Weit abseits von jedem Mainstream...

Hallo,

Birgit hat inzwischen die Leisten für die Fenster- und Türrahmen fertig gepinselt und irgend etwas gemurmelt von "drei Kreuze machen"... jahaaaa, selbst schuld, ich durfte ja nicht helfen. Aber sie hat nun als nächstes die Rückwand des Wohnbereichs in Angriff genommen. Nachdem der erste Versuch für die Tonne war, musste eine neue Lösung her. Und da hatten Birgit und ich dann ein ganz ernsthaftes Gespräch miteinander, das ungefähr wie folgt verlief:

Birgit: Weißt Du, Flutterby, ich würde es eigentlich ganz gerne mit einer Serviette versuchen wollen...

Ich: Hört sich gut an, dann mal los...

Birgit: Naja, das Problem ist, dass es mir noch nie gelungen ist, falten- und knitterfrei in Serviettentechnik zu arbeiten. Und wir sprechen hier von einer großen Serviettenfläche...

Ich: Du meinst also, vielfältige Möglichkeiten, Falten auf die große Fläche einzuarbeiten?

Birgit (hat gegrinst): Genau... die Wahrscheinlichkeit, dass ich das diesmal unfallfrei hinkriege, tendiert wohl gegen Null. Also, soll ich's versuchen?

Ich: Klar doch!!!

Ja, natürlich sollte sie es versuchen, konnte ja nicht mehr wie schief gehen. Und ich wusste ja, was für eine tolle Serviette sie für mein Cottage und mich ausgesucht hatte. Schaut mal:


Ach, ist das ein schöner Anblick. Erdbeeren, Erdbeeren und noch mehr Erdbeeren!!! Genau das Richtige für meine Cottage-Rückwand. Gewiss, das ist sicher nicht jedermanns und jederfraus Geschmack, trifft aber ganz genau den Geschmack eines erdbeerliebhabenden Flatterbärchens... *hihi* Und so sieht das an der Wand aus:


Klar, es sind die Birgit-typischen Falten und Knicke da, aber da wir die Fotos mit Blitz aufnehmen mussten, sieht es glatt ein bisschen schlimmer aus als es in Wirklichkeit ist... Also, ich kann mit dem Ergebnis richtig gut leben - um nicht zu sagen, ich bin total begeistert. Erdbeeren!!!!!!!! Große, rote, saftige, leckere, zuckersüße Erdbeeren... *schwelg* Ähhhh... wo war ich... ach so, ja... ich wollte noch sagen, der schmale Streifen am Rand ist nicht vergessen worden, das ist die Nut für Seitenwand und Boden. Und auch wenn es Nicht-Erdbeerliebhaber vielleicht ein bisschen erschlägt, aber mit den Möbeln davor sieht's schon gleich ganz anders aus.


Also, mir gefällt das richtig gut! Und wenn Birgit jetzt auch noch irgendwann mit den Seitenwänden zu Potte kommt, dann steht dem Hausaufbau und meinem Einzug eigentlich nicht mehr viel im Wege. Okay, Fußboden verlegen, Dach decken... oje, noch sooooooooo viel zu tun...

Ich wünsche Euch ein wunderschönes Wochenende!

Liebe Grüße
Euer Flutterby


Flatterbärchen-Mikado

Hallo,

in ganz langsamen Schritten geht es mit dem Aus- und Aufbau meines Erdbeer-Cottages voran, leider werkelt Birgit derzeit an Dingen, die weder fotogen noch interessant sind und - zumindest laut Birgit - auch nicht wirklich Spaß machen. Aber sie lässt sich ja auch nicht helfen... Mein Freund E-beertje darf immer mit anpacken und ganz selbsttätig beim Häuserbau helfen, aber ich... ich darf nicht. Sie hat immer Angst, ich würde mir mein Fellchen schmutzig machen... *menno*

Aber wenigstens darf ich mich als Blogbärchen hier auf dem Blog austoben... *zwinker* Birgit pinselt übrigens gerade die Leisten für die Innenrahmen der Fenster und Türen - naja, kein Wunder, dass sie nicht wirklich Spaß daran hat. Obwohl... hmmmm... mit der richtigen Einstellung und einer guten Prise Phantasie kann man doch eigentlich mit fast allem Spaß haben. Moment mal...


Das ist die Lösung: Leisten-Mikado! Das macht doch Spaß - ich versuche jetzt mal, die große da rauszuziehen, ohne dass etwas ins Rutschen kommt...

Ach je, die Freude währte kurz, Birgit will die Dinger jetzt fertig malen. Hat sich also was mit Bärchen-Mikado, aber das ist auch nicht so schlimm. Hauptsache, es geht voran mit meinem Cottage!!! ;O)

Liebe Grüße
Euer Flutterby

Phuket Mini Golf at Bang Tao Beach

It was on Christmas Day that we took a drive looking for the newly opened 'Adventure Mini Golf' in the Bang Tao Beach area of Phuket. It only opened in November 2011, I had read about it somewhere online, sounded interesting. Phuket already has a very well known mini golf operation at the Dino Park, Kata Beach. We've been a couple of times. And many years ago there was a place called Pirate Mini Golf in Patong. It closed more than 10 years ago and yet is still mentioned on many websites! Well, being that is was Christmas, I figured the kids might enjoy some mini golf. I had imagined that this Adventure Mini Golf would be right by the beach with sea views and swaying palms .. of course that's daft - beach land is way too expensive! We drove up to Bang Tao from home, and we don't go this way too often. The mini golf is located on the quiet Bang Tao road at the south end of Bang Tao Beach near the Sunwing Resort. I think it has been years since I last drove on this road! Christmas Day but very quiet - this is a totally different area to the main Phuket beaches. There are hotels, restaurants, and then a patch of grassland with chickens or buffalo. No crowds round here! The mini golf was signposted, and we found it easily enough. Not too expensive for mini golf - Adults 280 Baht, kids 200 (and yes, it's half price for Thai people). There's a little practice green near the entrance. Our daughter got some tuition ...

Golf Lessons

My dear wife decided a cold drink was better than hitting a golf ball on a hot day (mad dogs and Englishmen). The Adventure Mini Golf has a bar and restaurant with a dozen tables. We found out later that they are open into the evening (until 11pm) with happy hour 5 - 7pm - the restaurant was not even open when we arrived - too early! I think we might go back again one evening for food and some mini golf. Me and the kids took a scorecard and headed for hole 1. It was soon apparent that the kids would not be keeping score. Come on, kids .. take your fun seriously! I gave up keeping score after a while too. Kids were on hole 12 by the time I'd done hole 6. I got a hole in one on the 6th hole, on the 3rd attempt :)

Teeing off at the Mini Golf at Bang Tao Beach

The place is very nicely built and very tidy. Maybe a bit too tidy - I was expecting a bit more Adventure! I think the gardens and trees need time to grow. Maybe some of the 18 holes need more features than just rocks and fake bunkers. There are a couple of water hazards but when I was a kid, mini golf courses at holiday resorts in England had tunnels and windmills and .. or maybe I just remember it being more adventurous when I was a kid! Our kids enjoyed this one, even if they did not keep score. It helped that we were one of only 3 families during the hour that we spent there. The location is a bit quiet, I hope they can survive, might need more promotion. The Dino Park mini golf in Kata is in a prime location. This one in Bang Tao is harder to find. They do have a website, but I can't say I've yet seen this place advertised much.

Bang Tao Beach Hotels
Surin Beach Hotels (south of Bang Tao)
Naithon Beach Hotels (north of Bang Tao)

"Adventure Mini Golf" Bang Tao Beach Phuket

The menu looks good in the restaurant. The staff were all friendly. We had a few Cokes, it was a hot day. I guess since it was not crowded, nobody was rushing us.. me and the kids could play the same hole several times, mess about, enjoy Christmas on the golf course :) Glad to have tried this place and we will be back .. would be ideal to go with friends, let the kids go play golf.. maybe "competitive Dad" would join them and go for a course record after a few beers and a pizza. My son is still perfecting his putting style ...

Good Putting Style!

More things to do for kids ...

Splash Jungle Water Park
Phuket Fantasea Show
Phuket For Kids!

Adventure Mini Golf, Bang Tao Beach, Phuket - Location Map


View Adventure Mini Golf, Bang Tao Beach, Phuket in a larger map

Kaffeeklatsch (Nr. 82)

Hallo,

nicht, dass Ihr jetzt denkt, wir hätten aus Versehen noch mal das Bild von Kaffeeklatsch Nr. 81 hochgeladen... *grins* Nein, ich habe Birgit gebeten, heute noch einmal ausser der Reihe den Kaffeeklatsch übernehmen zu dürfen, schließlich bin ich hier ja das Blogbärchen vom Dienst - und ich möchte mich gerne bei Euch für Eure lieben Kommentare zu unserem letzten Post ebenso für die E-Mails, die uns erreicht haben, ganz herzlich bedanken. Seit viele von Euch die Kommentarfunktion umgestellt haben, können wir die meisten von Euch wieder besuchen und wieder kommentieren. Aber es gibt immer noch einige Blogs von lieben Freunden, auf denen wir keine Nachricht hinterlassen können - wir hoffen weiterhin, dass Blogger den Kinken bald behoben haben wird. Das ganze Dilemma liegt ja wohl an der Neueinführung einer Antwortfunktion in der Kommentierung...

Jedenfalls wollte ich mich gerne bedanken und bin deshalb heute noch mal in die Kaffeetasse geklettert - und ich hab' ein paar Blümchen dabei, die sind nur für Euch!!! Fangt auf!!!!!! Ein kleines Dankeschön vom Flatterbärchen!


Ich wünsche Euch noch einen schönen Rest-Sonntag und nachher ganz viel Vergnügen bei ein, zwei Tässchen Sonntagsnachmittagskaffee und ein, zwei, drei Stückchen leckerem Sonntagsnachmittagskuchen. Agent Flutterby hat schon spitzgekriegt, dass es bei uns heute bodenlosen Käsekuchen geben wird, da war noch ein Rest-Stückchen in der Tiefkühltruhe... *yammi* Na, und abgesehen von einem schönen Rest-Sonntag und einem gemütlichen Sonntagsnachmittagskaffeeklatsch wünsche ich Euch natürlich eine tolle Woche und eine schöne 2. Januar-Hälfte. Unglaublich, der Monat ist schon wieder halb rum, wie doch die Zeit vergeht... ;O)

Liebe Grüße
Euer Flutterby

FISH ON!!!!!!!! sometimes

One of my favorite things to do has always been fishing , I really love it, and wither I'm catching fish or not , I still  just like being on the river or lake and having a line or two in the water and the anticipation of a fish running away with the bait on the hook and jumping up and yelling fish on and the excitement of fighting the fish to get it in and into my net. When  we lived in Alaska (a fisherman's paradise) Me and the boys were on the Russian River or the Famous Kenai River as often as we could get away . You didn't need to be a professional or seasoned fisherman to catch fish in Alaska , it is almost like get a pole and a line ,bait your hook, and cast it out into the water,  and you'll 75% of the time get a fish . That of course, does not hold true for the trophy fish and the hard to catch one's and I've caught a few of them too, but for the most part it was just easy and fun and I don't have to tell you how exciting it was to hook into a big salmon on it's way to deposit it's eggs in the creek bed ,where it was hatched and hell bent on getting there to lay her eggs , before it's life cycle was to end, and when you hooked one of these you had a fight on your hand and about as much excitement as a body could stand. I have fished in heat , rain, sleet , snow  and blowing wind and still loved every minute of it .
 Then here I am in Thailand and the fishing is a whole new ball game for me , . they use different kinds of bait and you cast your line into the lake or river and just sit there sometimes for hours and a lot of times you never catch nothing and then some days you may just hit it right and catch one or two. Fishing  the other day I hadn't got even a bite for 6 hours and then a fish just grabbed my hook and took off, I got it in with almost no resistance on the other end at all, maybe that's because it was so small  ha ha. When I got it home , Ciejay made Red Curry Pla ( a spicy and hot fish soup ), and was it ever good . My friend caught nothing and that was the only bite I got the whole day . A fisherman down the bank from us was having real good luck and landed a few nice one , He also lost a real big one by trying to bring him out of the water to fast , and if you can believe this ,a man way down the river from us put a whole small banana on his hook and caught a huge fish , I couldn't believe it .Guess I'll have to just keep trying everything I know to do to catch fish here in Thailand , some days fishing is like the ole song  "some days a diamond , some days a coal," and You know old fisherman " THEY NEVER DIE , THEY JUST SMELL THAT WAY".
This one didn't get away, if you look real close you can see a fish on the end of the line  ha ha
Jerry , trying for a small minnow to catch a big fish
Checking my  bait
Jerry , checking things out
we got some poles in the water now where are the fish
FISH ON
caught on another fishing trip, these were good fileted and pan fried


This is a big 73# salmon I caught in Alaska


If you need some time to just relax and get away , alone or with a friend, give fishing a try , you might just like it and get hook yourself, and if you are like me, I can't wait for the moment I can yell "FISH ON".

Kein Kommentar!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hallo,

irgendwie hatten wir ja gehofft, wenn wir mal 'ne Nacht drüber schlafen würden, dann würden sich unsere Bloggerprobleme in Nichts oder wenigstens in Wohlgefallen auflösen... aber nööööööööö. Nun denn: Ihr Lieben, wir haben seit gestern massive Probleme, auf einige Blogs zu kommen und können demzufolge auch nicht kommentieren. Nach allem, was wir rausbekommen haben, hängt es irgendwie mit der Kommentarfunkion zusammen. Bei allen, die einen Pop-up-Kommentar haben, scheint alles normal zu funktionieren und wir können auch kommentieren. Aber auf die Blogs, die ein eingebettetes Kommentarfeld haben so wie es auch bei uns war (wir haben gerade auf Pop-up umgestellt) kommen wir nicht in die Posts. Die Adresse kippt sozusagen weg und wir sehen nur noch einen schicken weißen Monitor vor uns. Verrückterweise können wir Eure Posts lesen, wenn wir Euren Blog als Ganzes anklicken, aber wir kommen nicht direkt auf Euren aktuellen Post und können deshalb nichts Kommentieren und nicht wie gewohnt unseren Senf zu allem abgeben. 

Das ist ja alles sooooooo ungerecht und gemein *schnüff* Ich könnte echt heulen, aber Birgit meint, da müssen wir jetzt durch... (phhhhh, das sagt sie JETZT, Ihr hättet mal hören sollen, was die schon für altbabylonische Flüche ausgestossen hat... *grins*)


Tja, keine Ahnung, warum, weshalb, wieso... und schon gar keine Ahnung, was man dagegen unternehmen kann. Im Moment warten wir erst mal ab und bitten alle unsere lieben Blog-Freunde, uns nicht böse zu sein, wenn Ihr im Moment nichts von uns hört - Ihr dürft sicher sein: Vorbei schauen wir trotzdem!!!

Euch allen ein schönes Wochenende!

Liebe Grüße
Euer Flutterby

Chiang Rai to Pai on the Ninja ...

I was awake at first light and ready to go by seven but it was a cold, wet, cloud of mist that enveloped my world at this hour.  Delaying as long as I dared, half an hour later I was on my way regardless of the weather.  With the visor open, eyes stinging and water dripping down my face, I limped along at a feeble pace.  Bumps in the road would dislodge the droplets on the windscreen, adding to my discomfort and further blurring my vision.  It was the same with the visor on my helmet, covered in mist as it was.  It wasn’t until I passed Chiang Rai town that I was able to put the visor down and start making time on what I expected to be at least a seven hour ride.

One full-moon cycle had passed since our trip to Pai with Cookie in the truck.  This time I was alone on the Ninja 650, with only a vague idea what I would be doing.  I spent a couple of days on my Google Map examining our previous route and looking for alternate roads that would expose me to new ground.  Google Maps suggested a route through Chiang Dao which turned out to be a no go.  After speaking with locals in the area I retraced my path, pleased to discover that my wife had not missed a shorter route on our previous trip, but discourage that I had waisted valuable time on a false trail.

I am a bit of a dinosaur in that I have never used GPS and this time even traveled without a map.  There are, after all, road signs and locals to ask if one is uncertain about the path ahead.  The overcast conditions made for a cool and comfortable day of riding but not a good day for photography.  I had modified a liner from an older jacket to use with a new lighter one and that kept me comfortable during the cold wet morning.  It wasn’t until noon that felt the need to remove that liner and once again enjoyed feeling the cool breeze on my upper body.

I arrived in Pai at two thirty, almost exactly seven hours from my time of departure.  After a shower and a little nap it was time to eat and explore parts of Pai that we didn’t have time for on the last trip.  The first thing I noticed was the change in atmosphere.  Gone were the crowds of Bangkok Thais and in their place was a smattering of foreign travelers.  To be fair it was still early and the vendors were just setting up in parts of walking street but I wanted to take advantage of the evening light and catch the sunset down by the river.  The walk from the hotel to the river and back did wonders for my feet and legs.  Having collected a few shots and after a massage I turned in early, so still don’t know what the nightlife is like in Pai.








Twenty years ago I may have joined my fellow travelers in one of the open bars or restaurants but on this day I really could’t see the point.  I much prefer riding alone and at my own pace with time for photos and pee stops in the mountains but it is a little lonely when you get to your destination.  I guess that might be why riders like to travel in groups.  Another thing I have noticed, is that riders tend to be both drinkers and smokers.  I guess if you are doing something as inherently dangerous as riding a motorcycle, why worry about the added risk of drinking and smoking.  Still I find myself taking a step back when talking with fellow riders on their roadside smoke breaks.

Except for the occasional wave to a passing rider or a smile and a nod to a traveler I passed on walking street, all my communication was with Thais.  There is what appears to be a reluctance on the part of some travelers to talk to other foreigners.  If I don’t make the first move, the gap between us is not bridged, and we remain strangers.  Perhaps I was just tired from a long day on the bike but I just didn’t feel like mounting a charm offensive and allowed others to maintain their distance.  To be fair tourists and I don’t really have a lot in common, though it can be entertaining to get their take on things.

Thais are a different story.  I’m not talking about those in the tourist trade who make their living by interacting with foreigners but normal people who don’t have much contact with farangs.  A good example can be found in a couple of fellow travelers and their driver, I saw at breakfast.  We obviously saw each other but having not been properly introduced, as is the Thai way, we politely ignored each other.  Later, however, we crossed paths on a mountain pass where everyone stops for a photo op.  This time there was an instant sign of recognition and the Thai gentleman approached me as we took pictures of the sign that marks the spot and shows others where you have been.  A pleasant exchange followed after he discovered that I spoke Thai.  Also talked with Thai BMW rider from Bangkok for a few minutes.

I find even those Thais who speak relatively good English, are relieved to speak Thai.  Expats sometime take offense at being ignored, or by a Thai’s reluctance to deal with their mindless babbling.  If you don’t speak Thai, then what comes from your mouth is nothing but meaningless noise to most people, if you hadn’t guessed.  Throw in a lack of understanding about proper social etiquette and how to approach locals and what do you expect of an encounter.  The reaction of some expats is sad, however, considering it is their own fault that they live here without learning to speak Thai.  Recently a guy was complaining about bad service at a car dealership because they didn’t speak good English.  Leaves me wondering how many mechanics back home are great linguists.  Even expecting one’s wife to translate in an area where she has little interest, expertise or vocabulary is a little far fetched in my opinion.  I somehow doubt that the actual service was really all that bad.

Back to my travels, the next day started off with no more than a light fog as I headed out of Pai toward Mae Hong Song and Khun Yuem, where we stayed last time.  The weather cleared early and I managed to get some shots along the way.  The mountain pass at Doi Kiew Lom View Point was clear and not as windy as last time.  Making good time I made a quick pitstop in Khun Yuem, intent on making it to Mae Sariang by day’s end.  Parts of the 108 after Khun Yuem were quite quick, with plenty of opportunities to get out of second and third gears for a change.




Then of course there was a river valley where it looked like the road had been entirely engulfed by the river during the last rainy season.  Riding on the dirt was actually preferable to the patches that still had remnants of asphalt here and there, making the ride quite uncomfortable.  Anyway it gave me an excuse to get off the bike and take a few pictures.




I am embarrassed to say, I blew right past Mae Sariang.  I almost stopped at a big PTT station for gas at a wide spot in the road but was distracted by signs that had me choosing which road to take.  Stopping might have alerted me to where I was and sent me on a search of someplace to spend the night.  As it was, I was several kilometers down the road when I started to get an inkling that something wasn’t quite right.  At one of the police checkpoints along the way I discovered my oversight and though a little chagrined at my lapse, I was happy enough to continue riding until I got to Hot.  One officer thought I could probably make Chiang Mai before dark but I was pretty well done for the day by the time I pulled into Hot and I refuse to ride after dark.

It took some doing to find accommodation for the night and the place I found didn’t have the word hotel anywhere in its name.  It wasn’t quite as nice as the place in Pai but it was half the price and quiet enough, so I didn’t complain.  A little roadside food and a stop at the seven eleven and I was good for the night.  Interestingly day one and day two were both 371 kilometers and change, with a time difference of only half an hour from start to finish.

Initially I had planned to spend a night in Chiang Mai on this trip but found myself missing my home and my family.  I enjoyed the riding and being on the bike but the nights were far less enjoyable.  The wife and I talked several times a day, as I kept her up to date on my progress but it was not enough to keep me from missing her company.  Gone for me are those self-reliant bachelor days where I depended on no one.

I awoke on the third day to a beautiful sunrise and a burning desire to get home to my lovely wife and my dog.  The road from Hot to Chiang Mai, I could have done without and it was a relief to get on one of the bypass road around Chiang Mai.  I am not typically a speed or distance junky but my desire to return home combined with very light traffic from Chiang Mai to Chiang Rai had me moving more quickly than usual.  I was lucky enough to slot in behind a car from Bangkok doing 120 to 130 when conditions permitted.  Letting him run interference, I was able to relax my field of attention a bit and enjoy the ride.  Even with a couple of leisurely coffee stops, I covered the 325 kilometers from Hot to home in roughly five hours and was home by 1pm.

For those unfamiliar with riding a motorcycle in Thailand, seeing a bike in the oncoming lane is often viewed as an invitation to overtake a slower vehicle or simply move into your lane to make a turn.  That means you sometimes have to retreat to the shoulder to avoid being hit.  The unregulated nature of the roads where I live make them a lot more fun but with the consequence of being much more dangerous.  Dogs, chickens, kids, bikes, scooters and various farm equipment, farm animals and their droppings are to be found on the roads.  On this trip I had close encounters with many of the usual suspects, with a lone cow in the middle of a narrow mountain road being the most exhilarating, one might say.  That is all on top of the sometimes questionable condition of the road surface.

Despite the dangers and inconveniences I still enjoy riding around in the mountains of Chiang Rai but I am happiest when I can return home at the end of the day.

Kaffeeklatsch am Mittwoch???

Hallo,

hoffentlich wundert Ihr Euch nicht, mich hier am Mitwoch gleich mit einer Kaffeetasse zu sehen... *hihi* Nein, den BiWuBären-Kaffeeklatsch werden wir auch weiterhin sonntags abhalten, aber ich wollte Euch doch so gerne mal meinen neuen Wohnzimmertisch zeigen. Und jaaaahaaaa... Birgit hat endlich die Teile für mein Erdbeer-Cottage wieder hervor geholt, alles geordnet usw. und als allererstes beschlossen, dass die Rückwand vom Wohnzimmer so überhaupt nicht geht, also noch mal alles auf Anfang. Tja, das hält erst mal wieder auf und Birgit vertreibt sich die Zeit mit Reetbündelkleberei und etwas Rumpinseln, also nichts, was ich hier so recht zeigen könnte. Deshalb stelle ich Euch heute halt meinen Tisch vor, denn den kennt Ihr ja noch gar nicht.


Wie für mich gemacht, oder? *zwinker* Birgit hat sich nämlich gedacht, für mein Erdbeer-Cottage müsste es schon etwas Besonderes sein. Und da ist ihr irgendwann die Porzellantasse wieder in die Finger gefallen, die wir mal neben vielen anderen schönen Dingen von unserer lieben Melli bekommen haben. Die war für unsere Kaffeeklatschbilder zu klein und als Accessoire viel zu groß, aber als Möbel genau richtig - nur die Farbe musste etwas angepasst werden. Und da hat Birgit die Tasse nebst Untertasse mit Dekoschneepaste bestrichen, danach mit roter und grüner Farbe gekleckert und zum Schluß noch ein paar hellgrüne Rocailles aufgeklebt. Durch die Paste ergibt sich ein recht krisseliger Untergrund, aber das war Absicht von Birgit, sie meint, eine Erdbeere wäre ja auch nicht glatt wie ein Babypopo und so sehe es gleich viel spannender aus. Jedenfalls kommt obendrauf noch eine Acrylscheibe und voilà - fertig ist das Designerunikat für den Erdbeerliebhabär...


Und damit es noch mal einen Extra-Pfiff bekommt, hat Birgit unten in die Tasse noch ein paar Kaffeebohnen aus Glas geklebt - Kaffeeklatsch eben *grins* Damit auch jeder gleich weiß, dass dies der Tisch vom Blogbärchen dieses Blogs ist...


Ich hoffe, mein Tisch gefällt Euch - und ich hoffe doch sehr, dass wir bald mal etwas von meinem Cottage vorzeigen können... Aber wie auch immer - es wird!!! *jubel*

Liebe Grüße
Euer Tischbesitzer Flutterby

Happy 2012

I know it is little late for this stuff. But I believe in better late than later.
This is an assorted post. I have put it all in one place - my predictions, my wishlist, my resolutions for 2012. 

So, my predictions for 2012...

2012 is going to be horrible.
No doubt about that.



To start with, it is a leap year. That is going to be one extra day of farmer suicides, murders, rapes and more importantly traffic jams and T.V serials. But this year is not only going to be longer, it is going to appear even longer. Yes! We have olympics this year - the event they conduct once every four years so that stronger, faster, fitter athletes can sell shoes, chips and colas to dumber, fatter and lazier us. We have elections coming up as well. The media is going to bore us to death with its news coverage. They are going to tell us everything about the elections but for the most important one - where the nearest poll booth is so that we can avoid getting stuck in the traffic jam on election day.

 But do you know what is going to make 2012 annus horribilis? It is Harsha Bogle announcing in a solemn voice, 'This is end of an era.' as Sachin tendulkar gets out in his last test innings. Fifteen minutes later he will declare end of another era when Dravid gets out. And some time later in the same day he will go, 'Laxman is clean bowled! Oh, what the heck! Let's end another era.'

I am not much into sports. It is physically demanding - on my eyes. But I will definitely miss Sachin Tendulkar. He is the last batsman about who I can say, 'When he played his first test, I was just a teenager. I will bunk classes to watch his innings.' I don't think I will talk about cricket hereafter. What can I say about Virat Kohli and the ilk? Do you think, 'When he played his first test I was changing my kid's diapers.' is a good conversation starter?

Enough with the predictions. Let's move on to the resolutions. You can't be more careful about making new year resolutions. You are going to live with it for like.. at least a week. So I thought a lot over it in the dying days of 2011 and then the first ten days of 2012 and have whittled down my list of new year resolutions to just two.

1. I am going to do things on time this year. In fact, ahead of time. I have already started making a post on why 2013 is going to be horrible. Watch out for it on December 31, 2012 or January 11, 2013.

2. I want to become fitter this year. I plan to distribute free chips packets in my neighborhood.

Moving on to wishlist for 2012, Please come back after, let's say, six months. I will be ready by that time.

The Phuket Blog - Best of 2011 (Part 2)

Continuing swiftly on from the Best of the Phuket Blog Part 1 (January - June) .. here's the best bits from the second half of 2011. I enjoyed 2011 - we had some very nice days out, our kids are growing up and learning about life every day. We had holidays with my Mum and Dad here in September / October. And I've had no trouble finding new places to blog about, although I have also "reblogged" a few things that were originally on the Phuket blog back in 2006 or 2007, mainly to keep everything current, also to add new photos, as some of the older blog posts don't have great images. I am still using a Canon EOS 20D, which is quite old, and will most likely be upgraded this year. Bring on 2012!

July 2011... A very good blogging month. Starting with a favourite little restaurant in Phuket called Kopitiam located on Thalang Road in the old town. They do good old style coffee (Kopi) and Chinese-Thai food like Hokkien noodles and the restaurant is full of old photos of Phuket. The Chinese connection continued - I blogged about the big Chinese shrine at Thau Reua, close to the Heroines Monument - most tourists will drive past this shrine on the way from the airport to the main beach areas. It was being built when I first arrived in Phuket in 1999. It was only completed in 2010 .. and this was the first time I had looked inside!

Dragon at Tha Reua Chinese Shrine, Phuket

We found a new restaurant in July called Yellow Door, on the north side of Phuket Town and we've been several times since. And then on the weekend of 15th - 17th July was the 3rd annual Kathu Village Festival - a street fair with a great street procession on the first evening. We live in Kathu and I really like the area. Some superb costumes in the procession ...

Kathu Village Festival 2011

I have friends in Phuket who are involved in all kinds of businesses. I wrote in July about a couple of friend's places... If you want to book a tour, hire a car, charter a boat, visit Phi Phi, just about anything - contact Diego or Ingo at Easy Day Thailand! And if you want Yoga classes, go and see Becky and The Little Yoga Room!

August - it's low season and one thing I love is that the evenings are longer - sunset is 30 minutes later than January, it just makes the day more relaxed for me. I had the chance to visit places after work, catch the sunset, take in some views. The viewpoint by the wind turbine in between Naiharn and Ya Nui beaches is great, and when I visited in August someone was paragliding too! The weather in low season is mixed but can often be like this ...

Paragliding in Phuket

Also in August, another first - I had heard about the Por Tor festival (Hungry Ghost Festival) but never had a look before... another WoW! Very much enjoyed this - something very different for me, for the whole family in fact. It's a very local festival based around a small Chinese shrine in Phuket Town. Huge red turtle cakes are made as offerings.

Por Tor Festival - Por Tor Kong Shrine

The blog, being over 5 years old, is a little ragged in places.. can be hard to find some posts, so I wrote a couple of things to tie up some blog pages in neat packages - Phuket Museums and Phuket Waterfalls. In September, I realised that despite working for many years at Karon Beach, I had never stopped at the Karon Temple Market which takes place every Tuesday and Saturday evening. I have to make more of an effort! Hey, the Chalong Temple fair is coming up soon 23 - 29 January 2012 - I will be stopping there to get some new photos for sure. From local markets to new resorts, I actually got invited to the opening party of the Holiday Inn Mai Khao Beach, they obviously think I am a full time blogger with lots of spare time! Could not make the party, but did blog about the resort.

On another sunny evening, I visited the Nai Harn Temple for the first time. It's a stones throw from the beach. As the evening sun bathed the temple in light, Monks chanted inside. A spiritual experience? Well, a photo op for sure!

Naiharn Temple, Phuket

The 2011 Phuket Vegetarian Festival started on September 26th - my favourite Phuket event! The history and the traditions and the bizarre piercings and all the firecrackers - love it! The next 6 blog posts in September and October were all about the festival and it's many ceremonies. We attended the opening ceremony at Kathu Shrine - raising the Go Teng pole for the Gods to descend. We went back at midnight too. First time I'd done that.

Prayers in Kathu Shrine

The festival lasts 10 days. Best 10 days of the year! A few days after the start we investigated the "Birth and Death Gods" procession in Kathu village, and during the festival we also saw early-morning face piercing at Sam Kong Shrine, a big street parade in Phuket Town from the Bang Neow Shrine, we were at our "local" Kathu shrine early morning for more face piercing. And we were back at Kathu on the last night of the festival for the bridge crossing ceremony which seemed to attract the whole local population! A few photos from the vegetarian festival ...

Street Procession in Kathu Village 29th September 2011

Face Piercing at Sam Kong Shrine 30th September

Sword Head

Early October was a busy time for photos! Mum and Dad here for holidays and I took some time off work, we were out most days, though the weather was not very kind - most of the blog posts from October right into December were based on things we did during the holidays - we investigated quite a lot of new restaurants such as Thanoon Seafood, next to the Sarasin Bridge between Phuket and Phang Nga. And also the restaurant at Cape Phromthep, which somehow we had never tried before in all these years .. what a view!

Our lunchtime table

We also ate at Kin Dee Restaurant in the north of Phuket and I blogged about the floating restaurants at Coconut Island. We had been busy bees on holiday and I was glad to have a backlog of new things to blog - once I was back at work, things were busy! We visited the old Chinese mansion in Phuket Town called Chinpracha House, open to the public for taste of early 20th century Phuket life. Nice to be on holiday! Another day we headed to the south of Phuket and visited Rawai Beach and Ya Nui Beach.

Making the Fish Trap

Mum at Yanui Beach

(above) Fishermen making a fish trap at Rawai beach - and my Mum at Ya Nui beach :)

December 2011 - new pages on the blog included the very good Thai Hua Phuket History Museum and the new bridge from Phuket to Phang Nga that you can walk across - quite a popular new exercise area for local people. And the year comes to an end ... already a couple of new places ready to blog :) I have less time at this time of year, high season and the dive shop is busy. A day off is more likely to be relaxing at home, not driving and exploring Phuket! Thanks for reading the Phuket Blog ... much more to come! Please do join the Facebook Page, please do keep reading! The photo below was taken yesterday. Not blogged yet!

The "Other" Phuket Big Buddha

And as we enter 2012, here's a photo I took on New Years Eve. We (meaning my family) avoided the crowds and had a NYE dinner at a small restaurant by the beach in a less touristy area. The whole idea of the Phuket Blog was to show Phuket in a different light, hope that is still obvious, hope it will continue through 2012.

Lantern and Moon, New Year 2012

Happy New Year from Phuket!