It looks like spring has arrived in Thailand. Throughout Thailand there are trees along the major highways that bloom with bright flowers at some time during the year. It is like driving through an art gallery with the sumptuous bright colors. Right now it is the Cassia bakeriana or Pink Shower Tree that is in bloom. The pink variety of this tree is turning up in south Florida, but in their native land of Thailand, they bloom in pink, orange, yellow and purple.
In May and June the highways are lined with trees with these lovely red blooms. These are the Peacock's Tail Tree, or hahng nohk yoong in Thai. They are gorgeous and everywhere during that season.
And in January in Kanchanburi Province we saw blooming Bougainvillae of many colors. Of course these are found in California and other parts of America. In Thailand they are known as Fueng-Fa.
By selecting the right plants, I think a garden or yard in Thailand could have some trees or bushes blooming with bright colors at all times of the year.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara
Welcome lady bugs!
On 4 January 2014 after several days of great holiday meals cooked at the family home, rather than going out to restaurants, Paula has a favorite new sentence to teach me, as we drive off to Chiang Mai for a meal with her friends at the fun Shabu Shi Japanese buffet.
Tung kor mai jai, kin ow, kin ow!!
Translated to English from the Thai, it means "Paid no money, but eat eat eating yummy food!"
Spoken with great ebullience!
No guarantees about the spelling of the Thai words. Ha ha
On the edge of town, Paula spots a special sale and doubles back on the highway to go to the sale. We need to buy a wedding present for her friends and she says this will be perfect for them, "Salami!"
Hmmmmm, salami! I couldn't recall ever having seen any salami in Thailand. Seemed like an odd wedding present, but maybe salami is such a rarity here, that it would be a valued present. I have a lot to learn about their customs and preferences.
We park the truck and walk toward the Big Sale, which seems to be under large white tents. I'm wondering whether they'll have any samples of the salami to taste. My mouth is watering, it's been a long time since I had any salami.
We turn the corner and enter one of the big tents. Inside there are long tables, all covered with stacks and stacks of fine china. They're gonna serve the salami on china??? I'm feeling disoriented. "Oooooh, salami, salami!" Paula says to me.
And then it dawned on me. We were in a part of Northern Thailand known for its outstanding ceramics production. It was the china on the tables that was on sale. "Ceramics? ummm, ceramics on sale?" I asked. "Yes! Salami," only now it sounded more like "Ceramics!"
We bought a lovely twenty piece set for the wedding present and an elegant eleven piece tea set for our friends in Bangkok: 2,350 Thai baht, $72 USD after conversion.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara ‼
Early in my first trip to Thailand, Paula showed me how she could take a picture of us together with my camera or her cell phone. I didn't even know it was called a "selfie" yet.
So when I tried it on my own on a hot afternoon soon after, I called it a self portrait.
It was kinda exciting at the time. I was recording my own history.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara ☺
Died peacefully at his home in Chiang Mai last week.
I was very excited when I first discovered his blog. He was writing about the area I expect to settle in one day, from the perspective of an American who lived and worked for decades in the area that has also been my home for decades. It was full of useful and practical advice about life in Thailand. He seemed very happy about his life there with his devoted Thai wife, Tena, who brought so much stability to his activities. I will miss reading his articles. Life is short.
His final exit in the last blog post he was planning. A worthy balancing act.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara Ω
In Thailand I discovered a Coca Cola sales campaign that seemed like it might have been executed by Alfred E. Neuman.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara ♫
(1) My world, an American's perspective
(2) Paula's world, a Thai's perspective
Becoming one world, with shared goals, agreements, communication, adventures.
I’ll let you be in my world, if I can be in yours.
Stolen from Bob Dylan, of course. Isn't that easy?
Talkin' World War III Blues (1963), if you must know.
Ron Chester, Santa Clara ♥