Monday, November 28, 2011
I had intended to write a rant about my bad experience with Experian, the credit reporting agency that is threatening my fiscal well-being. But Thanksgiving intervened.
Gratefulness.org, advises: "Love wholeheartedly, be surprised, give thanks and praise -- then you will discover the fullness of your life." The realization of good fortune sometimes comes as a surprise if you expect the worst. Sometimes I deliberately anticipate negative results in order to stave off disappointment, a pretty poor way to find pleasure. But this year there was nothing to do but give in to gratitude. I am thankful for so much! My wife, the light of my twilight life, good companions like Jerry near and far (real and virtual), discovering the vocation of teaching and the joy my students' give me, the constant delight of everyday life in Thailand, good health and happiness, and, let's face it, the ability to chew good food with my real teeth (at least on one side).
put it, "Americans are for the most parts kind and generous, unlike its murderous government. I'm claiming that our 99% are mostly fair and decent, unlike the 1% that rule and represent us."
Watermarks from the flooding in Pinklao are everywhere. Here you can see the flood evidence with our building in the background (we're on the 9th floor of the 22-floor building so our balcony is out of sight).
Sunday, November 20, 2011
You won't find a manhole there
"House in the Country," Blood, Sweat & Tears
Because of widespread flooding around the capital, most Bangkok residents were in no mood to celebrate Loi Krathong, the annual festival of lights on the water. But in northern Thailand, where Nan and I were staying while waiting for the water around our condo to subside, it was a big deal. There were parades and festivals and contests to see who could launch the most spectacular khom loi (sky lantern). Even though there are no big rivers in Phayao, the mountainous province where our home in the country is located, villagers launched small krathong (boat), made of palm stalks, folded leaves and covered with flowers and candles, into local irrigation streams in the rice fields.
This picture show the entrance to the valley where Baan Thung Tae is located. In the distance, on the other side of the hills, is Laos and China.
Tuesday, November 01, 2011
We didn't plan to leave. It was the cockroaches that changed my mind. On Thursday we walked up to Tesco Lotus to take money out of the ATM there and to eat lunch in the food court. There were large pools of water on each side of the road that weren't there the night before and almost no traffic. Water was bubbling up out of the drains. An alley around the corner from our condo was flooded, and the lady who sells me the Bangkok Post and who lives there looked worried. Anxious people with backpacks and suitcases were waiting for buses that were few and far between. Coming up to the pedestrian overpass, I looked down and saw cockroaches scurrying across the sidewalk, lots of them. People were stepping on them with a crunch and a squish. I realized in a flash that they were running away from the advancing water.