Back in the Land of Smiles

So, it’s five years since I was last in Thailand…. Wait, not just about five years but EXACTLY five years and so much has changed in that time I can scarcely believe it, but ain’t that always the way? Has much changed in Thailand? Undoubtedly. political upheaval, tsunami, flooding, and much more, but I have to be honest and confess that even though I love this country, I have never been the type to keep up to date with international news and politics and most of that, apart from the tsunami of course, has gone almost completely over my head. Which I shall now duly hang in shame.

As I write I am sitting in Bangkok airport waiting for our flight to Chiang Mai having a coffee and listening to mum read out a list of jetlag symptoms since for the last 3 days or so we have both been having some lightheaded dizzy spells. I’m having one right now, it’s like being pissed but freeeeeee!

Bangkok was good but hectic: I’m glad we’re leaving after only a couple of days. It was a useful interlude to let us settle into a different time zone and remember what Thailand is all about, but I personally wouldn’t enjoy a stay there of longer than 2 days. I’m looking forward to being able to move around a smaller city a bit more easily and with less stress than Bangkok allows. However, I’m glad to have finally experienced a little bit of it.

So, how was it? Our hotel was lovely. Luxurious, clean, quiet, amazing staff, and an outdoor pool which provided welcome coolness in this mid-thirties heat. For all Bangkok’s legendary (infamous?) night life, my favorite bit was yesterday’s 6am wake up swim after finding myself wide awake at 4am and lying in bed for 2 hours, futilely attempting sleep. What better way, in my opinion, to see the Bangkok sky than floating in cool water on your back?

Anyway, our first night we got in after…. (mentally calculating….) 28 hrs constant traveling and having not really slept the night before leaving I was, as the French say, fucked. The journey itself was unremarkable, except for Mumbai airport, which was remarkably cockroach infested and awful. We both fell blissfully unconscious and woke up late and went for a brief walk to the local mall to find sim cards and have a coffee and some breakfast, having gotten up too late to have hotel breakfast. We had a wander and then in the afternoon I took a deathdefying, super fun motorcycle taxi ride half an hour to Jitti Gym to do some Muay Thai. Jitti Gym is quite famous in UK Muay Thai circles since Bad Company fighters, who are the best in the UK, tend to train there. My pad man was lovely and very patient of my wheezing and needing to take 3 minute breaks for every 1minute round, bless him. Skipping, pad work, then intermittent wheezing and bag work, then technique training and back home for a swim in the pool.

Thursday we woke up early, hence the 6am swimming, and took a guided tour of Bangkok that we didn’t really want but sort of got Britished into out of fear of saying no. we saw the reclining Buddha at Wat Pho, then got pushed into a long tail boat ride down Chao Phraya river and taken via the clothing and jewellery shops of our guide’s friends but succeeded in buying nothing. THoroughly travel sick and knackered we ended up at MBK shopping center, on the recommendation that we should see the “crazy” electronics floor…. Which is where I bought this iPad I’m typing on now…. Whoops! (awesome). Finally we made it home with no more energy or will to live than would permit swimming and room service and wondrous, blessed sleep.

The following morning, we packed our bags, bid farewell to the pool and let our tricky yet nice guide drive us to the airport to head for Chiang Mai, which is where I waffle from right now. So, hopefully tomorrow I won’t have to try and recount 5 days worth of information in 1 post and can do a marginally better job.

Sunday Blues

Ah, it’s one of those evenings. The dissatisfied, down, morose ones where sad music seems like an excellent idea and all your conversations are fatally tinged with melancholy and passive aggression, because nothing seems quite right. I#m familiar with these evenings, since they occur every fucking Sunday night. I really do suffer from a wicked dose of Sunday Blues every week, and tonight is no exception. Some Sundays I’m sad because Monday is coming or the weekend is over, others I’m irrationally angry at everything. This is one of those. There’s no particular reason for it; my job is not to remove nuclear waste or sewage by hand, or to hopelessly fight bureaucracy every grinding day, or to attempt to heal the multitudes of people who have no hope or desire to be healed. Actually, my job is relatively enjoyable in some ways: I never get bored, and watch the clock, I occasionally have days where I feel professionally satisfied, and most days I can sneak home by 4pm if I’m prepared to do work in my own time. Which is fine by me, I’m very on board with doing work in my PJs. So, why the weekly misery? Fucked if I know, yet thar she blows.

 

Nostaglia

In the course of talking to a friend about the past (Muay Thai, cutting weight etc etc), I decided to have a look back over my old blog I was keeping at the time, and it got me to thinking that I did used to quite enjoy writing, and actually sometimes wasn’t too bad at it….

Would it be so difficult, or such a bad idea to get back to writing more. Obviously, preferably with a little less emphasis on the whole depression, life is miserable blah blah blah aspect which began to feature quite heavily towards the end of my blog-writing ….err…. career? No. That is definitely not the right word. I’ll go with…. thing. Blog Writing Thing. Nice and… what’s the word? Articulate.

So, I have two weeks off work and little to do. Here are my three aims:
1 – do Muay Thai two times a week and run or visit the gym at least one other time
2 – nail down this whole house-moving thing if possible
3 – write in the blog in some sort of entertaining and personally pleasing manner

That seems like a reasonably number of goals for an Easter break.

Watch this space.

Fun in the sun

I believe I have previously mentioned that work is awful right now. The job I basically created and earned was kind of nicked, projects I had undertaken my boss didn’t tell her boss about, so I got no credit for the work, and seriously shit communication damaged my reputation at the point where the decision about who should do the role I wanted was being made.

Essentially, I got screwed. Sadly, nobody quite worked out how or why till it had happened and I resigned.

That said, I now have a better paying job lined up at a better school and its definitely all for the best, so it itsnt all gloom, but the next 6 weeks until I finish my current contract look tricky.

I feel so fucked over, bored and excluded that I’m really not.enjoying my days, so I’m working on small ways of improving my days.

Today, for example, I took advantage of the plus 20 degrees and blazing sunshine to bugger off to the park and sunbathe in my underwear for an hour, reading a book. I just organised an emergency “shit day” pack with a towel, scream, book and shorts to keep under my desk. Sorted.

I can use spare time to write more, get out of the building, who knows. Suggestions are welcome.

My diet, why hast though forsaken me?

Because I’m in a new relationship and its impossible to say “no, please: don’t make me delicious French cuisine with potatoes, cream, bacon and cheese. Id rather have a salad and some unsweetened beans. You carry on though”.

Fortunately, despite my over-indulgence during the Easter break, I’ve maintained my weight and can now attempt to carry on losing gradually and perhaps be comfortably in the 60’s of kilos by my birthday at the end of June.

In general I’ve adapted so that I am good at work during the day and less strict at night so that dinner won’t be a pain in the arse for the boy as well.

My current goals as they stand are to be 69kg by June 23rd, to run once per week, train twice and teach the boxing class twice. Hopefully this will see me a happier, fitter, healther 28 year old!

Again hopefully, the fact that work is a massive pile of shit right now and a daily source of unhappiness should mean that thinking about my health can be my biggest priority. I’m going to do what is necessary for the kids and otherwise forget the place between 4pm and 8am the next day.

Plan? Plan.

When I am a grown up

Recently I’ve been thinking about what I want to achieve by the time I’m 30. Yes, OK, I’m only 27, but in a month or so I’ll be 28 and that is, let’s face it, almost 30.

I know folk don’t like to admit it, but if you were just counting, say, and you got to 27 or 28, you’d say you were *almost* at 30. Wouldn’t you? You would.

So, there, like it or not, I’m numerically almost 30.

And that is a big number and I want to have some shit in order by then so that I can just deal with the fact that I’ll then be a proper grown up, with declining fertility, an even greater propensity to sag and little idea of what my future holds.

So here, in its mediocre glory, is my List and I’m sure I will add to it as I go.

Finances

1.  Be financially solvent: no debt

2. Have savngs and be saving regularly

3. Have a secure, international Pension

Career/Training

4. Figure out what I want to do with my life: find a path in education or a new career path which will give me challenge and excitement, either mentally, physically or both

5. Get a driving licence

Health

6. Be a healthy, maintain able weight, ideally c.65kg

7. Train again in Thailand

Fun

8. Try Taiko Drumming

9. Try Roller Derby

10. Travel to at least 3 new countries

11. Learn something new for the sake of learning

And that’s all for now, folks…