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Monday, August 29, 2011

Canada and Taipei

China Airlines in Hong Kong with Air Canada in the background

Just a note to say that I am on the road, through Taipei, with a stop in both directions, and apparently just at, or after the typhoon hits there, and back to Canada, for the next few weeks. I love China Airlines for this Trip, as they have never let me down and their on-line services are incredible. They also tend to have consistent seat sales from Vancouver to Asia. And it is the one airline I can fly direct from Phuket, with a stop-over and then go to Vancouver, without having to hub through Bangkok, entailing two stop-overs normally!
I have 2 blog posts I am in the process of finalizing, so there will still be posts.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Go Karting

There are two Go Kart tracks here in Phuket. During the Grumpy Old Men car rally (previous post) we used the track in Kathu for our driving skills testing of the participants. Now I will find myself behind the wheel of a Go Kart in about 2 weeks at the track Chalong, closer to my home.

It never started out to be that way. At a meeting of the Tourist Police Volunteers,

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Music Made In Phuket - Dark Fiber

Yesterday morning I tuned into one of the local radio stations and they were doing an intro of a song performed by a group named Dark Fiber. Not to be confused with another group, I believe out of America of the same name. This Dark Fiber is a local Phuket based group, who have recorded in the studios of Legend Music at the Boat Lagoon.

The announcer made a great intro explaining the artist and the Legend Music studio as well as our friend Gary Crause who owns the studio and produces the group. The song getting airplay was a remake of the House of the Rising Sun. Gary has been toying with the concept of a disco-rock style of music and this is a great example of how you can take an old song, rework it and find yourself singing along and bopping around, in my case, cleaning floors. The track itself goes for 6 minutes, quite a bit more air time than a standard top 40's radio air play song with an average of 3 minutes, but great for just listening and probably dancing to in a club. And then again, I am not a music industry person, so it is my opinion strictly as a consumer.

Our friends Gary, Deb and their son Blaze were the first friends we made when we moved here. We all met at the Thai Airways cargo offices in Phuket airport, as we awaiting the arrival of our respective dogs who had been shipped seperate from us. Like us they had uprooted everything from their home in South africa, including a productive recording career, to live the life that the land of smiles promised. And together we have lived through each others adjustments and sometimes the conflict of the dream with the reality. And as time has moved along we do nto see each other as much as we used to, but the good news is because the dream of recording and producing in Thailand is finally happeneing for them, it means little socializing time. We also live abut a one hour drive away from each other. when they have not been building the studio, getting business, managing their sons education and travelling to do recording work elsewhere, or keeping up with the name acts that are appearing here, and then trying to match our life schedule, it gets difficult. But we always do manage to find time to get together and it is always good.

We have followed the trials and tribulations as observers on getting the songs together dealing with the issues of studio and recording times and schedules, not to mention the challanges brought by the general infrastructure isses like a building location and lease, electricity and internet access. But in the end they have done it. And yesterday for a few minutes, I thought, hey wait a minute I know this recording, and who made it, and even some of how it got to be where it was on the radio.

I am so happy that this project has made it out of the studio, ready for the world to listen and then for more business to follow.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Surviving A Rip Current

In the hope that this message helps just one person, will make me happy.
Every year at this time, monsoon season, and the seasonal tropical storms. The water get very unpredictable and have proven fatal to more than one visitor. Today the local radio stations are telling people that the tropical storm coming in today, having worked it's way from the south China sea, wreaking destruction across Vietnam and caused flooding in northern Thailand while winding down is headed our way and has caused all the beaches to be closed.

The issue is what is locally referred to as a rip current or in some countries a rip tide.

Crackdown of the week

I have debated writing this entry for  a number of reasons. But it is a reflection of my reality or perceived reality. The subject is crackdowns.

Over the past few months we have been having what I refer to as the "crackdown of the week". Police or some government department with jurisdiction (there is no apparent cross-jurisdiction), swarm into an area and cracks down on an activity.