Mischling and Dani’s first playdate

Graeme debates challenging the cold falls

If the pregnant dog can walk this barefoot, so can I

Chinese New Year dance festival

I Know Who’s DJing the Block Party

Taking a procrastination break from my lesson planning I started browsing my neighbor’s music library since we are on the same network. I thought perhaps I’d find some sounds to keep me relaxed and motivated. Here are a few of the gems…

Blood Duster: DrinkFightFuck

Body Count: Momma’s Gonna Die Tonight

Boysetsfire: (Compassion) As Skull Fragments on the Wall

Perish the Thought: Blood Rusted Choke Wire

Propagandhi: Stick the Fucking Flag Up Your Goddamn Ass, You Son of a Bitch

Lard: Mate Spawn & Die

A Perfect Murder: Wake Up and Die

Fear My Thoughts: Accelerate Or Die

Sick of It All: Disco Sucks Fuck Everything

Hopefully I’ll be able meet my neighbor and he can introduce me to Chiang Mai’s underground grindcore scene. He did have room for a bit of variety, I spotted ABBA’s GOLD: Greatest Hits and 150 Fun Songs for Kids in the mix.

"…just don’t play hangman or come in wasted"

These were the final clauses to agree to before securing myself a part-time teaching position, though they were followed by the addendum, “but you can have a few beers, that’s fine, just not, you know…wasted.” Despite the permission I still plan to hold off on drinking before showing up to teach a 9AM class. I am thrilled, I’ll be working in central Chiang Mai for a decent hourly wage which will help offset how few hours with which I’ll be starting. I’ll be with eight high school students who are between an elementary and intermediate level who are primarily looking to improve their conversational skills. Provided I don’t screw the pooch, I should be able to take on more classes after a month or so.

:: Has nothing to do with the job other than I saw it on the way to the interview ::

I have never taught before so I’m a bit nervous about the first class on Saturday, regardless of the seemingly low standards that J.D. has set for me. I will be viewed as a success as long as I can get the students speaking, but I started lesson planning today anyways. I feel reasonably proud of myself for finding a job in spite of the reasoning behind them hiring me which weighed heavily on “the fact that you’re young and female, I can say that because we’re not in the States, this is Thailand,” apparently appearance outweighs experience in this field. One step backward for feminism, one step forward for Dani!

:: Spice and Rice ::

These Boots Were Made For Walking (just not in snow)

A year after they were first introduced, it seemed is was time for my feet to say farewell to my little black boots. I’ve never been much into shoes, but between how broken in these were, and how their lack of traction made them excellent footwear for twirling and moonwalking on the dance floor, I was holding on a bit tightly.

I shouldn’t be allowed nice things because I don’t always take the best care of my possessions, and these boots were fated for a short lifespan. By the end of the trip in Romania, after a few weeks of trudging through snow and slush, they weren’t providing much comfort as they were perpetually soaked, had worn down heels, sizable holes in both the soles, and one was cracked in half across the arch. Even Andrew, who has several pairs of socks with enormous holes but still wears them out of some sort of bicycle sentiment, was pushing for them to get trashed. I considered but ended up ziplock bagging them and bringing them to Chiang Mai where I was confident there would be skilled hands to bring them back to life.

Over in eastern Chiang Mai, on the Mae Ping River I found a round little old women sitting cross-legged surrounded by polishes, rubber, hammers and nails going to town on a pair of men’s dress shoes. I bashfully handed over my mildewy boots, she took a look, held up an assortment of materials smiling to say that she could do it. Fortunately the Irish man that was ahead of me spoke Thai fluently and was helpful of getting me the very reasonable price of 140TBH ($4.60) to get my boots looking new.

:: Before ::

Lame story or not, I’m psyched they are back in action, and that they won’t have to endure the winter elements for some time.

Day One of the Job Search.
Wouldn’t you want me to teach your children?

Day One of the Job Search.

Wouldn’t you want me to teach your children?

Come on the French!

While Americans are always getting a bad reputation across the globe for being terrible tourists who assume that everyone should speak english and serve all the appropriate condiments with every meal, the truth is the French are strong competitors. Over the years I’ve found myself in the defensive position on behalf of the French (as I’ve got some French blood in these veins and have many French relatives whom I love) only to be slowly worn down as a waitress who received lots of foreign cliental. Today might have been the final nail in the coffin. 

Ready to leave after a fulfilling lunch of coffee and spicy Jews Ear Mushroom (?) salad, I was distracted by the table next to me and decided to eavesdrop. 

Scene: Unassuming Thai waiter serves two women the drinks they ordered

French Woman (we’ll call her Nanette): Ahem (pointing accusingly a glass) what is dat?

Waiter (we’ll call him Sanun): Lemon/lime juice

Nanette: I ordered fresh lemon juice, dis is not fresh

Sanun: I’m sorry I don’t understand, this is pressed juice

Nanette: (looking irritated to her friend) ah no, dis is not fresh [note she hasn’t tried it, just looked at it] I do not want it

Sunan: Please wait miss (leaving glass on the table)

Sunan leaves and speaks with his manager (we’ll call Deng) who goes back into the kitchen then returns carrying an identical glass of lemon/lime juice and presents it to Nanette

Deng: I’m sorry miss, here is your fresh lemon/lime juice

Nanette: No. Dis is concentrate. I asked for fresh juice, if you do not have it, I’ll have nothing

Deng: I’m sorry miss, this is fresh lemon/lime juice

Nanette: I mean freshly squeezed

Deng: Yes miss, I squeezed it myself, just now, all of our juice here is freshly made

Nanette: You mean like this? (demonstrating with her hands)

Deng: Yes, one moment miss

Deng leaves and quickly returns from the kitchen holding the rinds from the fruit he just used to make this bitch’s drink

Nanette: Hmm ok, yes, this will be fine, thank you

Viva la France! merde

On a lighter note here’s what I saw on the walk over. 

While dogs are left to roam wild on the streets (though not as fiercely as those in Bucharest…stories to come) beloved kittens are kept at close range on leashes.

:: Loving Thai Yay (Grandma) with her Kitten ::

I’m grateful for my allergies or I’d have several in my 10x12 room

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