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About Puwa

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  1. Car Light Bulbs

    Along this trip, on the southbound side, is a car electric shop that might have the bulb you need. https://goo.gl/maps/LRSUGp2rfk12
  2. Thai Prof Quits UN; LGBTS Concerned

    FYI, Ajaan Vitit is one of Thailand's great citizens. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitit_Muntarbhorn
  3. You're in luck: the convention center on the canal road is Chiang Mai's main expo hall. Nice setting, too.
  4. I preferred Morally Diminished, the greatest Bangkok blog ever.
  5. Removalist from Chiang Mai to Lam Plai Mat

    Lam Plai Mat has a great Thai alternative school http://www.lpmp.org/
  6. Where to buy a REAL Mountain bike?

    It really depends on what you want and how you plan to ride. If like most people you will start on a hardtail (damped front fork but no rear suspension), then I would be surprised if you couldn't find an entry-level Trek, Giant, or Merida to fit you. But if you really intend to ride trails that require a full suspension, then prices increase by an order of magnitude, from 10-20K baht to 100-200k. Meanwhile, in western markets you can find secondhand full-sus bikes, barely ridden, high-quality, for 30-50K, in every size and configuration. In this case, the best advice is still: next time you go home, buy three things: bike, toolkit, book. Buying overseas and carrying in is still the best option by far, in terms of cost and choice. Also buy a decent tool kit ($100-$150). Serious mountain biking requires continual maintenance and repair. Some of the local repair shops are ok, but I've also had them fail at simple tasks that I ended up fixing myself-- brake problems, bearing removal, sourcing a derailleur hanger. And $10 on a bicycle maintenance book is money well spent. You don't want to go into the shop to chase down random squeaks and rattles. (A small torque wrench works wonders.) At local shops you can buy replacement components when things wear out. They carry what you need-- Shimano and SRAM for most MTB drivetrains-- and the prices are good enough. Items you don't want to buy here, apart from whole bikes, include frames, suspension forks and shocks, wheels, and maybe handlebars. Last good reason to buy used: sooner or later you will slip, fall, slide, scrape, smash, crash, tip over, meet a rock or a tree or pavement that has it in for you. Your bike will get scratched and bruised. The feeling of putting the first nasty scars into a new $4000 bike is unbearably painful.
  7. Unwavering support for their absent heroine

    She made the right decision for herself. She never wanted to lead, was terrible at it, and though elected was obviously a stand-in for her brother. The politics of martyrdom-- a few years as model prisoner serving the poor and wretched, never compromising her beliefs-- would not have appealed to her (but the country would have reveled in her jailhouse celebrity). Thailand before Thaksin had a lot of problems, but a lot of promise as well. In the 1990s we had a much freer press, stronger civil society, a growing middle class, a remarkable new constitution drafted by thoughtful patriots, and an overall sense that the country was progressing towards a brighter future. These were all assets in confronting antidemocratic, corrupt, or traditionalist barriers to change. Thaksin did immense damage to Thailand's fledgling democracy. He bought off competing politicians in flamboyant displays of patronage (remember the Bentley he presented to Sanan K?). He meddled with the independent agencies established by the constitution to provide checks and balances: anti-corruption commission, national human rights commission, auditor-general. He declared a Duterte-style war on drugs that empowered police to kill suspected drug suspects in the street, and cavalierly ignored the immense damage. Copying Lee Kwan Yew's use of defamation laws to silence critics, he sued a young journalist for 400M baht for repeating on air what had already been published in the papers: ShinSat was making money with T in the PM's chair. Thaksin was quite anti-farang, despite a few nods to the wealthy such as exorbitant visas with benefits. These are the underlying reasons why the so-called "elites" rejected him, not some anti-farmer impulse to oppress and exclude the rural poor. Thailand after Thaksin now has thrice the problems: all the longstanding woes (bad education, economic stagnation, wealth gap, environmental suicide); the addition of Thaksin's populist politics founded on a cult of personality, promising much, delivering little, enriching a few (One Child One Tablet, anyone?); and the huge erosion of civil liberties brought on by the military. But we don't have thrice the promise or hope or optimism, or even as much as we had before the Shins entered national politics. Yingluck is and always will be a mere sideshow to this historic tragedy.
  8. Chinese tourists jumping queue

    That anxiety of having just landed, then queuing up for one final trial of patience and uncertainty, watching the other lines move faster, tourists jumping the line, detached officials, arbitrary rules-- but it all melts away when you pass through the glass doors.
  9. CM Aboretum Fitness Park

    Haven't been for a while but yes it used to have a pull-up bar.
  10. Because motorbike accidents and deaths are common here, people just accept it as a normal way to die, strange as that sounds. It comes to be seen as matter of luck, not behavior. It's more gratifying to try to control your luck, with amulets and rituals, than your behavior. Every day you drive recklessly and don't die indicates that luck prevails over behavior. Until one day, as the saying goes, luck runs out. Believing in luck is for people too dim or too selfish to believe in probability.
  11. The Black Spot

    WeChat is the ultimate tool for government surveillance. It tracks where you go, who you're with, how you spend, who you talk to and what you say-- all in a single app that the Chinese government monitors. Sure, all these things can be tracked through other apps in other places like FB or Google Maps, but not as comprehensively or seamlessly.
  12. Head of Songtaew Co-op Chats/Shouts to Citylife

    Jesus, what a wingnut. He exhibits all the familiar tropes of the miniature autocrat: "How come you never say anything good about us?"; "Only we get picked on"; and the perennial "Look in the mirror before you criticize." I recall about 10 years ago being in a seminar with the (then) energy minister and about a hundred foreign investors. He gave the keynote, and launched into the same diatribe, "Look at yourself before criticizing us." But nobody was criticizing him or anyone, they were looking for investment opportunities. No one had said anything at all, as he was the first speaker. The guy freaked out at the sight of a foreign audience and went full-on defensive, reactionary xenophobe. Same thing here I guess. Gotta go, my Benz is double parked.
  13. Buying Car Seats In Chiang Mai

    Try here: https://goo.gl/maps/tvYJbUJUWAN2
  14. Dentist Search

    Chiang Mai Dental hospital on the Superhighway, just past CM Ed towards Huay Kaew, has always been good to me. They have a great specialist for exactly the prob you describe. I can't remember thw cost of the antibiotic treatmebt through thw root, but post and all-ceramic crown 14k baht.
  15. Pai shooting (history cont.)

    Thanks for posting this update. We're often left wondering, "What ever happened to...?" I remember this incident well, but wasn't aware of the subsequent lawsuit.