Category Archives: Information & Opinion

I’m over the moon

I really hate blowing my own trumpet but if someone is kind enough to do it for me then I’m happy to share what is now, after all, public on Amazon.
It takes a lot of hard work and time to write a book. Sometimes authors get it right and give pleasure to a lot of people. Sometimes we don’t however hard we have tried. When someone expresses gratitude, enjoy it, if they criticise you brutally accept it with good grace. Either way you know you have touched the reader.
At the moment I am feeling a warm glow because of the very kind words written by an Amazon reviewer. They will hopefully sustain me when the inevitable happens and some critic lays into me. Hopefully I will be able to learn from the bad reviews as well.
5.0 out of 5 stars Don’t pass this amazing book by!, March 13, 2017
Verified Purchase
Incredible, I cannot believe this awesome book was free. I learned more about Thailand in this book than all the 6 I purchased! A MUST for anyone who is even remotely interested in Thailand! Thank YOU++++

Is original thought possible?

Sam Harris

English: Sam Harris
English: Sam Harris (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sam Harris, neuroscientist and author describes ‘Freewill’ as an illusion. He uses brilliant analogies to explain that acting of your own freewill implies that you could have done otherwise. He poses the question, ‘What are you going to think next? Your next thought comes out of nowhere. Whatever you are doing you have a voice in your head which just says things. Thoughts just emerge in consciousness. We can’t choose them before we think them. So if you can’t control your next thought where is your freedom of will?’ Continue reading Is original thought possible?

Cool Breeze in Hua Hin

If you feel like taking a two hour drive South from Bangkok and chilling out by the sea there’s a Cool Breeze in Hua Hin. Drive down Soi 55, take a right at the end past the small Chinese temple and 150 metres later along the narrow road you will find the charming Cool Breeze tapas restaurant. It is not the typical tapas bar you will find in the bodegas of the Andalucian region of Southern Spain where the dishes are laid out under glass counter tops but it makes a welcome change from the cheap and cheerful daily plethora of Thai street food.

Roadside terrace
Roadside terrace

Continue reading Cool Breeze in Hua Hin

How I survived a jungle trek in Thailand

Rohun Bevan, is an ex-English tennis player, amateur jungle trekker, swims like a shark and until yesterday was a friend of mine. Over a glass of wine a week or so ago he suggested that I may like to enjoy a leisurely Saturday followed by a couple of beers and join him on the ‘Hash House Harriers’ Saturday run, which he quickly changed to walk as I choked on my drink. I hesitantly agreed and at 3.15pm on the following Saturday we assembled, along with 100+ others, at a clearing in the forest behind Tesco supermarket in the Chalong area of Phuket. Continue reading How I survived a jungle trek in Thailand

Artists don’t retire – they just die.

Quite recently I was encouraged to watch the massively popular HBO series ‘Game of Thrones’ and maybe afterwards I will read the books by George RR Martin. I have, at the time of writing, watched the first five episodes and must say I am finding it thoroughly entertaining. How I will feel after sixty episodes remains to be seen. The lavish, and no doubt expensive, production and screen play is first rate. However, the acting, while passable for a movie of this genre, is not top drawer.

 The purpose of this post, however, is not to critique the series but to highlight the criticism which has been levelled, unfairly in my opinion, at the Author for being behind the eight ball and not finishing the project. Much has been written, some of it unjustifiably aggressive. Here is an example followed by a quote from the Guardian. Continue reading Artists don’t retire – they just die.

The death of Earth

I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I did not know that 22nd April was ‘Earth Day’.

So, to atone for my sin – mea maxima culpa – I have put together this short post.

I feel much better already!

The Earth seen from Apollo 17.
The Earth seen from Apollo 17. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We have known, for more than half a century, what we have done and continue to do to the Earth . Yet despite considerable progress we still persist with destructive acts.

English: Rachel Carson, author of Silent Sprin...
English: Rachel Carson, author of Silent Spring. Official photo as FWS employee. c. 1940. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rachael Carson told us in her absorbing book ‘Silent Spring’ published in 1962.

She puts it so eloquently when she says:

 “The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.

Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.

Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.”

Continue reading The death of Earth

Balancing a love for wildlife with the demand for fossil fuel

In today’s world, when we think about preserving wildlife, it’s rare that you can mix it with the continuous use of oil and gas. The negative effects of fossil fuels on nature have long been publicized in the media. Amongst the most recent was the effects of unused oil and gas, its surrounding environment and most notably the region’s water supplies.

Texas Parks & Wildlife mentioned 4 steps to implement voluntary conservation practices:

1. Start with planning
2. Operations
3. Reclamation
4. Monitoring

There is more general guidance in minimizing impacts of fossil fuel to natural resources in a Texas Parks and Wildlife report. Continue reading Balancing a love for wildlife with the demand for fossil fuel

Fires already?

I have written many times on the subject of atmospheric pollution and although I am taking a break from blogging for a while I cannot contain my emotions when it comes to being exposed to deliberately started forest fires.

While I am managing a building project in Northern Thailand I am staying on the hill slopes of Huai Kaew village, 30 kms north of Chiang Mai, bordering the forests. The climate at this time of year is comfortable. Cool at night and early morning rising to 30c + in the day with no rain except the occasional shower.

But now the burning season starts when the monsoon rains have gone and farmers burn off the dry dead grasses and stubble to stimulate new growth next year around May/June’; then Cutting back excessive growth, clearing land and deforestation for fruit and vegetable farming. Continue reading Fires already?

Taking a break

I am taking a break for a few months because I have some important things to attend to which will take up most of my time.

But don’t worry I’m not planning on deserting you and will post intermittently.

Blogging is great fun but quite demanding if you take pride in your offerings.

So the last thing I want is to feel I have to produce just for the sake of it.

I’m driven by inspiration.

I’m not a machine.

So here’s a little ditty before I draw the curtains.

“I’ll be away a little while

So won’t be here to make you smile.

There’s lots of posts I’m sure you’ve missed

You’ll be surprised what’s in my list.

While I’m gone please don’t fret.

I’ll be back soon you sure can bet.”