Ten Years Ago January 2009

 |  December 29, 2008

Citylife (which changed its name from the Chiang Mai Newsletter in 2002) has been in publication for over seventeen years. Let’s look back at what we wrote 10 years ago.

1999: The Chiang Mai Newsletter bar is now officially open to anyone who may be interested to pop in to meet us or other business people in Chiang Mai. We are open every Friday after work for a few hours and finish whenever the crowd moves away! This is a great place to meet up with your friends or bring your friends and family for a quiet drink. Our beautiful office on the Irrigation Canal Road has a spacious croquet lawn and a small bar at cheap prices. So please drop by for a chat or a thirst quencher any Friday.

2009: Amazingly, this Friday gathering became quiet popular and during it’s hey day, we would regularly attract crowds of between 20-40 people. Visiting journalists from prestigious newspapers and magazines – The Economist, Bangkok Post, The Nation, South China Morning Post and many other interesting locals and occasional tourists would turn up to our humble bar where we sold beers, whisky and boxed wines at cost.

1999: Birdwatchers: A European Blackbird (TurdusMerula) was seen in Chiang Mai the week before Christmas. Since this is only the second recorded sighting of this species in Thailand, it has caused some excitement among resident ‘twitchers’. The location is along the Canal Road, past the 700 year stadium to the Huay Tung Tao Bridge. Approximately 100 metres further on there are piles of coconut shells beside the right hand side of the road (do not cross the bridge) and the bird was seen in this area on two occasions by three observers including Tony Ball. For those without a bird book it is about the size of a common muynah with a longer tail, it is all black with a bright yellow bill. Do not confuse it with the black drongo, which has a black beak and deeply forked tail. Also a Riverchat and a Plumbeous Redstart have been seen at the Tad Mok Waterfall.

2009: Two years ago a small group of birdwatchers approached the Royal Thai Army for permission to set up a nature reserve at Huay Tung Tao. Permission was granted last year and they are going ahead with plans.

This reserve will be a great asset to Chiang Mai not only for visiting birdwatchers – they have 251 species of birds in the area – but for local schools, colleges and universities to use for environmental studies. Cities such as London and Hong Kong have excellent reserves; we must educate our people regarding the environment before it is too late. For further information please contact Nigel Parker the Project Coordinator at nigel_parker50@hotmail.com