I am often struck by the differences of my life in the Isaan (“Retired Writer”) compared to the lives I’ve lived in the United States (lifeguard, disc jockey, park ranger, radio station manager, student advisor, radio engineer, freelance writer, cataloger, surfer). I want to share these “Random Thoughts on Daily Life” with you in no particular order, although I’ll try to write chronologically, from beginning of day to end. In a way, this is a follow-up to posts that I’ve written about my mornings, afternoons, evenings and what constitutes an average day, more or less. Family is particularly interested in this stuff, so the rest of you please bear with me and my details.
I am still a late sleeper by village standards. The cocks need to have been crowing for at least an hour before I even think about getting up. My wife is usually up before me, preparing sticky rice (khao nio) for sai baht and the rest of the day; in addition to doing hand laundry which I later hang up. She wakes me by 5:15am, knowing it’ll take me another half hour to raise my bod off the floor mats. In my defense, I must say I’ve taken to doing a little bit of yoga before rising, to stretch particularly my back, leg and hip muscles. Most mornings I miss my good friend Pahwet or his wife herding their seven cows out to pasture. I hope to eventually get going in the mornings a little sooner to at least wave greetings.
It’s not like I can’t do it. I remember one of my most productive periods writing about the history of surfing (LEGENDARY SURFERS). I used to get up at 4am and loved it. Ground my own coffee Italian style; no one awake to interrupt me and so quiet. Ah, no roosters back then in
Santa Barbara – at least none that I heard.
I finally have my morning ab-nam (shower) down to a fine art and get it and my shaving out of the way in enough time to sai baht (tak baht). Of course, I still check my corners and shake out my towel before every use.
One of the reasons I don’t get up before the sun is that the nyoong (mosquitoes) don’t leave the house until our star shines on the house. BTW, I have a new weapon in my counter-attack against the nyoong. I don’t know what they call it in Thai, but it’s like an electric tennis racket, battery powered. I use it to clear inside the mosquito net when going to bed and in the bathroom in the evenings, night time and early mornings – zap! ZAP! Occasionally, I’ll take it with me when I sit outside at night drinking a beer or two. Ah, but I’m getting ahead of myself. We’re still in the morning, right?
Thip now fixes me iced coffee, as I’m usually already in a light sweat by 6:15am, despite it not being the hot season anymore and I just took a shower (buckets of water over the head have been replaced by a real shower with hot water, even! My Wife assures me it’s cold overnights and in the morning. Yes, I have to agree. I used to sleep with only my briefs on and nothing over me. Now I cuddle closer and sometimes borrow parts of her comforter…