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El Laberinto del fauno

I recently went to my Ang Mo friend house and borrowed some DVDs to watch. To my surprise he has a copy of this Mexican movie, El Laberinto del fauno (in Spanish). It's called the Pan's Labyrinth in the International English and is a film by Guillermo Del Toro(Hellboy). The visuals effects are fantastic and the story very compelling.

Although supposed to look and sound like a children's film, the film is definitely only for adults. A lot of blood and gore yes, but behind all of these, there is a hidden moral behind the story which I comply greatly to. I am not going to spoil the film by talking about too much about it. I heard this film was already shown on Singapore's Cinema (R21). So I guess you could try to get a copy of the DVD if possible. Highly graded for those into cult films. 4.5 out of 5 stars for my taste. :)

The Singapore Inconvenient Story (We are not as good as we think)

If you CARE to check the meaning of inconvenient under This post is about a situation I perceive in Singapore social trend. From the people I spoke to, I kind of derived this post.

We Singaporeans tend to follow the crowd or want to be "one" of the crowd. This is especially true when the gahment say something so and so is good and we tend to just blindly follow.

Take for example, in the 1980s, the gahment was pushing engineering and we have flock of engineering students in the 1980s, followed by IT in 1990s (due to the Technology wave). Currently the trend is biomed. I myself have met students in my poly days that have not any interest in computer, yet they signed up the course as its supposed to be the "in" thing.

I even met some friends of mine joining churches because its "cool" in my secondary days. Not to say that most of them don't go to church anymore.

I also met some people who blindly venture into business as others are doing too. Examples from them are mass investments into China (with no results yield) and throwing money into stock exchanges (KLSE) and got burnt jialat jialat.

What about the bubble tea syndrome? Some people see other's business and copied it. These copiers normally have deeper pockets and they will undersell and to kill of other smaller competitors.

So are majority Singaporeans really that talented and good as mentioned in the mass media? I seriously doubt so. I think we are painting ourselves to be too good. The only positive edge about Singapore education is the using of the English language as its main official language. Other than that, most students (including me) are just bookworms who mostly use strategies to get good grades in the schools. Hardworking? Yes most of us are but at the same time, not working as smart as the Chinese or Indians. In short, we are not that good in areas that takes risks and sudden changes in the environment.

In short, I am a bit worry about the future generation of Singapore (our kids mainly). If they are going to compete against the children of China and India, who will win?? I mean we are already lack natural resource in our country and the only reason we are on top is because of our human resource, yet more and more bright local Singaporeans are leaving Singapore. The gahment tries to solve this by allowing more foreigners to be granted PR or citizens but yet, are they going to stay in Singapore forever?

Hectic week.

I am suppose to write once every 2 days, or at least try to. But this week was rather hectic over here for me. First, wife's friend is moving her house so I have to be the pick-up driver cum moving man for the day. Quite fun actually as you get to see few types of people when labour is involved. First is the looker which just looks until they are called to help. Then there is the worker who is enthusiastic and energetic all the way. Then there is the commander which gives people command on what to move. I classify myself as the observer.. hahah.. one who looks around a lot but don't really need to wait for people to call for me when help is needed. Anyway, completed the move in the afternoon and we get free lunch at their house, usual fare of chicken, vegetables and rice.

The next day, we went fishing with some of our friends. Very hot weather and we thought that its good to get out of the house as its very warm and stuffy in it. They have a lot of fishing ponds in Thailand (some of my friends will be very happy to learn about this) and you get to fish for the whole day for free!!! That is unless if you decided not to take any of your catch home at all. Most of the ponds actually are restaurants which you could send your catch to the kitchen to be cooked and served to you on the spot. Nothing beats the taste of a freshly caught fish (by yourself) and grilled or deep fried on the spot. The fish they eat is normally catfish or fresh water fish. That's why the best way to cook them is grill or deep fry and top it with lots of chili to get out the muddy taste.

The third day I helped my Ang Mo friend move his stall. (everyone moving!!) haha.. His rent just got more 5000baht more expensive so he decided to move out. The new location is not too far from his current position and offers a bigger space and much much lesser rent. He managed to borrow a cart which we mount onto his bike and proceeded to move part of his stuff over to the new location. Not completed though as most probably I will be helping him the new few days.

Today we went to Chiang Rai hospital for a routine check-up for my wife. (Almost a year after) Baby seems to enjoy the cheap bus ride (30 baht per head and baby is free) and we get to travel 72km to Chiang Rai (beat that SBS transit!!!). btw.. 30 baht is a dollar and thirty cents in Singapore dollars.


I am a bit slow on posting as nothing really interesting is happening here in Maesai. Except the weather is getting hotter everyday. Today the temperature in my room measures 34 Celsius! That's indoors!. Add another 2 to 4 degrees for outside temperature. Even at night, its a hot, no wind 31 degrees. Lucky its not humid (dry) but it makes the air very hot to breadth. Even my leather chair is hot. Really need to use the air-con to cool the room before going to bed.

Girl girl seems to be taking the heat quite well, but I think she is like me, prefer cooler weathers. She kinds of having more bad-tempers when its really hot. I guess we just need to endure for 2 more months of heat...

Meanwhile, I do heard Singapore has lots of news and interesting stuff happening. I wish I could write more but since I am not in Singapore, very hard for me to really comment on some of the issues.


Girl trying a piece of guava which happens to be very sour.... she kinds of like it though.... :P

Song Kran Part 2

Yesterday on the third day of Song Kran (which is suppose to be the last day of water fun), we went to the Wat (temple) in the morning to get blessed for the year and later in the afternoon. We took a trip to Chiang Saen to catch a Dragon Boat Race (Thai style of dragon boat). But the informer seems to have gave us the wrong day (suppose to be today) so we did not catch any big events. You may view a photo essay below by clicking on the album.

Song Kran 2007

Today is suppose to be a working day but as the 2 days of Song Kran is on a weekend, the Thai people will have an addtional 2 more days of holiday. (Bloody good man). No major splashing of water in Maesai today. Some kids are still having some minor fun but not as havoc as the last 3 days. We went around paying respect to my wife's relatives and some elders (ma cham our CNY bai nian). So we scooter around the area, going to 5 different places today. Now just reach home and finish this blog before going to bed... really a bit poofed liao.

Song Kran

Song Kran (Swang Krang) , 泼水节, or the New year (Water festival) of Thailand. Its on every 13th of April and yesterday was the first official day of party and fun. Actually the water drenching already started a week ago where children starts to squirt water guns at passing motorbikes.

I was sick so I am not that involved till today. Feeling better, I went to my storeroom to get my soakers out. 1 water pistol and another water canon. Baby and wife was at the rear while I drove the bike out. The plan was to drive to the main road and back. Wat lau... war zone just at the entrance of our village. Already all wet and bloody hell, they use buckets of river water which is bloody cold. Baby not very happy with the splashing, a bit scared.

They are 3 major variants of splashing water in Song Kran. The first are the the "Tankers". There are the people that will be on the back of their pickup with a whole drums (oils drums) of water as ammo and drive around the town to attack the "Sentries". The "Sentries" are just people standing at the roadside. These people will use hoses and pails and normally they are the most devastating as they are the most heavily "armed". Finally there are the "scouts" or "runner". Both are on bikes. "Scouts" are normally following the tankers but they run in front. If they see any major "sentries" in front, they will rush back to inform the tankers to come and play. Scouts normally have 2 people on the bike with little water pistols. "Runners" are just people on bikes trying to siam (evade) as much water as possible. Normally they are alone and they are actually quite dry compare to others. (really skillful in evasion)

We are going out as scouts but we got no tanks so just try to have some fun. We did not managed to hit the main road, half way we turned back as Huihui was all wet and we do not want her to catch a cold. The return journey also jialat. Tankers are jammed at our village entrance as there are dozen of sentries there.

No pictures as my camera is not even splash proof. Quite dangerous as these kids will just spray whatever at you. Quite fun actually, maybe someday if any of you managed to come to Northern Thailand (they are more playful here than Bangkok). Get to soak some water and laughter.

Btw... not to mention a lot of pretty ladies all wet and sexy........ especially those with very thin clothes... :P


I was planning to write about another article on the "inconvenient truth" under a more local context but I was quite sick yesterday. Wife and I was having dinner and it was pouring outside. Then suddenly it started. At first, it sounds like heavy rain falling onto our roof but something is hitting on our window panes. My wife went out to have a closer look and it was ICE!. The small amounts looks interesting but a few minutes later, the sound of rushing hail on our roof seems defeaning. Going ratatatat like a machine gun. REAALLY hope my roof will hold at that amount of ice.

The hail continued for about 5 to 10 minutes. The rain actually stopped too after that. We went out to inspect and see ice everywhere. I grabbed my camera and took a few snaps. Some caught in our bike helemet and cover (see photos). Wife was happily collecting the ice(so are our neighbours) saying that the ice is a curative for eyes and ears. (err... superstitious)
Anyway we cleared up a bit and I was sick, so we slept early last night.

Next morning, we went out to inspect the damage. My tree got blown sideway while most of my leaves were on the ground. My neighbour's tree lagi worst (see in photo). The worst damage to my plant is the one nearest to the house actually.

According to my wife, hails are acutally occurs quite common in Maesai but not at this period of the time, normally should be in the autumn to winter season (around sept to oct). Its wierd to have a hail storm at this period of time.... We are really screwing up our planet..

An Inconvenient Truth

There's actually 2 issues regarding the title of this post. Totally not related at all, but I am going to the original and more important (global) of the 2 issue.

I heard about this film last year and didn't managed to catch it. Finally managed to get hold of a DVD copy from my Ang Mo friend here in Maesai. ITs so damn good that I highly recommend this to all my friends.

Its a pity Al Gore got cheated out of the US presidency. The world might be a different place if he was to be in charge. The documentary basically is like a lecture on Global Warming. Its very real as in the documentary, there are proofs and horrifying pictures of disappearing glaciers and changes to the climate since the last 10 years. Within the span of 10 years, some rivers have dried out and part of Greenland and Antarctica got melted off. If the rate continues, in our lifespan (another 10 to 30 years) the sea level will rise 20 feet if we continue to pollute our planet.

Please if you could, get a copy and watch it and recommend it to others. We did this to the planet, all of us and Al Gore said if all of us just do our part, we still could reverse the situation.

If you really do not have time even for a movie, go here and read up about it. Its that REAL and URGENT. 2012 Mayan doomsday might be true if we continue to abuse our Mother Earth.

100th post

Just noticed that this is my 100th post here!! haha

Anyway, I spent the whole day spring cleaning and working on my garden. My garden has been overrun by weeds and grass. Took me almost the whole day removing them. I also took out my rock pavement and wash them up before placing them back.. Quite labour intensive. Now my back hurts a bit from all that heavy load. Not as young as I used to be.

I also noticed I have not updated on baby. Girl now is a little monster, likes to make a lot of noises and is a one curious little bugger. Everything she locks on with her eyes will be the target for mayhem and destruction. Still on the everything must grab phase and enjoys climbing on the floor. If we carry her for too long she will complain liao. Want to explore on her own.

A fussy eater also. As she nows has teeth and likes to bite mummy nipples, so we tried introducing formula milk for her. Doesn't like them at all. We do give her solid food like rice and apples. She likes them. Mum also taught wife to steam some meat and get the juice for her to drink. Likes that too. Overall healthy and slowly becoming a monster liao... hahaha

M42A Red Army

Another Model completed today. Its actually the first time I build a US tank. (The M8 Armoured Car does not count as its not a tank)

This tank is the famous WWII M42A "Sherman" tank used by the allies against the German panzers. According to Wiki, it was run on Gasoline and pretty dangerous when it got hit in the fuel tank (gasoline is more explosive than diesel).

I have to give credits to Dragon Model as they throw in a lot of goodies. Besides the photo-etched parts, there is a full metal barrel, a set of one piece steel track (so easy to fix this time) and a flexible dust cover.

This particular M4A2 as mentioned in the title, belongs to the Red Army of USSR. The USA loaned over 4000++ of Shermans to the Russians during WWII. This particular model has the isignia of the Russian 8th Guards Mechanized Corps, 1944/45. I actually don't like the US version as it has a big ugly star infront of the tank.

I had many problems with this model actually. Its has quite a lot of photo-etched metallic parts and they are bloody tiny to glue. Worst still, I have to use super-glue which is very hard to work with. (One mistake means you jialat liao). !@##$%#@# to the superglue.

Painting this bugger is also troublesome. I have no pre-knowledge of painting Olive Drab. (Sandy Yellow Brown is my norm). The model came out much darker than I expected. So I mixed a lighter tone by adding white. It helps ut the overtone still looks greyish rather than green (see photos). I tried pin-point pre-shading this time. Which means I only shade those darker areas with black. No more red-brown paint. Which kinds of make the model a bit brighter. Lucky I used this method or my Olive Drab will look even darker.

Rest of the pictures here..
I airbrushed my accessories this time. Makes them look more realistic.

The guards for the headlights and rails are photo-etched. Took more than a day just to fix these.

The corps isignal. 21b 6/4

Dust cover and roughened surface of the turrent.

Youtube banned in Thailand

Yup. is banned again (the second time)in Thailand according to the latest news due to this. The first time they banned for a short time is after the military coup, there was a clip on Thaksin on youtube.

To the joker who did the video, please be more sensitive in making a Thai King video. I know its a norm in the western countries to make fun of their monarchy or leaders but here in Thailand, they are zealots against the tarnishing of the king's image. An Angmo got jailed 10 years for defacing the King's poster. So to all those who visit Thailand. Be careful not to show "disrespect" to the monarchy.

Anyway, to the Thai zealots who banned youtube. Why so sensitive also?? The clip might appeared at some other websites and could you ban all of them? Information is free and so is each person's right. If the Thai people feel offensive about the clip they could just ignore the link. What you are doing is negative to foreigners who stay in Thailand. By behaving this way, more people will find it an excuse to challenge and make fun of your beloved King.

I just hate censorship. Singapore jialat, Thailand even lagi worst.

Heat Wave

Boy its hot here!!! Just pass noon and the temp read 32 degrees. That's indoors reading by the way. Even the air you breadth is hot. Each inhale is like sucking warm air into your lungs.

No need water heater for hot water too! As the main water pipes are exposed to the sunlight. It would be suicide to bath or water the plants at this period of time.

Girl girl and wify also complained about the heat. Afternoon nap time have to be delayed to 2pm with air-conditioning turned on at full blast. Its still not the hottest period for Thailand by the way. June is normally the peak and it should hit 35 at that period of time. At least for now, the evenings and nights are still cool.. by June, even the nights are warm.

Theives in Piyaporn

The name of my village is Piyaporn. Not exactly what it means but definitely low on "porn" but high on thefts. The main reason is that this particular village residents are mainly well to do (or rich if you want it plainly) families. Cars and bikes with big porches and gardens.

Recently, maybe due to the current political unrest, thefts in our village has rose. First, My neighbor (just diagonally across behind me) got her motor bike stolen last month. The thieves cut her cheapo pad lock and went in to help themselves with the motor bike. Funny thing is that this household had 3 dogs. All of them were indoors and did not barked at all.

The second case occurs opposite of this house. They got their children's bicycle stolen.

The third case happens just behind us!. Our neighbour lost their bicycle. They dod not lock it and left it behind the house. The thieves climbed over can carry their bicycle out.

The fourth case happens just last week ago. My Ang Mo Internet Cafe friend's house nearly got broken in. The thieves tried to saw his lock but he bought those expensive Solex lock. Friend discovered the lock has some filing marks in the morning. He also saw 2 sets of footprints on his walls. Which means the thieves climbed in and tried to break the lock but they gave up halfway and climbed back out. Haha..

The fifth case just happened 2 days ago. The house next to my Ang Mo friend got their bike stolen.

All in all, these cases happened in the span of 2 months. Bloody hell, very gutsy thieves. Anyway, police patrols have increased in the vicinity and so far, my street has no reports on thefts or burglaries. Think the main reason is that our street have many dogs!!

Haha, at the front end we have a big Alsation dog at the first house of our street. Followed by a poodle, a bulldog and my dear Cindy (Si Shi) along our stretch. And not to forget our dear Ah Ma diagonally opposite our street has her mighty army of 12 dogs!! hahaha. It would be suicidal if they climb in there. Anyway, even with dogs, I thing its still up to us individuals to be vigilant and careful in locking our stuff up.