Monday, December 26, 2016

Greatly honoured.

Most honoured-02640Dear Matt and Mar,

Today, your mother was greatly honoured to be a part of the host congregation for our Great late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, which happened to be on Christmas day. There will be another post about all the events leading up to today, so many important things were on the card today, and it turned out brilliantly :-)

Like most of the Kingdom’s subjects, the passing of our Great late King had hit your mother rather hard, so today was super important and meant so much to her.

This photo was taken after a very, very long day, especially for your mother, but you could feel that your mother was contented.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Going the wrong way.

Dear Matt and Mar,

Now that you two are on Christmas holiday, meant I can leave for work much earlier (not having to drive you two to school), but who on earth would want to do that? Haa haa haa haa haa.

IMG_20161220_084500So instead of jumping on the MRT (undergrounds) and heading East each morning, instead I would head West for a couple of stops and get off at Sam Yan Station, to visit Wat Hua Lumpong (Temple). Today is my third day in a row, and I think I am going to do it everyday from now on (if I can), well until you two go back to school.

It isn’t particularly a long visit, around thirty minutes or so, just a serene way to start off the day, don’t really know how else to describe it, lol, before heading back and getting onto the MRT and this time heading the ‘right’ way to the office... boo hoo hoo, haa haa haa.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Too far away :-)

Dear Matt and Mar,

Haa haa haa haa, because I’d vowed not to make the same mistake as when Mar had her singing event, then not having my main camera in hand was ever so difficult, so when it was time for the end of year Christmas concert, where Matt was a participating, I took the whole kit.

IMG_20161215_150843Knowing the environment that  you are going to be in helps ever so much in taking better photos, and I knew the main auditorium well, well enough to know where to sit and what lens to have in hand. Obviously the 70 - 200 f4 on the A7 and the wider 16mm (24mm effective) on the Nex 5.

On the main stage itself, there were easily at least 100+ students, all bright eyed and ready to sing their heart out. At first I’d thought it was going to be difficult to find Matt in that crowd, but it really wasn’t, lol.

Matt was next to his best friend, Sofia, who is probably the tallest one in her year, so it literally took 3 seconds to pick the two of them out in a sea of students. Unfortunately the two of them were at the very back of the stage, if you two were anywhere further back you would have been in the Chao Phraya river, lol, and now I was at least a good 7 - 8 metres too far back... haa haa haa.

Managed to capture a few good shots, but I was too far away to make it interesting, haa haa haa, will be better next year :-)

Christmas Concert 2016-02577

A few sections stood out in my mind, the 12 days of (Thai) Christmas was brilliant, the acapela song was fantastic, but the most fun of all was the ‘Frozen’ section. As I was sitting away from our group, auntie Tip, auntie Ward, your mother and Mar were all here, I’d thought that Mar would have been over joyed to hear the Frozen songs sung live on stage, and it was beautiful.

When I’d came out after the concert, what did I see? Mar fast asleep, apparently she had slept just a moment before the ‘Frozen’ piece, lol.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Quick fix :-)

Prepping-02586IMG_20161218_122915Dear Matt and Mar,

Time to stock up again, I am now stable at –10 Kgs, and to be honest doing quite well, mostly thanks to your mother, lol. During the past 3 months I don’t remember having any cravings, and certainly no binging, I think it does help living in a country where really vivid spices help to compensate for the need to consume bulk and bulk of fantastic starch, haa haa haa, oh, I have pieces of bread here and there… how can I not, your mother is making bread herself.

These bags that you see, are my quick fix (your mother’s idea) of mostly green vegetables (from Broccoli, Cauliflower, to the trusted Celery and many more), on the other side are the fruits (anything from Blueberries, Strawberries, Apples and so on), and only very recently, your mother had added herbs to the mix, I think this batch had a few cuts of Ginger in it.

The bags will then be frozen, when needed one bag would be emptied into the blender (no ice needed), and anything else that was around (banana, other vegs that were getting on a bit) would be thrown in. So each batch would usually make around a pint of smoothie, shared between whoever was around… haa haa haa.

Papa got a brand new toy :-)

Dear Matt and Mar,

By now you should know that your father is a bit of a ‘one thing’ man, a pair of trainers, a pair of work shoes, single colour jeans (black), a watch for work, and an old beat up watch for the weekend, the only thing I have several of, are pens, don’t really know why, and we don’t write that much anymore, haa haa haa.

Now the watch, oh, I have nice watches in my time (Breitling and so on), but none of them hit the spot, until I’d discovered Casio, haa haa haa haa haa, much to your grandparents dismay. It is the Swiss Army knife of watches, why have a boring dual functions equipment (if you have date and day, then the watch becomes a 4 functions equipment, Time, Stopwatch (just use the second hands), Day and Date).

Actually may I add another function, ‘decoration’, haa haa haa, there are some gorgeous designs out there, but it literally costs more than a house, lol. So for the longest time I wore a Casio ProTrek, it was perfect, affordable enough for my very clumsy wrist, runs on sunlight, waterproof, compass, altimeter, barometer, it even let me know what mood your mother is in at any time of the day, haa haa haa (oh I wish).

Then when that watch became too beat up for work (together with your grandmother’s continuous comments) it became my weekend watch and another classier ProTrek took its place, haa haa haa.

But now even the beat up weekend watch is becoming too beaten up (so I was told), haa haa haa, so my weekday watch became my weekend watch, meaning a new opening for the weekday watch... being boring me, my first and only choice was Casio.

It must have been destiny, just as I was looking around, Samsung launched the Gear S3, never ever thought I would have a smartwatch, who would need a phone watch? Haa haa haa, apparently I did, that is the second most used function on my watch (the first being using it to tell time, lol). I’ve found myself talking through the watch more times than I would like to admit, and of course looking absolutely ridiculous whilst talking, but it just came naturally, people called, I would look at the watch and pick up the call with a flick of a finger, the voice quality was good enough even for a business discussion, it is great.

Page 001Not mentioning all the fidgety things you can do with it, this thing is just super, super fun. The first thing I did during the very easy setup phase was to turn off everything, the vibrate, most of the sound, the step counter, the heart beat monitor, turned down the brightness and even turned off the gesture wakeup.

Now after about a week, I don’t think I’ll ever go back to a normal watch, imagine in a few years when it runs on solar power, and becoming properly waterproof at deeper depth, please just add a compass then it would be just perfect, haa haa haa, I am just having far too much fun.

Of course one of the main concern was the battery life, I mean for me if it lasts more than a day all should be fine, lol. Of course since this is the 3rd iteration, the battery supposed to last over 2 days (under reasonable use), and for me, I guess I am super duper reasonable, because I barely use 15% of the battery each day.

Yesterday from Aliexpress came the screen protection for the watch, super fidgety to put on though, lol, and all I am waiting for now is the new strap, the watch uses the normal 22mm strap, so virtually all straps with 22mm will fit. The strap that came with the watch was black, and after looking around on the web the white one looks rather dashy, haa haa haa, and as always it will look ridiculous on me, well it is too late now, haa haa haa.

This is how we shop (without your mother) lol

IMG_20161217_150819Dear Mat and Mar,

It is super difficult to be walking around the supermarket with a peace of mind, with 2 very curious children in tow, haa haa haa, and you two have refused to sit in the normal trolley, but on one of these, although looking so much more uncomfortable, you two wouldn’t have it any other way, haa haa haa.

Getting funny looks from other shoppers have become the norm in my life, haa haa haa, and the staff doesn’t seem to be bothered, and at the end of the day we were not harming nor bothering anyone, apart from bouts of laughter, haa haa haa.

Of course if your mother was with us, it would have been a totally different picture (literally), haa haa haa.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Finally a picture of me I like :-)

Dear Matt and Mar,

Finally, finally and finally, your mother took a photo of me that I didn't have to put it through twenty layers of filters that would have been cranked up to the maximum, and then having my finger hovering over the 'send' button while going back and forth in my mind whether to post it or not, haa haa haa.

This one didn't even spent two seconds on Snapseed, lol. So where were we going, actually where we were returning from should have been the question :-)

It was a very lazy Saturday (if it was up to me everyday would be 'lazy', lol), as usual you two were up before the sun awoke and then decided that your mother and I should also be up too, that alone made the rest of Saturday a 'lazy' day, your mother and I almost stretched it to a 'lazy' week but the nine to five got in the way, haa haa haa.

So instead of cooking breakfast at home, we took brekkie at D&D, and once again we ordered far too much! The multi layered pancake, stuffed with several strips of bacon between the layers, interlaced with jam (that we'd opted out), and hiding in between one of the layer was a fried egg, then on top of it all sat another beautifully cooked fried egg.

Too full-1482039373165

That dish alone was for Mar, which was a mistake, in my mind all the components came separately, you know pancakes, strips of bacon, syrup, eggs and so on, separated on a plate, rather than being stacked up higher than mount Fuji, haa haa haa, and Mar didn't even come close to finishing... oh well, there went my diet.

So the photo was of us walking back, and me working out how much calories I had consumed, and then I was sad... haa haa haa, in one meal I had already consumed my day’s quota of calories, haa haa haa.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Double long weekend :-)

Dear Matt and Mar,

We had double long weekend this month, when I said we, I’d meant your mother and I, however you two still had school though, haa haa haa. Your mother and I had different plans, I had to visit my parents as it has been a while, and your mother wanted to try cooking a few new recipes, haa haa haa.

Your mother is getting rather good at making bread now, for her latest tinkering she’d added milk to the dough and it was fantastic! However having all that gorgeous bread, beautifully laying around is literally killing me (and my diet), in the past ‘stairs’ was by far my biggest enemy... now I have just added ‘bread’ to the list, lol.

It is always enjoyable to pick you up from school (when we have the chance), to see your bright smile when you see us will never get old.

Your mother ended up scratching here itch, it started off with making tofu from scratch, then it was Thai spicy fermented pork and at the end of the day a beautifully, perfectly baked loaf of mouthwatering bread.

Wat Phra Piren-093100

As for me, it was fantastic to have spent most of the day with my parents, managed to teach your grandfather to print directly from his phone onto a Samsung’s printer (yes, they do make printer too). Found time to pay homage to both Wat Phrapiren (picture taken with Huawei M8 Panorama) and at home, ate too well (haa haa haa), bought a present for you two, you two are going to love it and it isn’t really a toy... lol (can’t wait to see your faces on Christmas Day).

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Mar loves to sing :-)

IMG_20161214_081811Dear Matt and Mar,

I would be so lost without today’s messaging apps, and there are plenty out there, at this moment in Thailand the most popular one is Line. Why would I be lost? Just a quick example, parents of each one of your class came together and created a Line Group, and in this ‘group chat’ parents would put up reminder for important events and things to prepare for each of your class, and without this we would have missed out on quite a bit :-)

I’d only found out through your mother that EY2 was having a mini carol singing concert this morning, and I was afraid I wasn't going to be able to make it (important meeting at 10:00). It all turned out to be well in the end (I am now typing this on a boat heading towards BTS), the concert started at 08:15 but I couldn't bring main camera just too many bags, so relying on phone camera was a bit of a stretch.

Mar sang beautifully, all of EY2 did brilliantly! I just hope that some other parents took one good photo of Mar and again would share on Line app :-)

My most favourite song “I am working in Santa’s workshop, all day long...” this song is stuck in my head, but after searching online, I still have no idea the name of the song, lol.

Your mother (and many others) were a bit miffed when one of the parent, with slightly less manner than a retarded chimpanzee decided to push in and physically manhandled other parents, and put her huge behind in front of your mother’s face, haa haa haa.

I would love to have a photo of Mar all smiling and singing, but not at the expense of being an arse, haa haa haa. Luckily, through pooling of resources, the parents of Mar’s class managed to share all the photos, and there were several good ones of you :-) Next time I am bringing my main cam no matter how many bags I was carrying, haa haa haa, love you.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Just a few more inches :-)

Dear Matt and Mar,

A bit of a relaxing Sunday, I was totally in one of my lethargic mode, Mar was asking to join her usual cooking class (again) so Matt and I was going to occupy ourselves by going to watch a film, but the timing was all wrong, so instead we went for a walk about. The plan was to find a coffee shop and zonk out for an hour or two, well that was the plan, lol.

IMG_20161211_143949Of course along the way we were distracted... although probably I’ll never have a chance to put together another PC (well, for the foreseeable future), it doesn’t stop me from being drawn into PC components shops, lol.

Matt was having a great time in one of these shop today, but he’ll need to grow a few more inches before making a somewhat of a spectacle of himself, haa haa haa.

We’ve even tried me working the paddles and Matt did the steering, the result was even more ridicules, haa haa haa.

Too tiring for a Saturday, lol.

Dear Matt and Mar,

Instead of the usual Saturday morning’s routine, we’d decided (well, your mother had decided, lol) to do something different, morning golf was cancelled, and instead of having breakfast at home we were all rushed out of the door to Lumpinee park for some light (well, it wasn’t very light after all, lol) breakfast, and then cycling along the ‘green mile’.

PhotoGrid_1481337243889This time we didn’t make it all the way to the other park, just a couple of hundred metres shy of the end, as it was getting late and the sun was quickly rising, it was really time to head back.

Great fun though, but really too tiring for me for a Saturday morning, haa haa haa. By the way, the ‘Green mile’ isn’t flat! Full of 2 or 3 flights of steep stairs dotted across the mile, haa haa haa, carrying your bikes up and down was enough to skip my ‘legs’ and ‘pull’ day, lol.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

A game is afoot…

mdeDear Matt and Mar,

All I know about chess is how each piece moves and a general understanding for the rules of the game, but apart from that, I have as much chess skill as a fish knows how to climb a tree. In short you and I are probably at the same brilliant level, haa haa haa.

So recently we have been playing ‘Snail’ chess, simply one or two moves per day (we use this small plastic figurine of a lady in a pink dress to indicate whose move it was), at the beginning it was working out great, until we noticed that some pieces were moving on its own... then we discovered that whilst Matt and I were away, Mar had been moving some of the pieces, based on a throw of a dice... haa haa haa.

So over this weekend Matt and I decided to take the match quite seriously, well as serious as one could (which wasn’t very, haa haa haa). We did sit down, with no TV in the background, no music playing, just Matt and I trying our hardest not to make jokes at the other person’s mistakes, and oh boy, there were tons of mistakes, lol.

Just a little over an hour we played 2 full games, going back and forth on both sides why each move was made, it was great fun can’t wait until the next match tonight.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Thrashed by everyone, lol

Dear Matt and Mar,

I was so confident, I mean, I was really, really confident, haa haa haa haa haa. For some strange reasons for the past couple of weeks Matt had been wanting to go bowling, lol. So with an afternoon free, we all headed for some fun time, as it turned out, it wasn’t that much fun for me, lol.

001Your mother was on fire! Matt was striking at will, even Mar, she was cleaning all split pins like on sales current collection Chanel handbags.

Then there was me, how can a grown ‘ars#’ man knock down less pins in a full game, than a five year old girl pushing a bowling ball down a chrome plated home made ramp? Haa haa haa haa haa, nonetheless, it was a great fun afternoon. After the second game it was obvious that both of you have had enough, I on the other hand, have had enough since the fifth frame of the first game, lol.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

The glorious walk :-)

davDear Matt and Mar,

Just wanted to share a view from my ‘third’ walk every morning on the way to work. ‘First’ walk is from home to the BTS, ‘second’ from BTS to the MRT, and ‘Third’ from MRT to the office, a total of around 1.5 Kms.

To be frank (not Steve, haa haa haa) the picture doesn’t do any justice, as the homage to our beloved late King Rama 9, TRUE had literally covered most of its building with his image, and it is glorious.

So instead of the mundane trudge to work surround by lifeless glass and concrete monoliths, this is what I see before turning right over the small bridge before arriving at the office, believe it or not, it does make a difference for the better, much better :-)

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Not a hope in h… :-)

IMG_20161205_091707Dear Matt and Mar,

On a lazy Monday afternoon (public holiday, late King’s BD), Matt was putting final touches on his Amazing India group project, so Mar and I was left to our own devices, and she had been itching to play cards with me all morning, however the problem was, apart from ‘snap’ she doesn’t know anything else... and so it began, let's make it up as we go along kind of a game.

At its core, the game was super simple, split the cards into two piles (obviously one for her and one for me), at the same time we would draw one card each from our respected pile and whoever had the higher card, wins.

Of course, like playing anything against the most cunning five year old, there was no hope in h… I was ever going to win.

IMG_20161205_091049It all began with, how the cards were divided into mine and her pile, one by one, Mar would be looking at each card, if it was below six that card was neatly put onto my pile and if it was six or higher it went into Mar’s pile.

Finally the game begun, and surprise, surprise Mar won every hand, haa haa haa, amazingly I’d refused to play it again haa haa haa.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Father’s day 2016

BlurredDear Matt and Mar,

Not the most joyful of Father’s day this year, for all the years I can remember, Father’s day in Thailand is also the day of the birth of our late beloved King, speaking from a commoner point of view I don’t even know if Father’s day date will have to change for the in coming 2017?

I am never much of a person for cards (greeting, congrats, and etc.), but the card you gave me this morning was pretty special :-) and to be very honest, I don’t often treasure things, let alone a card, but this one will be a permanent feature on my desk until the end of time, haa haa haa.

So to say ‘I like it’, is just a tad of an understatement, haa haa haa, thank you very much, lol.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Double milestones lol

IMG_20161128_130725Dear Matt and Mar,

It must be obvious to you two that the common theme for some of the past few posts since August had been about health, loosing weight and lifting. This is my run of the mill lunch at the moment, food have never been and will never be anything big in my life, unfortunately or fortunately everything is simply delicious, haa haa haa haa, perhaps that was why my waist was 33 inches at the age of 10, lol.

This time round, the starting position was around 77 Kgs (170 Lbs), as of yesterday at around 4 am when I’d arrived home (from overseas) it was 67.xx Kgs (about 148 Lbs), hitting the first big milestone was satisfying (keeping it off is another matter though, haa haa haa).

As for the finishing line? No idea, instead of the Kgs, this time I am going to go for % of Body fat, and to be honest, I don’t think lower double digit would be possible for me, aiming for mid double digit would be a more realistic goal.

Another milestone (hated this one, lol), is the 5+ mins plank, this nightly routine is literally a pain in the… stomach (haa haa haa, you can stop rolling your eyes now, lol). They say it gets easier… erm… not for me, haa haa haa. Hitting the 5 mins point was far, far, Shangri-La far in my mind when I followed your mother to do the plank many weeks ago.

While we are talking about something I don’t quite like doing… drinking ACV… wow, it doesn’t help with me always trying to keep things simple, so 30 ml mixed with cold water is how I take it. Of course one could add honey and a pile of other stuff to make it more palatable, lol. Now lets see if a few months down the road, will I write a post about how it all came back and beyond, I can see the post’s title right now… ‘All came back and then some, I am 150 Kgs’, haa haa haa.

Sending it home, haa haa haa

Dear Matt and Mar,

Last Thursday I was off again, a three and a half hour flight was going to take me somewhere out East (and a little North, lol). Only seven days earlier I was also at the same airport, but that time was heading West (but not too far), and a few weeks before that I was also here going to another place.

001 BetaI must have been in some trance that morning, the routine I was in, was to get ready for the 9 to 5 instead of being in the ‘flight’ mode. So my pocket knife was carefully slipped into my jeans pocket without a second thought.

After checking in at the airport, I was searching for my little fountain pen that lives in my jeans watch pocket, but instead I’d reached a little too far and to my surprise found my little knife, I told you I was totally zoned out, lol.

But what to do? First thought, put it into the loaded luggage, but I didn’t have any loaded luggage. Throw it away, the cost of the knife was literally insignificant, but that would in a way submit to my carelessness (with a handful of stupidity thrown into the mix, lol), so there was no way I was going to throw it away. Next thought was to give it away to one of many guards walking around, but I’d quickly shy away from that idea.

I was stumped for a sec, then without a second thought asked the lady at the check in counter if there was a post office near by, totally expecting her to say, are you crazy why would there be a post office in the middle of Thailand’s main International Airport.

Then she pointed me to the furthest corner of the check-in floor, lol. Oh man, I had never expected there to be a post office at the airport let alone on the check-in floor, and it was super busy too! Including the envelope, it was 49 THB, haa haa haa.

The silly thing was, the day after I was back in BKK I was surprised to see someone had sent me a package… haa haa haa.