Saturday, 30 June 2007
Seems to have been a lot wetter than usual. Each June we have some rain, as part of the monsoon at the other side (Andaman Sea) but this year there was a lot more, especially at the beginning of the month.
There was also a nice stretch of sunny weather in the middle of the month.
Towards the end of the month, we had some vicious storms with some more rain again.
I'm looking forward to see July cleaning up and bringing lots of sunshine again.
There's more overcast today and current temp is 27C.
Yesterday was also overcast all day long with the sun trying to peek through the cloud cover but to no great avail. Max temp was 31.2C and on the positive side, it stayed dry all day.
See you next month,
Friday, 29 June 2007
Today it was the time of the year again for the local school party at our neighbourhood school. We got the invitation a couple of days ago, in an envelope.
I've been going to this party since at least 4 or 5 years, since my wife's niece goes to this school and she performs here every year.
That's what's it all about, the kids of each class perform and they all dress up for the occasion, some picture will later.
We arrived shortly after five and it wouldn't be Thailand if there wouldn't be food available. As you can see on the picture's, tables are set up in the by now familiar 8 persons per table modus operandi. This time around I didn't have to serve though and could enjoy the food.
The envelope with the invitation is being used again, since every body that decides to eat here pays money for it, so the school doesn't lose out financially but actually makes money out of it. The food is donated and the envelopes make for good use for the school. Classrooms can be revamped, computers bought, you name it.
Here's the donation box at the entrance of the school grounds. Many high ranked local Thais and big hotels are invited, since they also spend money or come with gifts and today a computer was donated by Sila Evason hotel, one of the more upscale hotels on Samui, located in Plai Laem.
After all this the actual dancing starts and our niece has gone through the ranks so to speak and she was in the 'oldest' class and strangely enough they went on first;
This years theme for her class was a classical dance theme and they did well.
I found it a bit strange that the oldest class went on first, so the young kiddos had to wait before they could go on.
After her performance, her Mum, Grand mum and various other people gave her and the other kids performing so called 'Puang Ma Yang', the colourful things she's holding. One has to buy them and than you give them to your local performer. They're taken away again and resold for the next act. A prefect way of making money again for the school funds.
These 'Puang Ma Lay' are very common during all live shows in Thailand from performers. During shows people walk up to the stage and hand them to the performers on stage, sometimes also money is handed over.
In the picture to the left one can see a long row of guirlandes (that's what they look like) and some younger children waiting to perform, all nicely dressed up.
Here's some other children who were standing guard at the entrance to the school grounds, with some of their teachers and they're welcoming people, as long as they're not posing for my pictures!
Here's a picture of the very young ones, who're about to perform. It's a real cute experience and fun to watch how they try to remember their moves on stage and constantly look at each other to see if they remember everything correctly.
By now it's becoming a bit more crowded and everybody's waiting for their daughter, son, niece or nephew to perform.
It was a well organised evening this year, which according to my wife had to do with the fact that there was a new head teacher who was a bit smarter in how to organise everything and it seems he succeeded this year.
Thursday, 28 June 2007
Heavy overcast this morning with a current temp of 25C.
Yesterday around 1.30 pm we had a very strong storm with heavy winds and lots of rain. Apparently this storm raged all over Thailand in varying degrees and in Phuket people died, living on the beach in small 'slum' like buildings, according to Thai TV this morning.
Later in the evening there was more rain again but funnily enough the max temp was over 34C
Stay dry and see you tomorrow,
Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Tuesday, 26 June 2007
Monday, 25 June 2007
Rather early, around 8 am, we went to the temple and everything was ready to welcome all the expected visitors. Huge amounts of food were prepared and all plates, water bottles, ice, glasses etc etc were ready to be brought out. Until about 9.30 people trickled in but than a steady stream kept coming until about noon and it was hard work for all people tending the various tables, about 20 - 25 tables each seating 8 people. Grand sons/daughters, sons in law (like myself), girlfriends, nephews, cousins et all, everybody helps tending the tables, cleaning the dishes, preparing the food and you name it.
All people (groups, families) attending bring an envelope with some money and in return they received a small Buddha figure. The amount in the envelopes varies on how good you know the deceased person or the family and can vary from 100,- Baht to a couple of thousand Baht.
Around noon the monks started their chants for about an hour and a half. When that was over, an event takes place that excites everybody, small, wrapped coins are being thrown into the crowd, 1, 5 and 10 Baht coins and some have numbers on them which connect to prices, like a rice cooker, a blanket etc. Everybody is full of anticipation and enjoys grabbing the coins off the floor.
Here people are grabbing the coins and are looking for them on the ground.
When this cheer full event was over, the body, which all these days was in a refrigerated casket, as shown on this picture above, was brought over to the place where the actual cremation took place, a couple of hundred meters away from the temple. With a last farewell from the people who followed along, the casket is placed inside and cremated. This last part, bringing the body over and actually starting the cremation seem always to pass by really fast and is rather emotional.
This is the actual place where the cremation took place, a little bit outside the actual temple grounds.
I'm really drained from all events today and will see you tomorrow again.
It looks very nice again, in stark contrast to the last two days. A blue sky, however laced with clouds but the sun is out again! Current temp is 26.5C
Yesterday it was all day long overcast but no rain. Max temp was 31.5C
Today will be Grandma's cremation ceremony. Every day we've been to the temple, in the morning and again in the evening, well my wife, I went last night, my wife went each night with the kids, I had appointments.
Last night however, we went all together and it was very busy. Hundreds of people come to sit and eat and it's the family who serves them, so within no time, I was involved in carrying big plates of food, plates with cutlery, water bottles to various tables and once a party left at a table, immediately the table was cleared, cleaned and restocked with food.
At around 7 pm, the monks come and chant and everybody prays and after that, everyone makes his way home. Some folks were surprised to see a Westerner running around and helping out but the family in law was highly pleased with my performance!
This morning, pretty much the same scenario will happen, folks will come to eat and I'm preparing to help out again. Around 1 pm the cremation will be and after that we'll head home.
You all have a nice day out there, I'll get back to you later.
Sunday, 24 June 2007
A heavy layer of overcast today and it's been raining on and off today. Current temp is 26C
Yesterday it drizzled all day long with a max temp of 28.5C
Nice and cool if you live here but not so nice if you're trying to enjoy your holidays.
Hang in there,
Saturday, 23 June 2007
It's clouded and windy and it surely looks like it's going to rain today. It's 26C
Yesterday was cloudy all day and it threatened to rain during the day time a few times. In the evening it actually rained very hard in Chaweng but not here in Plai Laem. Max temp was just above 30C
Hang in there,
Friday, 22 June 2007
Last night one of my wife's Grannie's passed away.
It was Grandma from mothers side and she passed away as a very old lady, somewhere in her nineties.
She passed away after not being too well for a couple of months, getting weaker almost by the day.
The next couple of days, the whole extensive family, children, grandchildren and grand-grandchildren will be staying in the local temple, pretty much all day. Not to mention all friends and people who just come by to show their respect. My wife's parents and her sisters and brothers will sleep in the temple, until Monday, when the cremation ceremony takes place.
It takes some organising to keep all those people fed, so massive amounts of food have been bought on the local market, so during any given time, folks can be fed.
Here's a picture that shows grandma's last resting place until Monday.
On this picture you can get an idea, looking at the size of the wok's and pots and pans, how much food is cooked all day long.
Thursday, 21 June 2007
It's a blue sky with some isolated clouds in it. Current temp is 27C
Yesterday it turned out to be a very nice day after all, it started out with all those clouds but early in the day it burst open and the clouds disappeared and it was warm and sunny all day long with a max temp of 33C.
See you tomorrow,
Tuesday, 19 June 2007
The sky has almost 100% overcast this morning. It's currently 27.5C
Yesterday was a fairly blue sky with occasional clouds but with a nice breeze so it didn't get too hot although there was a max temp of 33.5C
See you tomorrow,
It turned into a blue sky again today, with very thin cloud layers. It's got all the makings of another hot day in it. Currently it's 26.5C
Yesterday was a nice day, there was overcast all day which made for a not too hot day without rain.
Monday, 18 June 2007
It started out with a similar overcast sky as yesterday but it's slowly breaking up with some blue patches in the sky. There's still plenty of clouds around though. Current temp is 27C.
Yesterday it was a sky with overcast pretty much all day which made for a nice, not too warm day with some cooling winds. Max temp was 31.4C
See you tomorrow,
Sunday, 17 June 2007
Saturday, 16 June 2007
We took an early Seatran ferry over to Donsak at the mainland and upon arrival at the mainland we tried to book a ticket for the ferry back, that same day. We were told that all ferries from 4 pm onwards were booked and maybe we could get a place on the 7 pm ferry. We decided to stay overnight and night take any chances for having to wait a couple of hours and then being told that there's no space anyway.
Well, back from the mainland and it's a lovely day on Samui with blue skies laced with some white fluffy stuff, the current temp is almost 30C.
Yesterday I was pretty much all day on the mainland and mostly in Nakhon Sri Thammarat, where it was warm and reached a max temp of 34.4C.
My travel adventures can be read above this post.
See you tomorrow,
Thursday, 14 June 2007
Since I most likely won't have time to post tomorrow, here's a picture I made today of the Big Buddha statue at Big Buddha. Check out the lovely blue sky in the background, it shows how gorgeous the weather is right now on Samui.
A beautiful blue sky with a bit more wind than average this morning and a current temp of 28C, it looks like another hot day.
Yesterday was warm, a max temp of 32C.
It looks like I won't be able to post tomorrow since I'll be on a day trip to Nakon Si Thamarasat, leaving very early, so see you again on Saturday.
Wednesday, 13 June 2007
Another blue sky for which looks to be another hot day, Current temp around 27C.
Yesterday the max temp reached 32.3C and it was warm.
Last night there was some rain and thunder again, so everything is and stays very green right now!
Tuesday, 12 June 2007
It's a nice blue sky again with a tiny thin white layer. The current temp is 25C.
Yesterday it was just hot! The a/c in my car was blasting away and whenever I needed to get out, it was a hot wall that hit me. Max temp was 35.3C
Last night there was some rain and thunder, which cooled things down a bit and watered our plants and garden nicely.
Monday, 11 June 2007
Sunday, 10 June 2007
Here's a picture of Chaweng Beach, at 8 am, taken in front of Long Beach, looking to the left.
Standing from left to right; Nobuhiko Abe (IDCS), Thomas Knedlick (PADI Examiner), myself, Sean McNamee and Naoki Igarashi.
Sitting from left to right; Toshihiro Minowa, Atsushi Sasaki, Maki Nakagawa and Matsubara Yoshimichi.Hope you enjoy these sunny and warm pictures and success to all my IDC candidates who are now all PADI Instructors.
Saturday, 9 June 2007
Another beautiful blue sky with cumulus clouds in it. Looks like it's gonna be warm again with a current temp of 27C.
Yesterday was lovely, 34.2C and a blue sky almost all day. At some stage some clouds did show up but they went way harmlessly.
See you tomorrow,
Friday, 8 June 2007
It's gorgeous outside, a blue sky with a couple of white ships moving along. Absolutely beautiful.
Current temp is 27.5C
Yesterday it was lovely as well, nice, warm and a blue sky with a max temp of 34.2C
Today the IE will start for my IDC candidates, I'll keep you updated on the progress.
Thursday, 7 June 2007
It's a lovely blue sky this morning!
Yesterday was a nice warm day. Chaweng beach was a bit more lively than last week.
At 7 pm yesterday, the Dutch national football team played vs Thailand in Bangkok and won 3-1, which was show live on Thai TV.
My kids and me were all watching in our orange shirts in front of the telly, great fun indeed.
See you tomorrow,
Wednesday, 6 June 2007
Another blue sky with a thin layer of clouds and a current temp of 25C.
Yesterday it was nice and dry but with a lot more wind than usual, today there doesn't seem to be any wind.
It's the last day of my current IDC today and we'll be visiting Chaweng Beach again to complete the last Open Water presentations.
The IE (Instructor Exam) will be held on Koh Samui this time from 8th to 10th June.
Tuesday, 5 June 2007
Monday, 4 June 2007
A bit of overcast with blue patches, current temp 24.6C, almost chilly!
That's because last night, just after 11 pm there was a long and hard rain which cooled everything down. It's till all wet outside.
Yesterday during the day time it was pleasant though, not too hot but nice.
Sunday, 3 June 2007
This morning has a blue with lots of thin hazy white layers in it and a current temp of 26.3C.
Yesterday it had a max temp of 35C, although it didn't feel that warm but a rather nice day.
During the Open Water training of my current IDC, we visited Chaweng Beach and the beach looked rather deserted, very few people out and about. The sea however was very nice and flat.
Last night around 7 pm there was rain and thunder for about an hour.
See you tomorrow,
Saturday, 2 June 2007
Here's a follow up on the Visakha Bucha Day story and the latest statue, build at Wat Plai Laem.
This picture shows the heart that I mentioned and posted a picture of in an earlier post . This is a clearer view of said heart. It's filled to the brim with small Buddha amulets.
Note the Buddha on top of the heart has the same appearance as the real one into which the heart will be inserted, as you can see in the picture below.
There's overcast today but it's nice and warm with a current temp of 27C.
Yesterday was a nice day with lots of sunshine and a max temp of 33.2C.
For all of you who're interested in football, the Dutch national team starts a SE Asian tour today with a game in South Korea vs the South Korean team. Wednesday 6th June they'll play the Thai national team in Bangkok. I'm busy teaching an IDC, so I can't go and watch it live but it'll be broad casted live on Thai TV.
6th June, 19.00 Thailand vs Nederland
Rajamangala National Stadium
Ramkhamhaeng Road Huamark, BANGKOK
Tickets are available as from 19th May through Thaiticketmaster
Friday, 1 June 2007
June is normally a very nice month, weather wise. It's not as hot as it gets in April (or should get rather, looking back at this year's April) and there are lovely occasional tropical rain showers. They last from an average of maybe 15 to 30 minutes to a lot shorter or a bit longer and they tend to cool things down a bit, which, if you live here is a nice welcome once in a while. However, for the folks visiting Samui, nothing to worry, after a rain shower, within half an hour or so, when the sun comes out again, every thing's dried up again.
Today is a good start, not too hot with enough sunshine to make it nice.
The weather predictions are showing a mic of rain, sunshine and thunder and lightning, for the coming week up to 40% per day. Let's hope for the better.
The start of June is promising, there's sunshine however with a hazy layer of thin clouds at the moment, which may dissolve once it heats up. It's currently 26C.
Yesterday was all day long overcast but no rain, besides a few hardly noticeable drops in the afternoon. It was a very pleasant day, not too warm, max temp was 31.3C
Welcome to June,