Friday, 31 August 2007

Night Out in Phuket Town

Pon and I went for a night out in Phuket Town last night. We do these nights out together occassionally. I really think it is good for the relationship to go and get pissed together sometimes. Get away from the kids and other friends and just spend a night together. Pon is always good company for these trips.

We started at Timber Hut. It is the most popular bar in Phuket Town with a live band and always lots of customers. It is actually the bar where we first met. We moved on to Jammin which used to be the next most popular bar in town but the last couple of times we have been it was very quiet. Last night we discovered it had closed. We went on to a Thai Country music bar on Sakdidet Road and then the bar in the Thavorn Hotel. At 1:00 am most bars close but we found a nice place on the way home that stays open until two and finished the night there.

A night out in Phuket Town makes a nice change to Patong. You often find yourself the only westerner in some of these bars so you always get a bit of attention but it is always friendly and well intentioned.

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Renew Driving License

I am just about calming down after Spurs' weekend game against Man U. As is normal in this game we were stitched by the referee. Having played well and restricted Man U to a handful of chances we had two clear penalty shouts turned down. How the referee missed the first one when Vidic literally threw himself into Berbatov is beyond me. The second one was a clear handball but possibly difficult for the ref to see - although I don't think so as I saw it first time on TV and everyone else around it saw it.

As if that was not bad enough Man U go up the other end and score just a few minutes later. And although it was a good strike it still only went in because of a lucky deflection. So once again a game against Man U leaves me seething at the sheer injustice of it all. It is crazy that a game of football can do this to grown adults but I was in a bad temper for a couple of days.

So today I renewed my Thai driving license. I got my first license last year to finally make myself legal on the roads here but the first one is only for 1 year. So yesteday and today I faced up to the hassle of dealing with thai bureaucracy again. Armed with a conformation of address letter from immigration, a health certificate from the doctor, photocopies of all relevant pages of my passport, photos of myself and my old license - I went down the local transport office in Phuket. once I finally had all the documents sorted out it remarkable only took 15 minutes to get the new license. And the new one is valid for 5 years.

Saturday, 25 August 2007

We have found a taker for the rabbit so I don't have to worry about whether to keep it. It would have been a nice pet for the kids but the amount or crap they produce is a real pain.

I went out for a night with Huwy and Udo in Patong. The usual routine around the usual bars but a nice night out. At the end of the night I was so hammered that I couldn't find Huwy. Udo had already gone home. I went to the toilet in Soi Tiger and I think I just went back to the wrong bar. In a state of wretched confused drunkenness I gave up and found a tuk tuk home. I have a vague memory that the first tuk tuk took me the wrong way - probably because I was too drunk for them to understand me. So they dropped me off and I got a second tuk-tuk home. I really don't handle the booze like I used to.

Wednesday, 22 August 2007


We have found a rabbit. I don't know where it came from but it has been living with us for a few days. We are asking around to see if we can find the owner but so far no success. It was found hiding behind a bush near our house. It was wet, dirty and trembling. I guess it is a scary neighbourhood for a rabbit with all the cats and dogs around. We took it in, cleaned it up and put it in our garden. I didn't think it would stay for long but it seems to have settled down nicely.

It is white with dark ears. Ben and Jenny love it. "Rabbit, rabbit' Jenny says, "carrot for the rabbit.' The rabbit seems fine with them. It is happy to take carrots from them and be stroked. It does not much like being picked up and kicks its legs so I have to hold it by the scruff of the neck to avoid being scratched.

At night we put it upstairs in our currently spare room with the leaking roof. I don't think we can leave him out overnight because of all the neighbouhood cats. As it is I think it is only a matter of time before a dog or cat comes into the garden and grabs the rabbit.

If we cannot find the owner soon we will have to make a decision whether to keep it or not. I am not sure I want to keep it because it will be a hassle keeping it safe and there will be rabbit pooh everywhere. On the other hand the kids love it an it does save cutting the grass. It is amazing how much difference a rabbit can make to the lawn in just a few days. If we decide to keep it we will have to buy a cage.

Monday, 20 August 2007

Damned Achilles

Our ex-pat football team have a tournament going on at the moment. Unfortunately I cannot play. My achilles tendon injury has flared up again. It is a long standing problem for me and so frustrating. I have to be so careful when I play. I always do a half hour warm up before I go. I have to take a few days break between playing to let my msucles loosen up again. I also put heel lifts in my boots to take the strain off the calf muscles. But still sometimes it tears. I have a little tear at the moment but I know if I play it could go completely. I pushed it a few seasons ago and it ruptured. I had to literally crawl off the pitch. I could not even walk for a month.

It is so frutrating because apart from that I am very fit for my age. I would be a very good player in the over 35 tournaments if only my achilles was okay. Ity is my own fault for not taking better care when I was young. Not enough time warming up or stretching and playing through injuries has caught up with me.

So I watched the guys from the sidelines. Normally I hate watching because I am dying to play. This time I must admit I did not envy them at all. They were totally outclassed by the Thai team. To make it worse it was pouring with rain. It looked like a thoroughly miserable experience. They lost 5-0. We know we don't have any chance of winning these tournaments but we do hope to atleast make it through a few rounds. The next game is tomorrow and I still won't be fit. Maybe in another couple of weeks.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Learning to Read

Well the new football season continues and Spurs continue to torture me. I stayed up until 4am last night to watch Spurs put in a dire performance against Everton. We lost 3-1 and could not complain. We look totally shorn of creativity. The defence is missing a few players and was shambolic. And we are trying to squeeze all our superstar strikers into the same team. When will managers learn to play players in position and in a formation that works? I am in a bad mood this morning.

I have decided it is about time Ben started learning to read. I figure since he has the extra demand of learning two languages and two alphabets then it is time to push on. I have always read story books to Ben and Jenny and they both love them. But now Ben is 4 I have started getting him to recognise words and learn letters of the alphabet. He seems kind of neutral on the whiole concept but in our few sessions so far he can now read a few words and letters. I figure if I can do 10 minutes once or twice a day then in a few months he should start to pick things up.

Not that I have any knowledge of how to teach reading so it will be interesting to see how it goes.

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Football is Back

Well the football season is finally back and what a dissapointment. After all the hype and transfer activity Spurs kicked off and went right back to type. An opening away fixture to Sunderland was always going to be tricky. We always start the season with a tricky away fixture which I can't help but feel is because the fixture list is now fixed to make sure Arsenal, Man U and Chelsea always start with a comfortable home fixture.

So after 92 dreadful scoreless minutes of huff and puff Spurs contrived to go totally asleep for the last 3 minutes and just gave Sunderland a goal with the last kick of the game. Spurs are so tough to support sometimes. They do this again and again until it becomes painful to watch. And it just never happens the other way round. I can't remember the last time Spurs grabbed a winner with the last kick of the game.

To add to my despondancy, the TV coverage has gone downhill. It has been bought by the Thai satelite TV service and put on Thai channels with no English build up or half time/full time analysis.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

Happy Birthday Ben & Jenny

Yesterday was Ben & Jenny's birthday. Yes they were born on the same day but two years apart. Very hand for a combined birthday party.

We had a big birthday party and they loved it. We got Ben a remote controlled car and a little games computer. We got Jenny a new racing car she can sit on and push. So far Jenny shows no signs of liking dolls or any other girly stuff. She likes the same things as Ben such as cars and balls. The only girls thing she really likes is her cuddly dog which she still loves and can hardly be parted from.

There were lots of other kids around and they all had a great time. Huwy and another friend called Udo came round for a fair few beers. It was all a good night.

One thing I have noticed over the last couple of months is I have been tired a lot. The result is I have often been grouchy and yesterday I noticed it was getting Pon down. I know I have been doing it and keep telling myself to buck up but somehow I kept being grouchy. Thinking about it I think it has coincided with Ben starting school and my having to get up early to take him. So my new reslution is to make sure I get a bit more sleep and pick my mood up a litt.e

Saturday, 4 August 2007

Work About the House

Boo (Pon's daughter) is the latest to come down with the lurgy. She has a headache and fever. I guess it is going around.

The odd jobs around the house have been building up and it is time to get them done. The final straw was when a guest went to the downstairs toilet and as she was sitting on it, it fell over. It made a hell of a noise. Quite amusing really although she looked a little shaken. So we have called in the local handyman. His name is Dum and he is Burmese but has lived in Thailand for a long time and speaks good Thai - I understand him better than I can understand most Thais.

We will get him in for a couple of days. Fix the toilet, replace the shower and bum gun and a few other jobs. We are slowly getting rid of all our wooden door and window frames. They seem to be an attractive home for termites so the simplest option is just to remove them.

In the meantime I will push on with fixing the interminable leaking roof. My solution of filling the gaps with silicone seems to work. So now it is a matter of filling every gap. I need to pull the entire ceiling down and get to work. Once it has done we will have to wait for some serious rainfall and see if it stays dry. If that is okay we will get a new ceiling built. Instead of having a solid ceiling we will get ceiling tiles so they are easy to move in case of future leaks.

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

More Ills

Blimey it just seems to be one ailment after the next at the moment. This time it was my turn again. I was hit with a stunning headache. I don't think I have ever had a headache like it, not even with my Dengue Fever a couple of months ago. I endured it for a day and a half but in the end it was just too much and I headed down the hospital. I was barely able to describe the symptoms to the doctor as the headache pierced into my skull. I don't think he really had much idea what it was but he suggested maybe a flu or some other virus and gave me a medicines to cover just about every possibility. It was another 24 hours before I began to feel human again. I just had to hunker down and sleep as mush as I could until then.

But only three days later and I feel perfect again. Today I played football in Patong while Pon took Ben and Jenny to play by the beach. In the evening Pon and I went to the Halal Food Celebration in Thalang. It is a nice little fair with quite an impressive show. A Thai style play depicting some of the history of Phuket's settlement. It is all a bit of a drama with lots of wailing and crying but the set is spectacular, great costumes, lots of colour and 500 performers.

It has been a long weekend for Ben because it is Buddhist Lent. He is back at school tomorrow.