Tuesday, August 12, 2008


wingssail image-tessa

For years now Marco has spent his time on the bow and a great bowman he is, too! Today he takes the helm as Wings leaves Yacht Haven.

He does OK at the back as well.

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Spinnaker Sailing

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Spinnaker Sailing

After lunch we set the kite and head out to open water.

Do we think we can get around that island and back to Yacht Haven tonight?

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Trimming the Kite

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Tessa trims, Judy steers

Meanwhile I am busy taking photos and Marco depletes the water supply.

See these bags near the starboard rail? It's two sails and an Avon dingy. On the upwind leg, once the wind got steady, I tacked these three bags to the high side on every tack and let me tell you, it was hard work.

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Heavy Weight Kite Pulling Strong

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This kite (see next post) is our code 3A spinnaker. Heavy cloth, small in area, made for running or reaching in strong breeze. It replaces our old standby horizon 1.5 S3 which we had for 22 years until it blew up twice in the King's Cup. I fixed it the first time in an "all nighter" (Thanks Pierre for driving back across the island for the sewing machine and repair material) but after the second time, which occured in fairly mild conditions, I knew it was terminal. We left it in a dumpster. Probably should have had a proper funeral and ceremony I guess, but we have a short position on sentiment sometimes.

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Used Spinnaker


I bought this sail used from a cruiser who didn't need it. I am sure it was used when he bought it. He asked $60 and I was happy to pay that amount. It is a heavy weight asymetrical cut down from a symetrical and it is slightly undersize for Wings; just right for a heavy weather sail. It came with a snuffer which we tried for an hour or so one day, then we stopped using it. The snuffer became a laundry bag and BBQ cover, with a nice role of bag material left over, the 120ft of line went into the line locker, and the spinnaker became one of our favorite sails. So this was actually a bargain to beat all bargains.

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Ready to Jibe!

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Marco takes on liquid

Tessa comes into the centerline to handle both sheets and Marco has his own preparation ritual: half a litre of water.

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Sailor's favourite method of explaning

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Hand motions

Judy is in the middle of explaning something to Tessa, but it looks just like every other sailor's explanation of every situation: plenty of hand motions.

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Happy Sailing

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Judy & Tessa

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Late in the day

Tessa works Wings up the channel as the day draws to an end.

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Marco Steers Upwind

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Marco tries his hand at steering updwind while Judy and Tessa work the navigation computer.

This guy is so intense!

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wingssail image-tessa
Ah! The salt air!

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Fred & Judy

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Day's End

At the end of a long day, with the sun low in the west, we think it's time to start the motor

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After a long day on the water, working hard not only sailing but getting ready and then putting the boat away afterward, not quite enough wind but a little too much sun, a quiet moment to relax and reflect on things is a treasure.

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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Samsung F480-mini review

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Samsunf F480

Here is another shot of the new phone.

I've been wanting a new phone for about a year but couldn't make up my mind which one to get. Most of my colleagues have iphones but I have this aversion to following the crowd. Anyhow, the 3G iphone is quite expensive without a contract here in Asia and it is not sold in Thailand with a contract. So I waited.

After seeing the adverts for this model, (it is 3G, touch screen, 5 mp camera & several other cool features) I went to the Samsung Mobile Phone Shop at Esplande to try it out (many other stores in Bangkok which would carry this phone only have display models for you to look at, and they don't work, so its hard to evaluate the phone and it's screen). The Moblie Phone Shop had one which was a real phone and it worked. OK, I liked it, now what?

Backorder. Put your name on a list. Hope they call you when the next batch come in.

After a week I called them back. "Yes, we have your phone, can you come in today to pick it up?" (Nevermind why they didn't call me, this is Thailand). I went to the store and got the last one (lucky me). At home I spend much of the weekend playing with it, including taking the following sequence of shots(here). The phone is well made and has a nice heft. The screen is bright and high contrast. The phone is very quick, too quick for me sometimes. The interface takes a little practice for some of the operations, like scrolling a long list, but I'm getting it. Text messages are easy, even without qwerty. The music player has great sound but weak capabilities for handling the library of music I put on it. The connectivity to the PC is good, but not solid. The camera is very good, but the video camera is low resolution compared to the still camera. There are lots of options and modes for the camera including a face recognition feature but I don't know what it does. When Thailand gets it's 3G networks up and running then I'll try the web features. All in all I am very happy.

The hardest part was getting a good photo of it with the screen lit up. Our eyes can do it but digital photography has a problem with the contrast range. I manipulated this shot to get it about right.


Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Walking Around Bangkok-Surawong & Silom

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Neilson Hays Library

From the web site, "The Neilson Hays Library was founded in 1869 by the Ladies' Bazaar Association, which formed the Bangkok Ladies' Library Association to serve the reading needs of the large English-speaking community in Bangkok. The building and property now occupied by the Library were part of an endowment received from Dr. Hayward Hays in 1922 in memory of his wife Jennie Neilson Hays who had served on the committee of the Library for at least 25 years. It is the oldest non-profit association in the Kingdom of Thailand."

Read about this building here

Go to the library's web sitehere

Neilson Hays Library, inside

Rich wood, cool air and quiet inside the library, and lots of nice books to look at and check out.

Thai Boxer Statue

We walked across Naradiwas and saw this statue. Notice the elbow to the chin? Ouch!

Chong Nonsi Station

"W" Hotel site

Another sky scaper going up

Samsung F480

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Monday, August 04, 2008

Ayuthaya & Elephants

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Crocodile Farm

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Little guys

The crocs in his group were only about 8-10 feet long; babies really, don't you think they would make good pets?.

I couldn't image what it would be like to be in this cage with these guys.


Now this fella was HUGE.

The teeth looked blunt, but they are REALLY BIG


Looking for scraps

Crocs are messy eaters it seems, and this bird can make a living darting in for any scraps they drop.

Good trick

Just moments before the crocodile in this photo snapped his jaws down on a 2x4 board and chopped it cleanly in half.


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Bangkok Alleys

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Bangkok Alley

We took a walk in an area of Bangkok which is near our house but isolated and quiet. The city surrounds it but here it is like a small village; a quiet place to walk and see people. There are many like this in Bangkok.

Clothes dryer

Clothes dryers are available at every window

Going somewhere


Three Kids on a motorbike

Three kids, no helmets, and is the driver even old enough?

In a quiet back street like this we are not so horrified as we would be if we saw this out on the busy avenues of Bangkok.


I think chicken and rice for lunch might be nice, and it smells so good!

Exclusive dining

Table cloths! Now if only you could get a good bottle of red wine.

Back street house

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Saturday, August 02, 2008


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One weekend we rented a car and drove to Ratchaburi for our friend Martin's wedding.

In Ratchaburi we found old style rickshaws still in use. You don't see these in Bangkok

We went down to the old part of Ratchaburi and walked around.
Traffic? Not Here
Not much traffic on this street. We took the car down one of these and almost didn't get through.

Motor Bike Delivery Truck

Is this man moving house or delivering goods?

CD's over Fruit

The hanging CD's are supposed to keep flies away. Does it work? We don't know.


It takes a tall antenna to get a TV signal in Ratchaburi

Ratchaburi Super Market

More Street Goods

Somebody lives on this street

Fishing on the river

David Thornell & Judy
David rode with us to Rachaburi to Martin's wedding. He wanted to take a train ride back to Bangkok and we took him to the train station.

Our ride for the trip: a nice BMW 330

Rachaburi Train Station

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