Taoist mythology, Lanna history, mythology, the nature of time and other considered ramblings

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Location: Chiangrai, Chiangrai, Thailand

Author of many self-published books, including several about Thailand and Chiang Rai, Joel Barlow lived in Bangkok 1964-65, attending 6th grade with the International School of Bangkok's only Thai teacher. He first visited ChiangRai in 1988, and moved there in 1998.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Spring Cleaning

For most who might read this, late January is not Spring Cleaning Time. But today it was for me – and a good thing, too. I’ve had bronchitis for a month! Two doctors failed to find out what to do about it… and holiday dispiritedness plus physical exhaustion from coughing kept me from getting to something that needed to be done: window cleaning! Not so much wiping down glass to make it clearer, although I did some of that too, but clearing away what insects have left, and dust. There are security bars outside the screens, more ornamental, I suppose, than protective. It wouldn’t take much to pull one off; I’m sure I could do it. But if someone wants in badly enough, they’re going to get in, no matter what. These things have lots of 45 degree angles which collect stuff, and although locals around here take off shoes outside the house, regularly sweep floors (without moving any furniture) and bathe frequently, they’re not much for doing anything difficult that doesn’t involve food.
Hill-tribe people here, and many AmerInd tribes, plus people of the Great Steppes, changed dwellings frequently, rather than bother with nasty cleaning. After not so long of no people around, nature has a way of making many things more pleasant. But scorpions and snakes might move in – I just recently read that scorpions, like bees and amphibians (among others) are disappearing. I have a theory that because there are now far fewer predators preying on the weak and diseased, germs that prey on us have become stronger, and more plentiful.
Anyway, it wasn’t just bronchitis kept me from posting here for a while, but re-writing a lot of old posts (posted below, up to the one with 9-11 in the title). I’ll print that up someday, after I make some copies of my Lanna history in Thai, and post that on the net (I think the domain name will be And we had to move out our chickens (my bronchitis may have resulted from breathing in a chicken mite) – mostly to our new place, to which we expect to move at the beginning of April. Surrounded by tall bamboo, it has a banana grove and lots of other fruit trees, a little lake, a mountain view and a difficult to find, but quite convenient, location. We’ll pump our own water, grow food, and invite the occasional guest. I’ll have a gallery upstairs, and no chickens right around the house! Really looking forward to it! We’ve been here in Nam Lat as long as I’ve lived anywhere in ChiangRai, or, for that matter, anywhere else – except Columbus, Ohio. And I lived in 6 houses there!
Cleaning is good psychologically, and that’s important, as the political situation in the USA has become way beyond depressing. At least I found “Abolish Corporate Personhood NOW” on facebook today, helping me to hope that some people will finally push to solve some of the major problems, before major catastrophe sets in (a possibility here too; people still believe Taksin worked to help them, broke no laws and is their only hope – not realizing that the Devil you know is almost always better, or paying much attention to the situation in Cambodia, Laos and Burma, where people who I see as much like Taksin have quite stifled things while making lots of money doing business with him…)… Ah me. And I was thinking the economy would be OK until spring. Not so, I guess.



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