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  1. #1
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    The Evolution of Mickey Mouse House

    Although I have been a member of teak door since February last year, I have not posted much, mainly because it has taken me until now to force myself to learn how to post photos.

    At this juncture I would like to thank Dirty Dog for putting me straight on this by way of a PM yesterday.

    Now that I have mastered it I hope to contribute a bit more to the board although the photos seem to post very small and you need to click on them to view them properly. If anyone can help me resolve that I would be grateful.

    I have posted this thread in 2 parts in the building in Thailand Section , primarily because the main point of the thread is focused upon the teak house I have had built in Chonabot, which is a small town 45 kms south of Khon Kaen, however as a lot of the posting includes my wedding at the house in question if somebody feels it , or part of it, should be posted in another section please feel free to move it.
    To make sense of the thread, I would recommend that those that are interested first read the thread I posted when I first joined TD by following this link: (How much to build a wooden house)http://teakdoor.com/construction-in-thailand/10698-how-much-to-build-wooden-house-2.html

    Okay for those of you that are still interested I thought I would show you how my life and the house have evolved since April 2007.
    My wife, Mam, christened the house Mickey Mouse House, simply because my name is Mick and she has adopted Mickey Mouse as a nickname for me. I believe it is more because she has seen my golf swing which we won’t go into here!

    In April last year we were married Isaan style at the house which as you can see from photos in the previous thread was in a very basic state. Although not shown in the photos a smallshower room had been built behind the stairs which consists of a cold water shower, a toilet (sit down not squat) and a wash hand basin. I was told we had to have this as there were over 100 guests coming to the wedding. You can see the hong nam here:



    At this point I had not seen the house and had relied initially on Mam’s mother and then Mam who travelled up in March, to oversee the construction. I knew it was a teak house but in my minds eye it was nowhere near as big or as impressive as what I discovered when I arrived to get hitched.

    The wedding was arranged for a Saturday which happened to be the 2nd day of Songkran and all I was told to do was to turn up the day before and bring the cash to pay for the wedding and reception. “How much”? I hear you ask. I will get to that later.

    I actually travelled up from Jomtien, where I live and work, on the Thursday and spent the first day of Songkran driving loads of kids around Chonabot in my (now) brother in law’s pickup. I had only ever experienced one Songkran before and that was in Pattaya, which I vowed never to do again, and I could not believe how wonderful Songkran was in rural Thailand.

    I was of the mistaken impression that the catering for the wedding was going to be done by Mam’s family but on the Friday a truck pulled up at the house and some guys started erecting a large awning and putting out tables and chairs for the guests, meanwhile some other guys started constructing a small stage on the land adjoining the house. Here are some pics of those:









    Details of the wedding were typically Thai, namely I hadn’t got a clue what was going on other than the fact I was told by Mam that it would start “about 10 in the morning”. She then told me that she was going to the beauty salon to get made up and dressed at 5am!!! When I queried why it was going to take 5 hours for this I discovered that “about 10” did in fact mean 8am!!

    Mam had asked me to wear a European suit for the wedding rather than hire a silk outfit as she said that nobody in her town had seen a Falang in a suit. These girls obviously like to show off their prizes so I wasn’t about to argue.

    So there I was all spruced up on the morning of the wedding but needless to say at 8am there was no sign of any guests or anybody who looked like they were going to conduct the ceremony. When I expressed my concern I was assured that everyone who had been invited would be coming as they didn’t want to miss out on the free food and drink!

    Sure enough people started arriving, including a guy in a white suit who proceeded to greet everone and at around 8.30. I was made to sit very uncomfortably on the floor, whilst lots of chanting and string winding and tying went on. I was worried that this might take ages as my arse became numb in just a few minutes but thankfully the ceremony was over within about 30 minutes whereupon the local hi so’s were able to set about the food and drink!

    Heres’s some pics of that stage of the proceedings.









    For those of you have never been married Isaan style, before you get to sit down and have some food and drink of your own, you are expected to walk around amongst the guests and thank them for coming, in exchange for which they give you an envelope with money in it which is meant to go towards the cost of the proceedings. The amount they give is written on the envelope so that if you go to a wedding at their place you can at least match it or preferably better it! When I was told this I thought, hey this will reduce my expenditure somewhat. What I didn’t know was that my mother in law would be walking round with us and every envelope went into her handbag!

    I didn’t mind really because she is a terrific lady who brought up 4 girls pretty much single handedly since her husband drank himself to death when Mam was quite young. Also the question of a sin sot never arose presumably because Mam had previously been married to a Thai guy who also drank himself to death, and also because I had bought the land and had the house built to enable Mam’s mother to escape from the wooden shack where she used to live before the bank repossessed what there was of it!

    So after the food was consumed, the entertainment started which consisted of about 4 singers who took it in turns to sing to backing music and in no time at all the place was rocking with mainly drunken middle aged and older Thai women.



    By this time,which incidentally was only about 10.30am, I had forced several Beer Leo’s and several Sang Som’s down my neck, and it was time for me to make a prat of myself by first of all singing a couple of Eagles numbers, and then get involved with the Thai dancing. As you can see from the following photo, it looks more like John Cleese’ ministry of silly walks!



    As you can see, the guest list was varied!



    As it was Songkran, I abandoned the suit after a while and dressed more appropriately for some serious water chucking which got under way almost immediately. Most people had come dressed in their designer Hawaiian shirts, but even those in carefully tailored silk outfits were not spared a good dousing.





    This guy is the builder who dismantled the house from its original location and rebuilt it on our land for a fee of 30,000 baht!



    At about 1pm people other than the real hardened drinkers started to drift away leaving a good few local lads to carry on depleting the copious supply of booze that had been stashed away by my ever thrifty wife.



    Eating and drinking carried on right through the day and into the evening interspersed with water chucking and in my case a 1 hour booze induced sleep in a deckchair dressed in a pair of swimshorts which according to Mam gave the village elders a birds eye view of my meat and two veg as my legs had splayed apart. No pics of that you will be saddened to learn!

    So at about 11pm the remaining guests staggered away and the day ended with me far too drunk to consummate my new nuptials despite my best efforts to kick start my libido by thinking about my new 18 year old sister in law.



    So that is the first part of my Mickey Mouse House evolution story. Except to add that the cost of the wedding was around 30,000 baht which included everything from the caterers, music and singers and copious amounts of booze.

    I will always remember the day as being one of the best experiences of my life. I have been lucky enough to travel quite a bit in my 57 years of life but I can’t think of many better days that I have had anywhere in the world.

    As previously stated, if anyone thinks this part of my posting should be in another section please feel free to move it. I shall shortly be preparing part 2 which will show you how the house has changed and been improved since April last year.

  2. #2
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    Let's check out that Eighteen year old Sister in Law:


    When you past the URL into the dialog box it looks like this:
    Code:
    http:// teakdoor.com/Gallery/albums/userpics/11505/normal_DSCF2378.JPG
    Without the space in there between the "http://" and "teakdoor..."
    remove the "normal_" part so it looks like:
    Code:
    http:// /teakdoor.com/Gallery/albums/userpics/11505/DSCF2378.JPG
    And there you are Pics are usually best for threads like this at 600 - 800 pixels wide and saved with about a 70, .7 or just 7 compression (depends on the soft ware how it will be listed but shoot for a 7 out of ten and you'll be inhte ball park)
    When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty -- T. Jefferson


  3. #3
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    Seriously hot SIL!!!!!!!!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteshiva View Post
    Seriously hot SIL!!!!!!!!
    Yes. She is now 19 and currently staying with us for a week or so at my condo in Jomtien.
    She has all of the charming naivety of an untouched Isaan girl which extends to touching me on the bum when I have just emerged from the shower with a towel wrapped around me.
    I keep telling her the lump in the front of the towel is due to too much starch!!
    Wife makes her sleep on the floor and is resisting my suggestion that she shares our bed in true Thai style!!

  5. #5
    Hansum Man!
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    Quote Originally Posted by racefan
    despite my best efforts to kick start my libido by thinking about my new 18 year old sister in law.
    Mate, with a wife as lovely as yours, why would you need to think of the sister . . .

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    Perhaps we could have a sister-in-law thread?

    Mines 18 going on 19 as well!

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    great thread racefan.

    now your next thread has to be "My Hot SIL"

    (include phone number please!)

  8. #8
    Hansum Man!
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    Quote Originally Posted by caller View Post
    Perhaps we could have a sister-in-law thread?

    Mines 18 going on 19 as well!

    Geez, how old are people's wives here for them to have 18 and 19-year old sisters?

    Cradle snatchers,the lot of you

  9. #9
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    the ages of my wife and her sisters range from 32 up to 55

    so not necessarily, but probably

    oh yes, Racefan, nice wedding, typically Isaan and they look like good people

    have fun

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by racefan View Post
    She has all of the charming naivety of an untouched Isaan girl which extends to touching me on the bum when I have just emerged from the shower with a towel wrapped around me.!
    try coming out of the shower backwards

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by panama hat View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by caller View Post
    Perhaps we could have a sister-in-law thread?

    Mines 18 going on 19 as well!

    Geez, how old are people's wives here for them to have 18 and 19-year old sisters?

    Cradle snatchers,the lot of you
    Heh-Heh! 18-27. My wife is the oldest and there is one in-between.

    Yes, to the OP - nice thread.

  12. #12
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    Maybe I should have left off the sister in law pic!

    My wife is 34 by the way and yes very attractive.

    I will be posting the main part of the thread i.e. the changes to the house, very shortly.

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    cool, cant wait !!

  14. #14
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    PART 2. THE TRANSFORMATION OF MICKEY MOUSE HOUSE

    So we were married village style in April 2007 and after the Songkran festivities returned to Jomtien and back to work for me.
    I should explain that at the time I was working for a Thai law firm as a “legal consultant” having spent over 35 years in the legal profession in England.
    Because of the fact that I was (and still am, albeit for a different company), working from Monday to Friday, the chances to visit Mickey Mouse House are few and far between due to holiday allowances etc.
    Although I had no immediate plans to spend any extended time at the house, I was so impressed by what I had already acquired, I wanted to improve the property but was not in a position to throw huge amounts of money at it.
    My wife’s sole objective in life now is for us to live there full time as obviously all of her family, including her 9 year old daughter from her previous marriage, are all there.
    The first priority was to get a proper electricity and water supply connected up as clearly a multi point extension lead and a hose from Mam’s sister’s house were not a good long term arrangement!
    The house is situated in a pleasant rural location with only the sister-in-law’s bungalow opposite, and is reached via a currently unmade road which connects to a concrete road about 200 meters away.
    The electricity company charged 20,000 baht to put 6 wooden poles in the unmade road and connect up the supply to a meter. The water company charged about 10,000 baht to put in a supply to a meter just inside the boundary. So now we had official power and water and shortly after the house was given an official address by the Amphur.
    I have no idea what they have officially designated the number of the unmade road as, but I know that the house number is 269 and in the absence of any other formal paperwork, I have named the Soi in accordance with the plaque shown in this pic, which I have fixed to one of the electricity poles!




    In about June last year, Mam told me that her mother was going to have a bedroom built on the ground floor and have a kitchen area created near the shower room. She said that her mother had saved the money that was given as wedding presents and was putting some of her own money she had saved towards this and I was not expected to pay anything towards the construction. She was doing it for her own convenience as she didn’t like climbing the stairs and more to the point, having to come down them at night to use the bog!
    I obviously was happy for her to do this and because of the way she had supervised the initial construction of the house, trusted that she would not have just any old shanty put up. Bear in mind that all of the initial construction of the house, and everything that has been done to it since have been done whilst I have been in Jomtien and I have only seen the end results a month or 2 after they have been completed.
    The bedroom and kitchen were duly built and to this day I have no idea how much the construction cost. I am not sure what I envisaged had been built, but it certainly wasn’t the huge structure that greeted me when we next went to the house which was in early August last year.
    The bedroom area alone is about 20ft by 10ft with teak shuttered windows on all 3 sides, and the kitchen area adjacent to the shower room is about 12ft square. As you can see from the following photos, it has been built very substantially in concrete block. I was stunned as to how it had transformed an area that was open to all of the elements when I last saw the house.



    Mam’s mother is very keen on gardening, as am I, and had started to cultivate a small area to the front of the house, primarily with some flowers but with the occasional chili bush and lemon grass patch thrown in. The trouble was that the land had not been fenced since I had bought it and the unmade road is used every day by a distant neighbour who leads his cows along there who were taking delight in eating everything that mother-in-law was planting.
    Shortly after the bedroom and kitchen were built Mam asked me if we could have the boundaries fenced to stop the cows wandering where they wanted, and when I asked how much it would be she said “about 25,000 baht”. I asked what sort of boundary fence we would get for that and she said it would be concrete posts cemented into the ground with barbed wire links.
    I agreed to this, but again I was amazed at what had actually been built when we arrived in August. A 6ft wall with a sliding gate had been built across the front of the land and the other 3 sides had a wall of 5 courses of block, topped off with barbed wire, all built on a very substantial foundation. Because the sliding gate was an extra, the total outlay for the boundary turned out to be just over 30,000 baht but I felt it was a bargain for what I had got. Here is a pic of me lazing in the sun near one of the side boundaries.



    I also officially named the house as you can see from the sign I am putting on the front wall!



    The more time I had spent at the house, the more enthusiastic I was getting in having things done to the place and on this particular visit I decided that a decent concrete drive needed to be put in because the front of the property became a quagmire every time it rained.
    The guy who had built the bedroom, kitchen and boundary wall happened to attend a pig roasting party that we had on this visit and he said he could lay the driveway I wanted, with a parking area to the side of the new bedroom for 12,000 baht. Another bargain, so I told Mam to tell him to him to get on with it.
    He and his team of 4 labourers laid it in 5 days after we had returned to Jomtien.
    This picture was taken shortly after the drive was laid:



    I had taken a weeks holiday before starting work at my new job In October, so I decided to have a few days at the house with the object of painting the exterior of the new bedroom and kitchen construction with some decent paint.
    We chose a cream colour named “English Rose” and with the help of Mam and the sister in law who has attracted so much interest in earlier posts, the exterior walls were given 2 coats which took less than 2 days to do. I had plenty of paint so I also painted the front of the large boundary wall. I have yet to paint the exterior of the other 3 boundaries but that is on the agenda for the next visit around Christmas time.





    When Mam and I were married Isaan style, I promised her that we would get the marriage legalized but this entailed a 2 day trip to Bangkok to get an affirmation notarised at the British embassy and once translated, registered with the Thai Ministry of Interior Affairs. (If anybody needs advice on this procedure by the way I will be very happy to assist as it was not as complicated as I expected).
    To do this I needed the original of my divorce papers from England which having been divorced for nearly 20 years I had long since lost.
    Fortunately I remain on very good terms with my ex wife who had kept hers and when my son came out in May to visit me he brought them with him.
    In June I took some holiday and having got the required papers in BKK we decided to get officially married at the Amphur in Chonabot as it is Mam’s home town and also gave me another excuse for a pig roast party! Here is a pic of the happy couple!



    While we were at the house I was looking around the place and getting carried away with other ideas as to how to improve it for my own comfort for that inevitable time when we move from Jomtien to Chonabot.
    Mam suggested, and I agreed, that the house would benefit from a bathroom on the first floor to avoid the precarious descent of the stairs courtesy of those beer Leo induced trips to the hong nam in the middle of the night.
    I decided that as we have at least 10ft to the side of the house where the current bathroom is we could have a 2 storey extension built with a bathroom on each level. Access to the ground floor bathroom would be via the existing bathroom which would then become a laundry room, but I was puzzling how to get access to the first floor bathroom.
    I had always felt that a large balcony would look good on the side of the house and worked out that if one was built access could be made to the 1st floor bathroom from this balcony which would only entail a short walk from the access which would have to be made from the lounge.
    As can be seen from the wedding pic above, a very small balcony was built to the front of the house when it was originally constructed but it was of little practical use as you could hardly get a small chair on it as it was so narrow.
    Mam contacted the guy who originally built the house as he is apparently the local expert on wooden construction, and he confirmed that he could build a balcony to the side of the house and also enlarge the small useless balcony to meet up with the end of the front bedroom, thus squaring off the whole of the front elevation.
    The work would involve putting in 5 additional concrete pillars and the cost was estimated at 40,000 baht which included his labour charge of 12,000 baht. Mostly reclaimed seasoned teak would be used and some new wood for the hand rail and spindles underneath.
    The work commenced towards the end of August, again under mother-in-law’s supervision, and as she wanted to vote in a local election for the village Orbator (sp?) Mam went to the house for the final few days of the construction and single handedly painted the new and old wood on the 2 balconies with a wood preserving paint as recommended by the builder.











    An American friend of mine was here on holiday when Mam went to the house and as he had never been to Isaan I took a couple of days holiday and took him to the house and to show him the general Khon Kaen area.
    It was obviously a bit of a culture shock to him to see Thais living in the way Thais do, but he enjoyed every minute of the trip.
    Whilst travelling to Ubonrat Dam we were driving by one of the many places at the side of Highway No.2 that sells concrete garden ornaments. I suddenly spied one place that had 1 solitary ornament of a mouse which I immediately thought would be an ideal sentinel for my driveway, although it was painted a horrible green and blue colour.
    I bought it for 300 baht, and on the way back to the house I stopped off at Homeworks in Khon Kaen to buy some paint to create my own Mickey Mouse.
    My friend is a bit on the artistic side and asked if he could do the job so while I sat around contributing to the profits of the Leo brewery, he set to and the next day Mickey took his place standing guard at the end of the driveway!





    So that is currently where we are with the house. I have been pleasantly surprised at the way it has evolved since it was just a patch of dirt in February 2007.
    The total outlay for the land, house and everything that has gone on since is still only around 500,000 baht for which I attribute the bargaining power of my mother-in-law who has gone out of the way to ensure that her farang son-in-law hasn’t been taken to the cleaners.
    The next major project will be the construction of the 2 bathrooms although I would prefer to be present when they are built as I would like them to be of European standard as I will want some creature comforts when I eventually become a permanent resident.
    My thoughts for them is either to have them built with proper faced terracotta bricks, so as to blend in with the wood of the house, or block construction faced with matching teak wood. Any thoughts on this from board members would be welcome.
    I also need to address the interior of the house. At the moment the walls are the unpanelled teak wood used in the construction which I find quite acceptable. The 2 bedrooms have however been constructed with some cheap plywood panelling which needs to be covered or panelled in with some seasoned teak.
    Obviously the upstairs of the property is not used at all when we are not visiting as mother-in-law uses the downstairs bedroom which has a separate area for Mam’s daughter. Long term I would want a better quality sofa etc and would install the plasma screen tv and sound system that I have in my condo at the moment but other than that I would wish to stick with traditional Thai décor and furniture
    I don’t have many photos of the interior except for these so again any suggestions would be appreciated.



    This access to the new side balcony used to be a window. It will ultimately be the access to the 1st floor bathroom.



    Thank you to those who have taken the trouble to read this thread which I hope you have enjoyed.
    I will try to update it when anything else significant is done to the property.

    Again I apologise for the small photos. Despite the posting from friscofrankie in part 1 I still don’t seem to be able to increase the size!
    Last edited by Marmite the Dog; 29-09-2008 at 05:19 PM. Reason: Formatting was all over the place. Old people, eh?!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by racefan
    Again I apologise for the small photos.
    These are ok size-wise. The photos you uploaded into the gallery are too big for the thread anyway as they are 1024 px wide. Try to keep your photos down to 600 to 800 pixels wide for the forum.

    I enjoyed the thread - cheers.

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    Thank you for this thread, Mick.
    Looks like a nice wedding and like you had a lot of fun.

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    Looks like everything is coming along nicely.

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    looks like your enjoying yoursef mate, lovely place you got going there, enjoy!

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    Sisters in law

    Any chance we can swap SIL's ?
    Wife is from from Sak Nak and her youngest SIL is a 22 stone lesbian with a striking resmeblance to Meatloaf
    Can adjust by up to 100 baht if you drive a hard bargain.

    (only joking...SIL is he only family member who has always refused ANY monetary help from me !)

  20. #20
    Member jaiyenyen's Avatar
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    Great looking house racefan. I've really enjoyed reading the thread. On the subject of interior wall finishes, I think it was Hillbilly that used some type of reed or bamboo paneling. It looked really good, and fits in with the style of house.
    It sounds like you have a wonderful family, good luck for you all in the future.
    Do not walk beside me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me for I may not follow. Just pretty much leave me the fuck alone!

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    Quote Originally Posted by jaiyenyen View Post
    Great looking house racefan. I've really enjoyed reading the thread. On the subject of interior wall finishes, I think it was Hillbilly that used some type of reed or bamboo paneling. It looked really good, and fits in with the style of house.
    It sounds like you have a wonderful family, good luck for you all in the future.
    Thanks for that and for the good wishes.

    Yes I couldn't have picked a better family if I had tried. I must get round to learning to speak more Thai so that I can communicate with them.

    I have seen the bamboo panelling you refer to. They sell it in Chonabot in rolls of about 4m x 2m for something ridiculous like 180 baht a roll.

    It is on top of my list at the moment as I could do the panelling myself and it is easy and cheap to renew.

    Would appreciate Hilbilly's comments though as Mam thinks that it might attract wood boring insects underneath.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by racefan
    Would appreciate Hilbilly's comments though as Mam thinks that it might attract wood boring insects underneath.
    It should be treated against insects.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by racefan
    Would appreciate Hilbilly's comments though as Mam thinks that it might attract wood boring insects underneath.
    It should be treated against insects.
    Agreed. We have all of our homes sprayed and treated once a year. Additionally, it is best to have a trusted person there while the spraying is going on. I raised hell once when the workers did a crappy job. Made them do it again.

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    Very nice house mate.

    Cheers.

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    21-10-2013 @ 04:06 PM
    Location
    A small village in Surin Province.
    Posts
    132
    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteshiva View Post
    Seriously hot SIL!!!!!!!!

    Yes, Thailand's always so damned hot!

    It wasn't the picture but what you said about her though!

    A really nice thread with so many things in common with my own experience of staying in an Isan village and building a home with Cat.

    Also the urge to write about it both for something to do and because it's worth it. Have a look at my avatar.

    Keep building... I'm sure you'll never stop, and wishing you every happiness.

    Andrew

    PS Doesn't Chonabot mean countryside in Thai? Baan nawk?!

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