Night riders

Oat had a strange group of friends called "night riders", the obviously they organized group ride at night. It was the first time Pazu joined them because Oat said, "There will be some girls coming too, and we will ride very slow." But quite a shock to Pazu, the girls turned down this appointment and Pazu was probably the weakest amongst all. We started our trip from the parliament, then to somewhere in Thonburi (western side of the Chao Phraya River, the previous capital) which wasn't too far away, but the trip was not easy because we rid at about 25km/h in some very dark area, the cycling paths (if existed) were very narrow (if you fell down, it was pond of fermented water) and everywhere was full of dogs patrolling. Pazu wanted to take more pictures, but how could he possibly do that? He had to put all his concentration to control his bicycle!

We took our bikes up a bridge across a highway.

Still on the same bridge... (what else? :)

There's a very young guy in our group, without helmet without back light, but he was really ... crazy! Can you spot him in this photo? He moved too fast! He was riding his bicycle down this staircase!!

And Oat put some lubricants on Pazu's bike chain. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Thai dance show

We went to the TK Park again (to return books) and there was a Thai dance show, it was very photogenic so Pazu asked me to put some photos here too. The host said the dancers were from the south (not Pattani?), and we definitely have no idea as to what the story was about.

The one on top must be a king or what... we just guessed.

Male and female dancers dressed almost the same.

Another dancer stared at the "hunter" (right), who played a comedian role in this Thai drama, adapted from a local folktale. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Chef mom

As to why we went to Oat's mom's home yesterday, it was her "birthday". Oat didn't remember his mom's birthday exactly, and it turned out that mom would just say it was her birthday when she wanted to see Oat (or perhaps it was another Oat's bad joke). Mom cooked some food for us, raw shrimp, fried fish, eggs. See the pictures, Oat should be very proud of his mom, are there many moms who could cook us food in such a professional way? Pazu doubts it. (Oat's mom worked in a restaurant before.)(Bangkok, Thailand)


The moaning song

Have you heard the moaning song I posted yesterday? Today we went to Oat's home and Oat asked Pazu to let mom hear this song, mom cried uncontrollably suddenly and said she felt so sad, she said it was like the time when she heard Oat was hit by the motorbike in July this year. She said she also wanted to hit Pazu because he conspired with Oat by not telling her. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Funeral II

This is the last day of the cyclist who died a few days ago, and we went to his funeral again to pay the last respect. Next to his coffin was a yellow sign with a bicycle and the words "metta" which means "compassion (for cyclist)". And perhaps it seemed to be quite strange to take pictures in a funeral, but Pazu wants me to remind everyone of you that these photos were taken with the permission of the family (actually they encouraged us to do so), it didn't show any disrepect to any person. It is yet another cultural difference. (I can't really imagine if somebody do the same in Hong Kong...)

Collegues from the Ministry of Education.

Family and friends of the victim.

Students at a nearby school who came to play moaning music during the funeral (and it's a part-time job).

Mr Chairman of the Thailand Cycling Club came to make merit to the victim by giving a bansagun (monk robe) to a monk.

The monk then came and received the monk robe, symbolizing the merit-making process was finished.

A lady sang the moaning song. You can hear her voice here. I don't understand the meaning, but the voice made so many people crying.

This photo wasn't very clear, this is a staff sent by the King, note that the flame (to burn the coffin) was brought by the King, and of course it's regarded as a very high honour.

Paying the last respect.

Friends and family came to burn a paper flower under the coffin with the King's flame.

End. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Critical fat level

As if Ah-Chin finally realized her body fat percentage was at a critical level, she decided to join a fitness club at a hotel near her office. She paid 10000baht (US$243) for 6 months and she got two free coupons, she gave one for Kong junior and one for Pazu. Let's see what we did in the club.

Aerobic time...

Ah-Chin discovered Pazu was taking pics, she decided to stop for a moment and warned Pazu not to put this secret photo on the blog... okay,, okay,,..... hehe.

The fitness club had a good view of Bangkok. (Bangkok, Thailand)



David (right) was born in Hong Kong but moved to America when he was grade 3, we met each other in Sapa of Vietnam. David once said he wanted to do business in Vietnam but after all the strange difficulties (like somebody offered him a job without paying any salary), he finally decided to goodbye Vietnam and trying to find another opportunity in Yunnan Province of China. While Pazu and David were chatting some travel tales, Tai phoned us so we went out for a lunch-dinner. Tai invited us to a restaurant in Chinatown for some shark-fin, a delicacy the Disney Hong Kong was forced to abandon. (Bangkok, Thailand)


A funeral

Three days ago a bus hit a bicycle, the bus driver was either too ignorant or simply under influence, he said he didn't know that he hit something and drag the cyclist for some 100 meters before stopping. Later the bus driver claimed that the brake was broken. Unfortunately the cyclist died and this news was spread on Thaimtb.com. A Thairath newspaper comic on the next day portraited this accident as "murder on the road", with the bus driver's face painted as crazy.

A group of members of the Thailand Cycling Club made an appeal to the Ministry of Transport, hoping the government would do something to make the road condition more cyclist-friendly if they are true to their energy saving policy. In a written statement they also hoped that it would be the last accident for cyclist.

But would it be the last? A month ago a female cyclist was hit and died in Nonthaburi, two weeks ago there was another similar accident. Veterans aren't exempted. The victim of the most recent accident is Mr Thaweephorn Thongkhambai(ทวีพร ทองคำใบ), a level 7 official at the Ministry of Education, with ten years of cycling experience in Bangkok Metropolis. And Oat was also hit by a motorbike in July, breaking his joint of foot.

Pazu knew Mr Thongkhambai only very briefly a few months ago in a club ride. He went with Oat to Wat Mngkut Kasatayaram in the morning and evening to attend the funeral, it will last for two days.


Members of the Thailand Cycling Club made an appeal at the Ministry of Transport.

Mr Chairman of the TCC interviewed by some local media.

Funeral at the temple.

A souvenir photo taken in front of the coffin, seemingly quite a common practice in Thailand. The purple flower plate with an alphabet of "tor tung" was sent by the Princess Somdej Phra Thep Ratana Rachasudasiamborom Rachagumari.
Related articles from the Bangkok Post: [1] [2] [3] (Bangkok, Thailand)


His Holiness the Supreme Patriarch

Jordy walked around with Pazu (and Kong Junior) and found many people outside Wat Bowornniwet (วัดบวรนิเวศ) near the five-way intersection outside the Queen's Gallery. And it turned out that the 92-year-old His Holiness the Supreme Patriarch Somdej Phra Nyanasangvara (the highest monk in Thailand) would come and we didn't miss this chance to see his face. He came with a special yellow car (Great Vehicle) and he was on a wheelchair. An old lady told us it was the ook paansa (ออกพรรษา), the end of the 3-month Rain Retreat, a popular period for ordination (becoming a monk) in the rainy season when monks are committed to stay only in their respective temples, it doesn't mean that they couldn't venture outside, we saw a lot in Panthip computer mall indeed.

The 92-year-old His Holiness the Supreme Patriarch Somdej Phra Nyanasangvara, the highest monk in Thailand. Everybody told us it was very fortunate to see him.

The three alphabets on the car plate is ร.ย.ล which means รถยนต์หลวง (Great Vehicle), the police probably wouldn't give it any trouble.

A lot of pilgrims.

A baby learns to wai (合什).

A funny monkey with a lot of money, donations from pilgrims. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Nong Tai and Jordy

Sometimes when Oat asked me something about Pazu's old schoolmate named Tai (pronounced as Thai anyway...), "would Tai want to go and eat on the street?" I was confused and thought he was talking about the Thai people. No matter how patriotic Thai people are, it must still be strange to have a name as Thai, so I should put the word "Nong" (น้อง = younger brother) in front of Tai from now on. Nong Tai came to Bangkok again for his BTS project and Pazu's sister asked Nong Tai to bring a watch-sized GPS for him (Garmin Foretrex 101), we'll tell you more about this funny gadget in the near future. But do you also see another long-haired guy on the left? His name is Jordy (Oat kept asking why a boy would be named "Judy"!), Pazu met him in Pakistan's Northern Areas and travelled to Peshawar two years ago. Ah, and the linga-liked monument was the October 1973 monument near the Democratic Monument. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Sanook factor

Nothing can be easier to answer this very similar question in Thailand, when people asked Pazu why he prefered to travel by bicycle: Sanook (สนุก) was the answer. It means fun, having fun is said to be a very important philosophical value amongst the Thai people. So why was this motorcycle modified into such a funny shape? I always suspect it's just another sanook factor. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Gold shop

A poster outside a gold shop, isn't it dangerous to eat so much... gold? The gold shop was located in Yaowarat the Chinatown, but the Chinese owner probably haven't heard of an old Chinese saying 吞金自殺 (tūn jīn zì shā = swallowing gold to commit suicide). (Bangkok, Thailand)


End of the Vegetarian Festival

The vegetarian festival lasted for ten days only (or 9 and a half days if you want me to be more precise), it ended on 11 Oct. We went with Ah Chin to the Chinatown again, and it was full of pilgrims again, with lots of free offerings (rice for poor people, candies for all etc). Let's see what we have seen on that day:

Many lanterns in front of a temple door.

A monk (dressed in Chinese robe) threw away blessing: coins (one baht), ritual white bread and candies.

Young and old pilgrims were all to eager to get some blessing. It's hard for the old man.

No, it's not free, we went to have some veg food with Ah Chin. (Bangkok, Thailand)


Use without permission

Recently a magazine in Hong Kong named Hitech Weekly had a covered story about mobile blogging and they just copied some of the information from my weblog without even mentioning my website address... hmmm. Thanks Sidekick for telling me this and sending me the scanned page.
ประมาณอาทิตย์ที่แล้ว นิตยสารที่ฮ่องกง(ชื้อ Hitech Weekly)เขียนเกี่ยวกับเรื่องของ mobile blogging(ใช้โทรศัพท์ทำให้ทันสมัยแว็บ) นิตยสารใช้ข่าวสารเบอะๆจากแว็บของฉัน แต่เขาไม่เขียนไวัชัดๆว่าข้อมูลนี่มาจากแว็บฉัน นิสัยไม่ดีจริงๆ แต่ฉันก็ไม่อยากจะทำอะไร ๕๕ ขอบคุณ Sidekick ที่ให้ฉันรู้เรื่องนี้ครัย


BookExpo 2005

There was a book fair in Bangkok, the BookExpo Thailand 2005 from 6 - 10 Oct, we went there with Pii Oil. Pii means "elder sibling" and is a common title placed before a nickname, you know Thai is a tonal language so Pii should actually be pronounced with the rhythm of "pee" (in English) or "" (in Chinese, which means farting...) Just like German travelling to Japan who couldn't stop help laughing when they heard people saying "moshi-moshi", Pazu felt funny when he had to call everyone "pii" when he came to Thailand last year.

Let's go back to the book fair, it was held at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center of Bangkok, we went there with Ah-Chin last year too. Oil is a friend of Oat who is also a member of the Thailand Cycling Club. I think I had put her photo on this blog before. Oil is her nickname (it means "oil" in English!) and her real name is Sirintr Khumwong (wow it's so long and Pazu is happier to call her simply Oil).

After the book fair we went to have buffet yakishabu with Oat and he asked Pazu, "Are there any new books published in the book fair?" Pazu didn't know... most books are in Thai and Pazu simply went to the souvenir counters and bought a paper notebook with some words like, "Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow; Don't walk behind me, I may not lead; Walk beside me and just be my friend." There was a bicycle on this notebook and Pazu liked it a lot.

พี่ออยพาเรา (ลูกก้องกันก้อง) ไปมหกรรมหนังสือระดับชาติครังที่๑๐ที่ศูนย์การประชุมแห่งชาติสิริกิติ์ พี่ออยเป็นเพื่อนของโอ็ต พี่ก็ขี่จักรยานทุกวันและเป็นสมาชิกของThailand Cycling Club

โอ็ตต้องทำงาน เขาไม่ได้ไปด้อยกัน ตอนเย็นเขาถามก้องว่า ในปมหกรรมหนังสือมีอะไรไหม่ แต่ก้องอ่านภาษาไทยไม่ค่อยเข้าใจ เขาก็ไม่รู้ว่ามีหนังสือไทยไหม่ไหม ก้องซื้อหนังสือ๒แลมเท่านั้น -- ่นิทานพื้นบ้านชานอ่านของไทย ่กับ ่เรื่องราวต่างๆ เกี่ยวกับประเทศไทย ่ นักเขียนชื่อธนพล จาดใจดี เขาใจดีหรือไหมฉันก็ไม่รู้ แต่หนังสือนี่น่าอ่านมากๆ และก็มี ๒ ภาษา อังกฤษ-ไทย

ก้องก็ซื้อสมุดบันทึก๑แลม อยู่บนสมุดนี่มีจักรยานและเขียนไว้ว่า(อังกฤษ) -- อย่าเดินก่อนฉัน อาจจะฉันไปไม่ตาม อย่าเดินหลังฉัน ฉันนำเธอไปไม่เป็น อยู่ขางๆฉันและเป็นเพื่อนของฉัน -- ก้องจะเอาสมุดบันทึกนี่กับคุณโอ็ต

This is Oil and two other members of the TCC. พี่ออยกันเพื่อน๒คน ก็เป็นสมาชิกของTCC ลุงท่านนี่(คนที่ข้างขวาที่สุด)กำลังพูดกับแฟน เพราะฉะนั้นไม่สนใจถ่ายรูปกับเรา... ๕๕

I'm not quite sure why everybody wrote something on these kinds of paper box, it's something like wishing Bangkok to be the "World Book Capital 2008"...? ฉันไม่เข้าใจว่าทำไมทุกคก็เขียนอะไรไว้บนกล่องกระดาษนี่ อาจจะเกี่ยวกับสรัางกรุงเทพฯเป็นเมืองหนังสือ (เป็นอะไร)...

A happy uterus. มดลูกที่ดีใจ

A chair made by Thai paper, luckily Thai people aren't overweight. ที่นังเป็นกระดาษ โชคดีมากๆประเทศไทยไม่ค่อยมีคนที่น้ำหนักเกิน...(Bangkok, Thailand)


Take it out at last!

This is the plaster which Pazu wore for two weeks, everyone in Thailand seemed to be bemused by the quality of this plaster and asked Pazu, "Did you make it by yourself?!" No, it's made by a Vietnamese doctor in My Tho Town near Ho Chi Minh City of Vietnam named Huy! It's hot in Thailand so Pazu was happy to take it out at last after two weeks. Without hammer, without saw, how did Pazu take it out? Dr Huy did give Pazu a useful advice, by soaking this funny plaster into a bucket of water of 40 degree Celsius (Dr Huy did emphasize it should be Celsius...)
ฉันก็ไม่รู้ว่ามีคนไทยกี่คนมาดูเว็บของฉัน แต่ฉันยังอยากพยายามใช้ภาษาไทยเขียนไดอารี่ที่นี้บ่อยๆ ภาษาไทยที่นี้ไม่ใช่แปลจากไดอารี่ภาษาอังกฤษ เพราะภาษาไทยของฉันยังไม่ดี... ฉันเป็นใครนะ... ฉันเป็นตุ๊กตาหมี ชื่อฉันคือลูกก้อง ฉันกำลังไปเที่ยวกับเพื่อน เขาชื่อก้อง เป็นคนฮ่องกง แต่โอ๊ตพูดบ่อยๆว่าก้องเป็นคนห้องน้ำ... ตอนนี้อยู่ประเทศไทย และก็เรียนภาษาไทยด้วยกัน เดือนที่แล้วก้องขี่จักรยานไปเที่ยวเมืองเก่าอยุธยากับคุณโอ็ต โอ็ตเป็นคนไทย แม่โอ็ตบอกว่าโอ็ตนิสัยไม่ดีก็เป็นคนบ้า แต่โอ็ตเป็นเพื่อนของก้องดีที่สุดแล้ว... ก้องตกจากจักรยานที่อยุธยา มือซ้ายก้องเจ็แล้ว ฝ่ามือแตกนิดน้อย ต้องทำเฟีอก ใส่๒อทิตย์แล้ว ร้อนก็คัน ไม่สบายดีเลย วันนี้เพิ่นเอาออก (ถ้าคุณไม่เข้าใจฉันเขียนกรุณให้ฉันรู้ ขอบขอบใจ)(Bangkok, Thailand)


Vegie Festival

It's the vegetarian festival in Thailand starting from 3 to 11 October. This festival is probably originated in China but Pazu couldn't recall anything similar when he was in Hong Kong. The Chinese name of this festvial is "jiǔ huáng zhāi jiè" (九皇齋戒), which can be roughly translated as Vegetarian Fast for the Nine Heaven Kings.

This is the time when devout Thai (mostly Chinese Thais) eat only vegetarian food and some travelled to the Yaowarat Chinatown of Bangkok to pay their respect to the nine temples of the nine heaven kings. To be frankly Pazu wasn't a very devoted buddhist but he went with Ah Chin to the Chinatown to see the festival. Touring around all the nine temples was made very easy by a dish cleaning liquid company called Sunlight (Lemon Power), they gave out a so-called "Sunlight passport", and you can then take a free two-rowed tuk tuk taxi for free and it went around the Chinatown whole day.

This is mostly a Chinese festival but perhaps because of the large population of Chinese Thai (about 11% of the total population in Thailand), or just because of the Chinese dominance in the business sector, this festival seemed to be widely popular as a commercial opportunity. Mama the instant noodles has a new brand called "Mama Je" (je = vegie), Swensen the sundae company has a new promotion of Sundae Je (perhaps without using cow milk?), everywhere in the supermarket you can see a red on yellow sign saying "Je เจ 齋"... other than that it just wouldn't be possible to avoid any vegie food, some looked like chicken or pork, but were made by tofu only.

(Bangkok, Thailand)