December 11-21, 2005
Yesterday Watcharee's friend, Rung, and her friend's daughter, Name, spent the evening with us at River Garden. Name was celebrating her 10th birthday.
Yes ... things are real exciting here in Bangkok.
Meanwhile my son, David, is down in Pattaya. Here is what he is doing:
Hello from Pattayaland. What a show it is here. It is like Patpong times 1000 and with prettier girls with better attitudes.
Today a Thai film company was shooting a scene for either a movie or a soap opera on the little soi next to The Oriental hotel. Between 'takes' the local 'stars' took a break. But not in the air-conditioned super-coaches that our Hollywood bunch demands.
Last evening we ate at the relatively new Thai restaurant at The Peninsula: Thiptara. (*) We went with Watcharee's aunt, niece (Bo) and nephew (Beem).
Sorry about the slightly out-of-focus picture of our waitress ... she is a lot sharper than what you see here.
But the food is reasonably clear. As is the view across the river. I hope that makes up for it.
(*) "Thiptara" is a woman's name in Thai.
PS: Hmmmm, I wonder what David is doing in PattayaLand?
PPS: Reader Masten Gregory from Tuva1 writes: "Next you'll be taking us on trips to your dentist's office."
Yes, on Thursday.
1 The Republic of Tuva (Tannu Tuva) is located in the Tannu Mountains on the Siberian border in northwestern Mongolia. At one time ... in the '80's ... my Russian fiancée, Anna, was ordered to teach English to students in TuvaA. Fortunately, that order was rescinded and she was able to return home to her Leningrad (now, St. Petersburg).
A To be banished from Siberia and forced to go to Tuva ... well, that takes some doing.
Two weeks ago today Sandra tested our horticultural knowledge with a posted flower. No one came up with the right answer.
Today she writes:
Did anyone recognize the plant? It is a Castor Bean and the seeds are used to make the poison Ricin. I believe a Ukrainian presidential candidate was poisoned a few months ago after having soup with some high ranking Russian officials. Want my recipe?
Sandra is very dangerous.
PS: Yes, Sandra, send it along.
Not infrequently the New York Times and its Paris adoptee, The International Herald Tribune, publish some of the strangest advertisements (notices?). Since they are sort of the newspapers 'of record' for goings-on I can understand why groups want to claim "... as seen in the New York Times ...". I can also understand why the NYT and the IHT need the money from whatever the source.
Today's advert ... well, at first I thought it was an off-key ad for something legit ... then, for a micro millisecond, I thought it was a joke. Not!
If you look at their web page you'll see that these guys have weird plans for a lot of the world's big cities. I wonder what these people are like in real life.
PS: Had I read their web site prior to the 2005 hurricane season I would have felt sanguine about my house in Florida having an eastward facing front door. Now: bah, humbug!
As promised, the dentist. Well, the waiting room.
Today we visited the "Thai Human Imagery Museum" (*). It's located west of Bangkok ... about an hour's drive from our place. It's worth a pause if you are on the same road; maybe not if you have to make it a special trip.
(*) AKA a wax museum.
PS: Here Watcharee was not allowed to pose with any of its paraffin figures ... unlike with the more egalitarian approach offered by London's Madame Trousseau's House of Wax. However, there was one definite upside to the Thai exhibit: one of the folks we thought was wax bolted when I flashed him. Any guesses?
PPS: A little humor after the gloom of a wax museum:
Donald Rumsfeld is giving the president his daily briefing. He concludes by saying: "Yesterday, 3 Brazilian soldiers were killed."
"OH, NO!" the President exclaims. "That's terrible!"
His staff sits stunned at this display of emotion, nervously watching as the President sits, head in hands, crying quietly.
Finally, the President looks up and asks, "How many is a brazillion?"
......... the next step:
This is the third day of our visit to Phoa Pathom Chedi, the largest pagoda in Thailand.
Take-out-food from the Gallery restaurant. This place used to be on New Road (Charoenkrung Road) ... but, now it is located just north of the main post office on a side soi ... a 10 minute walk from the old site. We used to frequent the old location back in the days when we lived at The Oriental. Hey, there must be some record of past visits in our archives.
We are looking south, east and north from the Ploenchit Sytrain station. The southern view shows the continuing construction of the Athenee Residence. East of my camera lens lies the stairs to the street ... (500 meters further down this same street lies the infamous but fun Nana). To the north, but marginally out of the picture, Pantip caters to the geek in all of us. But, I can see my dentist's office if I squint hard enough (not fun).
Next: Part III