Friday, November 14, 2014

2013 Epic Photo-book in the making… :-)

Dear Mat and Mar,

At the beginning of this year, I’d started making our traditional annual 2013 photo-book, unfortunately I gave up just an hour into the project, haa haa haa. Ok, so why did I stop... simply due to sheer fright... haa haa haa, sheer fright of the number of photos and the daunting task of going through them to choose what would go into the book, then there is a task of processing them individually.

Photobook 2013

But now (almost a year later) I am starting again, doing 2013 and 2014 in one book... technically 2014 is still happening, but by the time I finish this photo-book it should be well into 2015, haa haa haa. So how did I overcome my fear of the large number of photos? Well, my photos library is organised using ‘year’ as the first filter then in that would come the date and event’s name folders. So I am taking one or two night to process each month then add them to the photo-book.


It has been a few days since I had written the above paragraphs... and the original idea of putting 2013 and 2014 together is now such a bad idea, haa haa haa, I have just added the month of May to the book, we are not even in the second half 2013 and we are already on 40+ pages, haa haa haa.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Another change… :-)

Mum and Mar-06741Dear Matt and Mar,

Ok, so your mother has been back at work now for about four months (prior to that it has been six years of full time dedication looking after the both of you), and she is now about to change job… unfortunately her current position wasn’t the right match and now she has been offered another position elsewhere, and after a very long thought she had decided to accept the offer.

The current job is literally only down the road, the new one is again, literally even closer down the road, haa haa haa (well, for the time being.) For the next 6 months your mother will be working next door to our apartment, haa haa haa, after that her office should be only a few stop on the BTS down in Phrompong area.

The new position is a real challenge, which will suit her just fine… lol.

Fun time in Pattaya – Part 3.

Dear Matt and Mar,

25th October 2014 - Go with the flow :-)

We seemed to be waking up later and later each morning, haa haa haa... the morning routine of breakfast, swing and the coffee drive went without a hitch. We gave Matt a choice of going back to Amazone or to just swim in the resort pool. I wasn’t expecting him to choose the resort’s pool.

25th PageIt just meant more chance for me to try out the camera’s other functions, the slow motion vdo was fun, but limited, the multi shots mode was fun and the results were very interesting, but after extended use underwater I discovered that the lens was fogged up, at first I thought it was a leak but after only a few seconds the fog disappeared.

This was the first time we were all together in the pool, haa haa haa, that just meant more fun taking photos, lol.





For lunch we went back to Sanctuary, have never been disappointed with them, the animals also provided a good distraction for you two, seeing your faces when feeding the rabbits and goats were priceless :-)

For the evening entertainment, Matt wanted to go back to Ripley’s Infinite Maze, so we grab a quick supper at Pizza Hut (wow what a disappointment that was, not surprise that I have never been to Pizza Hut in over 8 years, haa haa haa). Infinity Maze is just a bunch of room all covered in mirror, and our job was to find the door to get out from each room. This time your mother knew better and refused to join us, haa haa haa.

What a great way to spend our last full day in Pattaya.

26th October 2014 - Time to go home.

Woke up to a game of UNO was perhaps more mentally challenging than it needed to be, haa haa haa. Instead of heading off for breakfast, your mother wanted to pick up the coffee first... :-)

Matt jumping[6]Swimming was next on the agenda, I am going to call you two Aquaboy and Aquagirl from now on... haa haa haa. By the time we went back to the room the sky decided to absolutely opened up and it poured so heavily part of the resort was flooded, so instead of checking out at noon we ended up leaving the resort closer to 14:00.

Leaving that late meant only one thing, Mar won’t be having her lunch... haa haa haa, and we were right, Mar slept right through lunch and Matt went out like a light immediately after lunch. So on the drive back everyone was in slumber-land... except me of course, haa haa haa.

When we arrived back at the apartment (after picking up supper) my parents came by just to get a hug from you two... haa haa haa haa haa, and brought more toys for you too.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Fun time in Pattaya – Part 2.

24th Pattaya-06907-EditDear Matt and Mar,

24th October 2014 - Could we have any more fun?

Breakfast, played on the swing and shower, our morning’s routine went without a hitch, Mar’s stomach has certainly settled down and we were glad there weren’t anymore projectile of vomits flying across the breakfast table.

Our destination this morning was ‘Cartoon Network Amazone’ which is the latest and greatest water park in Pattaya, with the entrance fee of 1,250 for a (Thai) adult I certainly didn’t expect there to be a queue... could I have been more wrong? Amazone opens at 10:00 and when we drove past at 10:15 the queue was so long we’d even contemplated on not going in, but the look on Matt’s face made me do the thing I hated the most, queuing.

Luckily Mar was fast asleep, Matt and your mother kept each other busy whilst I queued up... at least their staff were quite proactive, one of the staff would come by and ‘take your order’ so to speak, noting down type and number of tickets wanted, “Would you like a Cabana?”... haa haa haa, of course I said yes to everything. At the end we bought 2 adult (Thai) tickets (non-Thai pays a little more) 1 child ticket, hired a Cabana and hired a locker (for 4 hours)...

Although there was a long queue, but once you were in, due the huge size of the waterpark the place was still comfortable and didn’t seem crowded at all. The cabana came in quite handy as now we had a place to park all of our stuff, a private area to have lunch and not to mention a shelter from the rain, and it did rain :-)

Amazone can be divided into 3 big sections, one for smaller children, one of adult (120 cm or taller) and a wave pool. Unfortunately Matt is only 110 tall so he wasn’t allowed to go on the adult rides (I did breathe a huge sigh of relief, haa haa haa). There is also an area for flow board as well as a smaller pool for the children.

The choices for lunch were actually really good both in terms of taste and quality but it may not be ‘value for money’ but again one can understand their need for such a high price (don’t buy the orange slushy… they were good but at 150 THB, I bought three without checking the price first, haa haa haa).

Page in Cabana

The quality of the slides, the ambience, the design, the gimmicks and the small touches were quite brilliant, even in the so called kids section, unfortunately I think they were short of staff as not all the slides were open at the same time. Sadly (smirk) I didn’t have a chance to try out the grown up section (I was going to write ‘adult section’, but that just sounds dirty, haa haa haa). I think by the time we are here again this is where we’ll be spending most of our time. Mar on the other hand didn’t care for any of the slides, she just wanted to dive in the pool. (I’ll post some videos in a separate post).

I didn’t think Mat and Mar would ever wanted leave, but after almost four hours of running around it was quite surprising that you two were so agreeable to go back to the resort, actually your mother had other plan. We decided to drive out of the city and visit uncle Chat’s new business venture, a Thai restaurant in the industrial estate not too far from his factory.

Your mother and I agree that his business should do really well (it has only been 2 weeks) because of the location and a lack of real competitors… we all wish him luck (he won’t need it, lol) with Sanay-Har Thai Restaurant :-)

By the time we had dinner and got back to the resort, guess what, you two were once again fast asleep.

Fun time in Pattaya – Part 1.

22nd Pattaya pageDear Matt and Mar,

Your mother and I were quite busy during your half-term break, but we managed to find time this past week to take trip to Pattaya. I wanted to come here again because of the new water-park that had just opened, as well as to see your Uncle Chat’s new business venture.

Wednesday 22nd - The hectic beginning.

Both your mother and I got back home around six-ish because the bags were 0% packed, haa haa haa. The last time we did this, we didn’t leave the apartment until way gone nine, lol. So this time round I was in hyper mode, everything was packed and the wheel turned in our personal best time ever (around eight-ish).

More worryingly, during the week and especially today, Mar was poorly and found difficulty in holding down her food (which was totally unlike her), today she was sick a couple of time straight after lunch and supper, but her spirit was high and very excited. Matt was really looking forward to the new water-park, as for us, I just wanted to use the new camera (underwater) especially down one of those slide of death, and your mother was just glad for us all to be together and away from Bangkok, haa haa haa.

The rain was quite heavy but the traffic was light, which was unexpected as it was a national holiday on the 23rd. Well, we weren’t complaining, and for the first time I took the right route (much to your mother surprise too, lol). By the time we’d arrived at Villa Wanida it was gone ten and both of you were sound asleep.

Thursday 23rd - A change of pace.

pageThe both of you woke up much so early it should have been against the law and while your mother and I were still in slumber-land you decided to play with the huge bag of Lego we’d brought from home, you have no idea how loud a pile of Lego can be at that time in the morning… utterly deafeningly ‘LOUD’… lol.

Breakfast was going swimmingly until Mar had her vomiting session, but she had no temperature and she was opposite to being lethargic, so we just gave her soup for the rest of her breakfast, Matt on the other hand ate more than usual. We really didn’t know what to do with ourselves this morning, luckily Matt has been addicted to playing Uno for the past few days and he challenged us to a round, how could we’ve refused, lol.



23rd Pattaya-06843

The way Matt kept showing his good cards to us was quite annoying,  because he was getting all the good cards, lol. The rest of the day was quite puzzling, haa haa haa, by around eleven your mother wanted to visit the local fresh market to get some fresh fish and squid for lunch, so we all headed to Na-Klure market (literally 10 minutes away).

Page Mar underwaterOn the drive there we drove through McDonald’s drive through to pick up a couple cups of coffee, it was obvious that both of you were going to be sleepy-by soon, and by the time we got to the fresh market you two were fast asleep (it was very rare for either of you to take a nap before lunch).

When we got back to the resort, Matt was still asleep but Mar suddenly woke up and pretty much demanded for me to take her swimming, haa haa haa. We pleaded with Mar to go swimming after lunch but she was having none of it, with Matt still sleeping I saw no harm to take Mar for a quick (well not so quick) swim, anyway I couldn’t wait to test out the underwater camera… (it didn’t disappoint).

By the time Mar and I got back to the room, Matt was just stirring, but more importantly Mar was hungry… haa haa haa.

Page Matt underwater

After the late lunch, Matt and I went swimming and Mar stayed with your mother, I didn’t mind just another chance to give the camera another go, lol.

The camera was beyond my expectation, earlier when I was just walking around snap happy, the photos were nothing to speak about. But in good light, and especially under water, it performed brilliantly.

Because it could stand a drop of around two metres, I could just give the camera to you two to play around… haa haa haa.



23rd Pattaya-06866-Edit

That night we decided to pay your Uncle Chat a visit, Mar was really looking forward to see the dogs again, haa haa haa.

To be continued… :-)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Looking back… I am here…

Dear Matt and Mar,

I am here, don’t worry, I’ll always be only a step behind :-)

Looking back-06321

Having fun… lol.

Dear Matt and Mar,

As you can expect, I have been walking around (very) snap happy with the TG-3, and to be honest, at first all the photos looked great on the LCD screen at the back of the camera (as they always do, lol), the jpegs were tack sharp, the colours representation were fantastic, the skin tone looks fine and all the other, exposure, detail, WB and etc. were pretty much spot on… but that was viewed on the screen, then tonight they were loaded into lightroom… lets just say dreams were shattered… haa haa haa, oh, only kidding :-)

For a camera that goes 15 m (or around that) underwater and can stand a 2 m drop (or around that) the jpegs were more than passable, I can not wait to get a few shots of you two diving under water…


The photos above were taken this morning, and ‘yes’ you two are always this jolly in the morning… sometimes annoyingly so… haa haa haa. Sorry for the somewhat awkward crop, the toilet was just to the right, somehow it just looked too unappealing, haa haa haa.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Ready for Half Term... lol

Dear Matt and Mar,

Half term is upon us, and we are off to see uncle Chat once again. There is a new huge water-park that had just opened in Pattaya, and I know that you two are very much looking forward to that, I hope it won't be too busy though.

I know that Mar will get a kick on seeing the dogs again, haa haa haa. Anyway, it was time to make the jump and get an underwater camera, lugging a huge cam around on the beach and leaving it on the deckchair has always been a little nerve wrecking... haa haa haa.

For a point and shoot is was quite dear, but considering the functionality I think it was alright, even your mother is looking forward to use it under water, lol. Now all I have to find is a swimming trunks with a huge pocket... lol.

Friday, October 17, 2014

One Long Slog… haa haa haa

Paul Thailand-Dear Matt and Mar,

My memory is like a sieve at the moment, but I think I’d returned to True in August of 2013, so it has been around 14 months up to now… and it has been one long slog for the team, but as of October 15th, we’d managed to give birth to Paul Bakery Restaurant - Thailand, haa haa haa.

Not enough thank you can be offered to the team, to True, to CP as well as to all of our partners and outsource, the whole project from the signature to 1st dish served was slightly less than 11 months.

This is only the beginning, one can have the most beautiful kite, but without the right skill and focus and dedication (plus a little bit of luck) a kite is just a piece paper on a couple of sticks, instead of a majestic almost magical flying thing, haa haa haa. So our attention turns to operations, and so far the team has been fantastic, the only real hiccup we had was due to the POS system, unluckily this is also the heart of the operation… haa haa haa, but things are improving… one day it will be as smooth as both of your bottoms, lol.

During the 11 months, it was like building a huge ship in the dock on dry land and under cover, it was hard work and nerve wrecking but it was straight forward (somewhat), now the ship has been put to sea and it has been battered with wave after wave, bad weather as well as sunny sky will be undoubtedly take turn, but I think we have the right crew to take us through thick or thin… this is only the beginning :-) Ahoy here we come… haa haa haa.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Singing Shark, lol.

Dear Matt and Mar,

It would be nice if once in a while Matt would tell us what is going on at School... haa haa haa. I knew there will be some kind of a show at the end of this term, and that was simply because I am a fly on the wall in the class’s Line Group (the mums in Matt’s class have been discussing this). To my knowledge, the costumes have been designed and are now under production.

But what Matt have failed to inform us was that he had been chosen to sing solo... and wearing a shark suit... and you know how we found out???

We only found out because we saw this in the Line Group... haa haa haa haa haa. Last time, Matt was the main character as Humpty Dumpty and for another show he was one of the main narrator... for those two shows your mother made you (and I) practice every night for months! haa haa haa. I can still hear her saying... “You two should take this more seriously... Matt say your lines with more emotion and passion... Pa stop messing around... and etc...” haa haa haa.

Now it’s singing solo... wow I am guessing I’ll have to learn the lines with Matt again... haa haa haa, don’t worry I’ll do my best... haa haa haa.