Friday, April 13, 2018

Happy Thailand New Year --Songkran

What is Songkran and how do Thai's celebrate 
Truly, there are different ways people celebrate New Year. While western countries use fireworks for the celebration, Chinese nationals have their dragon dance. However, Thailand has the most unusual way of celebrating New Year, and this is known as Songkran Festival. If this is the first time you heard about this, then you may want to know more. Who knows? You might also be interested in joining them.
What is Songkran Festival?
If we would take a look at the history, Songkran actually originated from Burma. In fact, there are also other countries practicing such festivity like Vietnam and Laos. The word Songkran was actually derived from “Sankranti”, which means “to move or to change”. Celebrated on particular dates in 13 April – 15 April, Songkran 2017 is regarded as the longest holiday in Thailand. Unlike other festivals in the place, Songkran is said to be the grandest since it is traditionally celebrated for three consecutive days.
Similar to other nationalities, Thais also have beliefs which truly originated from their forefathers. A day before the celebration of Songkran, the housewives must clean their house and remove all the rubbish. Otherwise, it might bring them bad luck for the remaining months of the recent year. As part of the belief, Buddha images should be washed carefully so as to bring good fortune to house owners.
Rather than an earthly enjoyment, Songkran 2016 focuses on spiritual intentions like giving alms to monks and paying a visit to Buddhist temples in their place. In addition to that, they build sand pyramid images and festoon colorful stuff such as flowers and flag lets.
But before we forget, the festival would not be complete without the so-called Water fight. Armed with water guns and water containers, TRAVELERS and natives including children throw water upon others, which symbolizes cleansing and rejuvenating of their bodies. There is no exception in this festival but obviously everyone understands the real meaning of this event
Info from the net

Friday, April 6, 2018

Young Coconuts --How good and healthy

Cool and Refreshing ----- just what I needed
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Today I was sitting at my computer desk and complaining to myself about how hot it was and that I really needed something cold to drink, I had already drank a Coke Zero earilier and at least two tall glasses of Ice water , but nothing seemed to cool me down or quench that taste I had for something good and cold and refreshing at the same time,When all of a sudden Ciejay walked in and handed me a chilled , young coconut that the neighbor had given her and she had opened up the top and stuck in a straw and said " here honey try this I think you will like ", well I was ready for anthing cold and to my surprise , that was some of the best tasting ,cool juice I have ever tasted and when I had finished she gave me a small spoon and said for me to eat the meat inside , I said "get me the hammer to break the shell open first " Ciejay said "no honey , it's really soft and you can just take it out with the spoon . "I can not begin to tell you how surprise I was at not only how soft the meat was , but there are not good english words to describe how yummy and sweet tasting that meat from the YOUNG COCONUT was , you'll have to try it for yourself. I know some folks will have a hard time finding Young Coconut , but I think if you ask the local produce manager at the market where you shop to order some for you they will. Also you can always find them at a Asian or Mexican food store .
Below is some info I gathered from the web about coconuts and the great health value they can provide for lots of ailments we might have , I know that from now on I'll have a few cold ones in the frig. to grab when I need something cold and refreshing to drink ( I'm not going to give up my Coke Zero ) from time to time . Hope you'll give it a try too , let me know what you think .

Coconuts taste GREAT! Besides the incredibly amazing experience one can have when eating coconuts, there are many other reasons to eat this wonderful delicacy! In fact, the young coconut is one of the most important fruits within the tropics because of its potassium and mineral rich water.
Preferably, the water and meat from young coconuts is used as opposed to the meat of older coconuts which tends to be very hard (as well, older coconuts typically have less water...if any.)
Medicinal Value Besides being highly nutritious, young coconuts have also been exceedingly revered as having medicinal qualities for heart, liver and kidney disorders.
Coconut is a tropical fruit that is rich in protein. The meat of the coconut is very good in destroying intestinal parasites, that we get from eating infected food. Coconut water is good for kidney and urinary bladder problems.
Nutritive Values : Per 100 gm.
Vitamin A :
Vitamin B : Thiamine .10 mg.;
Riboflavin :
Niacin :
Vitamin C : 2 mg.
Calcium : 21 mg.
Iron : 2.0 mg.
Phosphorus : 98 mg.
Fat : 34.7 gm.
Carbohydrates : 14 gm.
Protein : 3.4 gm.
Calories : 359
Other Health Benefits of Coconut :
Prevents simple goiter (enlarged non-toxic thyroid) because of its organic iodine content.
Good body builder, so it is a food recommended for building up the body muscles of thin and emaciated individuals.
Constipation and for any build-up of gas in the stomach and intestinal tract.
Coconut milk has been found to help cases of sore throat as well as relieving stomach ulcers.
Coconut oil has been found to heal cuts, scratches, burns and sunburns.
The oil has also been recommended for facial massage and is reported to be good as a wrinkle remover.
Coconut oil is also good for the scalp and hair and makes hair dressing unnecessary.
Intake of at least 2 Tbsp. of Virgin coconut oil per day can lessen your Vitamin E requirement.
Coconut water is good for kidney and urinary bladder problems.as recently been reported to reduce the viral load of HIV. ( info from the www)

Before coming to Thailand , the only thing I knew about coconuts was that my dad us to draw faces on them to make them look like a monkey ,and that shredded coconut was good on a cake and that the milk was kind of sour and the meat was hard and also a lot of work to get it out of the shell . All that has changed and now that I am in the land of fruits and coconuts , I have learned how great coconuts and their milk and juice and coconut oil, are for your health and that the Thai cooks use them in hundreds of their dishes , there are many varities also, and each has it specific use in the Thai kitchens.
You can find lots of recipes on Golf's new blog http://www.awesomethaifood.com/ together her and Steve write the great blog called ThaiMusings, check them out, you'll find not only a lot of good Thai dishes to cook but , you'll enjoy all the other good stuff on the blog. Thanks for the read . Malcolm

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Life and Living on Moo 1 "Boys will be Boys"

I'll have to say that of all the places I have lived in my life,living on Moo 1 here in Wang Pho ,Thailand , has been one of the most relaxing ,scenic,peaceful,and enjoyable,places of all.Things for the most part are pretty laid back and quite , with the exception of Saturday morning when the next door neighbor feels it is his duty to wake all of the Moo up really early with a demonstration of how loud and full of bass his stereo system can play , and of course along with the loud music comes a variety of Karaoke song ,sung, at their worse. I never get to excited ,because by the time I am ready to roll out of bed , he has consumed his limit of beers and passes out on his couch for the rest of the day. As I said at the first of the post, it's normally pretty quite , but I did fail to mention that about every other week-in the daughters of our neighbors drop of their two sons  for grandma to watch while they get things done around their houses and do a little shopping , I must say I don't know how grandma does it , all they do is fight each other and running up and down the road crying and screaming and when they are not fighting they are chasing all the dogs around  trying to hit them with their sticks. The dogs have gotten use to  the boys and would never bite them and have learned to stay out of their way , Sabu  hides on the back porch under the table.I have to keep a sharp eye out as they like to come over , when they have run out of things to do they will come over and toss rocks into my pond trying to kill as many of my fish as they can ,  the fish have wised up to the boys too and know just where to hide so they don't get hit too. I guess boys will be boys . Ciejay comes out too when they are in front of our house because with the sticks they carry  (they call them swords) they try to knock off all her flower blossoms.I call them weapons of mass destruction . And I've given them the old  "you better go home " eye a few times and that usually does the trick .
Life here is good and as I said before "boys will be boys"  and "kids will be kids." and "neighbors will be neighbors."  And I just fluff my pillow in the hammock and take a nap, Works every time .  Malcolm

"Here comes the JUnk Man"

That's a sound I love to hear , for one thing , it cleans out our storage room of all the plastic and cans and paper that Ciejay has saved to sell to the junk man.For Ciejay it brings a smile to her face , she saves the recyclable things to sell to the junk man and she calls it her "hair money" . The little bit of Baht that she gets adds to the (my) pocket change cup that she keeps on my computer table and when it's full it's time to go to the hair lady in the village, to get a cut and wash and style and sometimes even a dye job , ( when the gray comes peeking thru).
Recycling is sooo easy here in Thailand , because the junk man comes around with his truck and weight scales about once a month to buy from the folks, things that he can buy for a few baht per kilo and hopefully sell in the big city to the larger recyclers for a little profit . Some do this as a way of making a living and a few others in Wang Pho, do it for a week-in or part- time job to add to their monthly income or to help make the payments on the new truck or to pay for the building of a new home, that's the case, for one young couple that comes by.
Ciejay keeps her plastic in one bag and cans in another, all neat for the junk man , and me I am just happy to see it saved for a good cause ,and for the good of Mother Earth, the more we recycle and reuse , the less non biodegradable stuff that goes into the land fields and is dumped alone our highways and by-ways to stay forever polluting our land and landscape and adding another eyesore to our beautiful earth, and the area that we call home.
Do you recycle???  I remember in America it was a pain in the neck to do, because you had to have different color containers , and everything sorted out for the garbage men or they wouldn't pick it up and when they did , if it was something that they didn't want  they would just throw it back on your lawn and drive away , and you never saw a reduction on you (very high) garbage bill each month. Things here in are so different and the "JUNK MAN" makes it sooo easy to recycle , I have found it to be so , and I hope if you live in the LOS or in a place where they take recycling seriously that you do all you can to pitch -in and help , If we don't do it WHO WILL??.  Malcolm