A wise man once said....

"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen you may learn something new." Dalai Lama

Sunday, 28 February 2010

February 29th ? In 2010 I don't think so...

So it was with some surprise when Tee and friends turned up at the house to say hello and wish me a belated Happy Birthday. He came with a few friends and whilst I was very happy to see him I had to explain that there was no 29th Feb this year.

I am still a kid only 14 and a half....

Imagine my surprise when Gaew who had come with Tee exclaimed that she also was born on the 29th Feb. For sure a lot of years after me....

So after a quick celebration beer we made party promises and arrangements confirmed for a big do on 29th February 2012!!!! (its a Wednesday)...

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Weekend Away

Been a while since I did any posting. Time flies and work is always only a moment away. Or so it seems.
Last weekend was a fun and relaxing one.
The original plan was to go to Khon Kaen and attend the motor bike weekend. There was no info about it on the web till I got my engineer to do a search in Thai. Amazing how much stuff is out there in all these other languages. Sure enough 20th and 21st Feb Bike weekend. Should be fun. Will visit and get some photos and of course the ‘T’ shirt. But TIT. Thailand being Thailand this was not to be. Sure it was the 20th and 21 st of February but that was for last year….
Putting that aside we seemed to cover a load of odds and ends. First off was my usual walk round the plot to check and inspect our plants etc. All doing well. Mainly down to Man daily providing water and manure.

The breadfruit trees continues to amaze by producing fruit while remaining so small. We have 4 breadfruit trees but only one is so far advanced and producing. No obvious reason for it. Perhaps location and better soil?

We had also planted some olive trees and I am told these are difficult to get to fruit. Well take a close look at my photo as I think one of is just starting.

But the big deal was…Wanna has acquired a new dog ‘Tiger’. Lovely chap and so full of fun. So far about 4 pairs of shoes have gone missing!
Of course a new dog then makes a trip to the Vet’s obligatory.


We also had time to start cooking a southern snail curry. Managed to get the start of the video with the idea of completing it, the curry that is, once we got back to Pattaya.
The curry comprises land snails boiled and removed from their shells then cooked with various herbs and assorted goodies. I hope to get it all on film this week.

Meanwhile whilst sitting enjoying my coffee I was shown a new snack. Buffalo hide. Yes complete with hair. Reminded be of South African ‘Biltong’. But a much coarser version. I was told it is first grilled on a Bar B Q and only then eaten as a snack. Have yet to try it… Back home my fish were not along. I had organized the feeding, with Tee kindly going round to our place on the Saturday. So its good to know you can leave things with friends and go away for a few days.

Now back to the snail curry…. Video to follow.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Chinese Cemetaries

Every day on the way to work I pass a Chinese cemetery and have promised myself I would stop by. Well that was over 12 months ago. I had reason today to go into town and pass by the place. Finally I though I'll go in.
What a disappointment. Having been to the military cemeteries near the river Kwai etc this was a shock. Scruffy, dirty with numerous 'mingy' dogs etc. The place looked like it had been forgotten years ago. So a few quick shots and back to work. I will next time on planning some to visit do it quickly to avoid a protracted disappointment. Goes to show, sadly, that not all of Thailand is the land of Smiles 'LOS'.

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Monks etc

Had an ealry start this morning. Wanted to get to work a bit earlier than usual. Set off was was happily driving along, half asleep when after a few minutes I realised I was behind three pick ups all carrying Monks. All fully equiped with their begging bowls etc. Must be off to a Monks get together breakfast somewhere.? Seemed a bit strange to me so hence the photo.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Owens 'Saling' And A Harley

Had our usual Monday evening pool game. And yes we lost. Again. Seems to be the way for the last few months. It was the last game of the season so we can only hope next season will bring us better luck.
We went there by Owens new three wheeler. An experience in the day time made even more interesting by night!
Having parked up I realised we were parked behind a Harley. So take a good look at the photo. Which do you prefer...

Bangkok Weekend

To say we were busy in Bangkok this weekend is an understatement. Hence so few pictures. No time.
We went up Friday evening and caught up with some friends at the British Club. A very special reminder of UK situated in the middle of an Asian metropolis. Had good Guinness and excellent British grub!
Saturday spent checkout our condos for curtains etc. All hard work trying to get them sorted. Seemed difficult to decide on what to place in the various rooms in particular choosing suitable colours and styles to attract the future lessees. Anyway it is fair to say we got a lot done and will hopefully be n a position to rent them by the end of the month. It also depends on the external works including the communal gardens and swimming pool being finished. I guess end of Feb.
This was followed by some good Thai street food and a long walk. One spot had a tree root crossing the pavement and a lump of concrete. Both suitably coloured in by someone. Very imaginative.

The evening was good and also a bit strange. I had been invited to an Alumni dinner at the Grand Hyatt Hotel as a guest of the Universities of UK. It was an open invitation to anyone who had attended any Uni in UK. Amazing about 300 + people were there. Excellent food and drink. Each University had its own area and I managed to catch up with several interesting people, so great fun.
Caught up with Wanna later in the evening and went to Gulliver's a well established sports bar to watch the rugby. (Wales v England). We got there at 10.00pm and sat through a load of boring football till midnight. Kick off time. Come 1.00 a.m. they closed the place down. Only got to half time. Did not find out who won till Sunday morning...And when I found out it was good result either.
Back to Pattaya and a cool swim. Work tomorrow.

Monday, 1 February 2010

Lunch On The Road Side .....By Bike Saling.....

Now we've got the three wheeler. (See last posting) weve been off to have a lunch at a local road side restaurant. These places are everywhere. They are really for locals and of course therefore sensibly priced accordingly. Some are good and some complete rubbish so when we do find a good one we tend to keep using it. We must have about 6-8 such places we go to, which we do on some inbuild informal rotation basis. This particular one has an OBAMA sign, and no he is not a Democrate. It's an advert for a local Brew....
The place is located only about 500 meters from home and to date is absolutely the best we've found. (Five Star for sure).
It does have two draw backs: 1, in so much as it closes at 3.30pm everyday and 2, the menu is only in Thai. You really do need to know what to order. Wanna is checking it out for us.... Lazy me.
In my defence I have begun to read quite reasonably Thai menus and simple stuff which you see most days.  But have not reached the standard of reading the Newspaper.  One day maybe.As for opening hours. It means really we can only use it at weekends. But just look at the colours of the food. The is Penang Curry with Chicken, Tom Yum Soup, and a pork/vegetable stir fry in oyster sauce. Fantastic.Apparently the cook/owner was a chef at the local Siam Country Golf Club.  It caters for LPGA's and other Asian and International Golf tournaments So working there he had to be good. He set up on his own at home adn 'mam' is he good.
While I'm writing thsi I can smell the food...  Its wasn't just great, it was fantastic.
A meal for 4 persons including beers each was 10US$ all in.  Where will I beat that. Thats 1US$ per plate plus beer. Way to go....
I'm just waiting till next Saturday.