Trip Start Jan 08, 2004
167Trip End Ongoing
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I got back to relaxed happy smiling polluted friendly traffic jammed Bangkok after Australia and just before going to Vietnam.
Just to remind me that I was no longer in a Western country Kanchana mentioned something that would seem almost impossible in modern Australia. She asked to check when I was going to Vietnam. Unfortunately I was going on the day that she was checking about. As it happens one of her ex students wants to give us some land and she was going to go have a look at it. The person has more land than they are using, a couple of hours out of Bangkok
Anyway, then I went to Vietnam and came back just in time for Loi Krathong festival. Loi Krathong is the beautiful festival held on the fullmoon in November where Thai people go to the local water course and say thanks to the water for giving life to the people, the animals and the crops. Sorry for any polution and trouble they have caused and wishes for future good rain and water. The kids father rang up to check that they wouldn't participate in it as it is not a Muslim festival but they told him they would. We went across the road and floated our krathongs on the lake. I explained how important water was by mentioning how the Australians hadn't taken care of their water and now they have almost none.
A new term has just started
In today's paper there is a report to say that Thailand will soon have a Gross National Happiness Index set up. Hmmm, the new government is OK, but a bit slow in helping people after the floods and also although they seem to want to help introduce more policies that would support the concept of a sufficiency economy they haven't really acheived too much. It is a hard task though and most people are content with things at the moment.
I noticed that the US Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps papers have all asked for Donald Rumsfeld to resign or be sacked.
Australia plans to build the world's largest solar power plant.
I have noticed a lot more American interest in Burma recently. This could be a good thing but due to USA's past record on foreign policy it is a little alarming
A recent report said there will be no more fish in the ocean within 50 years if we keep fishing and polluting at the current rate.
A recent WWF report shows that we are currently using more of the world's resouces than it can reproduce and we are getting worse. By 2050 we will need 2 planet Earth's to sustain ourselves. The currnet human consumptive lifestyle cannot be sustained by the planet. On current figures, if everyone in the world lived like the average USA citizen we would need 5 planets to supply the resources needed. If everyone lived like the average Australian lives we would need more than 3 planets. Most countries are living at a sustainable rate (just) but some rich countries take far more than their fair share and we will all suffer for that.
Oh, it seems that perhaps most Thai provinces are suffering from flooding at the moment.