We ran some errands this afternoon, talked to the travelers, and did a lot of reminiscing.

You all survived 'Easy Monday' and got to sing "Goin' Out of My Head" from Little Anthony and The Imperials.
"And when I see the sign that points one way, the lot we used to pass by every day. Just __ __ __, you won't see me follow you back home. The empty sidewalks on my block are not the same. You're not to blame. Hint: Obviously a very sad song. It would appear two people are walking in different directions. Hmm. The group is named after a place.

This morning it really looked like it was going to rain. The sky was overcast, the wind was blowing, and there was that feeling that something was about to happen. It stayed like that all day. Johan came by for a little pool talk and mentioned that he got a message from a friend that there was a typhoon somewhere in Isaan, north east of us. What ever caused this weird day, I hope it's done by the weekend.

Blue and I spent some time this morning just hanging out and looking back on various times in our lives. It felt good to connect with someone from my childhood that could relate to so many memories. He also told me about his adventures with the Java Jazz Festival this year. It's the biggest festival of its kind in the world. With multiple stages providing world class jazz and world music, it has grown into a model of what can be done. There was a WiFi system in place that was centered around the venue. One could rent a special Blackberry and it would notify you as to who was on which stage, plus streaming video from the main stage. Sounds pretty amazing.

Sam and Emma are in Chiang Mai, and will be coming to The Rai tomorrow afternoon or evening. We're making a list of places to see and things to do while they're here. In the middle of all that, we're looking for 10 chairs to rent for the party. We stopped by our local furniture store to ask about it and we got a blank look and a no. I know it's done, I just have to find out who's doing it. The adventure continues. Speaking of that, Blue and I were browsing the aisle with the chips today at the market. There are Lay's Original potato chips, but did you know that they come in a wide assortment of flavors? They have spicy shrimp, pizza, seaweed, and spicy hot BBQ, just to name a few. I just settled for the original. (Ha)

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"I do not know whether I was a man dreaming I was a butterfly,
whether I am now a butterfly dreaming I am a man."
~Chuang-tzu (c.369-c.286 BC)

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, March 9, 2010



Today we had slightly cooler weather, the river is very low, and the pool is warming up. We got a massage, and had dinner with friends. Life is good.

'Easy' for some, but not for all. I just knew you would get this one right away. Maybe this will help ring the bell:
"I see you each morning, but you just walk past me, you don't even know that I exist, __ __ __ __ __..." Hint: The clues from yesterday still apply. Here's a hint from Denny: "I got tears on my pillow trying to remember, and then I was going out of my mind until it came to me." Now, that ought to hold you.

Last night, when I went to pick up Blue at the airport, the temperature reading at the front gate was 25.6 C, which is 78 F. That was at 8:50pm. Today was supposed to go up to 100 F according to one site, but it didn't get there. There is finally mention in the press about the fact that we're in a draught. Here in Chiang Rai, there hasn't been rain since January. To add to the problem, the MeKong River is in trouble because of the dams in China diverting water. Supply barges that deliver goods between China and Thailand and Laos have had to suspend operations because the levels in the river do not permit safe passage. Sand bars are appearing in some areas. Our local river, the Mae Kok is very low these days. I'm not sure what it means for local farmers, but I'm sure it's not good.

Now that you know what's happening with the rivers, there's the issue of the sky. I have been going on and on to anyone who will listen, about the smoke in the air caused by the burning of fields and trash. It has received mixed reviews since 'it's what we do', or 'it doesn't bother me', or the one I just love: 'what are we supposed to do with all the stuff?'. The problem has finally caused the powers that be to speak up and warn about burning, and to suggest that some people get masks. There are no affordable masks that will protect from the smoke, but at least they're talking about it. Our filter is working great. I have ideas that could possibly help, it's just a matter of giving them to locals and hoping that they think it's a good idea. Hmm.

This afternoon Lisa, Blue, and I went to Arisara for a massage. I got a new person this time and I liked how she dealt with certain things. It turns out that the place is a teaching facility, which means that the operators have varying degrees of experience. It also explains why there isn't a regular staff there at all times. We all got good massages. As long as we get the people who treat us well, I guess it doesn't matter.

This evening we went to dinner with Sutheera and Nukoon. Blue and Nukoon hadn't seen each other in quite some time so it was a nice reunion. We met at Mumai restaurant and sat in a tent in the garden. It was really nicer than being inside. Nukoon has a great sense of humor and we laughed and talked about many topics. When we first came to Chiang Rai in 2001, Nukoon met us at the airport and took us to meet his mother. We were traveling with Blue and Ming and he wanted his mom to see her grandson. Nice memories.

We're still watching the Olympics. I know, it's taking a while, but we just watch one event at a time. Now we have to share the time with the Oscars. It's all getting rather complicated now, what with house guests, and the addition of the new Formula One season that starts on Sunday. Hmm, haven't watched any 'Football' in weeks.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"Honesty Without Compassion is Brutality."
~Marrianne Williamson

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, March 8, 2010



The 'Summer' heatwave has begun. Wishing for rain just doesn't seem to make it happen. Saturday's benefit/art project was a big success, Sunday was mellow, and today was a day of prep for our house guests.

Well, our 'Old School Friday' song has many spellings, but it all comes out the same: "Maybellene" by Chuck Berry. As my brother Denny put it, 'I don't know how to spell it but they make eye-liner'. Well played. For 'Easy Monday', ponder these lyrics: "I want you to want me, I need you so badly I can't think of anything but you..." Hint: It's by a 'Little' guy who seems to be losing his mind. Hmm.

Saturday morning when we arrived at Sahapaiboon, there was lots of activity going on. There were two MCs who were introducing members of the Chiang Rai Youth Orchestra, and the children were waiting to draw pictures. After some introductions, Lisa got comfortable with the kids just before she was called to the stage to be introduced to the patrons in the store. Khun Jaa translated Lisa's opening remarks and then it was time to work with the kids. There were eight of them, between about six and twelve years old. She showed them some techniques for working with oil pastels (a kind of soft crayon) and passed out some pictures of trees and flowers. They practiced a bit and then were given big paper to create their masterpieces. There was an older girl who couldn't be a part of the 'contest', but who apparently liked to draw. After some encouragement, she began to draw a spectacular flower. All of the children made some really wonderful drawings and I'm just glad I didn't have to make any decisions as to which was 'better'. In the end, all of them got a prize, and the three trophy winners were quite thrilled. I'll be posting some pictures from the event this week.

Our party is growing, and now it looks like there will be up to thirty guests. Blue arrives tonight, and Cousin Sam and his girlfriend Emma are in Thailand and will come to Chiang Rai later this week.

I have to run now. The airport is calling. Have a Great Week.


"Look at life through a telescope instead of a microscope."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Friday, March 5, 2010

Friday Funnies


We ended the week with a rather simple day. Up before dawn with the dogs, water the south 40, visit with a friend, talk to America, plan a party, and water 40 trees. Oh yes, and play with the dogs.

The mid-week song was "Girl" by The Beatles. That wasn't so hard, was it? Now it's time for 'Old School Friday'. This week we're goin' way back. "as I was motivatin' over the hill, I saw __ in a coupe de ville. A Cadillac a-rollin
on the open road, nothin' will outrun my V8 Ford...__, why can't you be true? Oh __ why can't you be true? You done started back doin' the things you used to do." Hint: Another 'car' song, by a R&R legend. He could play his guitar just like ringin' a bell.

The opening paragraph just about tells the story. It was a day of routine things, with a few twists. Our friend Sutheera came over mid morning to take Lisa to lunch. We visited at the house for over an hour and then they left. I was going to go out and get some lunch (Ha) but ended up staying at home and talking to a friend in America.

Next Sunday, number 14, we're having a party. So far it looks like about 20 people will be coming, but probably more. We've never really had a party here so this is a first. We have a diverse mix of friends and it should be an interesting time. I just remembered, we had a party when we first moved in, but most of the guests were friends of Boot's. Now we have lots of friends. Hmm.

Our dogs do a very interesting thing. When they sleep, 90% of the time their bodies are positioned in the same pose in the same direction. Sometimes it's the same pose in the opposite direction, like a mirror effect. Just thought you'd like to know. (555)

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


A teacher compiled this list of comments from test papers, essays, etc., submitted to science and health teacher by elementary, junior high, high school and college students. As she noted, "It's truly astonishing what weird science our young scholars can create under the pressure of time and grades." (this is the short list)

* H2O is hot water and CO2 is cold water.

* To collect fumes of sulphur, hold a deacon over a flame in a test
tube. When you smell an odorless gas, it is probably carbon monoxide.

* Water is composed of two gins, Oxygin and Hydrogin. Oxygin is pure
gin. Hydrogin is gin and water.

* Three kinds of blood vessels are arteries, vanes and caterpillars.
Blood flows down one leg and up the other.

* Respiration is composed of two acts, first inspiration, and then

* The moon is a planet just like the earth, only it is even deader.

* Dew is formed on leaves when the sun shines down on them and makes
them perspire.

* Mushrooms always grow in damp places so they look like umbrellas.

* The pistol of a flower is its only protection agenst insects.

* A permanent set of teeth consist of eight canines, eight cuspids,
two molars, and eight cuspidors.

* The tides are a fight between the Earth and moon. All water tends
towards the moon, because there is no water on the moon and nature
abhors a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins in this fight.

* To keep milk from turning sour: Keep it in the cow.

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Thursday, March 4, 2010



It was a busy day here in Chiang Rai. We went to the frame shop, the 9 Gallery, the market, and stopped by Tops. Lisa made lunch and dinner, and the dogs finally got baths. Whew.

Congrats to all those who knew the song. Not bad for starting with the second verse. The first verse may help.
"Is there anybody going to listen to my story, all about the girl who came to stay? She's the kind of girl you want so much it makes you sorry, still you don't regret a single day. Ah __ , __." Hint: The title is mentioned twice in the first verse. The group was known as the Fab Four. Now you gotta remember this.

This morning we went to Khun Noy's frame shop so he could mount the new painting Lisa did for Saturday's benefit. He wasn't there so instead of waiting for him, we went over to Le Meridien to take some pictures of the exhibit. It's difficult to photograph because it's in a hallway. That makes it very hard to get direct shots of the work. Everything is at an angle. Oh well. While we were there we noticed a group of monks across the river. We were not sure what they were doing, but it was interesting and intriguing. I'll have to ask someone at the hotel if they know anything.

When we got back to the frame shop Khun Noy was there and we made the arrangements for the work he was to do. After that we went to The 9 Gallery, which is a short ride down the highway. They have an exhibit by three women that opened the same night as the show Lisa is in, so we missed the opening. There were some beautiful paintings of flowers by one artist, and a series of women sitting in fields that were striking. Khun Nai, the operator of the gallery told us that her son will be performing on the Thai PBS channel on Saturday night. He's quite an accomplished violin player, and only 15.

We did our usual thing at the market. I put in the order for the chicken and fish while Lisa picked out vegetables. It used to be a little intimidating to go there, not knowing the procedure, but now we feel like 'regulars', and it's kind of fun. From there we cruised downtown for some spaghetti sauce and cookies at Tops. Imagine, buying Prego sauce in Chiang Rai.

After a delicious lunch we took a brief break and then tackled the washing of the dogs. Daku was first, and he gave us the usual 'why are you doing this to me' looks. He actually did pretty well at standing still through it all. When he was done rolling around on his towel I took him for a walk on the leash, just to keep him from getting into mischief while he was wet. BamBam is an old pro at the bath thing. She loves water so it's fun for her. Now we have two sweet smelling dogs again.

Have a Cool Thursday.


"Sometimes there are no answers,
there are only examples."
~Mark Kostew

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Reach Out


Today was warm and beautiful. We went to town twice (sounds like farmers), had a visit from Johan, and learned where to buy dinner to go.

'Easy Monday' turned out to be easy after all. At least it wasn't a total stumper. It was "Don't Worry Baby" by The Beach Boys. Some may find this next one easy, but others will wonder what it is. We start with the second verse:
"When I think of all the times I tried so hard to leave her, she will turn to me and start to cry. And she promises the earth to me and I believe her, after all this time I don't know why. Ah __ , __ (repeat)." Hint: From the collection of four guys from across the pond, a long time ago. The title is one word.

This morning BamBam woke us up early. She slept in the kitchen last night and began barking around 6am. As soon as Daku heard her, he was awake and pacing. We managed to hold off until 6.25, but it got to be too much. It's turned into an odd routine in the mornings. They seem to know what they want and we seem to be at their mercy. Hmm.

On Wednesday the pool guys come. Today we forgot, and they were late. We went downtown to show Lisa's latest painting to Jaa, as a possible donation to Saturday's benefit. We had just finished talking to her when I got a call from Johan. He and his pool guy were at the house. With Boot gone, there was no one to open the gate. (note to self, must teach dogs to open gate for Johan. ) (555) We dashed home, opened the gate and then had to stay at the house until he was finished with the cleaning.

The plan for the day was to eat lunch downtown. By the time the pool was done, we were starving. We went down to Jetyod Rd., to the man who makes the chicken burgers. I've had that on my mind for several days now. After lunch we returned to the house for a much needed nap. The dogs slept upstairs with us. It's funny how we all crash after lunch, even though they don't get lunch. BamBam woke up first, Daku is always last to totally wake up. He has a whole routine he does, rolling around, stretching, snoozing and then getting up. He takes his time.

Tye and Napa came over to visit with Lisa in the late afternoon. In the course of conversation the topic of dinner came up. Tye offered to take Lisa to a restaurant down the road from us that was supposed to be good. The menu had items we don't eat, so Tye took Lisa to another place and they got one of our favorite dishes. She also showed Lisa where to buy coconut ice-cream.

It's time for Wacky Wednesday.


"I just want to be one of the few,
who reach out to the many who need it."
~Mark Kostew

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Tuesday, March 2, 2010



It was a beautiful Tuesday in the Rai. Today we lunched out, did some shopping, and didn't wash the dogs. Boot sent help but I declined the offer. Hmm.

Well, a few of you knew the song, a couple knew the group. Denny (my brother) said "it's all about cars" and quoted this line: "I guess I should've kept my mouth shut when I start to brag about my car. But I can't back down now because I pushed the other guys too far. She makes me come alive, and makes me want to drive when she says '__ __ __' everything will turn out alright....." Hint: So you see, it's about cars. These guys sang about a coupe, but this was about not having any concerns about losing. (or something like that) (Ha)

We're in the 'HOT' season now, and it's beginning to feel like it. The days are getting warmer and the nights are also warming up. It's not hot at night, but the chill is not present in the mornings when I take the dogs out. That's how I can tell. The pool water temp is creeping up and all signs point to 'that time of year'.

Today was the day we were to give both dogs a bath. We decided to go to lunch and shop, with the intention of doing it after lunch. Well, after eating at Black Canyon, shopping at Big C, by the time we got home we weren't in the mood to wash the dogs. After the nap, yeah, that will work. (555) After the nap it was too late to do anything about it. Tomorrow we wash the dogs, early.

Not long after we got up from our nap, the doorbell rang. I opened the gate and a woman on a motorbike rode down the driveway. It was La. Boot had called her and asked her to come over and help us. As she said, cook, clean and, water. I told her we had everything under control. Actually, it was a nice gesture on Boot's part, and if I had known in advance, I might have let her help in some way, but I was not ready to have her just come in and do things. La called Boot and the three of us had a conversation that was left with, 'we're OK'. Boot said she'd be home on Friday and I think we can last until then. The adventures continue.

Have a Happy Tuesday.


"If you can't fight,
and you can't flee.......flow."

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style

Monday, March 1, 2010



We've been taking good care of ourselves while Boot and Rene are off on an adventure. We went to a special dinner party, and the Chinese New Year celebrations have ended.

The 'Old School Friday' song was "Stay" by Maurice Williams and The Zodiacs. It's had many covers, but they did the original. Now you know. For 'Easy Monday' this should take you back. It's by a So. California group that took us surfing, and had us tuned in to some vibrations. "Well it's been buildin' up inside of me for oh, I don't know how long. I don't know why but I keep thinking something's bound to go wrong. But she looks in my eyes, and makes me realize when she says '__ __ __', __ __ __ everything will turn out alright." Hint: There's something in the song about cars, of course.

Saturday morning I took Boot and Rene to the airport for the early flight to Bangkok. They were on their way to Koh Chaang, an island in the south, for a week's vacation. The island is called elephant island because the northern portion looks like the head of an elephant. Hmm. Get out your map. We're getting pretty good at dealing with the big stuff, but we do miss her when she's gone. The first night is always difficult for the dogs.

Our circle of friends is widening on a regular basis. Khun Jaffee invited us to his house for a full moon dinner party on Sunday. As he explained, his yard gives a perfect view of the moon as it rises in the night sky and eating on his patio makes it a wonderful experience. One of the guests was a woman we had met once before, but it was brief. Her name is Juanita and she is in the tour business. She brought a friend, Ghee, who operates several Ford dealerships with her family. Martin and Kay, who I've mentioned before, were also there. We hit it off right away with another friend of Jaffee's, Mark, who is from Switzerland and has lived in Thailand for 20 years. Mark is in the hotel business and manages the Legend Resort here in town. It was an evening of fascinating conversation, delicious food, and a full moon. It also marked the end of the Chinese New Year, and since Jaffee is Chinese, he told us about a few traditions.

When we got home from the party later than usual, the dogs acted like we'd been away for a week. They were frantic for attention so we went out and played by the light of the moon. They usually stay with Boot in the early evening, but this time they were all alone. They needed their 'people'.

Today Lisa painted and I ran errands. I went to see the bamboo lady on the highway to get a slender stalk to make a ballet 'stick' for Lisa. It's used for support when demonstrating during the class that she teaches. I found just the right diameter and they cut it to just the right length. After that I went to the market for a few things, and picked up a new bowl for BamBam to replace the one that Daku ate. All in all, it was a good day in The Rai.

Have a Great Week.


"The principles you live by create the world you live in;
if you change the principles you live by,
you will change your world."
~Blaine Lee

Gettin' Funky, Thai Style