Monday, February 28, 2011

Noddy Playgroup: Sports day 2011 :)

20110226 Matts first gold medal

The photo (left) is a bit of a spoiler… :) your team (Green) won the gold medal! Trust me baby, you and your team mates have no idea how stressful that was. Right from the very beginning, we were told the organiser had deliberately put together a weak ‘Green’ team, as ‘Green’ had already won the cup for the past two years.

There were four colours (teams) in all, Green, Red, Blue and Yellow, each colour was made up of a selection of children from different classes and also from different age group, so you and your class mates were split up between different colours. (By the way, it rained, so the whole event had to be taken in door')


Now getting back to the ‘Green’ being a weak team… right from the very beginning, I knew that this wasn’t so, the older children was taking real command of each game played.

You participated in two team events, winning one and came second in the other, I am sorry that I can not post any photos here, as it just doesn’t feel right posting photos of other people’s children.

The ‘Green’ and ‘Blue’ were neck and neck heading into the final event, the “Tug of Gory Death” (sorry, a bit dramatic here, it was a ‘Tug of War’)… (queue back the dramatic music), in the first semi-final, ‘Green’ had a hard time dispatching the ‘Red’, but they were through to the final, while the ‘Blue’ had no problem getting rid of the ‘Yellow’ in a somewhat one sided match. So, this was it, the very final event will decides who lifts the cup of champions… the atmosphere was intense, the sound of cheering parents were deafening, the passion was overflowing… it was time…

Each team strained the rope, the referee lifted his foot and the match was on! The ‘Blue’ had immediately took charge of the pull, the ‘Green’ was looking in disarray, each team member was swaying from left to right like a set of unorganised pendulum, the ‘Blue’ was fulfilling their deadly form they had shown in the earlier semi-final. You have to see the vdo to understand what I am about to say… like a phoenix, ‘Green’ being a millimetre away from loosing everything, sudden found their rhythm… pulling in unison like a team with a purpose… In a blink of an eye, the match was won…
Now I know how the people of England felt in 1966 :) (only kidding).


Sunday, February 20, 2011

2011 Winter Holiday (Part II): First Night in Chiang Rai

The morning came too soon, being a worried soul that I am, I was truly dreading the drive back through the ever winding road to Tak, as there was a very strong chance that you would be sick again. So a strategy was formed during the night (after a beer, so it may not have been the best of plan). Firstly, skip breakfast (you loved this), secondly, let you sit at the front seat, thirdly, make sure you look forward while driving, fourth, to keep the window slightly open so that we have cool fresh air coming into the car, fifth, stop when we can and finally, to drive at a constant slowish speed.

Well, putting all of the above together resulted in us taking almost two hours to drive the eighty km, including one short stop at a sight seeing area (09:17). It was all worth it though, the toughest thing was when we were at about the sixty km mark, you started to repeat the word ‘nom’ (milk) over and over, but it was easy enough to distract you (iPhone) away from your hunger. As soon as the windy part was over, we immediately stop to make your milk.

Mae Sot to Chiangrai is about 471 km, our chosen route took us from Tak to Lampang, then Phayao and lastly Chiang Rai, because we took it ridiculously slow going from Mae Sot to Tak, together with a quick lunch in Lampang, it was around 16:30 when you were once again jumping on a bed at the Dusit Island resort. A+ for your mother, the hotel was fantastic, not the newest of hotel, but the quality of staff, the view and all the bells and whistles were certainly above my expectations.


DSC03797Unfortunately the hotel was really busy and it was fully booked on what was supposed to be our last night in Chiangrai, so for our final night we were going to have to change hotel. The thought of having to pack up all your stuff, move hotel then unpack it all again just for that final night kills me. But hey, that is 3 nights away, your mother was convinced that there will be a room available so that we didn’t have to move.

After we got freshened up, we decided to head out straight away to your mother’s auntie and uncle house because that was where everybody was gathering (including your grand parents who flew up to Chiang Rai a few days earlier), and so this was how we spent our first night, full of food and laughter (especially seeing you and your new friend mucking around), more importantly you had a great time being centre of attention (as always).



Wednesday, February 2, 2011

2011 Winter Holiday (part 1): Bangkok To Mae Sot

Baby, now that everyone was back at work, it was our turn to take a break :) avoiding holiday madness is one of our golden rule that must never be broken, after an awful experience a few years back.

This time the destination was Chiang Rai, one of the most northern province of Thailand, this is your mother’s ‘home’ province, many of her relatives are still there and they were now eagerly waiting to meet the latest member of their family... ‘you’ :)

It felt like we had taken half of the house with us (we are all use to this by now), the trip started off rather wonky, your breakfast was loving packed into a special 3 compartments flask; hard gorgeous boiled egg, nutritious spare ribs soup and steaming hot rice... unfortunately the egg and soup was ‘lovingly’ packed in the wrong compartment, and so the soup leaked like the Titanic... had to stop the car even before we got on the express way :)

Chiang Rai being over eight hundred km away to the north, it was going to be too much for you to sit through this in a single drive, so your mother decided to stop over night at Mae Sot (on the border with Burma), before driving on to Chiang Rai.

Bangkok to Mae Sot will always be about 476 km (unless the Mayan was correct), on the map it was only 80 km off our intended route, but as it turned out, the 80 km side trip was more curvaceous than Miss Kardashian’s silhouette. You ended up chucking up a couple of times, and I had to drive slower than a lame duck walking up shag hill with a huge rucksack loaded to the brim with house bricks, it took us literally ‘forever’ getting through the 80 km.

After several stops (including a long lunch) and the need to go slow through the winding hills, all in all it took us around seven hours before we were checking in at the Centara Mae Sot hotel, it was just four when we were finally in our rooms.

DSC03693Lovely hotel, and I am sure it will always be totally fully booked during the holidays, but on this night I think they had three guests and they were all listed on the welcome board, very strange seeing my name of the front door of the hotel though.



We all regretted spending just one night here, especially when the journey was so tough on you and there were so much to do here; deep down I was dreading driving the same 80 km out to Tak then the rest of the way to Chiang Rai, it was going to be another long session tomorrow :)

After everyone had freshened up, It was just the right time to have early dinner, since you had chucked up most of your lunch (by the way, your mother was faster than lightening with the plastic bag, it was amazing the car remained as clean as it had). The restaurant was recommended by your mother’s friend (the friend is from Mae Sot), and talking about WOW... the food was great too :)




DSC03744DSC03764-013After dinner, it was time to head back to the hotel, it was around seven/eight when you nodded off... free time for your mother and I :) perfect time to enjoy the chilled night air (almost never happens in Bangkok) and a beer :) and trying not to think too much of the second leg of the trip, from Mae Sot to Chiang Rai.