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Time & Temperature

Column no. 120 - 111

You will see columns in the past; what I noticed about/in Thailand, about differences between Thailand and Japan and so on.
I'm wondering how long I can continue writing a column... :D

190-181 180-171 170-161 160-151 150-141 140-131 130-121 120-111 110-101
100-91 90-81 80-71 70-61 60-51 50-41 40-31 30-21 20-11 10-1

no.120 - Relaunch

This time, not related to Thailand, but the Japanese version of this website was relaunched.
(The design has been changed a little superficially.)

I was guessing it would be finished soon, one or two weeks, but I started it from the beginning of April and it took about one month ! While I didn't know that, the famous water festival in Thailand, "Songkran Festival" was over and the Golden week (holidays in Japan from the end of April until the beginning of May) had come.
If you make a website, I guess, you have heard or known "CSS" (style sheet). Some say if you use it, the maintenance of the website can be easier and you'll have more benefits than not using it. Okay ! Now try it ! This was the trigger.

However, while I checked about how to make a website and CSS on the net, a lot of information was found and it made me confused and took me a lot of time more than I expected, such as;
Each kind of browser show websites with CSS different, frame pages (old Japanese versions was using frames) are not good and layouts with table are no good (this English version is this type (later, the English version was aslo relaunched with CSS around the end of May, 2007).

In the end, I didn't understand the information very well, though.... Anyway, this is about how to make a website and visitors don't need to care.

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no.119 - Bicycle no.2

Long long time ago, I wrote about bicycle in the column no.5 but I feel I had almost never seen people riding on a bicycle in Thailand.

The other day when I went to Thailand (Bangkok), I visited a big park called "Suan Rot Fai" (State Railway Public Park) with my wife and her family to play foot ball (kids are now into foot ball ! :)). It was a huge park.

Rental bicycles are available. A lot of people are riding on a bicycle and we also rent bicycles, went around the park and played foot ball in a wide space.
(I felt I saw people riding on a bicycle for the first time...)

And some days later, while I was in a car in Bangkok, I saw a man riding on a bicycle in a city for the first time. Looked like he was a tourist and was riding among cars  with a brain bucket on in sport clothes. "Wow,.. but it's dangerous...", I felt but some people sell something on the street, so,,, "Hmmm, it's okay.", I thought. :D

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no.118 - Open again, Don Muang airport !

You maybe already know this but the old international airport in Thailand, Don Muang,  has been opened again.

The new international airport, Suvarnabhumi, which was opened last year, September in 2006, looks that it is too much crowded or troubles of its runway cracks and because of this, they wanted to open again the old airport.

However, the old airport is only for domestic flights, and the only three airlines are available, that is, Thai Airways, Nok Air, and One-Two-Go Airlines.

The airport cord is not "BKK" but "DMK" not to be confused, and the flight numbers that Thai Airways uses are 4 digits starting with "1" such as "TG1234".

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no.117 - Shopping in Spain ?

The other day, looks like my wife made a one day trip to Spain from Japan while she didn't notice that.

The next day in the morning in Tokyo, Japan, it was a wonderful day, and the sunshine gently held the living room. Someone made a phone call and my wife answered it ...

  • The man: (In Japanese) Hello. This is xxx of xxx credit card company. I'd like to talk to xxx...
  • My wife: (In Japanese) Sure, it's me.
  • The man: Your card was used in Spain yesterday for more than 100,000 yen (about 840 U.S. dollars) shopping.
  • My wife: .... Whaaaat !? (She understands what he means.)
  • The man: Did you go to Spain yesterday ?
  • My wife: Oh, no, no, no, no, I didn't ! I mean it ! I was here in Tokyo ! I was here ! (She understands the situation and was almost thrown into a panic.)
  • The man: Please calm down. Don't worry.
  • My wife: What should I do ? What should I do ? (in a panic)
  • The man: If you didn't use your card, you need to do a procedure to cancel it. We will cancel your card first, and ..... (he started to explain what she should do.)
  • My wife: (still in panic but) ... I don't understand Japanese well... Could you call my husband ? (desperate)

Right after that, my wife called me and told me about this, then a while later, the man called me and told me the procedure. I asked him to send us the claim form to fill in.

After finishing talking to him, I quickly called back my wife, desperately waiting for my call, and told her, " Hey, you went to Spain ? How wonderful ! :D ". She got mad but relieved.

Looks like a shop skimmed information from her credit card. It might be when we went to Thailand the other day. I'm not sure where and when but be careful of your card especially when you go abroad. :)
(Some days later, my wife got a new card. Now she can shop a lot !? :D )

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no.116 - Makha Bucha Day

It was a day called "Makha Bucha Day" on 3rd, March. It is a religious and national holiday in Thailand.

This holiday is not on the same date every year: it's held on the full moon of the third lunar month and it's usually the end of February or early in March.
("Makha Bucha" literally means worshipping (Bucha) in the third month (Makha).)

This holiday is from the two old events below that happened on the full moon of the third lunar month
2,500 years ago,

  1. 1,250 Buddhist monks who had been individually ordained by Buddha himself came from all locations and directions to hear the Buddha's preach with no announce or schedule.
    The Buddha gave them the three disciples: cease from all evil, do what is good, cleanse one's mind.

  2. 45 years later, the last year for the Buddha, the Buddha announced to the 1,250 Buddhist monks that he would enter Nirvana and break the constant cycle of death and rebirth within the following three months.

On this day, Thai people go to their local temple in the morning to make merit, listen to sermons and also to take part in a candle-lit procession, walking around the temple 3 times; the first is for Buddha, the second is for doing good, the third is for monks.
(Not on this day, but I saw people were doing the same in the temple, Doi Suthep in Chiang Mai.)

By the way, on that day, government office, some shops and offices are closed, and bars and restaurants stop serving alcohol.

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no.115 - T-Shirt

You often see someone wearing a T-shirt on the street, and I also wear a T-shirt so often. This was in Thailand the other day.

A Thai male is walking wearing a white T-shirt in a department store. I noticed that Japanese 50 characters from " あ い う え お " (a i u e o) are written on his back in black all over. I have a Thai character T-Shirt and I thought, "Ah, Japanese character version is sold here in Thailand." and I noticed some Roman Alphabets are written, "OTAKU", under that.

I don't know if he knew the meaning and wore that but in Japan also, you sometimes see someone wearing a T-shirt with some English written that gives you a start, right ?

It would be better to check the meaning before you wear it. :)

    In modern Japanese slang, an otaku refers to an overtly obsessive fan of any one particular theme, topic, or hobby. (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

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no.114 - Dog in Bangkok

You know what ? Dogs are relaxing here and there along streets, right ? This is when I was going back home from the Grand Palace in Bangkok.

It was a very warm day (as usual) and I was walking along the street to find and take a taxi. I noticed a dog sitting on the road next to the median strip planting. Cars were coming and going, speeding. "Noooo, dangerous ! What should I doooo ? " I had nothing to do with the dog, just watching over him. Then a car sped close to the dog. Noooo! Help !

The dog, however, stepped back to the center once to get out of the way of the car and went across the street, taking the chance of a moment of a gap in traffic like nothing happened, then went away somewhere.

You are great ! :D

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no.113 - Part-time job

Now, we were hungry and went to a restaurant in a department store in Thailand. Tourists from overseas were here and there in that building but it looked like only Thai local people were having lunch there.

After having lunch and while relaxing for a while, I saw a few girls, junior high or high school students, in a school uniform, suddenly sprang up and quickly went to a table and cleared it. "Huh?", I was watching for a while and found that they were working for a part-time job.
(You can tell what it looked like if you imagine that in Japan, girl students in their summer school uniform are working in a restaurant.)

I guess the school laws allow them to work because they are working in the school uniform but in Japan, usually you change into the uniform of the shop, right ?

The scenery was a little bit unusual and curious to me. :)

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no.112 - Warning label of No Smoking

I wrote about smoking in Thailand in the past, but the last time when I went to Thailand, I noticed a warning label of no smoking at restaurants like below;
" Smoking in this area is prohibited. Fine 2,000 Baht."

I heard that smoking at department stores or restaurants is not allowed at all in Thailand, and the situation for smokers has been getting worse and worse. (Do you smoke ? :D )

I, one of smokers, bought a new portable ashtray at Narita airport in Japan last time when I went to Thailand. It is a plastic case with a stand to be put on a table. This is convenient and it looked like my wife's dad looked at it with interest. :D

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no.111 - On the top of the mountain in Chiang Mai

It's, as you know, very warm in Thailand. Even though you are shivering in winter in Japan, once you fly to Bangkok, you must feel as if it were in summer there. Around 25 to over 30 degrees Celcius !

I visited Chiang Mai by air from Bangkok during this new year holiday. I went there before but this time, I went up to the highest mountain in Thailand, called "Doi Inthanon", 2,565 meters high, of which I uploaded pictures this week, in the early morning. Aaand, you know what ? It was quite cold there. Around 7 degrees (3 degrees the day before). Wow wow. People around me who visited there at that time looked they were local people and they must have felt colder than I did who had been spending winter time in Tokyo until a few days ago.

In Chiang Mai, it's very very warm in April, and it's cool from November to January, around 25 degrees Celcius in the day time but kind of cold in the early morning or at night. This time also, not only on the top of the mountain, I wore a long sleeve shirt in the morning.

Be careful not to catch a cold in Thailand. :)

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190-181 180-171 170-161 160-151 150-141 140-131 130-121 120-111 110-101
100-91 90-81 80-71 70-61 60-51 50-41 40-31 30-21 20-11 10-1