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Articles in series Thailand, 2012:
Photos by MJ Klein (and others, uncredited) plus FOOD PHOTOS!
I was having so much fun in Chonburi that I honestly didn’t want to leave, but this was my last day nevertheless. It began with A-nune and Elle picking me up at my room,
and then us heading to a famous temple.
You can’t tell from these photos but, the traffic lined up to get into the temple complex was very heavy. So we decided to go to a small restaurant and have something to eat (we’re in Thailand, so what else would we do?)
Elle snapped this photo of me at the little roadside place.
Oath had driven his car and met us. He had picked up this grilled chicken and stick rice on the way. It was good!
This is stir fried kale with deep fried pork, a dish I have had at Xiao Hui’s and other Hukou Thai restaurants, for years. It was delicious!
I don’t know the name of this dish but I’d also had it before, and this version was excellent.
A nice flavorful Thai soup.
So, we ate for awhile and hung out, and the traffic just got worse. The guys all said that if this was a weekday it would have been OK but on the weekends, it’s jammed. So, we decided to 86 the temple and A-nune took off for another place. I had no idea where we were going, until we got there.
They took me to a Thai karaoke club! The place was empty except for us. I have little experience with Thai karaoke, but it’s pretty much the same wherever you go.
Oath kicked things off with a few Thai favorites. This place has nice wireless mics, and the sound system was quite good. The sound was clean and not too loud (which was amazing, actually).
After awhile, Elle (aka: meimei) got up to sing a few songs. Elle is studying voice and music at a university and she’s still finding her voice. But she’s doing very well.
Watch her left hand….
When she hits certain notes, she bends her wrist outward. It’s cute!
The one cool thing about wireless mics is that you can roam around while you sing.
You can even sing to your mother!
Oath and Elle do a tune on the sofa.
But soon they were back onstage….
Who looks better in the straw hat, Oath, or Elle?
Meanwhile, outside it was demonstrating that it’s monsoon season in Thailand. This downpour was impressive. By the way, to get to the restroom, we had to go out the back door and through an open kitchen, basically getting soaked in the process.
This was our drink server, a fine example of female beauty from Laos. When Oath talked with her, he used the Lao language because he’s from Isaan. That was cool.
Just when there seemed to be no end to the karaoke, some food arrived:
I’d never seen fish done like this before, where you could peel back the skin and get to the meat.
Elle wanted me to pose with A-nune’s ukulele.
Of course, the guys asked me to play some tunes with them. When I got up on stage, the Lao server and the boss and boss lady had no idea what was going to happen, but you can imagine their surprise when I started playing some famous Thai songs!
Elle must have taken these photos. She became quite fond of my D7000.
Later on, I threw in a few English songs that everyone knew. I’m reading off my tablet on the music stand.
But the highlight of the show was Oath’s singing. He’s improved a lot since he left Taiwan, and he’s quite an accomplished performer. He knows literally thousands of Thai songs!
Then later, more food arrived! You’re experiencing pretty much, what it’s like to be in Thailand where we spend large amounts of time drinking, singing and eating.
Notice the guy playing guitar in the background. He performs in the evening apparently.
Yes, this was as good as it looks!
I was surprised to see good ole’ french fries. They were good, too!
Now, this food photo was taken at the restaurant where Oath performs each night. It was raining when we left the karaoke club so I didn’t get any photos on the way.
In the previous article, I told you I had some shots of the boss lady, and here they are.
I didn’t get her name (which would be difficult to pronounce for me in Thai) but she is a single mother of 3, and she said she is open to meeting anyone I would care to introduce her to. One of her daughters is studying Chinese so I was able to talk with her through the daughter.
A very nice person indeed, she made sure I felt welcome and invited me back to Chonburi.
Oath and Elle kicked off a few tunes.
A-nune joined his brother Oath for some tunes too.
What? You want me to play too?
Finally I got to play some with Elle. It was fun having her do harmonies with me.
I only played a few tunes and then the boys went back onstage.
Even though this was the third day, I couldn’t get enough Thai songs played and sung by these guys….
But, I would have to leave the next day at 4:30 am. This preview photo shows my destination: Khonkaen. It was fantastic seeing Oath, A-nune, Nom, A-jo and meeting Elle. Oath was heading to Udon Thani and I would get a chance to hang out with him again, one more time. So we went to the airport together and took separate flights to Khonkaen and Udon Thani. You’ll be reading about that in the next installment.
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