The 2002 Adventure of Cowboy Bob & Bonanza Jellybean In Thailand...

Sun, Jan 6 - Victoria -

We left home in good ol' Bluebird Taxi... prices have gone up, it was $41 to the airport. Security was very tight but polite and efficient. Dash 8 to Vancouver [YVR]... one hour wait, off to Seattle [SEA] very square air, felt like an old pickup speeding along a country road at high speed, fish-tailing and hitting every pothole. When we finally arrived at the United Airlines [UA] gate for Tokyo, the line was very long and the gate crew were announcing a request for volunteers. I pushed under the corral tape and pushed forward my prearranged form… (when we checked in to UA in Vancouver we had been asked if we would be interested in the "give up your seats voluntarily, program"?) Because we were listed and our baggage had been marked as such, we were chosen. The choice was US$800 each flight credit with UA or US$400 cash each. We chose the cash. Since flight UA875 was also overbooked for the next day, we had were routed to San Francisco [SFO] on UA, then on All Nippon [NH] to Narita, Japan [NRT] to connect with UA875 (only the SEA-NRT leg was over booked)

Off we went to one of the airport hotels with room and meal chits in hand. The room was 3 star but we had a great room service garden burger and good sleep in a king-size bed... dreaming of the Canon G2 camera to be forth coming on our return to Victoria.

Mon, Jan 7 - Seattle -

4:45 wakeup call... pouring rain… transit to SEA only to find that UA1805 to was delayed because of ground fog in SFO and their bad weather landing instruments were out... the flight was finally cancelled about 8:30... so what now... well Thai is still not answering in LAX and Cathay is full from YVR... over the next hour of waiting and checking flights, the situation in SFO cleared a little and we were booked on UA523 to SFO to connect with UA845 to Taipe [TPE] and TG6 to BKK. We should go to wait at gate N14. As soon as we arrived the attendant said hurry it is boarding, tore our boarding passes and tried to hustle us on. I asked, "Are our bags on this flight?" He snapped back that we should hurry... I said we're not getting on unless our bags are on... in his agitated manner he called back to gate N7 where we had been dealing with Joy and asked if the bags had been transferred? He said they told him they were. So off we go on our way to SF. Upon arrival we headed for the UA agent to pick leggy seats for the 14 hour flight to TPE... and to locate our luggage. Ricky did locate the bags... still in Seattle and they still had the SFO-UA1805... NRT-NH0007... BKK-UA875 tags attached. After much discussion and phone calls, Ricky said we should contact UA ground staff in BKK.

Crossing the Dateline heading westward is a strange thing… we left SF on Monday evening… the 14 hours was long... I didn't get my leggy seat but thankfully UA has a new "Economy Plus" class which does have quite good leg room.

Tues, Jan 8 - Bangkok -

Our arrival in TPE was going to be tight… the head winds all the way across was sucking up the time… as we got close to TPE the steward announced that those of us who were connecting to other flights should see the ground staff at the gate as we deplane. Chiang Kai Shek Airport has huge distances between gates and not very many moving sidewalks… my knee was feeling like crap, I hopped a wheelchair and Joann pushed. By the time we got to gate A07 the code shared flight with Thai Airways was gone. Back along the miles of corridors to a transit desk… the UA ground staff are gone. I figured I'd better talk to a Star Alliance partner at least… we not settling for anything less than a night in a hotel… well there was a China Airlines flight leaving a 21:30…. Would we like main cabin or upper deck? Off we go to BKK in business class sipping champagne.

Wed, Jan 9 - Bangkok -

It's now Wednesday in the wee hours… when we arrived at Don Muang airport [BKK], not much was open… we finally found the baggage service counter and spoke to the staff… it seems that the international baggage rules are: Whom ever is your last carrier is responsible for any delayed bags. We fill out the forms and then phone WE-TRAIN International Guesthouse. We're sorry that they were here earlier to meet our flight and we weren't. Into a taxi for the 3 kilometres to WE-TRAIN. Our room was ready… simple and clean. Good night

Thurs, Jan 10 - Bangkok -

The WE-TRAIN facility is located on government land adjacent ot an military base residence. The cafeteria - come dining room seats about 100 and has a very acceptable Thai menu as most of the clientele has typically been Thai. That's going to change as soon as the word gets around via the Siboya Webpage.

Fri, Jan 11 - Bangkok-Krabi
Sat, Jan 12 - Krabi-Siboya
Sun, Jan 13 - Siboya
Wed, Jan 16 - Siboya -

So today the back feels a little relapsed, I decide maybe yesterday's rally was actually drug induced. Peter is chomping at the bit... can we go sailing now... eh bob can we can we?... shut up and sit down... ya bother me kid... Tide was up enough at 11am so off we go. The skiff is gaff rigged, I've never sailed that style and nothing with a "lee board"... the wind is cooperating and off we go to Ko Jum on a starboard beam reach. have to get these new landlubbers wised up to the sensitivity of a small boat and the power of the wind. The skipper, Gilligan et all

Fri, Jan 18 - Siboya -

Peter and Lea arrived on queue... Peter has a fever and is hacking like hell... says the green stuff would tend to indicate pneumonia..?? It's going to be quite a reunion when Andy, Mel and Paul get here... three birthdays in the last week of Jan... the 28th looks like an appropriate day... full moon.

Sun, Jan 20 - Siboya -

Another day of Siboya bliss... Andy and Mel coming today... the boat arrives and here comes Andy bounding over the bridge grinning from ear to ear... Mel close in tow... it is so good to see these long lost buds. Andy is still his exuberant self and Mel is as lovely as ever. reminiscing about the Vichit experience... snippets of the wedding...

Andy and Mel can't wait for their Chu Chi Chili

Mon, Jan 21 - Siboya -

Party on the Veranda... G&T's all around

Wed, Jan 23 - Siboya -

Pete, Becky, Beth, Shanti, Mel, Robin and Sam went on a 3 day tour d' Phang Nga Bay in Amad's new boat. Spent the entire day shaping and fixing the main and jib blocks to the new mast.

Thurs, Jan 24 - Siboya

8 people went to the village this morning.

Lea is trying out a new seamstress.... on the north side of the road just east of the bridge. if we can cultivate someone local to do dress and shirt making for the farangs it'll be good for all concerned.

Maiden voyage of the new mast... Jib only... after only about 1 km, joann noticed a crack in the new mast... While trying to come about, she broke... Luckily for us, a crab fisherman was within whistle range... He gave us a tow. I guess the bamboo has to cure and dry otherwise it's like using green grass... just folds up. I'll try to find some fibreglass to reinforce the old one till a new one can be cut and cured.

Thurs, Jan 31 - Siboya -


Attendees: Shanti Besso, Peter and Janet, Conny and Liana, Daniel, Peter and Becky, Jules and Barb, Cathy, Gerry, Juliet, Andy and Mel, Peter and Lea, Paul, Russ and Amanda, Matt and Glenda, Jani and Beate, Marco and Mam, Eric and Marian, Glenn and Laura, Charlie and Gaye, Mark and Yani.

Joann prepared moose sausage, salmon on crackers, bugles, peanuts, wine gums, birthday cake with real chocolate icing (imported)

Everyone had a super time talking and drinking (3 gin, 2 mekong and someone even cracked my Bailey's birthday gift) Shanti sang some Joni Mitchell covers but says she feels uncomfortable when everybody is quiet. She likes it better when she can just blend into the back ground din.

It is so good to be here... I am so lucky that my birthday falls in January. Since 1988 I've had my birthday in Thailand all but 2 years. This year I wore a Canadian flag umbrella hat... it was a hit.

After a rousing rendition of HB to Uncle Bob... we all retired to the restaurant for some, yet again sumptuous Thai cooking. My gift from the Crew was a big white snapper with lemon and ginger, veggies, tom yam seafood and a plate of deep fried sting ray.

Sat, Feb 2 - Siboya - Breakfast in the village… made arrangements to have the chain on DD's moto adjusted… after a little tinkering, the repair guy says that it will require a whole new swing arm assembly… about THB500

Tues, Feb 5 - Siboya - Breakfast at the village... chicken biryani?? Left DD's moto to have the swing arm replaced, will pick it up at 3pm

Thurs, Feb 7 - Siboya - Went sailing with Jani... no wind.

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