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

Monday, 18 January 2016

Boats and Bikes

I was sorting out a few old photos on my phone and its amazing how you take pictures and forget about them all. Brings back some memories of recent trips etc. I found a couple of snaps of a fishing boat.  Looking at it coming in to port the other day I was glad I had not been on it.

Sailing yachts is one thing, but to be stuck on a Thai fishing boat for days/weeks/months at a time would be a night mare.  They do not look comfortable bouncing around, also look dirty and unkempt. Certainly lack any TLC !!

As an aside they seem to produce enough fumes to keep CO2 levels high for a long time into the future.

I can't speak with 1st hand knowledge on these boats having only observed from afar. So shut me up of you want !  Well I've been near enough!  I suspect the living quarters are also cramped.  I remember years ago going on a long liner in Seychelles I think it was an old Korean boat.  The bunks were about 5 foot 6 inches long so as a Westerner your could not stretch out in full.  Everything seems a little small !

But the contrast here on land.  Having dismissed the fishing boats as a non preferred mode of transport, I spotted a few choppers parked up on the main beach road. Some guys out for a ride.  All seemed to be old modified 4 cylinder Honda engines strapped onto home made frames. Now they looked like fun for a ride ! But like the fishing boats not for days/weeks/months.  Get a very sore backside after only a few hours !

Saturday, 16 January 2016

Rayong House The Beach Part I

Now we have a ground floor view including our truck !!!!!  Must move it.

Nicely cleaned up. Later put in some coconut trees.

When we bought our Rayong House back in mid 2015 our view at ground level was onto the main road and opposite to beach shacks and small shops blocking the view to the sea. We are literally 25 meters from the sea and could not see it from our ground floor. Frustrating indeed !

From our roof top the view was lovely.  Straight over the tops of these shacks, and having to look down to spot the road. We could "watching the ships roll in and I watch them roll away again" (Marvyn Gaye  !! ). Lovely seeing the small fishing boats go by. Sitting up on the roof top is great both in the day time and evenings when the sun was  going down. Always something to see.

Our next door neightbours mention last July that all these huts would be gone by end of Jan 2016. Yeah, yeah, I thought  This is Thailand. Nothing will change  and certainly now moving people on from free dwellings to "nowhere".  So "dream on" was my silent reply to him.

Then yesterday Wanna sent me some photos showing me the army telling the hut dwellers, all to move. The army were equipped with trucks and front end loaded.  They demolish one house, which in fairness to my reporting had been stripped bear a few days earlier.  Gone. Left it looking a bit scruffy but maybe thats a good thing. Should stop more people moving in to the new cleared space.... Now we wait till we seen the rest go.

It s sad for them, but great for us to have a sea view from the ground floor window.  Better breeze through the place as well.  Will let you know when the rest are going.....

Monday, 11 January 2016

Koh Samed

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Just had a  weekend away on Koh Samed.  It's a small holiday island  about 20 kilometers down the coast. Ideal for a quick get away.  Only down side is everyone else had the same idea.... It was packed. All the guest houses were fully booked.  I am used to beaches where you get lots of space and little chance to be constantly pestered to buy stuff.  But there is something very nice about walking along and being offered a deckchair and shade. Very easy just to stop and anchor up !! No sooner have you sat down then someone or in fact many "ones" will be offering fruits, salads, fried prawns etc etc and of course cold beers, so all in all very difficult to complain.

We had a great time.  Sitting round and doing absolutely nothing.  Well I did for the first time in ages get some guitar lessons and really enjoyed it.  I'd met a guy called Greg and his wife Miranda, who were over on holiday. He is a very talented guitar player. He reignited my interest as recently I had begun to loose faith in the whole idea of me playing a decent song. So a very big "Thanks",  Greg. I'll continue to persevere. They joined us for dinner and he put on quite a performance getting us all j.umping up and down in our seats.

While there we noticed a fishing boat had been damaged and drifted ashore. But sitting watching it all seems a bit surreal.  Soon was dismantled and taken away.

Very good weekend.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Rayong Lunch with 'er indoors and friend

Had a lovely lunch few days back relaxing on the beach side. Sunny, warm good food and excellent company. 

Rayong - Fishing Boats

I was going home from work last evening, taking a different route. There are several cross country routes to work all about the same distance but in the mornings I seem to be in auto-drive and go the  same way each time.  Saves thinking I suppose... Obviously.....

Anyway, for a change, last evening I decided to take the route with the longer beach road section. Along here are several fishing communities and lots of boats, many were sitting up on the sand. Can't say they were moored as they are driven up the beach at full speed and parked ! Then once driven up the beach everyone jumps out and unloads fish etc. Simple as that.

Took a few photos and tried a little "photo shop" on them.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Street Food Thai Style


Came across this guy a few days back.  He was making up a Thai salad. Busy talking to customers and passers by. But he just got on with it. Just watch how easy he makes it look and check out the contents......

A picture says a  1,000 words is correct.

Monday, 4 January 2016

2016 and all that. The Start.

The year started of very well. I planned to make Blog posting frequently and practice my Guitar and get up to speed with my Thai talking and reading/writing. That's enough. Add in my aquaponics and hydroponic and I don't seem to have much spare time.

Today is the 3rd Jan.  Review of resolution but, progress to date looks sad........

Jan 1st................ Did nothing.... (No hangover !)  but no resolutions met. Checked my Thai lessons on the tablet.  Tablet broken. No screen................ Great start to 2016 I don't think ! :(
Jan 2nd...............  Visited friends for the day then in the evening drove down from Ban Muang to Rayong (550 kilometers). Normally a 5 - 6 hour journey but this time very one and their dogs, cats buffalo's etc decided to do the same trip all at the same time.  Took 15 hours plus. non stop. We left at 09.00pm and arrives 1.00pm next afternoon. Included a fuel and toilet stop for about 30 minutes tops. So no resolutions completed.
Jan 3rd................ Back in the after afternoon, to tired to do anything.....
Jan 4th................ Tomorrow back to work.

So there you have it.  Lots of plans and little action to day.

What I did this morning was go through my phone and look at the photos. Seems like a good summary of a few events in 2015 and start of 2016. So I'll add 2015 in here for the sake of good memories.... 2016 comes next.

2015 A brief look back on two events.

A few days in Bangkok when we enjoyed Kebabs, had a ferry trip with the obligatory phone check !
Lots for birds and fish to feed at the landing stations.



One sad event was Dad having to go to Papworth for a heart operation. Fortunately all went well and he is now back to 100% recovery. I visited and it was a lovely spot.  Cold with clear blue sky's etc.  Took him for a wheel chair run around.  Now all OK.

Dan with Owen doing the hard work
Papworth clear blue Sky

2016 New Year in Ban Muang

I had been to UK over Christmas to see Dad, Gulshen and Vivi.  Quick visit arrived in UK on 23rd Dec and back in Thailand on 29th. Tired?  Sure was....

Anyway went to work on 30th and off we started again in an effort to close out 2015..... So we decided to go up to Ban Muang for New Years Eve. A sort of get away from it all for a few days.

On the way up we stopped in a road side restaurant for some food.  Amazing seat made from some reinforcement steel and an old cutting disc, small and a bit sharp on the edges for sitting !  Well worth a photo.  Very clever.

Got home. Garden looked great. Had our first Jack Fruit starting on the tree next to the Bar B Q.  Great excitement. Seems to have taken years of waiting on this to happen. Checked the banana fields, all good, sorted out the irrigation in the pond, and had a frog visit us in the kitchen.

Pond irrigation considered a success.
Jack Fruit finally after all these years of waiting.

Had a quiet New Years eve.  Went into town and looked around the night market. Had a street meal of stir fry and noodles etc. Nothing special. Then on hte way home stopped by Wanna's sister for an hour to say Happy New Year. They were busy celebrating and the karaoke was on, as expected. Normally we spend New Year with friends who join in with us so this time was a bit strange but a very enjoyable change.

New Year Sunrise 2016

New years evening saw us having a quite Bar B Q.


Then on 2nd Jan we went up to Udon to visit some friends and their family.  One guy Greg, was an expert Guitarist.  So great afternoon had by all singing and generally making merry !!!