Just like when we were cruising, folks ask what we do all day just anchored in one cove/town, one place, and in this case one room. ADL’s was the answer we gave so frequently when we were on the boat. Activities of Daily Living: those same goals they require in nursing homes for the institutionalized so they don’t develop lividity.
Time goes so quickly you have to remember to do “one chore a day for the boat,” and for us in Thailand, besides our ablutions and feeding (which is no less than sumptuous even when we eat at our room), that amounts to cleaning our digs, washing clothes (major room cleaning and linens provided weekly), catching up on local home news, national and international happenings (digitally, of course with websites [Durango Herald, Huff Post, CNN, Aljazeera, FiveThirtyEight], subscriptions [Economist, New Yorker and Atlantic], and podcasts [New York Times, Science Friday, Wait Wait… and Planet Money].
Then, tg’s studying Thai (vocabulary flash cards, audio alphabet and phrases, plus translations of menus and signs photographed with later interpretation using Google Translate) Stanna working occasionally with Chalong on her ESL professional papers and presentations, to challenges us. Oh, and keeping up with friends with Chats, Messages (text) and FaceTime, not to mention a blog.
And additionally on the home front, we get to read books (Kindle app for Stanna on the iPhone and iPad – Audible on the iPhone for tg), watch videos of recent movies, provided by the local residents (most of the 2015 new releases) on USB flash drives, and now we can use our Netflix subscription (albeit with limited content availability) to stream movies and TV serials like Narco, Jessica Jones and Making a Murderer. Entertaining podcasts such as Serial, Undisclosed, Hidden Brain, This American Life, and Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me fill in when you feel like veggin’ out, or the latest word is “chillin’”.
We have a number of venues to relax, read and chat in. Lounging by the ponds, out at our back yard table and chairs, the front porch, our Belgian friends’ porch and we can use the social eating and gathering sala if we choose. Much like Paradox we’ve got a “big yard” and plenty of room to hang out.
This belabored dialog is simply to encourage those of you retired folks in cold, inclement and closed-in climes to consider all the advantages of coming to Thailand where the weather is warm, the people are friendly and the conveniences are plenty.
Is it worth reminding you that this arrangement costs us $150 a month for our apartment (Stanna reminds me another $ 9-10 for electricity), $45 a month for a scooter with $1.40 for gas each week. Our most expensive and best dinner-sized meal costs us $6.25 for two, if Stanna doesn’t have a beer, and normally lunch costs about $1.20 each.
Our regular blogs should explain what we do when we leave our residence, which we have to do almost every day to forage for Thai food, whether we eat out (at least once a day), or bring it home as a take-home delight from the carts, markets and carry-out restaurants all over Trang. Or when visiting with our Thai friends and cycle touring.
We would never say this is better than cruising on Paradox, but it’s a very similar and far less expensive alternative. And there is no guilt for not shoveling your neighbor’s walk.