The Week That Was #2019-01

At long last, the silence has been broken! Honestly, I start too many entries in a similar fashion on this blog. The last period of activity stretched from the end of July 2018 until i posted my New Year’s Eve shaky-cam video earlier this week. I haven’t checked but I believe it to have been the longest gap in the history of Asian Meanderings and perhaps going back as far as ‘Burque Blog. Does anybody remember that incarnation?

As the end of 2018 approached, I thought that the best way to rejuvenate what was once my one and only blog was by taking a look at the year that was. I began sorting through photos taken and journal entries written each day in attempts to find something interesting to highlight. There were quite a few blog-worthy happenings throughout the year but I quickly bored of trying to find them and put them into a form that people would actually enjoy reading! I got as far as mid-March before I abandoned the project.

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I’m Still Here!

Yes, I’m still in Phuket, Thailand. Still teaching English. Still collecting stamps and postcards. Still reading as much as I have time for. Still healthy. Still single. It my be a new year, but life continues at the same relaxing and stress-free pace that keeps me rooted in the “Land of Smiles.”

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A Year In The Life: 2014

SAM_1660The beginning of a New Year brings the traditional “year in review” post on blogs all over the world.  Thus far, I’ve managed to avoid such an annual wrap-up as I’m not certain it serves much of a purpose.  Now that I’m blogging much more, and am on the verge of several major changes in my life, I feel that I should finally make an attempt to look back on the year past before moving forward. 

ASEAN-member-countriesThe year just begun – 2015 – promises to be a significant one for many reasons.  Not only does it mark the tenth year anniversary of my arrival in Thailand but also the fiftieth anniversary of my birth.  In Southeast Asia, there has been a battle cry of sorts – “Are you ready for 2015?” — for several years now as the Asian Economic Community comes into full affect with English as its official language.  Am I ready, indeed…

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The 12 Days Of Christmas Stamps 2014: Day 2 – Germany and Belarus

Christmas 2014 Germany 01

On 3 November, Germany released a Christmas stamp depicting the Star of Bethlehem, also known as the Christmas Star, which in the Christian tradition revealed the birth of Jesus to the Magi and led them to Bethlehem.  I always enjoy seeing children’s artwork used on stamps and I often see potential stamp subjects amongst the drawings and colorings of my own students.  

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New Year #2: Chinese New Year & Phuket Old Town Festival 2014

SAM_1716In late January and early February, those of us in Phuket look forward to the year’s second big New Year’s blow-out.  There is a huge Chinese population centered on Phuket Town.  Many of the older families began during the tin-mining boom starting in the mid-nineteenth century and their clan shrines still dot the small lanes of the community.  The Old Town Phuket Festival, celebrating the area’s rich history and unique culture, is usually held a few days following the start of Chinese New Year.  It is my favorite of the local festivals, even more so than September/October’s Vegetarian Festival.

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New Year #1: Phuket Countdown 2014

SAM_1542One of the best things about living in Thailand are the myriad of festivals and other celebrations throughout the year.  We actually have three different annual New Year’s – the Western New Year on 31 December, Chinese New Year in late January or early February, and Songkran (Thai New Year) centered on 13 April. 

Now that I live in Phuket Town, I usually celebrate Western New Year by walking over to Sanam Chai.  This is a park in the northeast portion of Phuket’s administrative district, across the street from Provincial Hall to the east and City Hall to the north.  Each year, Phuket’s Provincial Administration Organization (PPAO, known in Thai as OrBorJor) sponsors a three-day celebration in the park called Phuket Colorful Countdown and it just keeps getting bigger and better.

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