Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Living Life October 2006

October as got to be the mentalist month ever, Elizabeth as been the most life altering thing ever to happen to me, not all good. She as decided not to sleep normal hours. Sleep during the day and be grumbly all night. People have said we should try and keep her awake during the day so she sleeps at night. Duhhh! Why didn’t I think of that? Trying to keep a baby awake during the day is almost impossible. Oh well, we persevere.

My trip to Australia could have come at a better time, it as taken all of my savings to get over there, whilst it October as had to have been the craziest month of my life. Elizabeth as been the single was superb to see my Uncle Steve and family, it means now that I’m really skint, proper this time. Hopefully something comes along or I’ll have to re-think were my Thailand adventure is going.

Australia as given Nuch and I a few ideas, it seems like a place we could be both be happy and a place I would like to bring Elizabeth up in. Not much chance of a military coup and you are treated more like an equal. I shall be looking into the possibility of maybe moving over there. The immigration Laws are very tight, but with a bit of hard work I’m going to do it.

I’ve put in a few more pictures of Elizabeth, she gets cuter each day. She as blue eyes, which is very unusual for a half baby. No PC in Thailand, a mixed raced baby is called a half. Her white will also set her out from the crowd; hopefully she won’t have to spend a fortune on whitening cream like a lot of the Thai women do.

Anyway, I’ll try to keep in touch more. A lot of the next posts will have an Australian theme, I liked the place.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Yer Gret Galar

When I was married, I had to watch the hideous sit com “Home and Away”. One of the characters was called Alf, A true die hard Aussie. One of his favourite sayings was “ Yer Great galar” Never did know what a Galar was?

Now I know, it’s like a pink parrot that’s hangs around people’s gardens. Easy really.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Hello Savarnabhumi

Savarnabhumi is the new Airport servicing Bangkok, it about 35km away from me, but as plenty of excellent service roads to get there.

Pronounced “Savanapoom”, all flights now go there, although there is talk of Domestic flights going back to Don Muang. The Airport looks fantastic inside and as a more international feel to it.

The prices that are charged are also up international standard, with stuff costing five times the retail price in Bangkok, stock up on drink before you go.

Immigration seems quick, so does the bag reclaim. This after a bad press at its opening.

The only downside is, when you come out of the arrivals, you are deluged by loads of touts trying to get you into a taxi, Don Muang was chaotic, but this is stupid. No room to swing an unwanted tout around.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Last Supper

On my last night in Perth, Steve, Auntie Paula and Cus James took me out to a little place near them.

We went to a local micro brewery called Little Creatures, which is known over most of Aus. I had a Pale Ale which tasted great; I could have stayed there all night.

We ventured next door to a local fish restaurant; I had the fish and Chips. GOD! They ere bloody lovely, could have done with mushy peas, but the fish had to be amongst the best I’ve ever had.

I will be going on this trip again.


It seems that hairstyles have past Australia by! My Auntie Paula who used to work in an Hairdressers used to be asked for a “Mulett” all the time. First of all thinking it was a joke, then only to be told “really”.

We saw this bloke near James at our fish supper. Cool long mullet. Aussies might be good at some sports, but they have diabolical hairstyles.

Sunday, October 22, 2006


Australia is the home of the ancient and noble tribes of Aborigines. Or so we are led to believe.

I didn’t come across many in my travels and the only words that I heard were “Got a dollar Mate?”

It seems that the Abo’s have not changed to well with the times and certainly the only people I spoke to about the subject were very dismissive about them. Alcohol, drugs and crime seem to be taking the toll of the poor buggers.

I’m sure there must be a way of making them into a value for Australia, I just can’t think of one.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

WA Beaches

Perth’s coastline is one of the best I have come across. Although the sea at this time of the year is way to cold for me, it looks lovely.

There are surf beaches, family beaches, dive beaches. Everything you can think of, all within a thirty minute drive.

The beach near Steve’s house in Secret Harbour is more a surf beach, it as a surf club just like Home and Away. It rocks.

During jan/feb the sea gets warm enough to swim in, I’d like the chance to get back and try it out.

Thursday, October 19, 2006



As much as I love Thailand, Australia was a little like stepping back into civilisation. To be able to get pretty much what you want when you want is a pleasure. Australia maybe lags a little behind the UK in this stakes, but is also streets ahead in the more exotic things you can buy.

Here is a list below of the goods I bought back;

Wagon Wheels
Tuffnells Wafer Biscuit
Branston Pickle
Feta Cheese
Fry’s Cream

All of this list was out done by the beers that I drank, I had a bottle of Marstons Pedigree and best of all several pints of Stella Artois. Stick your Thai beers, Stella is still the one..

PS I also caught a game of cricket, you know yor’re back in civilisation when you can watch cricket.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Perth is the largest city in Western Australia, which is the biggest state, similar to Western Europe.

The city hugs the coast north to south, it as a feeling of being very new and clean. It as a big financial heart where all the skyscrapers are, but a lovely Quayside and a fantastic park called North Park.

As you can see, the views from North Park are something else; the park is a large war memorial, with all the tree lined roads having a dead serviceman named under every tree, a very nice touch.

Pert as a fantastic public transport service, basically three set routes around the city which are free!

Perth is very quiet compared to Bangkok, this is good and bad. Stuff like ATM’s and Internet cafĂ©’s are hard to come by. However the quality of the air is fantastic, it actually hurt my chest for a few days, I was glad to get back to the smog of Bangkok.

Visit Perth, it rules.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Mega Visa Run

Usually visa runs are a quick day trip to Cambodia. Now that the new Thai Military Junta hates foreigners I had to go all the way to Perth, Australia to get a one year Non Immigrant Visa.

Don’t get me wrong, the trip was fantastic and I got to see my Uncle Steve, Auntie Paula and totally cool Cus James, so lots of goods things came out of it.

The trip cost a total of £700, £700 I could have done without spending, the visa was gotten easily from a very polite Australian woman at the Thai Consul in Perth. No problems, unlike dealing with the Gestapo in Bangkok.

Going to Australia as been a trip of many firsts, these include;

First time in Southern Hemisphere
First time playing golf in said Hemisphere
First time across the equator
Never seen wild Kangaroos before
Having a death metal bass playing cousin (Who rocks)
First flight from Suvanabhumi Airport

I’ll fill you in more deeply in later posts, but I enjoyed my time in Aus.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Noah's Ark

On Monday evening we had a rain storm that had to be seen to be believed. Two hours of non stop torrential cats and dogs. At one point the water was half way up the drive; I was rehearsing how to get everything upstairs.

The family across the road was just about to see their car float away which was parked on the road. I told them to use my drive, which they hastily accepted. The good thing was that as soon as the rain subsided the water in the street began to go down. The main road leading to our project was not so lucky. They are around 400mm under water and it isn’t going away.

This is the same in many parts of Bangkok, dozens of people have lost their lives and the spread of water born diseases are a definite threat.

5pm in the evening.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Poor Baby

Sadly, poor Elizabeth as had o go back to Hospital. Wednesday morning, she got up after a terrible night of no sleep for Nuch and I and proceeded to have a two hour bout of diaries, I know how serious this can be in a very young child, the biggest killer of new borns in the world.

Just to be safe we took her back to the Bcare, who as usual were very good. They took a sample to get a culture growing. Hooked her up to a dip and got us a room.

She had to stay in a second day, the Doctor wanted to be sure. Throughout the day her appetite returned and she slept more soundly. The Doctor as put us on a milk free formula for her and they identified an infection, but it was lost in translation.

Hopefully all will be well, she might not be two weeks old yet but I’ve grown quite attached to her.
13th Oct - Back home with Elizabeth, All's well!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

The Smog in Thailand is all mine

This year like every year, Indonesia is responsible for a chronic smog cloud that stretches from Borneo all the through to South Thailand.

The cloud is caused by slash and burn of the Indonesian Jungles. This is of course illegal and as strict penalties. However in Indonesia punishment never fits the crime. Smuggle the smallest amount of class C drug in or out of the country and you’ll face the firing squad, organise a terror attack on Bali killing hundreds of tourist and you’ll get two years house arrest.

So polluting the lives of millions of people will not even warrant a slap on the wrist or detention.

These clouds hang around for months, visibility down to 50M and the air quality is nearly as bad as Bangkok at rush hour.

Luckily it won’t happen for much longer; the speed they are cutting down the jungle it’ll be gone in a few years. Savages!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

All Quiet on the Western Front

Thailand now as a new PM, can’t remember his name. He is a retired General and doesn’t seem to affect anyone.

The day it was announced all the soldiers went back to barracks and near normality, or as close as you can get in a military dictatorship as resumed.

The lack of soldiers as bought plod back onto the streets, Police are now having a frenzy stopping innocent drivers in a bid to recoup all the money they lost over the two week period the troops were on the streets.

Like I said, normal life returns.

Saturday, October 07, 2006


I had my first accident in the car this week. I think I did well to avoid it for the year that I’ve been driving.

Going down to Pratunam, just before the Indra Regent Hotel, I was in the left hand lane when a motorcyclist came across three lanes to gain a couple of metres, he banged into another MC, who in turn banged into me and went under the car.

I slammed the brakes on, luckily like most of Bangkok; you never get much above 20kmh, so stopping was quick. I got out and saw the guy prostrate under his bike looking a bit worse for wear.

He got up, dusted himself down and proceeded to grovel and beg for forgiveness, there was a small mark on the car which I rubbed off with my thumb. I tried in my best Thai to tell him to and go and find the prat who had knocked into him and give them a good hiding. He looked pleased the foreigner wasn’t going to throw a fit and went on his way.

That’s my duck over with, now I need to find a way to avoid all accidents. This time I was lucky, next time?

Friday, October 06, 2006

One week Old

Elizabeth is now one week old; she is coming along fine and everyone who sees her falls in love.

This weekend we had many visitors, Nuch’s workmates, friends and family. The picture is of Elizabeth and her Great Grandma.

Elizabeth as surprisingly got blue eyes; this is rare in a Thai western baby. The stronger brown eyes usually win through. Everyone seems pleased about the eye colour. No big deal to me, everyone in my family as blue eyes.

Thank you to everyone who sent a card, very much appreciated.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

BCare Medical Centre

The Hospital where Nuch had Elizabeth was call BCare Medical centre and is only 5km away from the house.

From the confirmation of her being pregnant all the way through to the delivery and stay in hospital. The service as been first rate. Yes it is private and you get the same private treatment as you would back in the UK. The difference is the price.

Confirmation of Pregnancy
13 trips to see the Doctor
7 doses of Vitamin’s and Calcium
1 night stay due to false alarm
3 scans
3 days stay in a private room with TV, Fridge, balcony and bed for me…

All of this came to a grand total of 19000bht which is £270 in old money. Nuch’s works health insurance stumped up a third, so all we had to pay was around £190. What would that cost in the UK to go Private; I doubt you would have much change from £2000.

The Doctors, Nurses and support staff were fantastic, I was going to say we would use them again, but I don’t think Nuch is planning on anything so drastic.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Home at last

Home at last, after a three day stay in hospital, Nuch and I have Elizabeth to ourselves!

Well we would if we didn’t have Nuch’s family staying the night, every night. In Asia it is custom for the new Mum to go into hiding for a month, do nothing. Dress in woollies, drink strange potions and have the family do everything.

They originally wanted her to go back to their house and live there for a month, I put my foot down on that idea. So this is a bit of a compromise. Not perfect, but I’m adapting. Giving her Father the shitty nappies to change and the messy end of jobs.

The first night was murder, Elizabeth had been as good as gold all day, then at night she transformed, in all fairness it was Nuch’s Dad who got her to sleep, and we managed four hours sleep. Last night was a little better; we’re getting there slowly but surely.

I’m quite impressed with my fathering skills; changing nappies and feeding seem pretty easy. I watched the nurses at the hospital to see how they handled Elizabeth, all very matter of fact, not beating around the bush.
I’ll keep you all posted on how things go in the next few weeks

Monday, October 02, 2006

The tables don't lie

The tables never lie, Derby County are in the top 10!

There must be quite a few nose bleeds at Pride Park, not used to this height, I just hope they can keep up the good form and maybe scrape into the play off’s.

1 Cardiff 10 4 23
2 Birmingham 10 3 18
3 Preston 10 3 17
4 Crystal Palace 10 2 17
5 Southampton 10 4 16
6 West Brom 10 4 16
7 Plymouth 10 3 16
8 Wolverhampton 10 -2 16
9 Derby 10 2 15
10 Luton 10 0 15
11 Burnley 9 3 14
12 Ipswich 10 1 14
13 Colchester 10 0 14
14 Sunderland 10 0 13
15 Coventry 10 0 13
16 QPR 10 -2 12
17 Norwich 9 0 11
18 Barnsley 10 -6 11
19 Leicester 10 -3 10
20 Leeds 10 -6 10
21 Stoke 10 -2 9
22 Southend 10 -8 9
23 Hull 10 -6 8
24 Sheff Wed 10 -4 7

Come on you RAMS!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

No Playing with Guns

The latest directive from the Military Junta is for the troops to stop letting tourists and locals posing for photo’s whilst at the same time holding the weapons.

In all fairness this is a damn fine suggestion, the other day as I was driving passed a detachment of troops, a young lad about 1ten, was standing up in a Hum vie port hole, I thought the soldier was about to bullock him! But no, he was showing him how to cradle the M-60 in his shoulder properly, great Army recruitment.

The Thai Army is taking some stick internationally about the age of their equipment, 1960’s Patton Tanks that the US used in the Vietnam War and some of the assault rifles are from the same era. Also some pundits claim that none of the tanks have any ammo anyway.

Well in the picture, the armoured vehicle carrying the radar guided 30mm cannon chain gun was definitely fully armed, this boy will do serious damage to any stray helicopter or other armoured vehicle. Not a piece of kit I’d take the piss out of lightly.

It also guarding my local driving range, so I’ll have to watch my slice next time I’m there!