Beyond the Postcard
[Re: Stuck in Place, Frozen in Time, October 2013] The long neck hill tribe villages of Thailand are part of the reason why I wanted to travel to the country. Hearing stories about them, however, I had soon grown ambivalent about visiting them. To this day, after having travelled and even lived for quite a few months in Thailand, I have never been in one such village.
I am not here to tell you to visit them or to not visit them, but I will tell you to educate yourself about these villages. This article is a great start.
Paul Xymon Garcia
Excellent article! Comprehensive and informative. You shed light on past and present questions surrounding conditions that the Kayan face in Burma and Thailand. Even after spending much time with the Kayan, there’s much I still don’t know, and your research and commentary here has given me many new insights. Thank you!
It really is well researched and written. You consolidated a lot of information about the Kayan that was formerly found in bits and pieces here and there. You also explored the different angles associated with matters pertaining to the Kayan.
Your article published recently [Immigration Frustrations, February 2013] has had quite an impact upon the productivity of the staff employed and the turnaround time. We have reported to you before that our experiences have been pleasant and the service acceptable. This week we arrived at our usual time of approximately 7.15 a.m. expecting to be admitted into the Immigration Office at 8 a.m. To our surprise the office opened at 7.30 a.m. and we were issued tickets and methodically prepared for the 8.30 a.m. counter start up.
All customers were seated and the counters logically divided up with new chrome rails to accommodate immigrants in sequence. Only a few natives from North America ignored the protocols. Outside, the photocopying process was quick thanks to the addition of more machines.
The net result of these simple changes has brought about significant service improvements and we thank you for contributing to this process.
[Re: Inspiration Incognito, October 2013]: Another wonderful story of Chiang Mai. Soi Wat Umong is a little known gem of Lanna. I’m glad this article reveals some of the jewels.
Should have also talked about Thepsiri’s and Wattana’s exhibition spaces inside their houses. Thepsiri had the walls full of drawings on Doi Suthep and nature. Really wonderful. Wattana uses his space for outstanding exhibitions and 31 Century refers to The Land (down the road a bit), a wonderful space and worth the mention. Has world class artists hanging out there. Finally The Land’s inspiration comes partially from Kamin, a great artist. Ah and you missed (did you?) Rirkrit’s house, which is a fantastic modernist concrete dream halfway between 31th Century and Ajarn Thepsiri’s house. Rirkrit is permanently living in NYC and his house was featured in NYTimes Sunday Magazine some years ago.
[Ed. Thank you for your additions! We did not include Wattana Wattanapun in this article because we just recently wrote an individual feature about him. “Painting a Legacy: The Art and Times of Wattana Wattanapun” can be found online in the February 2013 edition of Citylife.]
Laugh Out Loud
Your editorial this month [October 2013] was laugh out loud hysterical, again. I am enjoying the new direction your editorials are making. Of course the serious pieces are also important and you write with such flair, but it’s nice to be able to open up Citylife and literally spray the pages with my morning coffee. We all need more laughter in life.
[Editor,] you finally made me appreciate all those damn pictures of food on my Facebook, a feat I never thought to see. They normally annoy the hell out of me, make me dislike the repeated posters – yourself, too, were we “friends” – and want to rage at the showey images. Now, I see it through your perceptive eyes and realise that you are right, it is so Thai! Thai people share food, and why didn’t I realise that social media was a simple tool for them to do so? Great, just great.
About to add you as a “friend” so I hope you accept!
The Laramie Success
I just came home after watching your much-publicised Laramie Project and now I understand why it is much-publicised! I was blown away with the quality of the performances. Considering these are all part time and, I presume, amateur actors, it came across as a very professional production, the likes of which I have never seen in Chiang Mai, even without all the lights and sounds accompanying many Kad Theatre performances. A remarkable evening and I hope to see many more of its kind. Well done, cast and crew.