For 2013

19 December

Busy again with stuff away from Koh Chang, least week it was a nice drive up to Vientiane, Laos that left me wondering why someone on the island doesn’t have a specialised fruit smoothie shop by the roadside with a sideline in awesome baguettes.  No more trips away until January, at least none are planned, though that could change.

He probably won’t be playing Jungle Bells, but Barry from the DubPistols is special guest at Q, Lonely beach this Xmas Eve.  If you haven’t heard the Dub Pistols, you can discover more their Soundcloud page, music is a  mix of dub, ska & hip-hop. Worth going to if you are in the area.  ( Hope that’s worth a packet of Digestives, Barry. I’m easily bribed.)

Klong Kloi Beach is a pleasant spot for a bit of sunbathing and good views out to the islands south of Koh Chang. I was down there twice recently – taking some people for a bit of sightseeing.  the second trip, I warned the guys I was with about what to expect, as the previous visit it was populated by a fifty-something Russian tour group.  If the wearing of speedos & bikinis  was a crime, then some of the elderly group would be hauled off to The Hague for atrocities and hung.

However, this week things were looking decidedly perkier, the fifty-somethings having been replaced with a far younger crowd for whom a bikini top was just too much hassle to put on first thing in the morning. “In the distance you can just make out the silhouette of Koh Kood, the flat island is Koh Mak, in front of that is Koh Wai and about 5 metres from where we’re standing you’re probably having as much trouble as I am trying to ignore a couple of really cute semi-nude girls bouncing around in the surf.

Please note, that I cannot be held responsible for lack of Russian totty on view or the quality. Nor do I in any way condone Maria Sharapova look-a-likes getting their tits out on Koh Chang’s beaches,as this is technically illegal. (Insert obvious police related ‘busted’ gag here.)

Kai Bae View

If you’re looking for longstay accommodation the ‘Klong Praow Camp’ has just re-opened.  Fan bungalows for 6,000 Baht/month, AC bungalows for 9,000 and 2 bedroom house for 30,000 Baht/month.  Quiet location and by far the cheapest monthly rent you will find by the beach.  These are old buildings that were part of Klong Prao Fisherman’s Camp.  This ceased to be several years ago when Aana Resort rented the land to as a beach for their guests. The bungalows haven’t been used since and have now been renovated.  There’s no obvious way to get there – but access is through Klong Prao Resort.

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Last year we had a Grande Xmas Charity Appeal which raised a smile and some cash for those in need – or it would have done if only the admin fees hadn’t eaten up 99% of the donations and I’m sure this year will be no different.

But the problem is deciding who to give to when there are so many deserving causes in the community.  Therefore, this year the choices have been narrowed down to an elephant, an abandoned kitten and an alcoholic expat.

Simply insert your choice of deserving causes into the blurb below and stick your credit card details in an email to me. Giving couldn’t be easier and less guilt free this year.

2013 Adopt a __________ for Christmas Appeal

Through IaMKohChang you can adopt a __________ quickly and easily online as a gift.
Adopting a __________ can really help as  Koh Chang’s __________ population has decreased dramatically as their natural habitat is encroached upon by development. This is a worldwide problem destroying nature, damaging communities and distorting trade.  Around half of the world’s natural habitat for __________ has now disappeared.

From just 1,000 Baht a month you can adopt a __________ . Your support will help us to safeguard the future of __________ on Koh Chang and build a future in which  __________ can live in harmony with locals, tourists & nature.

Your gift helps provide the daily sustenance it takes to keep a __________ happy and healthy. Plus ensuring they get a daily bath and routine medical care. All of this costs a lot of money! Your gift will help provide the best care that each __________ needs and deserves.

When you adopt a __________ you get a special pack and updates on how your __________ is doing.

As a foster parent you will receive the following:

– A personalized foster certificate
– A high-quality photo of your foster __________
– Your foster __________’s biography, detailing their life before they were rescued
– Two or three updates per year on your chosen __________’s progress as well as new photos of them enjoying the fruits of your labour.

But wait . .  .there’s more  . .. you will also receive a choice of either:

– a) ‘ __________s’, a beautiful book which details your chosen adoptee’s intricate society and strong sense of family.
– b) A beautiful __________ soft toy.  Kids will love it.
– c) A car bumper sticker which states “ASK ME ABOUT MY __________.”

ALTERNATIVELY

. . .

You could do something more useful with your hard earned cash. And No, I don’t mean spend it on one of the  3,000 Baht a head Xmas Gala Buffet dinners that every posh hotel will hold. ( If I was paying that much for a meal in Thailand I’d expect a Michelin starred chef; live music from a band I’d heard of; and a show that wasn’t a troupe of rather unconvincing ladyboys lip syncing to ‘YMCA’ and ‘I will Survive’. )

For example, this year the shareholders of iamkohchang.com aren’t going to award ourselves an annual bonus. Instead the money is being used to pay for our maid’s husband to have a couple of operations on his eyes.  Something he needs, that the government hospitals won’t do and which he can’t afford to have done at a private hospital.  It’s a pretty minor op – but one that will make a world of difference to him as his eyesight is getting progressively worse.  First op is scheduled for this coming weekend and then he’ll get the second eye done after New Year.  Total cost is about the same as a family of four will spend on their Xmas Buffet dinner and rooms for the night at a beachfront hotel on Koh Chang.

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Finally, the weather has been cooler than normal here recently, with a cool north wind blowing.  Fortunately the sun is shining.  But early morning and in the evening you’ll want to cover up and wear a long sleeved shirt. These photos all taken earlier this week.

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