Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Retirement--"I love It "(Most of the time) no really "I love it"

This is what the house looked like when we bought it one year before we moved to Thailand
Me acting like I am helping , when most of the time I was just in the way

We are seeing some progress , we really did a lot

The folks that did the work remodeling and almost rebuilding, were great and it took a lot of work and reconstruction work to get the house the way we wanted it .

We're very happy with the way it turned out ,and we have added a lot that I will show in the post to come .

Malcolm and Ciejay Retired in Thailand

I love being retired and especially ,being retired here in Thailand , but loving it and enjoying all the benefits that come with being retired and accepting all the not so fun things, and some of the lack of benefits that come with being retired also, all this and more (of which I will share in later post ) took quite a while to get use to and even longer to get my mind, to accept the fact that I was indeed retired .
Almost all the things I will write about will be from my own experience, being retired here where we live in (Kanchanaburi) in the small village of Wang Pho, Thailand , from time to time I may mention other places and people , but for the most part it will be about us and OUR retirement life .
The first couple of months , it was life as usually , just in another country , we were busy remodeling the house we had bought pr yer to our retirement in the USA.We were there everyday watching , and sometimes complaining about the way the work was progressing , we were, trying to make this little house into a home , that we could live and enjoy, the rest of our lives in comfort and with as many of the conveniences that we were use to back in the good ole USA . Little, did I realise that some the things I hoped for , would never happen, and that this is not the good ole USA and they don't think , live , work ( or even think important ) many of the things we just take for granted , living in our homelands. I had to wrap my mind around these facts real quick or go crazy , fly into fits of rage, and show my anger and disapproval, just as I would in the good ole USA, have a long , hard and intense, talk with everyone and end up getting things done MY WAY. Well it don't work that way here in the LOS they will just pack up their tools and leave ,and you will not see them again and no one else in the village will come to work for you because the first folks that you ran off are all related to everyone in the village, and now you are on a Thai black list , which can take years to get off of , and then only if YOU learn how to be Retired in Thailand and Loving It . Some things I have learned the hard way , but for the most part I was at least smart enough to do a lot of research and learn a lot about Thai life and customs and Village life before we arrived and I have to say up front ,that I have the most wonderful Thai wife in the world (Ciejay) and she saved me from many a pit fall , and kept me from making a lot of mistakes along the way, starting in to this new way of life , Retiring and living in a strange and new country all at the same time .
Once all the work on the house was done, furnished like we could afford and learning how to get along without the things we could not afford right away, and we had things almost like we wanted them , we moved in , Then the real life of being retired set in, and believe you me , did this time in my life ever take some getting use to .You ask "like what ", well these are some of the things I am going to write about in the up and coming post :
Family , food , shopping , money ( having a lot or a fixed income based on a small to medium pension) , market days , health care , exercise, (enjoying or lack of ), village life ( how much to get en voled,)Kids , grand-kids , neighbors , animals, (yours and the neighbors) social life, together time with wife or husband, time for self (hammock time ), and any other subjects that pop into my mind or that you as my readers and folks retiring or thinking about retiring(in Thailand) would like me to write about , from our point of view, and from mine and Ciejay's experiences.
I hope you will enjoy this post subject and the follow-up post and that you will be kind enough to take a moment out of your retired or not retired life and leave a comment. Malcolm

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I've said it before and I'll say it again , "my favorite day of the week in the LOS is market day". there are soooo many reasons why I like market days soo much , I like getting to see everyone , the whole village and surrounding area comes out to buy their weeks supplies of fresh fruit and veggies and anything else you can think of that you might need to keep body and soul together and then some.I like for the folks to see the farang and see that he's still here after 10 years and not just a visitor. Right beside the market is a car wash and I can get the truck cleaned and detailed for 100 baht , and there is a great coffee shop there too and the lady always puts a scoop of chocolate ice cream in mine , yum yum . give it a try . The real reason I love the market is that everything is sooo fresh and I can pick what and how much I want with out it being wrapped in plastic saran wrap and stored in a cooler for several days and then put out as fresh , I can pick it up, and squeeze it , smell it, hand it to Ciejay for a look see and her professional, (ha ha ) approval or disapproval ,and even ask for a sample taste if I'm not to sure , and the person does it with a smile and not like I'm bothering her or him, like I have experienced in the store front markets .What a difference it makes when you are spending your money and the folks really appreciate you buying from their tent or little table , and you know you're not only getting fresh fruit and veggies , but you are helping this family , by buying the fruit of their labor .

But today was a special mission, we had company coming for dinner and I wanted to have a fish fry , soooo I was on the hunt for the freshest fish I could find, well I soon found out that there were sooo many different kind , and sizes, That I had to go back home and get Ciejay to come help me( that was a first as I always think of myself as the shopper King ), I never knew there was so many varieties of fish swimming up and down the River Kwai, and raised in all the little ponds in back of my neighbors houses.Well I picked a big Catfish to grill and Ciejay picked a Mud fish , to make Tum Yum Pla , we had a couple of Thai's coming too and she said they would like the Tum Yum , Sooo I said ok . Everyone had a great time , the Cat fish fry turned out great , I served it with grilled hot veggies and served on a chilled bed of lettuce , red and green, topped ,with my home made Italian dressing , baked potatoes with butter ,chives and sour cream and bacon bits and my very own corn hush puppies ( deep fried cornbread rolled into balls ) and served with home made cole slaw (South Carolina style ). The Thai guest jump right in and had heaping bowls of Tum Yum and a side dish of the famous Jasmine Rice (Thai guest are soo easy to cook for ).
Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves , and everyone keep say the were full , and Em sooo I guess it was a success.
I am always sooo glad for the fresh things we can get at our market that make it sooo much fun to cook and it (I hope) always taste soo good and fresh , especially the fresh fish , just caught this morning.
I'm posting a few pictures of all the fresh fish I had to chose from. I hope you have a fresh market near you and if possible , buy as much there as you can, the family farmers will love you for it, and you will be eating a lot fresher and healthier.
I'm glad I'm here in the LOS and that I have a wonderful person like Ciejay to share it with, I guess you could say I'm here, I'm happy,I'm blessed, and to top it all off I'm Retired in Thailand and Loving It .

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Tuk-Tuk's Love them or Hate them

All aboard

Click here for all you need to know about Bangkok http://www.onestopbangkok.com/

These folks bought this one new and rode all around Thailand , they store it in Kanchanaburi for their next trips and for their friends to use when they are here . He said made special for the 250,000 baht " I want one."

Opps-!!!! how did that get in here

Ciejay really liked this one

Alex on a Resort Tuk Tuk
Here are a few Picture of Tuk Tuk's

Here today and maybe gone tommorow

ME, I love them and for lots of reason They are cute, they are cheap , they are colorful and the guys that drive the are crazy , and you are in for the ride of your life and the most important reason is "They are a big partof Thailand" , what would a trip to the (Big Mango) hope Martyn doesn't have that name copyrighted, ha ha, without a ride in the little motorcycle that has made the big city and travel around the city famous , I know a lot of you folks don't like the smoke and the noise they make , but after all it's Thailand and you are just here visiting and to some folks it just would not be a complete trip to Bangkok with out a ride in one, when I rode in( or on) my first one I hung on for dear life , it was like riding on a amusement park ride. Ciejay was scared to death and to me it was like riding with my Mom in her little Ford Mavrick in 1975 , when she got her license ot 60 years old . Her moto was the same as the Tuk Tuk drivers "peddle to the medal" and then some . ha ha .
Well I guess they have limted the number of tuk tuk 's in certain areas of BKK and in some areas they have outlawed them all together , that was what a friend of mine told me .
Now ,they have come up with a green Tuk Tuk-- battery powered and charged with solar panels , or a 10 baht charge at a charging station for a 80 kilometres ride , I guess it was to be expected and for the Earth I guess it will be better , BUT I'll miss the smoke and noise and you can bet they want go as fast.
Here is a article I got from a link on the web about the "new" Tuk Tuk's.

The end of the line for noisy tuk-tuks?
July 5th, 2010 Health & safety, Transport posted by Jimmy Kransic
The ubiquitous Bangkok tuk-tuk is in for a revamp with the development of an environmentally friendly and silent model.
For decades, tuk-tuks, which are a form of taxi in Thailand, have been a fixture on the streets of Bangkok. The tuk-tuk moves with a sound akin to a chain-saw. Tuk-tuks are powered by petrol or gas, with little engine maintenance, and usually belch out thick clouds of exhaust fumes.
Due to the fact that the colourful vehicles can only carry two passengers comfortably, they are slowly being superseded by alternate transport options, which include taxis and public services, such as the Skytrain. Tuk-tuks are more of a tourist attraction than a viable means of transport nowadays.
With the appearance of a new solar driven model, tuk-tuks could be given a new lease of life. The only snag is the hefty purchase price. At over 300,000 Baht, this option is more than 50 per cent dearer than a standard model. The new price of the current model is around 180,000 Baht.
The initial expenditure on these green models would soon be recouped with lower running costs. Although the new tuk-tuks have batteries, they supplement the power from them by utilising the sun’s rays. The batteries cost 10 Baht to charge, which gives a distance of up to 80 kilometres.
The solar powered tuk-tuk could become more affordable if the government subsidised the cost of it. With an estimated 8,000 tuk-tuks on the streets of Bangkok, replacing them with smokeless, silent vehicles would surely lower noise and air pollution levels in the capital.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Ha Ha Ha Ha
Ciejay and La La enjoying a glass of wine

Me and my Buddy B-Bie

Three good friends

Talking Thai and catching up on the latest from Wamg Pho
Empty bottle and happy faces

One of the things I love about the LOS is that there are soooo many great places to eat , It makes for a hard choice when someone says "UP TO YOU " which is the normal saying in Thailand , when someone ask you " where do you want to eat tonight ". Well tonight was one of those nights and B-Bie my best friend from The Big City of Bangkok called and said that he would like to come to Wang Pho for a visit , and to take us out to dinner and to celebrate our adopted daughter La La's 30th birthday (I think B likes her a lot ).Well the old" Up to You" was thrown at me and right away I said Som Mai's in the Jungle , one of my favorite places to eat fried fish and cashew chicken, two of my favorite things to eat.Of course I took along a bottle of our famous Hanuman Mangosteen wine , most folks like white wine with fish , but me I am a Red wine person and served at room temperature, It just don't get any better than that . Good food , good wine and dinner out with three of my favorite people.
Took a few pictures of our dinner and evening out hope you enjoy them and if you ever get over this away , I'll take you to the Jungle restaurant , for a "dinner out" you want soon forget .
I guess you know by now that with all these good places to eat and all the wonderful friends we have made in Thailand , that it's just another reason why I'm Retired in Thailand and Loving It

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Today when I checked my e-mails I had a nice surprise , I had recieved a Award from Emma and Dennis from http://www.awardingtheweb.com/ and I was given an award for being one of the 2010 Top 25 Retirement Blogs Awards . This is a first for me and made me love blogging even more and more determined to post more stuff about Ciejay's and My life being Retired in Thailand and Loving It . Click on the button on the side to see a list of the other 24 winners and to learn more about the work and world of Emma and Dennis and their blog. Malcolm

Monday, July 12, 2010

I'm back on the net


I don't know what happened or how but, I have been off the internet for the past week , the home phone worked then did'nt work but net would never come up , I go upset and tired of waiting for help and started to push and click and found a form that said I had to re-figure my user name and password , now I did't know how I lost it in the first place ,unless It happened during the huge thunder and lighting storm we had last week , anyway I call the CALL CENTER for TOT and got a very sweet and kind lady on the help line, and she walked me thru every thing to remotely correct the problem and within 5 minute she had me back up and running , now you don't get any better service than that . thank you Miss TOT for all your help . And now I think I'll stop being an old-fart around the house as soon as I get my net fix . ha ha . Do you go bananas when you lose the net for a while ? I have come to the conclusion that I am addicted , BUT I LIKE IT . Malcolm

Saturday, July 3, 2010











Ciejay and me have had family from the USA here for a week or two and we have had lots of fun taking them around the country . They have also had a lot of Sister-Hood time and during these times and I chose to stay Home _Alone , for my sanity, can for a minute you imagine being in the van with five sisters and a brother and all of them trying to talk at the same time (Thai custom ) and all in Thai and noone worried wheither or not you can understand what they are saying , pointing to , are laughing at , I can let my thoughts and imangination run wild and quickly decided to stay home-alone and not complain at all.
They have had a great time and I have really enjoyed the time I did spend with them , I really got to eat some great Thai food with all the sisters cooking ,gained 3 kilo.
Well their last day with us, I thought it would be a good idea to take them to see and take a ride on the elephants , my nephew ,Alex was really excited and kinda scared a little , we got there and took a few snap shots with the baby elephants and then they went for a ride , they loved it and I'm sure that Alex will remember this day and the elephant ride till the day he dies. A fun time was had by all. Took a few pictures and , hope you enjoy them
I sooooo love the elephants and love to visit them every chance I get , especially when I get to go out in the jungle camp and see my favorite elephant girl Moll- Lee . I'll do a post soon about her , I guess thats another reason why I'm sooo happy here in the LOS and to be Retired in Thailand and Loving It. Malcolm