We just got back from a great dinner at a new restaurant in Chiang Mai. The “Spirit House” Owners, Wanchai & Steve just opened it and we went there tonight for dinner. The Spirit House is a garden restaurant that surrounds a ancient Chedi. The bar area has classical music, antiques and a art gallery. Entertainment consists of classical concerts, opera and ballet DVD’s. They fly the rainbow flag and have sufficient space for large parties.
We had several dishes, steamed rice, pork & kale, sweet and sour chicken, asparagus with shrimp, shrimp cocktail and Thai salad with soft drinks – total bill 450 Baht = $11 US Not bad for a full dinner for two – excellent taste, no MSG (that’s my real dread in most of the local shops), and large servings so we couldn’t eat it all and had to leave a lot – too much for us.
When you come to Chiang Mai be sure and stop by. They are going to have a web site in the near future and I will put a link to it here on our blog.
We are planning on visiting more local venues and report about them in the blog – I would want to develop a list of the best places to eat, stay and find entertainment in Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai and surrounding area and post it here so when someone comes for a visit they will be assured that they will fully enjoy themselves without the worry of being ripped off.
We’ll cover more spots as time permits.
Another great article I found. Actually I have a Alert Newsletter sent to me that everyone should be subscribed to. Gizmo’s Support Alert. Sign up here:
Check out the article on the NEW WINDOWS VISTA Content Protection specs and see if it blocks any of the hardware or software programs, or media like DVD’s you have now – stitching to Vista would or could make your computer life miserable in the future.
Hope this helps
Hey are you using FoxFire – Do you want to make it behave like you want – here is a link to a great site for those special tweaks to make the browser work the way you like – try it out.
Just went to a great AA meeting in Chiang Mai – what made it better than others I have been to is that the members were from all over the globe. German, Dutch, French, Australian, Middle East, British and so on. Listening to them share, each with their own problems, but actually the same, really hit home that we all share the same joys, problems, and goals no matter where we are from – just the language is different. Strip everyone of their Nationalism, Religion and Politics and just talk about their feelings and needs and find we are all the same – just hiding behind these institutions. It’s these institutions that fuck up our ability to communicate. Meetings I went to in the Bay Area were generally limited to locals and so seeing these different views of the same problems was not there.
I’m really looking forward to the next meeting and getting to know the people there –
anyway, my thoughts
Boy, have I been busy trying to learn the new DVD video software – finally got it working, fades, crossovers, transitions, slide shows, and full movie preparation. I’m testing out Sony’s Vegas / Architect for Video with Sound Forge for Audio. What great programs and very easy to use – at least it is now that I am over the initial learning hump – it was difficult changing from Adobe Premiere logic to Sony’s – but I think it is a lot easier and I have full Dolbe Sound now. Once I learn it I can teach it to Tasanai. So far he has been using “Roxio” DVD Studio 8 – not that good and he needs to raise the quality of his DVD Video projects to something like broadcasting standards – looks like these will do it – the first one cut was really stable, great clarity and sound.
I will now try to make some small clips to put in the Blog – maybe about the artist we show in the store and later something for the trips I take ———— I am hoping that anyone who wants to see something about a “tour” or vacation area they are thinking about – this would be a great way to do it. We have a lot of footage from videos on the trips we have taken and thousands of snapshots that would make excellent clips – just ask and I’ll try.
We are planning on going to the Royal Flora again at night to film the shows final month – the show was real great the last time we were there but we were not prepared. At least now we know where to set up the cameras – last time we were nowhere near the good site. This time we will get there before the crowd and stake out our seat and vantage point. He will get his video and I will take my still shots and get some for the blog.
Anyway, that’s about all I’ve been doing — and Tasanai has been preparing a printed photo project (wedding party) for friends of ours that they went to in the Nan area (city Northeast from Chiang Mai). I told them, Jerry and Art, that I would try to make a DVD slideshow from their pictures that Tasanai has processed.
Promise to have some more pictures for the Blog later –
Here is a panoramic view of the entrance to the Royal Flora Horticultural Exposition in Chiang Mai. If you click to open it please be patient – it’s a very large file.
We took Tasanai’s family there yesterday and I got this 3 shot view from the front.
The second shot is the fireworks display at the end of the nightly show. We intend to go back and do some serious photography next week now that we know where the events will happen and where the best shooting points are. Hopefully I’ll have some good shots to show you, till then, if you look closely at the panoramic you can see the Buddha in the far left background – thats almost 20 miles away (as the crow flies ). Actually I’m just guessing but it’s really far away.
Sawasdee Khrap, Sawasdee Pee Mai:
Here are some shots from the Royal Flora Ratchapruck 2006 Exposition. We went there last week, first during the day and the following day with friends for the night show. I did not get a great deal of shots but hope to get more when we take Tasanai’s family there next week. Here are a few ( mixed collection ) of the shots I have processed so far:
I’ll have some more when we get back from next weeks trip – But the main URL link above will take to the official site and they also have a great Photo Gallery – enjoy
Sawasdee Pee Mai (Happy New Year)
Been watching CNN as the new year went around the world – great shows, fireworks and excitement – however – Thailand was hit by several bombings in Bangkok and one in Chiang Mai — someone always has to screw up things somewhere – so we didn’t have a very exciting fireworks display here.
I did try to get some shots of the show that was put on – small but still very nice, but there was just too much radiant light from the city to take any good shots. I have to practice more to get some ones I can show you.
Tomorrow, I will post some shot of the Royal Flora Celebration we went to last week – nice night light show and pretty busy while we were there. We are due to go back next week to show Tasanai’s family the place – so if you have any questions or would like to see something particular you read about from the show – drop me a email or comment and I’ll try to get some pictures and post them.
Anyway – I see 2007 came in very nicely around the world – Hope we keep it that way
P.S. Be sure and check out the Store and Gallery.
HAPPY NEW YEAR —— HAPPY NEW YEAR
And we have the new version of the Store and Gallery online now. Still plan on making a lot of changes but we think the basic format is there – just tweaking the site now is needed. Many images will now be improved, and we still need some pricing for “Bird’s” Asian Tours ( trekking & Chiang Rai) for starters.
Well what do you think of the site and store now – Please clique for me – need your opinions, comments and suggestions.
What do you feel when you see the site? Is is appealing?
Does it convey any feelings to buy? We were told the old version looked more like a museum than a store.
Has that changed? Are there some Thailand products you would like to have presented?
Thanks for your help – we really need it.
Frank & Tasanai
What a day, or I should have said evening — we were robbed last night. He entered in through the balcony and stoled our laptop – right while Tasanai’s mother was sleeping on the couch. She did slightly wake up and saw someone but thought it was Tasanai, going to the front bathroom and so didn’t say anything. Pretty brave, to come in while there are people there – but last month we were missing 17,000 Baht or about $500 US — must have come in the same way. Security in the building is sure they know who is doing it (happened to about 3 others on our floor this week I found out) but they don’t have actual proof Yet.— we are now setting up a motion alarm and will stop any other attempts, just movement will set off an alarm and lights. But that’s the excitement for today, Thank God we have the insurance. Bought it last month – never thought it would be needed this soon.
On another point – our neighbour said he really felt the earthquake we had last week – Tas and I slept right through it – Our neighbour said it really swayed the building and lasted for about a minute – first one he has been in – he said it was pretty scary —
Making a lot of changes now – trying to make the Blog, Store and Gallerys easier to use and the general theme of the site more apparent — Your comments are really helping, we just wish we had a better background of web design. Sorry, we are taking so long – quite a learning process.
We are updating “Tour’s Best” – Bird’s Tours – for better content and photos — and it will also have next seasons new pricing – Mock-ups look great – hope you like it when finished.
We are trying to incorporate the “Asiancoop.com” flash Title used in the Gallery into the Blog, so the sites are more consistent. That’s not as easy as we thought it would be — again the learning curve — but doing so is also teaching us how to embed “Flash” movies into the Blog and Gallery — that way we can show you movie clips, such as small clips on the different tours offered, short movies about the Artist we sponsor, and scenes from Frank’s travels. We’re hoping that these will help make the site more attractive. What do you think?
Anyway – it’s your comments that give us the incentive and guidance to make the site more inviting.
Thanks so much,
Tasanai & Frank
Just got the store and blog integrated – Please check it out and be sure and leave some comments.
The images in the store right now are set at low resolution – we will start to bring them higher while at the same time reducing the size of the code to reduce loading times. Lot of work still ahead.
Some of the images – Pong’s artwork for example – were shot in bad lighting and will have to be replaced – sorry Pong. Her work is so beautiful we feel bad that the images turned out so poorly, We’ll get those changed next week. We have only included enough images to fill the pages – now we will develop a larger Gallery. Really looking for your input to decide which images or scenes you would like to see.
Just click on the “ARTIST – GALLERY – STORE” in the upper Menu and have a look.
We are also looking for State-Side sales Reps (U.S.) for the products shown – interested ????
Drop us a email.
We must have been very tired after Tasanai’s Birthday and next day celebration – It was a great party and yesterday we took the family to the Airport Shopping Center – Got some pictures but we’ll post them later – the quake is news now. last night about 12 PM we had a earthquake (5.1) about 30 miles away and we didn’t feel it. All over the news this morning they were talking about it – showing buildings, even ours, checking for damage and we slept through it. – Some of the older ones showed some cracks but our building – nothing
The quake was centered in Mae Rim, about 30 miles away where the tourtist usually go to see the elephant camp and where the Orchid farms are. Apparently some real damage there. I had some pictures of our trip to here when Tin was visiting from San francisco. They didn’t know this fault existed and are now giving it a name. — We still can’t understand how we slept through it – they said that there was also over 20 after shocks.
Anyway, got the Store loaded into the servers today and in testing phase before we begin to change the blog to link it. Within the next week we will create the menu links to set it in the blog – Sent out email for some to test it now and will use their comments to get out the bugs.
and for everyone else MERRY CHRISTMAS – if we don’t have it fully functional by then.
Frank & Tasanai
Well tomorrow is the King’s Birthday and a National Holiday here – actually it’s called Father’s Day and we will go to Lampang to celebrate with Tasanai’s family.
We’re taking a computer system over to give to the family and the kids can use it for school work. Tasanai’s brother, Thanon Chai’s birthday is Jan 2 so this will serve as Father’s Day, Christmas, and Thanon Chai’s present. Hope it will help him with school – he’s studying PhotoShop right now and being able to practice at home should really give him some extra help. They don’t have a lot of computers at school – so the kids can use it to study at home – I hope to see them having good grades.
Just adding the finishing touches to the Store and Gallery, didn’t think it would take this much typing – have to add a small description to every image in the Gallerys and especially for the artist products being shown. I have just started testing it on PayPal to make sure that the credit card part is working OK and then I will set up the Form-Mail for contact purposes. I’m still planning on the end of the month as the latest – sorry I won’t be able to get it done before the Christmas buying rush – bummer – but for next year we should have a tried and tested system and several new great artist and their works available. I am just putting in a short description for all the images now – but will continue to add to it as time goes by.
Anyway, just wanted to post where we are at – And the San Mateo number is active now 650-227-2913 and will accept voice messages. see you soon at the STORE
Frank & Tasanai.
Well the store is just about ready – the new template is great. We are now working on the photos that we will start offer first. So far we’ve planned 8 gallerys:
# 1 – Hand Carved Soap Flowers by Nattapoun
#2 – Photo Reproductions by Piyachart
#3 – Po Leaf & Sa Paper Artwork by Pong
#4 – Landscapes – images from our travels
#5 – Flora & Fauna
#6 – Temples in Thailand
#7 – not yet defined
#8 – not yet defined
Paypal is set up and will accept purchases and deposits for projects.
I think you’ll like the new site addition – some major changes will be needed to be done to the blog to include the Gallery, I will start working on them next week.
P.S. Frank is recovering from a infected ear but is expected to be at full steam shortly.