It's still all quiet here, there are a few more people generally but not many, even Walking Street on Thursday was half empty. But there's good news on Darling, the lovely black dog (above) from last year. Apparently he was still a bit naughty after he had been "done" and was still chasing motorbikes. One of the local traders further down the road wanted him to be "removed", as in permanently, but luckily before that happened a new home was found for him. The people who have taken him on are friends of the girl who had been looking after him here. They apparently have a bit of land where he can run about. They often bring him back to the beach here so I will keep a look out for him. But apparently he's got fatter in his contentment so hope I still recognise him! I do miss seeing him though.
There's been a few more wild days, the seas on Wednesday really were high. The evenings are chilly (well Gill's version of chilly which is quite warm really....) but one evening I needed light wrap and leggings! And today people eating at a beach restaurant were wearing sweaters against the wind chill. But it's still more than warm enough to sit and enjoy this whole pool that I have had all to myself for a week but as we get nearer to Xmas it is slowly filling up. I guess I have been really spoiled having the whole place to myself and am not sure I like these interlopers. The man on the roof by the way is trying to fix the iffy wiffy.
I have also been catching up with the snake population. I saw my first and hopefully my last in snake alley. Carole and I christened the part of the road where we had more frequent sightings this last year. We were always more watchful walking there. It's part of the nice back road route on our morning walk. This one I was glad was at least dead, but I guess the snake may not have felt the same!
I've also been catching up with old faces. The hotel put on one of their "welcome back and thankyou returning guest parties" on Thursday night, coinciding with the return of their two grown up children who are studying in Australia. There was a big family table as well as guests and Surajit's family is quite a large one now. Angel, the front of house manager, her husband and another of the front of house staff did sterling work as the band - they are very good and do it professionally as well as their day job. I met up with a Swiss couple I have met here the last two years, it's always nice to see a friendly familiar face. It's so good of the hotel to do this, free food and drink, plus the music - but perhaps this is why they have so many returning guests.
I've also been getting my daily steps back up, for some reason it's easier to get up here and go for a walk than it is at home. It's so much easier just to get up and don a pair of shorts (don't try and visualise that, not a pretty sight, but even that is better than some of the get ups you see Europeans in here...), a top and a pair of flip flops. The UP 24 doesn't quite know what's hit it. However I do have a summer of too many Mary Berry Great British Bake Off challenges - both cooking and eating - to walk off... And an evening walk does always make that first glass of why why taste much better... The words are still "why why" by the way - I did try the other day asking for "white wine" but got no further than the usual puzzled look. As soon as I changed to "why why" the look of comprehension dawned accompanied by the relieved "ah, why why", not as relieved as me of course as the cold wine was served!
The Thai economy obviously is doing better than the Russian one, on one of my walks along the back roads some of the places that were just open plots of land now sport lovely little houses. But the gardening business perhaps isn't doing so well. One place that had a beautiful flower nursery has had the greenhouses bit knocked down and a new house built. But what is growing well there is the cute little white puppy who had one ear up and one down, now grown into a handsome boy as you can see.
Wifi issues continue to plague me - I really should be chilled about it. I do find it really annoying though as the Sky reps found to their cost this summer at home! At Jordan's tonight, usually my one port in a wiffy storm had network communication issues, i.e. no wiffy. The Florist have had people working this afternoon so fingers crossed it's good now at the hotel. I guess wiffy can't be good in all places all of the time, but I'd be happy with some of the places some of the time... But wiffy allowing I have been catching up with my reality tv. Given I'm 7 hours ahead, most of the excitement takes place too late for me to watch in real time so I have to be very careful that social media doesn't spoil the surprise. I got it very wrong with the X Factor. Just before watching the final, I went on to the iTunes Store for something and the first thing that greeted me was a banner ad for "the winner's single" and Ben's picture - bit of a giveaway but I guess it took away the tension whilst watching! I'm being a bit more careful with the Apprentice, but the best time to avoid knowing what's happening is to watch early morning here, and even I don't want to go to Jordan's bar for that. Hopefully the Florist fix on the wiffy here will help so I can watch at my leisure with a coffee in the morning. Just for clarity for any new readers to this blog, wiffy is the tech why why equivalent here. Ask for Wifi in a normal English accent and you often get a puzzled stare. Then ask for Wiffy and a password is proffered post haste after the relieved "ah, wiffy" along with a huge smile is heard. Easy.
I've also been trying to catch up with life under military rule which is still in effect here. The only real visible difference I can see is that the big sign with inflated taxi prices has been replaced with one insisting on 100% adherence to helmet wearing by motorcyclists. Not sure the sign is that clear as as far as I can see, almost 100% don't wear them. The Europeans are as bad. I saw one family yesterday, the man, the woman and two small children on a motorbike, the only one with a helmet was the man - just shows where his priorities lie. I still haven't found out the taxi answer. The military are supposed to be clamping down heavily on the taxi Mafia here. I do hope so as it did make the taxis here almost on a par with a black cab in London.
I've also done a quick recce of the big Tesco Lotus, I needed to pop into the Boots there for Soltan. Quite proud of my Thai language recognition, I can now tell when it's on 3 for 2 or just special offer. For those who are interested, no big purchases this time, it was just on special offer... But they still don't recognise a UK Advantage card only the Thai one. Same in Tesco's, free wiffy if you enter your Clubcard number but it wouldn't take a UK one. What's gone wrong with the global economy is what I want to know...
And the good news is that the hotel wiffy is back up to speed - hope I am not speaking too soon. I guess the only downside to that is I don't have the excuse to visit a local bar just to catch up and communicate....
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