Sunday, November 08, 2009

Day 5 Monday: Karlovy Vary

The morning begins one hour early than usual so I can finish breakfast before the tour pick me up.

Around the appointed time, a van with tour company's logo and name parked outside the hotel and I went in. There were several people in the van already and I thought they would be my tourmate. But as it turns out, this is just a pick up van to take people from hotels and drop them off at rendevous points to meet the actual van.

I found out, when I got in to my actual tour van, that I was probably the youngest person who bought this trip on my own :P About 90% of the van were elderly Spanish women, with one younger couple who brought children with them. It was then that I realize that the terms spa town seems to be the selling point which eludes most young people :pp Our group were Spanish and English speaking group, thus, our tourguide speaks both English and Spanish. He is a young man with a pear shape figure and relatively cute face :P.

Anyhow, I ended up sitting close to an asian-looking elderly couple. We chat a bit and I learned that they were from US and spend their retiring years traveling around. The van stop at a petro station so people can use the restroom (the restroom do have fee). I checked out the shop area a bit, nothing interesting though, just snacks and some cheap looking keychains.

The view was nice though, a lot of green hills and some cattles in the far off distance. Then we were on the van again. Our tourguide narrate a the general information of Czech republic while we were on the road.

The town itself is a basin surrounded by moutain. The first sight of the town was posh looking hotel. The area surrounding the road into the town was very lush green forest. The van drop us off and then we start to walk to the town itself. We started out in, probably an our of town drop off area. The trees were wall and lush. The air was fresh and cool. And then the elderly spainerds lit their cigarettes... The whole lots of them... From that point on I tried to stay upwind from them.

The guide told us that the town has been long used as a health retreat due to the numerous mineral springs founded in the area. Which was said to have stomach healing properties. Then he pull out a ceramic cup from his bag. It has a thin rectangle shape from the top with hollowed sprout which you can sip the water from like a straw. He said the cups were designed this way so you can slowly sip the mineral water and warm your hand at the same time, since some of the springs give out hot water. This way you can sip the water slowly while walking through the lush green mountain paths as part of the healing process.

He said the doctors then used to prescribe the cure by having the patient drinking the mineral water and sit in the hot spring all day. He said that it was more like a punishment and I understood why once I tasted the water. It has quite a strong metallic taste and not very pleasent to drink. This is also probaly why the cups were designed for sipping and not drinking :p

Then we passed a parking spot or something of that sort which has a souvenier hut. I bought a box of the traditional cookie with lemon flavour and a mini-bar size bottle of herbal liqour for my mom. Then we headed into the main area of the town. The guide narrate some more histories of the area, pointed out a few more spring tap which you can drink from and then we arrived at the main tourist centre. Inside there is the main spring fountain and 4 spring taps with differeciate in temperature by the distance from the main fountain. Some of the unique souvenier that sell here are items that has been metalised in the mineral spring such as rose on the stem, carved animals figure. However, my main draw is the ceramic cup with straw handle. There are many selections of many colours, size and shape. They are quite pricey. I also wants to choose the one that is large enough for me to drink from it for several times before I need to refill. So I ended up with a normal shape cup, in deep blue, and not very pretty print on the cup. But it is the most price appropriate one for its size.

Then it's time for lunch. It was relatively nice, the guide warned us that the drink is not free but I did not prepared to think that the small bottled of orange/lemon soda that the waitress pour into my glasses would cost be 70 Korunas. Andw hat's shocking for me is that they charge the same price for every type of drinks in their serve, including plain water!. What a ripoff... But I did not dwell on it too much. The orange/lemon soda tasted very nice and it will be probably be the only time I had it.

After lunch, we have some free time to explore the town. Our guide mention earlier that there is a massage package that cost abotu 20 Euros. I went to the spa building and found out that it was just 15 minutes partial massage. So I did not buy that.

Walking around the town, I found a shopping area with brand name shops and what not. For me it looks rather busy for a relaxing quiet spa town :P

I also walked pass a small park area with tall trees which connected to another area that has a fountain. I filled my bottle with the mineral water to use for bathing later in the evening. There was also a traditional music band performing near by. There was also a hugh Azelea bush with large cluster of flowers. There were some comments that the reason the flowers were so big because of the volcanic soil in the area.

I went back to the hotel when it was appointed time to leave. After everybody arrived, we got into the van and heading back to Prague.

Back inPrague I went to have my last dinner in Prague at my favorite Italian restaurant near my hotel. I chatted a bit with the waiter/manager of the place. He said he had been to Thailand and play some golf.

That night I took a bath while wiped my body and face with washcloth soaked with mineral water :) I also put aside a cup of the mineral water for sipping while taking a bath. After that I packed up my stuff, ready for my flight to Amsterdam tomorrow morning.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Day 4 Sunday: Take it Easy

I decided to take it easy today as I still pondering whether to buy a trip outside of the city or not.

So spent most of the day checking the other side of the city, the area behind the Wenceles Square. I found a park on my Google map so I decided to check that out. I loaded up the Google Map using the hotel WiFi signal to get the map and use it guide my way. It was not a long walk but it still take some time.

As I walked passed the national museum, I can see that not too far off there is a main train station with many railways going under the hillside that the museum is built on. The area behind the museum look more modern than the main tourist spot and sure it a lot less people.

I eventually reach the park. It was on a hillside with uphill walkways. I walked up to the top which overlooking the city. It was a lovely view with some folks jogging or walking their dogs. On another side, I could see the TV building in the distance with the famed baby statues. All in all it was a nice park with lots of big trees and a canopy area. There is also a path with flower islands in the middle with several butterflies fluttering about.

After spending some nice relaxing time in the park I walk back to my hotel for a bit of pit stop. I flicked through the channels on the TV, lying in bed and relax. I even took a bit of nap, something that my mom would sure told me off, saying that I could take a nap at home and not when I am on vacation :P

I have decided to buy the tour at last. I went to the hotel front desk to buy it. I choose to buy the tour to Karlovy Vary, a spa town. I choose this one over another tour because it sounds more relaxing and the length of the tour is one hour less than another one.

Then I left the hotel to walk to explore the other side of the city and head toward the river side walk path. It was a fairly long walk but it was nice to see the other side of the city. Along the way I noticed some differences in building style and I even found an art building.

I finally went to the traditional Czech restaurant that the guide recommended. It was, as she warned, nothing to write home about. The food was rather bland, not a lot of taste and not much in size.

I eventually went to bed a bit early as I will have to get up one hour early for the tour.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Day 3 Saturday: Touring With Guide

I planned today a bit around the free walk tour. It was rather cold that day because of rain during the night. After breakfast I ventured into the city again for the tour.

The meeting point: Near the Astronomical Clock.

The starting time: 11:00 and 14:00 for 3 hours walk tour.

I arrive at the spot around 10:45. The guide of this particular group will be the one carried light blue umbrella. With a little time to kill I wandered around a bit. It was not long before peopel start gathering around. In the end we became a sizable group of almost 20, including a bunch of young french tourists :P

Our tour guide of the day, a young Canadian woman who came to Prague with her bf, she started the tour with some tidbits about the Astronomical Clock. She told us that when the clock was finish, the city councilmen were very happy with it that they invited the designer/maker to dinner, in order to poke his eyes so he cannot make a better clock elsewhere...

Next it was a bunch of cross signs in the ground in front of the city hall. She told us that the crosses were there as a memorial to the knights who were slain on the spot protecting the city.

Then she led us around the another church and another one surrounding the old square including a plaza with Roman style decors. Then she led us to the Jewish quarter, pass a building with colourful fresco. The building has Hardrock Cafe, she said it was controversial when Hardrock cafe was first announce their plan of buying this building. The neighborhood and the city thought it would not fit well with the surrounding and atmosphere of the area. However, the issue drop after Hardrock cafe said they will pay for the maintenance of the fresco on the front of the building.

Next we continued to Charles Bridge. During our journey across the bridge, we learned that the statues on the bridge will be replaced periodically overtime. And the original ones are kept in the museum nearby. There are also a few tidbits regarding the statues on the bridge:

  • Christ on the cross with Hebrew scripture on the top in gold: This one was said to be the result of how a thief was caught who turn out to be jewish. So as a punishment the Jewish community was fined by being ordered to create this statue.

  • A plague and statue of St. John of Nepomuk: He was a priest who refuse the king's order to divulge the queen's confession to him because the king was suspicious that the queen might not been faithful to him. The king ordered the priest to be tortured for the night. The priest relent and by the morning the king gave him one last chance to divulge the confession. The priest complied by saying that he will only tell one soul in this roomand the king agreed. He then told everybody to clear the room except for a dog. This, of course, make the king furious and ordered the priest to be thrown into the river. It was said that were five stars shine on the spot where the priest hit the water. Thus, the statues of him were usually include halo of five stars which usually depicted with Jesus or Virgin Mary. The plague under his statue is said to given love fortune or money fortune depend on which plague you touch with your left hand.

After reach the other side of the bridge, we got a little pit stop at a convenience store. And then we began our trek toward the castle. But first we walked by the a small bridge which was said a mean old woman used to live in. And across from that is the location of Lennon wall. The Lennon wall is a wall that youngster used to paint anti-communism graffiti on it. The police then paint the graffiti over but new things would be painted on soon after. This routine stop after the communism were gone from Czech and police finally concentrate on their more important duties :p Nowadays, the graffiti still going on, over the graffiti that's already on the wall. Our guide said that the wall change everyday, and she gets to see the progress as she came daily as the guide.

Next we continue toward to castle. This path was not as steep as the one I used on Friday. It even have steps. Along the way she pointed out that there are many embassies in the area and that the buildings in those times use symbol instead of numbers as the sign to differentiate each houses.

We finally arrived at the castle. The guide gave us a brief history of the place. I don't remember much, it could be read online anyway. The tour ended at the exit on the other side of the castle. The guide gave us the location of her recommended traditional Czech restaurant. After we split, I eventually decided to pay for the ticket (the cheap one) to enter the 'Golden Lane'.

The Golden Lane was comprised of a row of small houses which has been converted to souvenir shops on the first floors and a museum on the upper floors which seems to take the space of the second floors of all the houses combine. Some of the shops sell nice items like metallic bookmarks with matching symbols, one sell Christmas tree ornaments and another sell traditional soap and bath products. I did not buy any though… As they are quite pricey and the later two look rather fragile.

At the exit of the Golden Lane, there is an entrance to the tower which has a dungeon basement where prisoner were kept in at a bottom of the pit. I went inside to take a quick look. There was not much to see but

Then I walked back to the main church on the castle. There was a long line of people queuing to get inside St. Vitus Cathedral. I went to queued up and it was not long before I got in. The inside of the church was beautiful. I took many photos :)

And then I left to leave the castle ground the same way I did yesterday. I found out that the restuarant with scenic hillside view was close for private event. It seems that I was lucky to have went to the castle the day before otherwise I would have miss that path. So I have to go down hill on the perhaps official path which had not a lot to see except for stone walls and cobble stone paths. It all came out around the same path as the last times and then I use the subway to get back to my hotel room.

After a brief rest I went out again for something to eat. I am not sure what I had then but it was probably some Panini in the fastfood chain near by.

I rest that night pondering whether I should buy a tour trip out of the city since I already visited most of the free (and some paid) tourist spots.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Day Friday 2 : Touring Prague

Due to my laziness I will not post a shot by shot photos of Prague. I have uploaded all Prague photos already so please check it out. I have added the link and preview in the left column.

So, each morning I started the day by having breakfast in the hotel. They have buffet breakfast, one of the reason I chose this hotel. They have the staple menus of scramble egg, several kinds of breads, cereals, cheeses, and yogurts. With alternate menus of mini sausages, bacon, bean soup, mushrooms, fruits, etc. Overall the breakfasts were very nice, it usually early evening by the time I got hungry again.

I began sightseeing by walking to the Astronomical clock in the old town square. Along the way I saw many many souvenir shops. I must have passed by 20-30s shops by the time I reach Prague Castle. All the shops seems to follow a couple of patterns and looks almost identical. This reminded me a lot of the souvenir shops I saw in Camden market. I did not buy anything from these shops though. Although the glassware looked nice, I did not want to worry if my purchases will still be in one piece by the time I got back home. After all, I still have Amsterdam to go to next.

Once I arrived at the Astronomical clock, it was nice but wasn't much to look at, I start wandering around. I had gone through a street through the main square and finally arrived at Powder Gate and then I walked further toward Charles Bridge. But once I couldn't find it I look at my map and realize that I went the wrong way. I walked back and ended up at Palladium Plaza, a big shopping mall. So I did a bit of pit stop before asking their information desk for direction. I ended up using the subway to get back to Mustek station so I can start over from the old town square. Eventually I did made it to the bridge :) A few parts of the bridge were in renovation and maintenance, but other than that it was nice. There are numerous souvenirs stands on the bridge as well selling paintings and some accessories for women. After the bridge I began walking toward the castle.

Along the way I noticed a walk tour group. I decided to follow one of them for a while. This lead me into a building with the path that I would never choose to go by myself. After going through a small gate I ventured into a large garden of sort with something about senate in the name sign. I am not sure what the place is for but it was unusual looking. The most amazing thing about this place, however, is that as I was about to leave a peacock glide out of nowhere and landed in the garden area :O. It was the most peculiar squawk I have ever heard. I cannot really describe it, only that the sound that came out did not match the appearance, at least to me. After finish seeing the garden and gawking at the peacock, I left the building and continue to the castle.

It was an uphill climb, literally. My feet began to hurt from the pressing spots with my sneakers. I tried to wiggle my feet around but it didn't help much. Eventually I have to loosen the strings all over. I did have to ask for direction once though. I passes an uphill path with amazing view overlook the city. I took several photos of course :)

Finally I reach the top of the hill. I rested at the near by statue and survey the surrounding. Then I headed into the castle. I walked through the big gate, through an archway and saw a steel steps leading to the ticket office with rubble underneath, it seems that they are renovating the stairs. I went into the ticket office and found that there are a range of ticket prices with recommended audio guide to listen to the history of each location and artifacts as well as allow you to get right into one of the cathedral without waiting in line. However, the audio guide was 350 Ckz. I am not going to spring for that amount of money just to get the audio and minor priviledge. While I was browsing the room, I noticed a brochure of Free Walk Tour. I picked up, read through, and found that I was already late for both times that they offer the tour. I planned, in my mind, to do this free tour tomorrow.

I left the ticket office and tentatively walked further into the area. I found out that I can enter through the main gate without ticket. So I walk through another archway and was greet by the sight of St. Vitus Cathedral. Then I walked pass it a large widen plaza area. I noticed WC sign and went in a building which also has a museum shop. The toilet here look modern and very nice. I took a pit stop there and rest up a bit. It was pretty windy and chilly. It was quite calming sitting quietly in a nice clean toilet :P

After the rest in the restroom, I walked out and walk further. It was a bit of downhill path with a few fence erected for construction crew to work in. They were fixing the cobble stone walkpath. I did saw how they make cobble stone street. They literally arrange the stone and then pound it with hammer one by one. This way they ensure that the stones will be put in order and make a nice path. Then I passed some more shops, then an entrance way into the famed Golden Lane. Ticket is required for entry so I did not went in. I continued onward and passed a section with house an Inca gold exhibit, Toy Museum and a blacksmith. Yeap, a real blacksmith doing metal works and selling his wares at near by stand.

I surveyed the area, looking for a place to eat but they either too expensive or written in Czech which I can't read. so I headed toward the exit. There is another city overview spot right outside the exit. After taking a few looks I continue down the path. I soon encounter a fork in the road. I take the right path as it is a gorgeous hill side path with small vineyard and a restaurant with great garden. I continued down the path, eventually off the hilly area and onto the street. The subway station near the area is not hard to find but surprisingly the entrance is located in a medium size park. The entrance building itself also have a restaurant which I find rather odd :P

I took the metro back to Muztek station to get back to my hotel.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Day 1 Wednesday & Thursday - Flight to Europe

I chose to work half day because my flight is at 23:25. This way I will have more leave time.

But, as things turn out, I should have just take whole day off because I find myself rushing to do things that needs to be done before the trip. My mom is taking me to the airport again. In the car she is pushing the idea of me running a 7-Eleven shop. As she said I would make more money. Be that as it may, I don't think I wants to just yet.

I also ran into an old collage friend. He was working at the information desk. We catch up a bit and then I went to find the toilet with cleaning hose. However, the area were closed off, as nature called, I have to start using paper earlier than I thought.

When I eventually arrive at the gate, I noticed that there was a downpour. Luckily, the plane took off ok without any problem.

As the flight progress, it was getting really cold in the cabin. Despite wearing my thick long sleeves shirt and have the iarplane blanket it still didn´t help much. It was also quite dry in the plane as well.

Eventually the plane arrived at Schipol airport. Before landing, they show a video of how to transfer the flight without boarding pass. It shows that there is a self-transfer machine where you type in your e-ticket number and the machine will print out your boarding pass. I walked into one not long after got off the plane. I type in my number but it did not work, the print out say that I need to contact the airline staff for assistance. It took me quite a while to get direction and walked to the said airline station.

I showed my print out at the station and the staff said I need to take a queue card and wait for my queue. I did and ended up waiting for about half an hour before it was my queue. Good thing that I have three hours transit time. After I finally got my boarding pass, I then went through the immigration. The immigration officer asked what I will be doing in Prague, and I answered. Then he asked to see my hotel booking and I showed it to him. Then I went through without a hitch. I felt pretty fatigue by the time I get to my gate. I have to wait for almost two hours before boarding time. I noticed a sport bar near by that sell apply pie. And then I noticed on the other end of the terminal there is a snack booth that also have the same apple pie. I ended up buying one. It was... not quite what I thought it would be but it was still edible and I am not going waste 3 euros snack just because it did not tasted the best :P

The ride to Prague was not very smooth but quite alright. I noticed a very cute guy in the waiting area of the gate. Then I found out that he sitting in the same row as I did :D. He was getting some shuteye most of the flight though and I need the same as well. It was not a long flight so they only serve a sandwich. It got a bit thrilling for me after we landed and I was waiting for my suitcase. They seems to be taking their sweet time unloading the cargo. I was getting nervous wondering if my suitcase was in my plane or not. However, my suitcase finally loading into the belt, I breath a sigh of relieve and headed out into the airport.

I had to ask for the location of ATM machines as it turns out they are all in the far side of the terminal. And then I went to buy my 5 days ticket and then look for the bus stop. It took me a while to locate the stop itself and then I am off from the airport. It took about 15 minutes, just like it said in the guidebook, to get to the metro station. It was a bit awkward getting into the station because there was no escalator. Once I got into the train, lo and behold, it was that cute guy from the gate again :D Though we only just nod at each other for the recognition. I got off at the Muzeum station. As it turns out, I came up from the station and greet by the sight of big statue. I actually came up at Wenceles Square! It was quite impressive indeed, although I have no time, hands, or energy to take out camera to take the photos.

I took out my hotel google map print out to get the location. It was not that hard to find, only that it is actually quite a bit uphill. Not to mention that it was oddly hot that day, almost Bangkok hot. I was panting by the time I reach the area where the hotel suppose to be. Turns out they did not use the name ´Majestic Hotel´on their sign but Best Western. Luckily I noticed the name in the print out and finally went in. I got check-in right away at around 13:00, local time, and got the room on the first floor. Not that I mind, since I am not planning to do sightseeing from my room anyway. I also got a corner room with a small view into the center courtyard, it was lovely :) The room itself is very beautiful, though rather small.

I quickly took a shower and start exploring around the block. But fatigue set in soon after so I went back to my hotel and take a nap. I set my alarm at 18:00 so I will still have time to see the city later. After I woke up, still groggy, but I forced myself to get up and start sightseeing by walking into the historical area.

All the street and the road are cobble stones, just like what I read in wikitravel. The sneakers work fine, so it was not a problem. I decided to check out one of the gay place in Prague, as it was evening soon. And then I went to bed.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Eve of My Trip

I am almost finish preparing for my trip. I guess it is a mistake that I choose to take half-day off from my work instead of a full day.

I was rushing to do this and that and right now the last thing I need to pack are my chargers and extension cord.

My mom called so that's my ride. I won't do half day off like this again... It's too much hassle.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Pre-Vacation Mishaps

Although I am looking forward for my vacation, things happens that make me feel quite upset.

It is 95% certain that I will be flying solo in Prague. Both my friends could not make it after all. The German who live in London could not afford it. He already struggling to make ends meet as it is so I can't blame him. Although it is entirely his fault that I even go to Prague in the first place :pp

The second guy, a German who live in Berlin, said his company sent him to Bremen office on July 23-24, so he could not make it. Since my time in Prague is from July 23-29, it is quite true. What I don't understand about him is that he only ask his company for day off on Monday July 13. Despite the fact that we have been planning this for months. This is especially bad for me since I initially planned to cancel my hotel booking in favor of cheaper hostel. Although there are still time to cancel, the cheap hostel no longer have the cheap room. Also, all the other places that I have checked no longer have the cheap price that I got from months ago. So I guess I will just have to enjoy the hotel alone :pp

And then the sneakers that I ordered would not arrive before my trip. It is partially my fault for ordering it almost too late. I have look for some cheap alternatives today. I found a couple of shoes that I am interested in. But tomorrow I will look at MBK malls as well.

The plastic top of my USB MicroSD reader broke a while ago, before I wrote this post. So I will definitely have to visit Pantip Plaza to look, no just for another MicroSD card but also for the USB reader replacement.

I still need to finish packing, getting my hair cut and more packing...

So little time, so much to do...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The New Day Has Pass

I survive the first day in my head office, barely.

My new boss informed me of my new tasks, his expectation of me, and when I will visit the other offices. I must say I am overwhelm by all the new things that I have been informed of (been ordered). However, I was slightly excited that he will sent me to do couple of Microsoft certified courses. I think that will do me good, especially for my future. Although they are just XP support and Applications on XP support courses, at least after that I can really say that I am official a certified support technician :P

The morning hours doesn't help that's for sure. I was half awake in the morning and getting sleepy in the afternoon. I hope that I will be able to adjust as time goes by... It certainly doesn't help my mood. I was able to be cheerful when greet by other people but I am not feeling as happy, relax, and comfortable as I was in my old office.

I will either have to adjust or else....

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Quivering Mood

On the eve of my last day at work, I find myself quivering inside.

I will definitely be sad. But I must remind myself that I will be visiting once a week. It is a fairly big deal for me. I know that this is not something very serious. I am still working for the same organization, I will return to my current office at least once a week.

Unlike some of my friends who is worst predicament of unemployment or struggling to get by. As I wrote many times before, I still feels upset. Although not at the soul shaking level that I had before.

It will over soon... Then it will be the adjustment period to the new office and so on... Although I wish this did not happen. I deserve to enjoy my trip to Prague and Amsterdam without thinking about the move...

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Move is Coming

So it finally going to happen. This Tuesday will be my last working day at my current office.

It will be quite sad for me. But the consolation is that I will visit it every Friday. I maybe a blessing in disguise... Since my current boss will also leave to take another position in Europe in August. And the new boss, I heard, that he had a row with the head of Thai staff years ago. So it might be a good thing that I get to move. The work dynamic will change along with the new boss. This will goes both ways, both in the new and current office.

I decided to let the other guy get the Fri-Sat weekend this time and then we can alternate every three months. Since I will be on 2 weeks vacation soon.

In order to keep my mood up, I will just have to concentrate on the new Harry Potter movie. Which will be release in Bangkok on this week. I will go watch it on Monday, which should have less people by then. And then later that week I will began my trip to Europe. I start packing a bit already.

Monday, July 06, 2009

250 to 1000 :)

It was more than a year ago since I last replace my harddisk. IT was ComMart show time so I went to buy it there.

I end up going on Saturday. Arriving at the show I felt a little light headed, I guess because I haven't eat yet. So I went to the food court area to eat. It is my policy not to shop with empty stomach. I feels that I would be more objective on my full stomach :)

I eventually bought the 1TB harddisk, an external box and power cable, all from different shops. All to replace the 250GB one. Then I went to check the Adidas sales like usual. I do like some of shirt but nothing really caught my interest.

After I got home, set everything up for transfer, and fire up the computer, something wasn't right. I heard buzzing sound coming from the computer case. It took me a while to figured out which fan made the sound. I eventually figured out that it came from the power supply. I was not happy with this. Since a new one usually cost about a couple of thousand baht for a reliable one.

It keep buzzing the first night and I have to turn off the computer after unable to fall asleep due to the noise. I decided that if it still buzzing by Monday, I will take it to an IT mall to buy a one power supply. Luckily the buzzing stop, I guess the fan was finally spinning in the right way.

It was the right decision that I went to buy the harddisk on Saturday. This allow me to fully enjoy my 4 days off this week. I really need these time off.

Friday, July 03, 2009

The Date Got Set

My boss told me today that my moved day have been agreed. So this means I will start working in the head office on July 15.

The news did not feels as threathen as it was a few weeks back. I feels that I have been warming up to the move, eventhough I do not want it to happen. At least I will be there for a week and then it will be my Europe vacation :D

The new Harry Potter movie will also be release on July 16th. I am looking forward to that as well. I am also looking forward to this weekend. I am still deciding whether I should go to the IT fair on Sat after work or on Sunday to buy the new harddisk. Both have their own pros so I am still considering it.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Delayed Inevitable

It has been finalized. My move will be postponed for a couple weeks in lieu of new computers being deployed. The idea is for me to monitor if the new computers will have any problem or not.

This news made me happy. As this also help me finalized my weekend plan to go to ComMart fair. So I will probably buy the 1TB disk, since the price has come down to about 3,200 baht. Which is significantly lower than the 1.5TB one at 5,050 baht. I am slightly worried whether my power supply can handle all these large size harddisks. If it doesn't then it will be a trip to one of the IT mall to buy new power supply. Luckily I have taken leave day next week which will make me have four days off :DDDD. I certainly need that.

Monday, June 29, 2009

The Actual Move

Due to some circumstances, I think my move will be push for a few more days. This is not my doing, since I have finish on my parts, but the IT manager. Not that I mind nor complaining :pp

But it is still inevitable. I would like to know the definite soon though. Since the ComMart fair will be held again from July 2-5. I need to know when will my weekend be. So I will have time to go to that fair and buy new harddisk along with the external box so I can transfer my data after the switch. That way I only have to open my case once and be done with it.

I know that I am just whining now but I need an outlet to whine otherwise I would have gone crazy.

I also went to see Transformer 2 today. It was an ok movie. I sensed some flaws here and there but it was not too glaring. The 'Bay Bang' was numerous and sometimes, in my opinion, excessive. The camera sway too much or move too fast sometimes and focusing on the expensive special effects of the robots. Overall it was worth the money. Next will be Harry Potter 6 :D

Friday, June 26, 2009

No Raise, No How!!

The director of my office sent email to all Thai staff yesterday evening, to inform us that there will be 0% raise in our salary this year...

He cited several reasons but the gist of it are the economic recession, budget cut, and negative inflation. The email ended with a promise to look into providing some alternative package instead. All of which make the salary raise less justifiable, not counting the morale boost issue. Although I still think that even 1% raise would boost the morale of the staff, even if just slightly.

So now it makes me wants that promotion even more, although not by much. It certainly lower my already low mood about my own work situation, reading the force moving to head office. This surely is a sucky situation.

There will be a big meeting next week at the head office between the Thai staff association and the upper management. Hopefully something good would come out of that.

I am still trying to maintain positive thoughts about the move...
a) My new weekend would be Fri-Sat, which I preferred than Sun-Mon.
b) The places to eat in that area has a lot more varieties, it is close to MBK.

It's not a lot but enough for me to concentrate on.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Harden Soul

Today my soon to be boss had, again, voiced his frustration on the lateness of my progress on work here and, again, said that he wants to me start working at the head office on first of July.

This times, however, the fact did not shocked me as much as it did before. I guess the repetition dull its effectiveness. It may sound strange but my emotion felt harden by this statement. I suppose I have come to terms with it, slightly, on some level.

While I am feeling stress and upset about my situation, I do not have a lot of people to complain about it to. My online friends who goes online often are not really good to talk with on this issue. Especially when one of them has been unemployed for months now. I know that my situation is not bad in comparison to other possibilities.

I must keep my head on straight and my mood in check. I hope that I will be able to come to terms with it once the move happens. I do have several leave days left after allocate them for my trip. I will start using it them once I moved.

Monday, June 22, 2009

A Tearful Remedy

I have been feeling down for the pass several days. I would usually feels a little better if I gets to cry.

There was a time when I was really upset about something and I feels better after I got to really cry in cinema watching 'Nang Nak'.

So today I decided to watch some videos that I have that would make me cry, I was successful. Then I also got to cry a bit over Oprah's show about puppies mills. And again over something on TV which I forgot.

In total, I cried or shed tears three times since afternoon. I think I now feels slightly better after relieve some tension with crying.

I also buy some Euro money today, finally, as well as complete my sneakers order. That also help too, I think. I do understand how people find spending money feels quite therapeutic. I suppose it gave you a sense of control and power to be able to buy whatever you desire.

I like shopping for groceries, especially when my mom still haven't moved out. I will call her and ask what she would like me to buy and add a few of my own into the list. All of which will be cooked by her later. Nowadays though, I just buy various fruit juice to mix with my protein shakes. Occasional shower gels and shampoo and that's about it...

Anyway, I really needs to go to bed now... This week could be my last week at my current office. I better tries to savior the moment. Although I will be visiting again at least once a week...

Friday, June 19, 2009

Soul Shaker

My soon to be boss that is... Today he gripe about how slow the progress of prepping the new set of computers has been and that I should have been moved already.

This is not good for my morale at all. I feels like I have borderline depression since last week or so. It manifest as the feelings of not wanting to go to work. The sinking feeling and bad mood of having to go to work. I guess it felt like I have been betrayed by the office.

I know that my own boss had tried to keep me but it was beyond his control. I suppose my resentment has been directed to the establishment. Lately I have to reminded myself that I need to have a job, this is a good place to work, and if I wants to return to this branch office, I better remain part of the organization. I am also torn between using my leave day to rest my nerve or coming to work here since it is likely I will be moved very soon. I suppose I can use it soon after I move.

It seems very likely that I will start working in the HQ on first of July. My boss told me in our weekly meeting that his boss said so but he added that it was not what they agreed on. He said he will just let it simmer and see how it goes.

Also, my current boss' contract is coming to an end. So he will leave the office in a couple of months to take a position in another country. Hopefully the next boss will wants to have an IT personal, that he will have enough pull to open the position so I can move back :P It was a really long shot but one can hope. Not that I would pinned all my hopes and dreams on that hypothetical scenario. I do have to concentrate on learning the skills that I needs for the promotion. I can't just let myself feels too down to learn all that. The prospect of getting promotion is, for now, far more realistic than being moved back here.

No matter what happen, I will still be back here once a week anyway.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Harddisk Blues

After a little more than a year since the last time I buy new harddisk, I have manage to almost filled it. Although I did not feels like it's been that long, good thing that I did blog about it so I know when I bought it last year.

The price of 1TB (TB=Terrabyte which means 1,000 GB :d) harddisk became more attractive but I would love to buy the 1.5 TB one instead. However, the 1TB one is still about 1,300 baht cheaper than the 1.5TB one. The price which I do not wants to pay just yet. But it became harder and harder to make space for my downloads, especially in this series heavy season. The Closer and So You Think You Can Dance are running weekly now. Soon Leverage will began it's second season in July and then Dexter's fourth season in September :O.

I could not possibly housed all those files with my current 14GB space left on my biggest harddisk. Despite my wish that I wants to hold off buying new harddisk until the price of 1.5TB one reduce to about 4,000 baht. I don't think that I can wait that long.

Monday, June 15, 2009

My Funny Man is Going Home And That Sinking Feeling.

I spend today with my friend 'Funny Man'. He told me that he is going home to New Zealand in two months time and ending his four years of traveling around the world. The news shocked me quite a bit. It makes me feels like I lost a friend.

Although, in truth, we will still keep in touch so we will still be friend. Except that it will be quite a while before I see him in person again.

I also help him located the washing hose so he can buy one for his apartment back in Wellington. He really love it as the way to clean up after the deed was done. I hope he will be able to install it easily back home.

I am going to miss him. He is very funny, fun to hang out with and fun to talk with. He did invited me to visit him in his hometown and that I can stay at his place. I think I will take him up on that in a couple of years time.

Lately I have been plagued by the 'Don't Want to Go to Work' feelings. Which I think, was triggered because of my soon to be boss. He reminded me over the phone, when we were discussing other issues, that he wants me to start working at the HQ next month.

My heart and mood sank when he said that. While I knew that this is inevitable, it still hitting me harder than I though it would. I guess I am mentally not still want this to happen. I did not expect the sinking feeling to occurred. It seems that I was put this out of my mind until it hit me again.

When I tell my current boss of this, he said that it wasn't the IT manager's decision to make but rather the higher level manager. So we will see when will that happen. But we both agreed that it would not be for our best interests to prolong this more than it should.

I suppose it will be ok once the move happen since then I will accept that it actually happen and not just looming around the corner, making me worried like this.

I know that I am lucky that I still have a job, a decent paying one in fact. One that it allows me both financially and enough free time to start traveling. Yet my feeling is not in the best of mood to appreciate that. I will tough it out and see what happens.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Weather Foiled Plan

I decided to pay up and spend a bit of money to buy a snack from the coffee shop near my office to get their WEP code for their WiFi. Lo and behold it works!! I could open my WebGUI page on my Nokia 5800 :D

I tested it a bit and found that WebGUI page works nicely on my phone and everything works, albeit, slower than on actual computer :D

Too bad that by the time the TV show I wants to download, The Closer, became available online, there was a power cut at my home :ppp There was a brief heavy rain just when I walk back to office from my lunch break. And by the time I found that the show is available for download, I could not open my WebGUI page anymore. I thought that there could be a power cut at my home due to the heavy rain and my younger bro confirmed it. Bugger...

So now I have to wait until I got home and do it manually anyway :pp I suppose I will try this again on Friday for So You Think You Dance Season 5.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Experimenting With Remote BitTorrent

After realizing that many of the TV shows I want to see is being shown again in US summer season.

Since I sometimes would not be home when the shows would be uploaded to the BitTorrent, I would like to know how to remotely add the one I wants to download when I am not home. I figured I could use my phone to access internet and did what I wants from it.

I use utorrent as my BitTorrent client. It has WebGUI function which allow you to remotely access your client through internet with an addon and a bit of know-how. It was pretty easy actually. Here is the instruction I use to do it.

I also learn how to create domain name since my ISP will disconnect my connection every 24 hours, thus, shifting my IP address.

It was all pretty simple and easy really. The difficult part is to find a free WiFi spot that I can use near my office. There is one WiFi spot but you have ot pay to get their WEP code.

I am looking forward to test this and see if I can work it when I am on my trip as well :)

Friday, June 05, 2009

The Museum Run, The 2nd Times

About a week ago I went to see "Night at The Museum 2: Escape From The Smithsonian", it was quite a fun movie but not totally.

It was still a very fun notion to have the *reviving* scenario taking place in the biggest Museum of all, the Smithsonian. The art showroom sequence looks fantastic while the air and space looks surreal (er, more than usual). The villains were practically stereotyped in their personalities which feels a bit flat at times.

Overall, it is a fun movie, but I do not appreciate the fact that it was more than 30 minutes before the movie begin after I enter the theater. Although I like to watch the trailers, the ads were too much for my taste. The fact that I had not eat anything substantial before the cinema that day worsen the matter even more.

All in all, I think it is no wondered why people do not go to cinema much anymore.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Chapped Ass Hot Sauce

When I saw this one, I thought of Torn :)

Chapped Ass Hot Sauce by `ursulav on deviantART

It is Ursula Vernon's latest piece, of which she lamented how it looks homoerotic relatively by accident :P But then we are all homos here so...

I think Torn would love this and get a good chuckle ;)

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Consolation Prize

I finally called the HR manager today, since no one contacted me about the interview result. As it turns out, it was not all good news.

Although I pass the interview part, I failed the exam part. So, to compromise, the HR manager said the solution is for me to transfer my post without the promotion. It was not the best of outcome but it is better than the alternative of being laid off I suppose. She said I should look at this a development opportunity. Once I learned enough skills for the position, I can apply for it again in the future.

So it was not the best outcome but not the worst either. I did imagine what I would do with the raise in my salary. I guess I cannot put that in practice yet. At least I am not in the situation where I *need* that promotion just yet. But the added traveling cost will surely cut into my savings.

Although it was not quite how I thought it would turn out, at least this is over and done with for now. I am not complete happy about this, even more so now that I did not get the promotion. But at least I still have got a job and I know how hard it is to get one. The last remain issue, is when I will be moved to the HQ. So far not much has been progress on the move condition set by my boss. I hope it will not happen in at least 3 months or longer.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Leo In Me

Although I was born under Leo sign, I never felt particular extrovert or any of the typical Leo's traits that you would read about in the astrology articles. Especially that I am the dual fire sign one. Both my Chinese Zodiac, the snake, and my zodiac are of fire signs.

However, it seems that I did had it in me after all. Late afternoon the previous day in my office, we had another car exhaust fume coming into the office. It was particularly bad because the rain was falling heavily and the cars that leaving the parking lot were backing up behind the office where the A/C ventilation was located. I called the maintenance asking for a technician to come up to fix the problem. It was after 17:00, so only one or two technicians left on shift. But after about half an hour, no one came up. I finally had it and marched down to the maintenance room and found two technicians watching TV.

I called out "I Need one of you to open the A/C unit room, Now" The younger one get ups and follow me back to the office. I explain what I need him to do and have him to it. He later told me that he was not on duty.

Today, I informed their boss that my office still have this problem. He spoke in a patronizing, dismissive manner that either intentional or simply his normal manner. When he said that I will help with this issue. This made me through the roof. I proceed to forcefully tell him that we do not need his help but rather him doing his job properly.

The problem has not really been solve as it happens again around 11:00. So I call the maintenance again. After 10 minutes, I called again to tell them that no one came up yet and if no one came up in 10 minutes I will go down there to get someone myself.

That seems to make them step up their game a bit and sent someone up.

I feels that it is time to take gloves off, no more mister nice guy for them until the problem is really solved.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Longest Work Week

Although this is only the third day of my working days, it felt like I already had a full work week, since I came to the office in the morning...

Tuesday was my interview, Wednesday was office meeting day which I have to come in one hour early, and today we had major problem with one of the server. It was totally out of my league but the IT manager is just a phone call away.

Even he was struggle with this particular problem a bit. Luckily he was able to tell me how to solve an hour or so before the classes began. I was nervous as hell getting everything ready in case the problem cannot be solve on time.

The good news is "So You Think You Can Dance" season 5 will premier tonight in US. Which means that I will be trying to download it before I go to work each Friday. This should cheer me quite a bit :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Interview Was Done, The Anxious is Over, For Now

I have done the interview... It was harder than I thought. I think I did ok, although I felt like I speak random things at times. They only need to *steer* me into the right direction a couble of times (that I noticed). When I asked about when I will know the result, they said I will be contacted next week.

My saving will be reduced significantly today, to pay my mom back for using her credit card to pay for the plane tickets. I will have to get a card of my own soon. Too bad the embassy did not return any of my documents... So I will have to spend another 200 baht to get the bank statement *sigh*

I tried The Sims 3 last night and boy it was quite fun :D. It certainly looks a lot liviler than the previous game. There are a lot more activities to do and gain skill of. Cooking is more tricky now that you have to do grocery shopping. Gerdening is quite a breeze as it included from the start. Now it completely occupied my time and my two other games has been put on tbe back burner :P

Monday, May 18, 2009

Booked Flights and Hotel and The Eve of Reckoning Day

After a chance researched last night, I found out that I could book my flight online at a cheaper prices, at the time I wants and I can have the airline transfer my luggage through the system without unloading it into the transit airport. What I needs to do, is simply have the two plane tickets and state my intend at the airline counter.

The passport pickup required a fair bit of time than I though. They only use one counter to check and return the passport. I heard the staff said it is because the rest needs to process the applications. A fair enough explanation I suppose.

On the eve of the interview day, I am still rather nervous about it. I hope I will do fine tomorrow. I think I will do fine in the interview... I just hope it will be over with quickly.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Nature's Wonder and Slight Tweaking

A friend of mine who started out as a fan of this blog had sent me these photo (he is the same guy who sent me the vintage Valentine's card). He said they were nesting near his house so he take photos of them as time passes. As you can see, they are hummingbirds :)

Aren't these looks like pictures from Animal Planet channel? :)

I also have replaced the header to something more related to the link name of this blog as well as the background which I am not too fond of.

It's been raining everyday this week. Which is great for bedtime. Luckily I only walked to and from work so it did not bothered me. Tomorrow will be another busy day for me... As well as this weekend.

I will have to prepare for my interview, pickup my passport, pay for my plane ticket and insurances and prepare for my interview *Ugh*

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Visa Acquired and The Final Endeavour

The embassy finally called me, I have got Schengen visa :D

So I will spend the next few days finalizing my plane ticket and hotel bookings. I will also gonna look into buying the fake AAA Nike sneakers as well. As of now, I do not have the appropriate walking shoes. Not the one for traveling in slightly cold weather anyway.

The HR personal from the head office contact me today to set the date for interview. At first she wants to have me do the interview today or tomorrow. But my boss put his foot down saying it is too sudden and I should have to prepare for it. The HR manager agreed with my boss. So the interview will be set next week. My boss will help me prepare for the interview tomorrow.

I hope this would not be an obstacle to my travel plans...

Monday, May 11, 2009

The 24" Delivery

The monitor I ordered finally delivered today. The delivery truck came in morning instead of the afternoon, which is ok for me as well.

Now it looks triumphantly perched on my new desk. Everything fit nicely XP detect the change right away and change the resolution automatically, which is nice. I think it will take some adjustment to using it. Everything have more space to moved around. Video files looks a lot bigger now and more TV like. Although many of the video files are a little too small for resolution this size and turn slightly blocky but it sitll nice to be able to watch them this big. I would have to turn the brightness level down a bit to save my eyes.

All my high price purchases are all done for about a year or two, not counting the traveling cost.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

The Rain Spell

It's Raining!! Hard!!! Fi-freaking-nally!!!!

It's been uncomfortably hot for the pass several days. The sky turn light gray since afternoon but it finally rain now, at about 22:30. Now it feels more comfortable in my room. I must say I cannot wait until Winter arrive to see how my new leather chair will feels against my bum...

The rain is great!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Schengen Visa Application

Per my plans to visit Prague and Amsterdam in late July, I went to do my visa application at Netherlands embassy yesterday.

The odd thing, for me at least, is that they seems to have small office to receive the visitors. Only about 15 people waiting inside the A/C room and about 4-5 people in the inner room waiting for their turn to be interviewed. I have to wait outside for about 5 minutes before an officer get into the booth and do the initial check of my papers. Then I was given a queue number before I could get inside.

The wait was not too long but surely not that fast. The *interview* itself was more not that probing... Just how long I will travel, where will I stay in Amsterdam, and that's about it. They request more documents regarding my friends' passports. I was able to get those last night, so I went to the embassy again today to drop the paper off. They said they will contact me on Monday to tell me the result. I hope that is a good sign that I will get the visa. If I got the visa, I will also have to get an insurance and show that paper when I pick up my passport. They give me a list of companies for this. I am still deciding which would be the best choice...

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The Exam Commence and general Rants

I went to SSQ to do my test in my bid to keep/upgrade my position. The test was difficult, that much is true. The test was multiple choices with written part to explain your answer.

Most of the questions were network related, which are not my trade. But I muddle through and answered every questions to the best of my abilities.

Right now I am still tired from the lack of sleep the previous night. There was a road crew just outside my house working on something in the street with an engine that produce rumbley loud and exhaust fume that goes into my room... Not only they were here last night and tonight, they will be here for 2 more nights!!

I called the police and they sort of say that this is government works and asked me to call again later in the night. I will probably do so soon... I don't think I should take this without any complains...

I have not been contacted by Dell regarding the shipping of the monitor I had ordered. When I check the webboard that I ordered it from, the seller posted that the shipment of the lot that I ordered will be in BKK tomorrow :( Since Friday is public holiday, the goods will be delivered after Monday... That really screw with my plans to enjoy the big screen monitor during the 3 days weekends...

Hopefully I will not have problem at my visa interview tomorrow...

Sunday, May 03, 2009

The Learning Experience

I have been using 5800 for a few days now. I am still learning how to customize it to my taste and I am learning more and more about it.

Garmin GPS software works today, finally. It took about 10-15 minutes before it was able to pickup the satellite signal. I was waiting for a bus at the time, I open the software and let it search for satellite signal while I put it back in my pant pocket. When I took it out again, the map was loaded up as the signal was founded.

It was said on the 5800 community webboard that it will eventually work faster the more often you search for the signal. Hopefully that will be true.

I have also loaded up new themes and applications. One of which give the home page a new, more useful looks. I certainly prefer this *shell* over the default one.

Like many other 5800 owners, I am waiting for the new firmware to be release. Somehow only a few people were able to get it. No one seems to know the official release date though... Only speculation, while other countries for their update already.

Friday, May 01, 2009

The New Phone

I finally bought new phone today. As planned, I bought Nokia 5800. Although I bought the red one instead of black, because they ran out of the black one.

I am happy with the big screen. But, for being tout as music phone, there is no button that directly play the music. I also have trouble making Garmin software works. Other than that I am quite happy with it. If only I have more reason to use it :p I do enjoy typing SMS more now, with the mini QWERTY virtual keyboard of the phone.

With bigger screen, it means that I have to redo most of my video conversion and upload larger wallpaper images from my collection. I am still learning how to best utilize it. Hopefully I will not have to change it again at least 2 years later.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Rain Had Fallen, Finally!

This morning I stirred up and greet by the sound of rainfall outside my room. The first sign was how I pull the blanket up to cover my legs.

It was gray almost all day today, which is lovely!! It bring down the temperature nicely, just when I bought a new white work shirt for summer :ppp The bad news, however, is that the new shirt is not wrinkle free type. And it looks more obvious with the

The chair and the desk works nicely. It seems to have overall space more than the old one. This one is wider, though narrower in some area with the wavy rim design but it looks nice and the curve in area allow me to push the chair in.

However, the chair itself create a problem I never thought of, sweating. I actually soaked the seat of my boxer shorts and the back of my tank top by sitting on it for a certain period of time. So I am now on my flat cushion again just like with my old chair. Although my butt feels a lot better because I now sit on a lot softer surface.

I am looking forward to 4 working days this week as Friday will be holiday. I will also have to step up my things for my visa application next week.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Desk Arrived and Now Waiting for the Monitor

The desk and the leather chair was delivered this morning. I was worried at first that the desk might be too small for the new monitor but once it is up to my room I can see that it will be just right. If not I still could shift things around to make room.

The chair is really really nice. I have made the right choice of the chair to buy the more expensive one for better back and head cushion. Although it did not tilt backward and stay there like the one that I looked at.

I also made the order for Dell monitor. It should arrive in 7-10 days. Can't wait :D

The weather also getting really really hot. It's like 39C in my room, right now. I also shutdown my computer when I am not in the room as well, to make sure it will not overheat. This Summer is Really Really Hot.

Friday, April 24, 2009

First Chunk of Purchase

I finally went to the furniture showroom and purchase the desk and the leather chair, office stlye, to put my computer set on. Oddly enough, the chair is more expensive than the desk :P

I am finalizing my decision on which monitor to buy. I have not found a nice one from Samsung or LG just yet but I have found a nice, relatively cheap one of Dell. I have also got a price quote from Dell as well for LED monitor. Which made me wondering what will LED screen looks like but after reading up soem review, it wasn't that much better than LCD screen except for energy consumption aspect.

I think I will probably goes for Dell. The price is cheap enough and Dell have good gaurantee. I will have to decide before Sunday before they close the order.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Charming Wombat

I am a big fan of comics, although I am not familiar with Web Comic. I have been a fan of a few like 8-Bit theater and the now defunt Flintlock Adventure. I recently reading up and following a Web Comic of Ursula Vernon "Digger".

It is quite an unusual story, as the pretext at the top of the page said, "A wombat, a dead god, a very peculair epic". This is the story of "Digger", a female wombat who accidentally thrust into an epic adventure by chance. I would not say more, but would recommend you read from the start. While the art looks nice, the dialogues are pure gold. There are many great lines in this comic. I really love the dialogues :)

Ursula Vernon has always been a very entertaining writer, as you can see from reading her blog, and the same goes for many of her works as well.

I would highly recommend reading Digger, especially now that it is free to read.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Perception of Expensiveness

I realized that my sense of "Expensiveness" has change a lot from when I was a kid. Although not by much and I think I do think in relative terms more.

Even now I do find some certain things *expensive* for 100 baht, while at the same time think some certain things are cheap for the same amount of money. Thinking back when I was a kid, I saved up my allowance to buy an SD gundum figure. It was almost 200 baht and I did thought that it was Very expensive but I just could not resist.

Now I am considering spending 30,000s baht on new mobile phone, 24" monitor, new desk and leather chair. It made me shuddered how much I am planning to spend, considering that I will made a two weeks trip abroad this year as well.

Although these purchases will be of items that I will use for more than 5 years (except the mobile phone perhaps), it still make me feels uneasy about buying those. I think it is a good thing that I still maintain this reservation about money. It means that I am still quite grounded and not lost touch with reality yet.

I will probably buy Nokia 5800 in a couple of weeks.

A Day Outside of My Room

Today I went to see my *funny friend* who just came back to Bangkok after his long trip in India.

I went to see him at his guesthouse. He shows me many photos of India that he had developed. I must say that their colours are very rice and vibrant. Certainly live up to India's reputation :) Some of his photos looks good enough to be in travel magazines. He also brought me a box of chocolate, the Jameson Irish whiskey chocolate truffle! He assured me that the whiskey is just for flavour and should not make me drunk. I will definitely tried it out soon. After I finish the other two chocolate items that I had bought recently :P

After a while we went to the 7-Eleven to buy Walls ice cream, my recent favorite Berry Blitz ice cream stick. Which is a blended berry mix covered a vanilla ice cream. While I am not too crazy about the strawberry, the mix taste nice and I find it quite soothing during my recent stress periods.

Then we walked into the subway station. I noticed a white guy walk up to us waving his hands. It turns out that he is my friend's friend from the extras acting job that my friend got into the last times he was in BKK. We must have stood there and chat for like half an hour. From our chats, I gathered that his friend is an American veteran from northern state. He studied at Chula for free with his funding from disability leave due to lost of hearing during his service. He is married to a Thai woman and love the long shiny black hair women (darn!). He is also very energetic and seems like a fun guy to hang out with. We would probably meet again soon. Since I gave him a phone number to Kuroda and he love the idea of authentic Japanese buffet restuarant :)

All in all it was a good day.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Brand Spanking New Look

I finally done it. After been putting it off for quite a few months, I finally use new template for my blog.

Personally, I would prefer dark/blue colour motif but this is the best I could find with three columns that I wants. I tried to get some help but free helps are not easy to find. Plus, after I check the template more closely, most of the white are not code but rather image files. So it will be extremely difficult to change it. I guess I will have to just use it as it is.

The move is not a smooth one, as many of the page element can't be export easily. I have to let go a lot of stuff I used to put up. I guess I will do some new ones later or just left it like this.

One thing that I do not like about blogger, is the fact that they have not update their own template collection for a really long time. Which I think it's a real shame.

Let me know what you think of the new look :)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

New Item in my Home

This is the first times that I own a large electrical appliance, though I did not buy it myself. My mom gave me her old refrigerator.

She had bought a new bigger one as this one is not big enough anymore. Since she live quite far from the main road, she wants to stockpile more groceries. So I have got a hand-me-down fridge :P Which is nice, it is not that old yet. It not as big as the one we currently have, which is enough for my usage. It is about as high as my chin so it is not a large one.

I now kept my juice boxes in there. Now I am thinking about stocking some fruits and some snacks in there as well. I just bought a 6-packs of Pepsi Lemon today :)

Today I spend my day outside of my room, which is nice. I went to check the price of mobile phone at MBK mall and found that the price has gone down about 1,000 baht from its initial release. I will buy it soon, I think right after I am done with my bank statement for my visa application. I am sick of the current state of my smalltalk cable. I will just have to wait for about two weeks more.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Holiday Post

I had spent most of my holidays so far at home and did not go out much, other than the mandatory meals time.

Mostly this is because of my lack of friends and desire to go out and partially because of the red-shirts riots. My mom called me a at least once a day to check on me during the riot. At first I was thinking about a rendezvous with my funny friend from New Zealand who is back from India. I have not seen him the last time he come back.

I am also looking at B&B websites and info in Prague to plan my trip. But all that I could find are quite expensive rate if about 60-70 Euro. However, I am started to find some decent price range on a website. I just sent emails to ask my German friend and my boss about those hotels.

Hopefully I will hear back from them soon. The booking needs to be done before my visa application interview.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Making Progress

I have finished about 85% of the application with the guidance of my boss. I must say that I would felt quite lost with this had he not help me out. He likes what I write so far and he will help edit it before he went off to his holiday.

While I was not really stressed during the writing of it, now it's back at full force. To quote Big Daddy from "Raising Duncan" comic strip, now I feels like the devil is making a animal balloon with my intestine.

Now I could relax a bit and try to enjoy my Songkran holiday. I have a plan to meet my Australian friend who is moving to Hong Kong on Sunday. I am also contemplating whether I should buy new thumbdrive since I lost both of mine. Because I forgot to zip up the front of my backpack... Which lead me to lost mobile phone cable, camera cable, and both of my thumbdrive :((((

I also felt rather tired and sleepy but I do not want to go to bed and lost my free time... I recognise this feeling, the feeling that I wants to just stay in bed and do not get up. I heard of this symptoms many times on various TV programs that this is the symptom of depression. I do tried to keep my mood in check and try not to let this affect me more than it already has.

I will now concentrate more on my free time and that should do wonder for my psyche.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

News Update

Today the head of HR department call me to give me more info about the process of my job *promotion*.

It turns out that the job will be posted internally first. This give me the advantage to get the position. Since it would be most likely that I will be the only one applying for it. But this does squash my dream of the ideal scenario where a perfect external candidate comes along and the head office would wants to have him while let me stay in the branch office. However, it seems that my moving will be inevitable, provided that I would get the job. It is the company's policy that promotions will be considered through application process.

The process will take longer than I first thought. Since the interview was said to be happen around mid May. However, the move will likely happen, eventually...

The update, while still filled me with terrible dread, did not affect as bad as when the boss confirm the news. Although the more I think about it, the worst it make me feels. But I will need to concentrate on this for at least a couple of days to write my application. At least if these were finish within two days, I can rest my mind easy for a few weeks before the interview.

Part of me wants this to be done with other parts just wants to sleep and forget the whole thing.

I do not wants to move, one of my aspiration is to decorate my office for Christmas again and again... But I will just have to think positive, let the angst wash away and not bother me more than it already has. I also have to remind myself that I will be most likely visit my branch office rather often. I will have the time to do this. I am sure I will have some leave day left to visit later to buy more stuffs and use them to decorate.

I know it sound whiny of me to bitch and moan about this. After all, I will get paid more, with more responsibilities that should be good for my career and perhaps better future. While many others loose their job and have to look for jobs in this economic climates. Not to mention that the raise turns out to be quite a considerable amount. Almost one third increase from my current salary base. Which would more than enough to absorb the traveling cost and the meals which would be considerably more expensive in that area. Still... I would rather be in my current position than move.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

A Lazy Holiday Weekend

It was a 3 days weekend for me this week as Monday is public holiday. It is also my mom's birthday but since she does not do birthday, my mind slip... I should have call to say HBD though...

My mind still rather frazzle around the edge but it was not as bad as last week. Although I must say that the timing is really bad. Since I planned to start calling around for plane ticket for my trip in July, this just put a damp on my moment.

This week I will have to concentrate on writing my application. I still have the one I wrote when I apply for job in my current office. I think I can use that as a guideline. After all, I can't just use my old one now that I have more experience :P My boss will also start his holiday after this Friday, so I better start cracking.

Songkran is also coming up next week, again the timing is Really bad. I do not have any plan just yet, although I will probably hit Oishi express buffet again. I think that one of my friend would have sometime to meet up. He will leave BKK to take a job in HK after April. I hope he will keep in touch. He is fun to hang out with.

I must focus on both the application writing and my trip. Otherwise, I might return to the mild depression state that I was in a few years back. I am kinda know that this is not depression just yet. It just rather severe stress that I am experiencing. The word severe seems an overstatement but since I have little stress to begin with... Anyway I should go to bed now... It's been raining today and I do wants to take advantage of the cool night.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Mobile Phone Reflection

To take a break from the mentally exhausting topic, I will post about my relationship with mobile phone.

About 10 years ago, when I started to earn my living, my mom began to push a pager for me to carried. After that I have a PCT, a quasi-mobile phone that connected to the home phone but with worse reception. I used to despire owning a mobile phone, thinking of it as an invisible chain that will yank by other people.

Now that I use w810i as my main music player, I hardly left home without it. On a contrary to one of my friend's behavior. He often turn his phone off or divert his calls, he sometimes even left it at home. He prefer SMS over call while I am totally the opposite. Maybe that will change once I bought Nokia 5800.

Right now I am barely tolerating the condition of my smalltalk cable which broken inside and need to be in particular position to make sound on both side of the headphone. I planned to buy it after I have got the statement from my bank for visa application. Which means that I will mostly likely buy it in May.

The price has drop about one thousand baht since its release. Added that to the fact that there should be some newer released, the price should come down nicely by the time I buy it. I can't wait to buy new phone...

Thursday, April 02, 2009

The Development

Today I went to the HQ office in place of one of my coworkers to attend a meeting regarding our telephone answering system. And by chance I ran into one of the big boss there (not by chance really... It's not a bit office)

As it turns out, this will not be simple move. There will be an application process, with the job being advertised in newspaper. As I mention earlier, I like how things are just fine right now but there is nothing I can do other than apply for that position. I suppose I have to take solace in the fact that this was not just my case. Due to the restructuring, they remove about 20s positions and create 10s new ones. Those that wants to remain have to submit their application still.

Anyway, this means that I will, again, have to do the job application and interview. Not that I mind but it's not what I signed up for in the first place. It still not a deadlock either. Since it will be advertised externally, I will be competing with other applicants.

But it could have been worst and so could the traveling. Still, my wishful scenario is that someone with the best qualification will apply for the job and they decided that I should remain in my current post.

I am not hopeful but hope is all I can do, and the application and interview preparation. The big boss said he wants to fill the position before the first of May. My own boss will help me with the preparation process and I hope to be ready for it.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Good News and Bad News

Today I finally broach the subject of my employment with my boss, regarding the rumors that I will be transferred to the HQ office.

With the corporate restructuring that happen recently, we were promised that there will not be any change. I guess that is not entirely true after all. As part of the restructuring, one member of the IT team decided to take early retirement. There will be just two of them left so that is not going to be enough.

The good news is that I will be promoted one step higher in the salary grade. The bad news is that I will be moved to the HQ. This decision, as my boss said, was made by people higher up at regional level. So this is not something that he, or even the boss in HQ (if they would), could protest or have any say. He said he did fought this but it did not make any difference.

I must say that I am not happy about this arrangement. While it's true that I will get more money and I am not getting fired. But I am perfectly content with my current situation. I love the fact that I could only walked to work, the workload is fairly light, and I have varieties of responsibilities other than IT related issues.

Now I have to look forward to travel to work, being in a close proximity with the bosses and less time to slack off :ppp

I am not suppose to know about this yet because they still ironing out the details of how I will be transferred. Also my boss seems to be able to manage that I will not be transfer anytime soon. At least not before the computer woes has been dealt with. Or at least, as the head of Thai staff speculate, until this boss got transfers as his contract expired.

While this is not entirely bad arrangement, I still feels horrible. I guess that I am not the type that handle change very well. I am not sure if this is due to the fact that we used to move quite a few times in the pass, before settled down at our current location. My boss did said that I have to concentrate on the good of it and not the bad. I also have to remind myself that it is not like I got fired and I can still come back to visit. I will probably got to visit at least once a week. I hope I will feels better after I woke up.

Although I will get paid more, at this moment I do not think it worth all the *monkeys* that I will be taken on. Before this year I will say that my job is relatively stress free. Perhaps not so much in the future.

Now I just have to wait and see...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Two Male Doing Tango

I saw this from another blog that I read. I saw the preview image and I just have to see it :)

It is not hard to see that they must be professionals. The butt kicking was certainly cute :P It would be fun to dance like that, although I would prefer Cha-cha-cha over Tango but I get what I can see :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I've watched the Watchmen

I spend Monday hanging out with a fan of my blog :) Despite the minimal number of people reading this, I do have a good fan :)

We meet up in MBK and wandered around the area. I mention the movie 'Watchmen', he said he had watched it a couple days ago but badly jet lag and slept through half the movie. I said I wants to watch this movie in big theater, like the couple deck theater in the old days or IMAX theater. As it turns out, the IMAX theater in Siam Paragon is showing Watchmen, so we went up to buy the tickets.

Since I have not read the graphic novel, I cannot tell how much of the movie stay true to the original source. However, I feels that the movie is, somehow, looks very real. Most of the 'Superheroes' did not seems to have special power other than highly trained fighting skills. Except for Dr. Manhattan of course. I couldn't shake the feelings that the movie feels *real* somehow. The way the characters interacts, the way they think and how they behave. Although some of the characters seems rather simplistic in their behaviors.

The looks of the movie did not feels over the top, although many of the action sequences were. Some of the scenes were very violent, one was particularly grusome. Interestingly enough, they only censored the frontal package of Dr. Manhattan but not the behinds of all the people who show them :P

Monday, March 09, 2009

No More Japanese Suki and Waiting for the right Watchmen

Today I was reminded why this is the second times in about five years that I have had Japanese Suki. I do not like it much.

Like I mention in my previous post, it was a meat-centric meal, particularly beef, which I am not crazy about. They were thin slices, but not too fond of it. My friend loved it, according to his bf.

So I propose another Japanese restaurant. A Japanese grill house this times, in Victory Monument area. I will probably do it with them in a couple of weeks.

I also wants to see Watchmen but the movie is not shown in the ex-IMAX theater in the cineplex near my house. Nor it is playing in the current IMAX theater in Paragon either... I wants to watch this movie in big screen like the old days with two decks seats.

The only theater like that left are in Siam Square area, which is quite far for me. We will see... I am planning to buy 24" monitor anyway. I will be one of the movie that I will download later for sure.

PS: It is so hot right now... I can't wait till rainy season...

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Blazing Heat

The Summer is now hit BKK in full force. Luckily though, it seems that the heat mostly generate from the sun as the night is still quite comfortable once the light was off.

Now I shower with the shower head turned to spray mode which feels very nice on my skin. As oppose to 2 months ago when I have to turn it to massage mode to get the water in thick stream which retain the most heat.

Tomorrow will be the second times I will eat Japanese style sukiyaki. Which is very different from the Chinese style that I usually see or had in BKK. The soup is different, the way you eat it is quite different not to mention the ingredient.

I only had it once several years ago. It was a meat-centric meal that I did not feet very good afterward. Maybe they will have some noodle this time around.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The Day I Handed out Cans of Whopped Ass

Today I did a lot of follow up on various issues which still not resolved in my office. The ongoing process of Formica resurfacing bookcases, the broken projector, the car exhuast fume that came into the a/c vent, and the strangely high counter number of the new photocopier.

I have manage to express my displeasure with the way things are on the first three issues, which still goes unresolved for a couple weeks (The car exhaust problem is longer). Especially the bookcase resurfacing and projector cases. The resurfacing issue is by now, a week late. The work is just not up to par, the current carpenter just not have enough skill to do it neatly. After working on it for 2-3 days. I finally had enough and ask the vendor to send better personal who have enough skill to do the task. The new carpenter is said to come in on Friday morning.

The car exhaust fume issue is also a big problem for my office. So far, the problem has been handle rather poorly (in my idea at least). Since the building techinicians still cannot figured out where the leaks happen. Since it only happen after other normal office hour, as other office workers went home, their cars congested in the back of my floor and the fume gathered. After giving me non-specific "We are looking into what/where/how to fix the problem", I finally told the contact person to give me update every two weeks regardless. I considered this is serious issue. It is unacceptable that this happen, not to mention the rather nonchanlant attitude of the maintenant crew.

I call to follow up on when will we get back the projector. The supplier was not much help because they also have to send the projector to HP. So I decided to ask for HP contact number and do the follow up myself. After calling them a couple fo times, asking for specific finish date, express my displeasure with their service and some hardline questioning, I finally got a confirmation that the projector will be ready to pickup tomorrow.

The photocopier issue was a lot easier to handle. The saleslady who visited the office today had figured out the reason why the counter is so high. If bypass feed tray was used with default configuration the machine will count it as two pages. Maybe... it will also count double when the A3 size pages were made. I will have to check this out when the techinician comes.

All these incompetent raised my blood pressure. Although I partially enjoy railing on these people who seems to unable to give me the specific date or solution to my problem. Of which, then, it became their problem. I suppose this is my learning not to take crap from people and demand of them what I need.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Another Banned Youtube Account

**Sigh** My second youtube account got permanent banned because I uploaded *copyrighted* materials...

For some of the stuffs, I admit that it is not quite right to uploaded them. But geez at least one or two things got me banned was uncalled for. I suppose I would hardly understand why youtube or rather Google now, feels that they needs to policing the copyrighted material on youtube. Everything that went up there got their quality reduced considerbly that it won't worth much. I Know because I had download videos from youtube and rip the audio into mp3 for me to listen to.

I had checked the video clip with codec analyzer and found that the audio usually got reduced to 22000 Mhz and 64 KBit. Sometimes it even got reverted from streo to mono!

I am not sure if I will make another account or not... After all I had uploaded a bunch of stuff that is well liked by a lot of people... I am not sure if it would worth the efforts anymore.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

An Old Lesson

When I was in, what would be the equivalent of the eighth grade, one of the teachers gave my class a life lesson on drugs and drugs use. Of which I am sure would get him in a lot of trouble, had he talk of this in USA.

He told us that if we wants to try drugs, it is better to wait until we are adults. Because then we will not interfere with the physical development and be responsible enough to take care of ourselves. He also said that he tried a bit if almost everything from marijuana to meths. And then he give warnings not to never ever try heroin because it will hook you from the first time.

I find that this is a sound advice. I have never tried drugs and never have the urge to do so. The closet thing I ever tried is popper :P For some reason, it never give me the affect people were raving about... Just a sniff of something that smell strange.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Vintage Valentine Card

A former fan of my blog, now my friend, email me a scan of a vintage Valentine card. I like the looks very much. I ask him if I can post it on my blog, he said yes, so here it is :)

He said he found the card in his grandmother's belongings and it was from the year 1908. It looks amazing despite being made more than a 100 years ago. I would say it has the timeless looks of something that is classic and stylish :)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Drill and The Summer

The fire drill when along nicely today. The drill finish within 12 minutes, which is a good time. However, all the students were herded into the front lawn of the nearby furniture shopping mall and broken one of their ground spotlight in the process.

The shopping mall people was quite understanding and only asked us to pay for the damage. Which turns out to be relatively cheap for the office.

Summer started to show it's ugly side here. My room started to become hot. The heat seems to emit from my bed and my bedroom floor. Then the mosquitoes began to show up. I had bought an electric mosquito zapper for this purpose.

Oddly enough it felt relatively cool when I woke up. I wondered if it's really the weather or if it just my body readjusting the sense of warmth itself when I slept.

Anyway, tomorrow is my weekends, I am looking forward to wake up without using the alarm.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Office Simulation

Tomorrow will be rather exciting in my office. There will be a fire drill exercise.

It's been a long time coming. We only had fire drill once since I join the office, and that was done by the building management.

Tomorrow it will be a real exercise for the students and teachers. It will be interesting to see how this goes. This will be my first time. I should remembering the details as much as I could since there will be more in the future.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Day of Yawning

It began last night when I feels very sleepy just around midnight. Which is quite unusual since I usually went to bed around 1:30AM.

It was such heavy drowsiness that I barely able to sit straight in my chair, so I decided to gave in, take a shower and turn in soon after.

Today the sleepiness happens again since late afternoon. Now it is only an hour and a half until it is time for me to go home. I am looking forward to that...

I wondered why I became so sleepy lately... It would be nice if it only happen at home :P

Monday, February 09, 2009

Here Comes Summer

Summer has finally arrived, though I have been kinda missing it, the thought went away once I am *in* it.

Today the sun shone bright and hot when I walk to Central Ladpraw for my meal. I did a bit of shopping today as well. Buy some more discounted shower creams, toothpastes, and face cream. I think I will buy one more item tomorrow since the discount was like 70% :)

I have also been playing game quite excessively. Been binging on 'Evil Genius', albeit, cheating heavily :P

I have also been playing quite a few DS games namely 'Big Bang Mini' and 'My World My Way'. There will also be a couple of games that I will play once they got released as well.

Tomorrow I will be having a pizza buffet at Narai Pizzaria in MBK with a friend. It will be the first times I do pizza buffet. Narai have buffet on late Thuesday afternoon only. The food there was quite ok and I am looking forward to eat them through. I hardly eat pizza, mainly because they are quite expensive here and not really filling, not to mention fattenning :P I will eat only light lunch tomorrow to make room for the buffet dinner.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Questionable Object

I have found this... thing , in Ursula's blog comment.

Click here to see it. I will not post the image directly because of what it is.

It is a dildo on a harness strap on the chest... The sight of it boggle my mind quite thoroughly and make me exclaim, in my head, how did the person who make this came up with this idea...

I suppose there must be market for it, after all, it still being sold.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Food Reflection II: Green Dream

Lately I have been accustom to eating more vegetables. Not just the simply white radish soup that was usually the only thing I would eat but I gradually added watercress and *gasp* brocolli to the mix.

I am sure that my younger self would be aghast by this fact if he saw the kind of vegetable I did ate now. I have been eating, not just carrot and cabbage, but brocolli, basil, bamboo shot, and bell pepper.

I still remembered how my mom told me that her younger sister used to not eat a lot of vegetable when she was younger and how she now eat vegetables a lot more. I never thought that that would happen to me. The fact that now it did happen, boggled my mind a fair bit.

It is better for my health I am sure so I am not complaining. I am also sure that I will not began eating salad anytime soon :p