Eleven Two & Co. Restaurant in Phuket Town

Because we live near Phuket Town, if we are eating out we often head to town or nearby and we have several favourite restaurants. But Phuket Town is constantly changing, new restaurants and cafes open often as the old town in particular gets popular as a place to visit. The center of the old town is Thalang Road which used to be the main market street 100 years ago and is still home to older shops selling cloth, hardware and herbal medicine. There is a weekly Sunday market on Thalang Road too. One of our favourite places to eat along Thalang Road is Kopitiam, and I have found Since 1892 good for a coffee, and then you have a couple of old Muslim roti restaurants on the same street. A newer restaurant, Eleven Two & Co. opened in late 2013 and I have been a couple of times just for a snack or a drink. Last week, I met up with fellow blogger Tim for a proper meal there, as the menu did look quite tempting!

Sunset time on Thalang Road

(above) Eleven Two is situated on Thalang Road in the heart of Phuket Old Town. It's on the left side of the photo above. You can see it's built into an old shophouse and I am glad to say the owners have kept the old style.

First thing .. a drink! The drinks menu is pretty big with all kinds of coffee, different teas, smoothies, sodas and beers. A few "special" imported beers available, but at 250 Baht per bottle, I'd rather stick with a simple Chang or Singha! There's even one import beer on the menu called "Dog B" with a menu price of 1,250 Baht! If anyone tries it, do let me know.

Chang Beer with free Prawn Crackers

(above) And you get some free prawn crackers with your beer :)

Eleven Two & Co

Most of the seating is open air, some right by the street, some just inside. There is also an aircon room if you can't stand the heat. I much prefer sitting near the street. Thalang Road is not really busy, you're not sitting by a highway here! The food menu has Thai dishes, burgers, pizza, salads, sandwiches and more. Prices a bit higher than your average Thai restaurant, but a decent price for burgers and pizzas. First time I stopped here with my wife for a snack, and the chicken satay french fries looked like a good idea - see photo below, went very well with a cold beer.

Chicken Satay with French Fries (Chips)

With Tim and his wife, we ordered a whole variety of dishes .... you have to try a few things before judging a restaurant! First up was a bruschetta selection. Pretty much a light meal on its own!

Mixed Bruschetta

And my main dish ... well, I do eat Thai food about 90% of the time, and when I go for something non-Thai, it's often a burger. And I don't mean McDonalds, no, no. I like a good homemade burger, big and fat, lots of real meat. And what I got at Eleven Two was the "Northern Tribe Burger" - just what the doctor ordered!

Burger at Eleven Two & Co

I had actually ordered something called the "Cheese Lava Pork Burger" but it was not available - a good reason to go again :)

And another side dish - spicy pork with tortillas ...

Spicy snack at Eleven Two & Co

I like this kind of restaurant, a bit arty, a bit different, a selection of foods that I might not normally eat. And the old town is a good place to find a more interesting place to eat. I can recommend Eleven Two & Co. for lunch or dinner. I think it's closed on Mondays. A place I will eat again for sure.

Eleven Two & Co. - Location Map



Daredevil is the comic book show I've been waiting for

*Don't worry, there's no big spoilers in here.*

Marvel and Netflix's first limited series, Daredevil, is finally here and man, it was so worth the wait. Before I get into why I think it's all kinds of terrific, I want to make one thing crystal clear: this article isn't a jab at the other comic book shows. I'm absolutely loving The Flash; Arrow's quality jumps around yet it still has my attention; The Walking Dead's latest season showed a lot of promise; Constantine was solid; Nick's TMNT is a total joy. I hear Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has made significant improvements, but I'm way too behind and don't see myself catching up with it in the near future. Sorry, S.H.I.E.L.D. fans. "But Gregg, what about Gotham, Powers, and iZombie?" Hey, random reader, I'm trying to get to why I really enjoyed Daredevil, but sure, I'll quickly answer that. Gotham: wasn't a fan, sorry. Powers: has potential, but rarely leaves me hooked. So, I'm left feeling down the middle. iZombie: sorry, haven't checked it out yet. Now, let's get to why Daredevil made such a strong impression, okay?
Daredevil wasn't kidding when he said Hell's Kitchen is his city.
There were a lot of concerns about Daredevil's tone and I'd say understandably so. The Marvel Cinematic Universe can sometimes be a pretty lighthearted place -- Marvel Studios obviously aims to make sure its projects can be enjoyed by a wide variety of viewers. Even when stories take serious or more compelling turns, the minds behind these films try to make sure you have a good amount of fun throughout the adventure. Sometimes the emphasis on comedy can be a little too much, but for the most part, the trips into the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been a pretty good time. However, seeing as this is on Netflix and going for a more "street level" approach, there were understandable concerns this limited series would be overly dark and gritty just because it now has the freedom to bring more mature content. Thankfully, that wasn't the case and I think the minds behind this series did an excellent job delivering a tone that's serious and gripping while also having just the right amount of darkness and levity.

The show is not too dramatic and the occasional bits of comedy most definitely don't get in the way of the more serious story and it doesn't ever feel out of place, either. (Unless you dislike Foggy, but that doesn't apply to me.) What's really great is this show doesn't let loose simply because it can. It shows a lot of restraint with its graphic content, making those especially savage moments even more effective when they do drop. Just because they can curse or show gruesome violence doesn't mean they're constantly throwing it in our faces and I think that's to be commended. We get a proper look at just how ugly the situation in Hell's Kitchen has become (the very first episode includes human trafficking, after all) and we feel the weight behind these situations, yet surprisingly gory displays of violence aren't common and when characters do curse, it feels natural instead of just some attempt to be edgier. They aren't saying "shit" every other sentence just because they can and when they do have disturbing elements, they're handled appropriately instead of aiming just for shock value. When there's a very unsettling story about a twisted father, it's used to enhance Matt Murdock's story; it's not there just to stun. The show has plenty of darker elements, a ton of drama, and a whole lot of violence, yet it's not a depressing experience that feels like it's taking itself way too seriously. It brings the kind of content you'd never see in one of Marvel Studios' movies, yet it doesn't feel like it's a different world, either. We're just exploring a whole new part of the one we already know pretty well. Avengers Tower may be right around the corner, but this show is exploring conflicts that are simply under the powerful team's radar.

Photo by Barry Wetcher.
Daredevil's overall story has plenty of familiar elements. The hero trying to save his city; he questions whether he should kill his enemies and whether he should reveal his secret to the ones closest to him; the media and authorities think he's a problem; there's the power hungry villain; so on and so on. Despite this, the show doesn't feel uninspired or repetitive because it focuses on humanizing and building its characters. Foggy isn't just there for laughs. Murdock's moral dilemmas aren't handled in a way that make me go, "Yeah, Arrow already covered this, man." Karen Page isn't just a potential love interest. Ben Urich isn't just in the story to give us exposition. This may be Daredevil's story, but the show did a mighty fine job making me feel emotionally connected to each of these characters and that's what truly matters. Sure, this is a show about a superhero and it ends in a very standard way, but what helps it standout is just how character-driven each and every episode is. Best of all? The relationship elements aren't cringeworthy! They could have had a seriously annoying and predictable love triangle or dragged out some of the relationships, yet they were able to dance around this and handled these stories in a reasonable way. You kind of go into these shows expecting some frustrating romance drama and thankfully, Daredevil didn't give us that. These storylines are still present, but they aren't front and center and they sure aren't cheesy, either. This show got me invested in these characters and the fact it's so well-acted certainly doesn't hurt.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is full of interesting heroes, but overall, the villains haven't exactly been one of the universe's biggest strengths. Luckily for us, that isn't the case in Daredevil. They could have gone with cliche crime lords and one-dimensional baddies, but instead of being lazy with its antagonists and focusing mostly on the good guys, the show gave its foes a great amount of insight. Some may not enjoy the show's take on Wilson Fisk, a.k.a. Kingpin, but I view it as the big guy's origin story. Instead of him just acting like a tough guy and enjoying a cigar, we're given a far more complex and fleshed out foe. The actor, Vincent D'Onofrio, does an awesome job handling the surprisingly awkward character's mannerisms. This isn't the Kingpin you'd expect, but he's still able to command respect and absolutely reminds us he's a brutal, brutal man. The other villains don't receive as much insight -- which is to be expected -- but they still get more than enough of the spotlight at one point or another. After watching the first episode, I was concerned the handling of the villains would be really generic. Well, this is me happily eating my words.

Photo by Barry Wetcher
The show obviously has a few reminders that this takes place within the Marvel Cinematic Universe (the big battle in The Avengers is discussed a handful of times and there's a joke about the iconic heroes' abilities), but the show also did a pretty satisfying job building up the hype for future Netflix shows. I didn't spot any Luke Cage or Jessica Jones easter eggs, but there's a few really neat ones for Iron Fist's world. There's a whole lot of love given to Daredevil's mythos, too. From a potential nod to Elektra to even something little like Gladiator's symbol, there's a whole lot of fan service in here. I mean, they even have a freaking Stilt-Man easter egg. How awesome is that?

I can be a pretty big snob when it comes to action. For example, I was told by many that Captain America: The Winter Soldier had brilliant and stunning action sequences. I saw it the day after I watched The Raid 2 and I couldn't help but feel like the action was just pretty good. Certainly the best choreography we've seen from a Marvel Studios movie, but it wasn't as intense as it was built up to be. So, you can bet I was feeling a little skeptical about how Daredevil's agility and hand-to-hand encounters would be handled. Thankfully, a majority of it is solid and there's more than a few moments that were legitimate jaw-droppers. There's an extended and astonishing shot that'll remind you of Oldboy and they frequently manage to use slow motion at just the right moments. Okay, sometimes you can tell when there's a stunt double or you may question why someone is such a terrible shot, but overall, the action sequences are massively entertaining and oh-so-visceral. Daredevil isn't as agile as you may expect him to be, but they remind us every now and again that the dude is a brawler and nimble. He endures some crazy stuff and there's dozens upon dozens of harsh punches. And when the show does unleash some stronger displays of violence, they're definitely memorable.
From left to right: Dr. Evil, the latest voice of Wonder Woman, Cyclops, Gwen Stacy, Fulton Reed. 
Daredevil offered basically everything I wanted from it. It had an excellent focus on character, cool and sometimes even creative action sequences, and it did a great job balancing comedy and a grittier tone. The cast certainly delivered with their performances and the story even manages to avoid all of the cliche relationship drama that seems to be a mandatory ingredient in some shows! Now, it's obviously not flawless. You'd want to give up attempting to count the amount of times anyone says "city," some story elements drag a bit, and I was left wanting more from the ending. But if you put my complaints on one scale and my praise on another one, it's pretty clear I think this is a damn good show. Daredevil's emotional, gripping, and brings just the right amount of fun. We're talking about a comic book show that embraces the source material, offers thrilling action, and has a smart script and solid performances. What more could you want? My expectations are raised for the next four Netflix shows.

Oh, and now that we know they're cool with making the action more brutal and occasionally even over-the-top, Gareth Evans needs to direct the Iron Fist show. Make that happen, Netflix and Marvel!

Many Improvements at the Levittown, NY Old Country Buffet

I have said many times on this site that the manager and employees can make or break a buffet restaurant and that has been so true at the Levittown, New York Old Country Buffet since it opened many years ago. I have written many times about this buffet - mainly in the negative - but there have been some significant changes over this past winter and they coincide with a change in the general manager.

Battle of the Stephen Amells: Arrow vs. Casey Jones

THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE AMELL! Sorry, couldn't resist.
When someone says "Stephen Amell," odds are you immediately think of Arrow. That may change next year since the actor has been cast as Casey Jones -- the rough vigilante who wears a hockey mask -- in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sequel. We'll just have to wait and see if he becomes an awesome version of the fan favorite character, but for now, I can't help but wonder what would happen if these two heroes got into a brawl. We know Amell will get plenty of "who would win in a fight?" questions about these two at press junkets, and odds are he'll try his best to makes sure he doesn't upset either fanbase. Or maybe he'll totally surprise us and say one blatantly wins. Guess we'll find out eventually. However, I have no problem declaring a winner and I do believe one of these vigilantes does hold a clear edge. Before I say who should be the one left standing when the fight is over, let's go over their advantages and disadvantages. I mean, it's the fair thing to do, right?

Amell's Green Arrow is a gifted hand-to-hand fighter and one hell of a good shot with projectile weapons. He's held his own against various skilled enemies in melee combat over the course of 3 seasons. From China White to Deathstroke to Maseo, we know he's one of the strongest melee combatants in his world. He's had trouble with plenty of enemies and it was clear people like Bronze Tiger and Ra's al Ghul are his superior in technique, but he was still able to give Bronze Tiger trouble and Ra's had a whole lot of praise for Arrow's abilities as a fighter (despite the fact the hero was totally sloppy during their fight, but whatever). Simply put, the dude's got solid technique and that has allowed him to adapt to a variety of opponents and thanks to the harsh stuff he endured on the island and then in Starling City, we know he can take quite a lot of punishment, too. Obviously, he's had plenty of showings to justify he's a good shot with everything from an ordinary arrow to a throwing dagger. That's established right from the very first episode (those poor tennis balls) and even though Ray Palmer wasn't moving, a recent episode of Arrow showed Oliver can quickly use a throwing weapon with great precision. This should be proof he's capable of disarming Casey at a distance. Well, assuming he even tries to.

"Goongala? You have failed at catchphrases."
Arrow's pretty awesometastic in combat, but despite having a bunch of trick arrows available to him, he doesn't tend to use them very frequently. He's also quick to rush into melee combat despite being an impressive marksman. He could beat most characters by hanging back and putting those trick arrows to use, but he doesn't do that all that often. Sure, we can say he regularly avoids that strategy because it would make many of the show's conflicts way too easy for him, but we have to treat that as how he acts in character. So, even though he could quickly end this with some trick arrows right when the fight starts, that doesn't seem very probable and the odds of him choosing to duke it out after firing just a few arrows are very likely. He'll also do everything he can to avoid killing, and while that technically isn't a disadvantage (it certainly doesn't make Batman any less dangerous, does it?), it does mean he's holding back and this is something that can be taken advantage of. Arrow's hesitation could give Casey the small opening he'd need for a cheap shot.

We've seen plenty of versions of Casey Jones and right now we have no idea what Amell's version will be like, but the one thing they all have in common is they're aggressive brawlers who have no problem dishing out a cheap hit. In fact, Jones tends to love landing cheap hits. Whether it's while his enemy is talking or if they think he may be down for the count, the Ninja Turtles character uses any opportunity he can to strike his enemy when their guard is down. It's not the most honorable approach around, but when your fighting style is sometimes "it's okay if you get hit, just hit back harder," then I guess you got to do what you got to do. He doesn't have the same extensive training and technique Arrow has, but he makes up for that by simply being an incredibly tough dude. His first brawl with Raphael (in the Mirage comic) was a brutal encounter that wiped both of them out and since then we've seen him land plenty of cheap shots when his enemies think he's too weak to continue and have their guard down. Seeing as Arrow loves to get in close and he wouldn't want to dish out any lethal damage, I'd say there's a good chance Casey Jones is going to get some extremely cheap hits in. They may not keep Oliver down for the count, but even stunning the archer would leave him vulnerable to some follow-up attacks.

 "You want a fist in the mouth? I've never even looked at your abs." 
Casey's one tough fellow who knows how to take a hit and send one back even harder, but he isn't the most tactical or skilled fighter around. It's clear Oliver has the edge in martial arts knowledge and that means he's going to land more hits. We know Casey can take a beating, but he's only human and those hits will begin to add up. He'll use this to his advantage and get a sucker punch or two in as Arrow thinks his opponent is going to stay down, but the longer the fight goes on, the more and more it shifts in Oliver's favor. While Casey's limited to close combat (he could throw his blunt weapons, but he'd be throwing them at a dude who deals with marksmen, so it's not a game changer), Arrow can eventually think something along the lines of, "Okay, I'm done with this," and use a trick arrow to take Casey out of the fight. Whether it's an electric arrow to the chest, a rope tying Casey to a wall, or even just using an explosive close enough to knock Casey down, Arrow is bringing so much more versatility to the fight. There's no reason to believe he wouldn't be okay with tagging Casey in non-lethal areas with some regular arrows as well. When it's up close, it'll be entertaining as Oliver dishes out better skill and Casey unleashes a more rough and direct style, but at a distance, well, Casey better hope he has plenty of cover.

In the end, I just don't see Casey Jones' toughness overcoming Arrow's superior skill and variety of gear. Knowing Arrow, this will come down to close combat at some point (the guy was foolish enough to go hand-to-hand against Bronze Tiger in their second brawl), but I think he'd eventually realize the best way to take a key edge over Jones is with one of his spiffy arrows. Even if that doesn't happen, he can just win because of his better hand-to-hand knowledge. It would be a pretty cool battle to witness and Arrow would probably walk away with some bruises, but in the end, I see the DC hero holding all of the important advantages. He's more skilled, has more options, and he definitely doesn't have a glass jaw. That said, I'd be rooting for Casey Jones the entire time. Sorry, Arrow.

Just a couple of days to start the Easter break

Tuesday
Up at 7:00am to get ready for a trip to Lake Eyasi. My neck was feeling crappy having been bounced around while testing out the land rover we'd hired the previous day, I'd had a few issues getting a vehicle and then fuel the previous day and was not in the best of moods.

My not so subtle 'I don't really want to go' dialogue:
7:20 'My neck really hurts, those bumpy roads have done me in, not sure I'll cope again today'
7:50 'We can't afford this trip' and then I made a list of the things that we need to spend money on.
7:55 'The rain is really starting to pour, the wipers aren't good on the car'
8:00 'Shall we just go with the P-Rs (our neighbours who were going to the same place) it will mean only one day but we'll save on fuel and accommodation' I pop round the corner to confirm we'll travel down in their car.
8:10 'Actually Emily it really is a miserable morning, don't you fancy a day in your pyjamas?'
8:15 'Emily. I don't feel like going.'

To all of it Emily responded with sensible suggestions and understood, like a parent trying to coax a fat child to go into school on sports day.

It was a strange and welcome relief to not have to go but most uncharacteristic, I love me an adventure. Though I'm sure we were missing a great couple of days, for whatever underlying reasons I was pleased to have been honest. Instead we had a lovely relaxed morning cuddled up on the sofa watching Monsters University as the rain beat down outside. Emily cooked soup and baked bread for lunch and once the weather brightened up we sat on our porch and read. My book was about identifying psychopaths and I identified myself several times and Emily once before concluding that we were probably both fine. As the sun set Emily gave the house a spray of mosquito killer but when we came in the sofa had become a small graveyard for ants that had dropped from the ceiling. I felt guilty for the collateral damage and after we'd brushed the bodies aside more continued to drip on us from the ceiling; it was raining ants but these ones were still moving. I consoled myself that because ants have it built in to follow the one in front these ants weren't writhing around in their final breath they were simply following their friend thinking the jump was a game.

Thoughts on Stephen Amell being cast as Casey Jones in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2

Well, it looks like Stephen Amell, a.k.a. the brooding vigilante in Arrow, has been cast as Casey Jones in the upcoming Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles sequel. When I saw Variety's headline, the first thing that crossed my mind actually had nothing to do with whether Amell will be a good incarnation of the dude who loves to scream "goongala!" Instead, my first thought was, "good for him." I may have a ton of criticisms about Arrow and to be totally honest there are plenty of moments when his acting isn't the strongest around, but based on the way I've seen Amell interact with fans, I can't help but root for the actor. So, while I'm sure many knee-jerk reactions were either excited, disappointed, or all kinds of neutral, I simply thought, "way to go, man." Now, do I think Amell's the right person for the part? Let's talk about it.

It's obviously worth noting articles like these are 99.9% speculation. We can think someone is horrible for a part and then they'll make us eat our words. Or we can think someone's a perfect fit and they can disappoint. Basically, unless the person has an atrocious resume or if you just don't like them, I think it's important to apply a "wait and see" mentality. But hey, if you don't want to, that's cool as well. You do you, right? Now, this non-casting director is going to react to the casting news.
"The class is Pain 101. Your instructor is Oliver Queen."
When I think of Casey Jones, I think of someone who has an in your face personality and a blunt sense of humor. So yeah, Stephen Amell's work on Arrow doesn't make me immediately think of him having either of those qualities. But just because he hasn't done them doesn't mean he can't do them. Arrow's an overly dramatic show, attempting to constantly establish a dark and serious atmosphere. Obviously, that hasn't given Amell the freedom to goof around very much. I mean, how many times have you even seen the guy smile or crack a joke in the show? It's not very often. 

I'm not saying you need an Oscar winning performance for this movie, but if you're bringing a fan favorite to life, you have to bring the personality. Arrow doesn't give me the most faith around in his ability to pull that off, but it's worth noting he's made significant improvements since the first episode and this role will give him the chance to play a way more entertaining and easy going character. Seeing as he landed the gig, it's safe to say he's capable of embracing the personality -- how well though has yet to be seen. Now it's just a matter of seeing whether he makes the character likable and funny or abrasive and annoying. I'm really curious to see whether he'll have a bit of a New York accent, too. It's not required, but if he can pull it off, I'd love to see that happen.

"Okay, let's give this a try, funkoid!"
The good news is Amell's certainly got the look and physical skill to play as Casey Jones. The man sure can appear imposing, and if someone is going to be crazy enough to fight with these big Ninja Turtles -- well, probably just Raphael -- then yeah, I can picture Amell dressed in some sports attire and doing what he can to land some cheap shots on a sai-wielding Ninja Turtle. Seeing him with long hair or using a New York accent may be odd at first to us Arrow fans, but assuming he gives it his all and does a fine job, I can picture him being an amusing part of the movie.

If you asked me to think of 20 actors who could be Casey Jones in the movie, Amell honestly wouldn't have made the list. But I have to admit, the dude certainly has what it takes to look the part and hold his own in some brawls. That said, one small criticism I have is the guy just doesn't sell pain very well. If Raph is going to slug him across the face or if he's going to battle some Foot Clan ninjas, I really need him to sell that moment when he's the one getting struck. You just know Casey is going to take some hits, so when he does, I don't want it to remind me that he's playing make-believe with some guys in costumes or motion capture outfits. I know it sounds silly (we're talking about mutated turtles who fight crime, after all) and it kind of is, but an unbelievable reaction from an actor can really take you out of the moment and that causes the whole illusion comes crashing down. This happened to me when Flash was landing a gazillion punches on him in the awesome crossover episode and once again when he struggled against Ra's al Ghul. I think Amell is capable of pull off Jones' personality and he probably won't have his emotional range pushed with this role, but it's pretty much guaranteed he's going to be in plenty of action. When he is, I hope he makes getting hit look every bit as good as the ones he's dishing out.

"Hey, what are you, some sort of punker?"
The TL;DR version: Amell has the physique to make the character seem like a boss in fights, but everything else is pretty much "wait and see" since his character in Arrow is nothing like Casey Jones and, when it comes to his abilities as an actor, that's pretty much all I've seen from him. They're both tough, but their personalities are drastically different and that means I haven't seen Amell deliver a more amusing and animated performance. I'm rooting for Amell and I think he obviously has potential to make the role memorable, but I just can't say that with total confidence right now. However, let's be totally honest with ourselves here: even if his performance is pretty bad, I really doubt it'll be the worst part about the movie. Oh, and if an Oliver Queen and Felicity Smoak relationship is called "Olicity," I guess that makes one between Casey Jones and April O'Neil "Casil," doesn't it? Although, "Caseil" sounds cooler. Sorry, I couldn't resist going there.

Writing Samples

Hey random readers and potential employers,

For the past several years, I've written countless editorials, reviews, interviews, and more for several sites. While I will continue to update this blog with new reviews and editorials, I figured why not share some of my previous articles in one place? Hopefully you'll enjoy reading them!

Superman: Why he isn't a boring powerhouse
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/superman-why-he-isnt-a-boring-powerhouse/1100-149932/
Movie review: Avengers: Age of Ultron
http://www.comicvine.com/reviews/avengers-age-of-ultron/1900-4072/
TMNT: Why the franchise has lasting power
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles-why-the-franchise-has/1100-149444/
Video Game review: Batman: Arkham Knight
http://greggkatzman.blogspot.com/2015/06/batman-arkham-knight-review.html
13 Marvel Vs. DC Superhero Fights We’d Love To See
http://screenrant.com/best-dc-vs-marvel-superhero-fights/
Get your friends to read comics
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/get-your-friends-to-read-comics/1100-151186/
Elektra: A great series that deserved better sales
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/elektra-a-great-series-that-deserved-better-sales/1100-151819/
News: Deadpool: Colossus Motion Capture Provided By Andre Tricoteux
http://screenrant.com/deadpool-colossus-andre-tricoteux-motion-capture/
Preview/Reactions: We saw two new scenes from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/07/15/we-saw-two-new-scenes-from-teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles
Why Kraven the Hunter deserves a comic
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/why-kraven-the-hunter-deserves-a-comic/1100-151093/
The Punisher: Why John Wick's directors are a perfect fit
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/the-punisher-why-john-wicks-directors-are-a-perfec/1100-150276/
Product review: Monopoly - TMNT edition
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/spotlight-on-monopoly-teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles/1100-150622/
Know a Batman foe: Deadshot
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/know-a-batman-foe-deadshot/1100-151840/
Comic review: Batman and Robin #40
http://www.comicvine.com/reviews/batman-and-robin-40/1900-4004/
Movie review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
http://www.comicvine.com/reviews/teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles/1900-3318/
Batman vs. Superman: Analyzing the most popular superhero fight 
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/batman-vs-superman-analyzing-the-most-popular-supe/1100-150424/
Movie review: Mad Max: Fury Road
http://www.comicvine.com/reviews/mad-max-fury-road/1900-4118/
Interview: TMNT's creative team discusses the team's big loss
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/interview-tmnt-s-creative-team-discusses-the-chang/1100-151777/
Arrow: Less Batman stuff, please 
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/arrow-less-batman-stuff-please/1100-151604/
Mortal Kombat X: Why Predator is a perfect fit
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/mortal-kombat-x-why-the-predator-is-a-perfect-fit/1100-151779/
Why it's okay to love discussing comic book fights 
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/why-its-okay-to-love-discussing-comic-book-fights/1100-149989/
Six Underrated Batman Family Villains
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/six-underrated-batman-family-villains/1100-151624/
What we want in Marvel Studios Phase 4: World War Hulk
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/what-we-want-in-marvel-studios-phase-4-world-war-h/1100-150248/
Analyzing the Alien franchise
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/analyzing-the-aliens-films/1100-151577/
Why you should read The Valiant
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/why-you-should-read-the-valiant/1100-151157/
Batman doesn't always win and that's okay
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/batman-doesn-t-always-win-and-that-s-okay/1100-151027/
Does it Hold Up? Mortal Kombat (1995)
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/does-it-hold-up-mortal-kombat-1995/1100-150893/
DC Animated Movies: Let's talk about them
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/dc-animated-movies-let-s-talk-about-them/1100-151119/
Spider-Man Reboot: Must-haves
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/spider-man-reboot-must-haves/1100-151275/
Analyzing David Ayer's Suicide Squad
http://www.comicvine.com/articles/analyzing-david-ayer-s-suicide-squad-movie/1100-151717/
TMNT: Why the new Bebop and Rocksteady are awesome
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Rimlay Restaurant at Rawai Beach

Rawai beach is very different to the main west coast beaches in Phuket such as Patong, Karon, Kata and all the rest. Rawai is located right in the south of Phuket close to Phromthep Cape and the beach faces southeast. Like most beach and coastal areas on the east side of Phuket, Rawai is not a swimming beach, but it is fairly busy, as the beach road is lined with many small restaurants and a few hotels. Plus Rawai is home to many longtail and speed boats which can take people out to nearby islands such as Coral Island or Koh Kaew Yai. The east end of the beach past the pier has a fish market and a small sea gypsy community. I don't come to Rawai as often as I should. I like it and will try more of the restaurants here in the future.

Rimlay Restaurant sign

Rimlay (actually the full name is Baan Rimlay) is close to the pier. If driving in from Chalong, turn right and you can park in front of the restaurant - it's just after the turn. It's next door to the well known Nikita's bar/restaurant. Back in January I stopped here my my aunt and uncle for lunch during a tour of the south of Phuket. It was a good choice! We got a table by the sea and on a hot day it was an ideal place to enjoy a cold beer in the shade.

Rimlay Restaurant

And I was glad to see the prices are reasonable. 60 Baht for a Chang beer when you are sitting by the sea in Phuket is a good deal :) Baan Rimlay has been there for many years. I'm pretty sure it was there back in 1999 when I arrived in Phuket, I know it's neighbour Nikita's was there back then and if I recall, Nikita's did not do food, but you could order and they'd bring it from Rimlay. Is that right? Heck, it was a long time ago! Nikita's does do food now and I should stop by sometime soon. On this occasion, my uncle, aunt and I ordered some small dishes (and another beer). The whole place is in the shade with some big trees growing above the restaurant. A light sea breeze is all you need, so it's not too hot even on a hot Phuket day.

Yam Sam Grob

(above) I ordered Yam Sam Grob, which is a seafood salad. Very good with a beer, very good on a hot day when you don't want a huge plate of food. Phuket (and neighbouring Phang Nga province) specialises in this kind of dish - you can also get a salad with crispy dried shrimp or with lemongrass or with fish eggs, it's very local food and hard to find outside this region.

Garlic Prawns

(above) And some garlic shrimp, another good snack to enjoy with a cold beer. I need to go again and order something else from the menu to complete this blog entry! It's a comfortable place for a seafood lunch or a drink and a nibble, with seating by the sea and good prices - you struggle to find this at the more developed beaches. I was back again last weekend taking some photos and stopped in just for a cold afternoon beer. It's not a huge place, maybe 10 tables, service quick and friendly. Might be a nice place for dinner too.

Rimlay Restaurant

(above) Baan Rimlay Restaurant

There are a whole bunch of small restaurants here in Rawai. If you visit the fish market on the other side of the pier (see photo below) there are restaurants there which will cook what you buy - totally fresh seafood! There are also a couple of fancier looking places further along the beach. I hope Rawai can stay nice and simple - the fact that you can't swim and sunbathe here tends to keep the hordes away. To be honest, it's not changed that much in 15 years, a bit more developed, but still quiet.

Rawai Beach Fish Market

Related Links / Nearby Attractions

More about Rawai Beach
Rawai Beach Hotels
Ya Nui Beach
Phromthep Cape
Koh Kaew Yai Island
Sunset Tour to Coral Island

Baan Rimlay Restaurant - Location Map

What the Heck is Going on With Old Country Buffet?!?

There have been some big changes at Old Country Buffet over the past six months - perhaps longer in other areas of the country - and not for the better. I am not talking about any particular Old Country Buffet location but with the chain as a whole. I am talking about the change in menu and how some foods are not being served.

Where to see Monkeys in Phuket

I get the impression that a lot of visitors to Phuket want to see a monkey .. and preferably not in the zoo (the zoo will not appear on this list). Now, I am a bit blasé when it comes to monkeys. I have seen plenty. I have traveled in Africa, been face to face with a baboon outside my tent, seen hundreds of vervet monkeys in the Masai Mara, and I have seen gorillas in the Ruwenzori mountains (gorillas are not monkeys of course - they are apes). Nevertheless, I am still happy to see wild monkeys. There are not many wild animals left in Phuket - the island was jungle covered 200 years ago, and Phuket used to have wild elephants, tigers, rhino and a lot more. Industry in the form of tin mining and especially rubber led to clearance of much of the jungle during the 19th and early 20th century, long before any tourists came here. There are some untouched jungly areas, but much of the land is cultivated, and there are no tigers here anymore! Monkeys however are adaptable, and can live in just about any kind of environment. There are quite a number of places where you can see monkeys in the Phuket area....

Monkey Hill

I guess the best place to start is Monkey Hill (real name is Khao To Sae) on the north side of Phuket Town - it's the hill with all the aerials / radio masts etc. on top, and easy to spot from much of the south of the island, being around 270m above sea level. There are a lot of monkeys here, mostly they are found near the top of the hill. Local people come up to feed them, but it's not a "tourist attraction". You can drive up in a car. People also exercise here, but I am not sure I'd want to walk up to the top where the monkeys are. Not sure if they can get aggressive, but I'd rather be in a car! (update) I saw a news story last year - a tourist was bitten by a monkey here.

Monkey Hill - More Information

Monkeys at Monkey Hill, Phuket


Rang Hill

Also on the north side of Phuket Town, Rang Hill (I am sure) never used to have monkeys some years ago, I do not recall seeing any until the last few years. Rang Hill is quite popular as a viewpoint, a place to eat or get some fresh air and exercise. Our last few visits, there have been monkeys a-plenty taking handouts or sifting through garbage. They just tend to hang around the carpark area and not the restaurants.

Rang Hill - More Information
New Viewpoint at Rang Hill
Tunk Ka Cafe on Rang Hill

Feeding the Monkeys


Sirey Island (east of Phuket Town)

As you drive to Koh Sirey, passing the fishing port and shipyards, you enter an area of mangroves and here be monkeys. They live in the mangroves and the local authorities even built a little monkey viewing area by the side of the road. We like the Sirey island area, nice and quiet and there's a very nice temple on the hill here too.

Sirey Island - More Information
Sirey Temple

Monkey on Road!


Wat Suwan Kuha Temple

Also called "Buddha Cave Temple" and "that cave with a Buddha in it", Wat Suwan Kuha is a temple built into a cave close to Phang Nga Town, off Phuket Island, and about a 90 minute drive from Phuket Town. Certainly worth a visit, and outside the cave there are lots of monkeys. We have been a few times and I have not seen any monkeys inside the cave. I guess they know the rules.

Wat Suwan Kuha - More Information

Monkey at Wat Suwan Kuha


Bang Rong (northeast coast of Phuket)

I remember driving down the small road to Bang Rong pier to eat at the floating restaurant in the mangroves. We'd been before but never seen monkeys. This time - monkeys! We got quite excited - unexpected monkeys are the best. They hang around in the mangroves but also jump around on the roofs of buildings and chew car aerials. We know where *not* to park now. Bang Rong is where you can get a ferry over to Koh Yao Noi and Koh Yao Yai Islands too. (Update) On our most recent visit monkeys were rather over friendly and even stole fruit from our table and tried to grab a bag of take away food from my wife's hand. Take care!

Bang Rong - More Information

Monkey eating car aerial


Gibbon Rehabilitation Project

Close to Bang Pae Waterfall and not far from the aforementioned Bang Rong, the Gibbon Rehab Project looks after gibbons that have been illegally caught, or kept as pets. Some are released back into the wild. It's illegal to own a gibbon, and if you see gibbons being hawked round the streets for photos, please contact the GRP. Gibbons are apes, not monkeys, I know that .. but want to include the project here, it's worth a visit combined with the waterfall, a jungle hike ....

Phuket Gibbon Rehab Center - More Information

Gibbon at Phuket Gibbon Rehabilitation Center


Related Phuket Blog Posts

Khao Sok National Park
Hiking to the Highest Point in Phuket
Kayaking in the Mangroves
Suggested Phuket Hotels

Osteoarthritis pain should check where and what to eat ?

( TamGa news.c10mt.com ) If your family members are people with osteoarthritis pain, then now you'll have to do? To seek information as to how to be able to answer the questions that you make for yourself during this time. Available bye, TamGa is also looking for information and to prevent the risk of osteoarthritis pain for themselves and others.

Osteoarthritis pain should check where and what to eat ?


When life development, in addition to the reasons that we age, the body is aging or go part because of pressure because of the current work, as well as the diet is not reasonable, and habits sedentary flexible in your own life, it is also one of the ingredients promote your patients develop osteoarthritis.

RULES OF THE BUFFET

It has been a while since we have listed our "Rules of the Buffet". These are the rules that everyone who dines at a buffet - from old to young - need to know and follow. From what we have seen lately at a few buffets, these are sorely needed to be seen again.