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Messages - martin

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Discuss Shopping / Re: New TOPS Supermarket???
« on: May 01, 2018, 02:51:39 PM »
Work's progressing on this place and there are now signs outside saying "TOPS Plaza". It looks a fair-sized building and I'll try to post photos sometime soon.

According to a quote from the Inside Retail Asia website, "TOPS Plaza was designed as a means for the brand to open outside shopping malls owned by Central Pattana and Robinsons department stores where TOPS are traditionally located".

Because of the name 'Plaza', I'm guessing it'll be a mix of TOPS and other shops. Something like a mini-Central based around TOPS??

With this and Big C in Ban Phai, the need to make the 80 km trip into KK is reducing rapidly, which will be very welcome.

Discuss Shopping / New TOPS Supermarket???
« on: March 25, 2018, 03:40:03 PM »
It looks as though we might be getting a new TOPS supermarket in Phon!

Some time ago, my wife said a TOPS was on the cards for Phon but I thought it unlikely - they only seemed to be in bigger cities rather than places like this.

It appears the tessaban had a public meeting, the decision was made to approve it and construction has begun during the last month/6 weeks and is progressing quickly.

Location - north bound Highway 2 at the southern end of Phon, next to the police box.

Whether it ACTUALLY turns out to be a TOPS only time will tell but it'll certainly be handy if it is, being less than 1 km. from home, even though we very, very rarely use the one in Central.

Open discussion / Bung Kaen Nakhon - What's Going On?
« on: March 15, 2018, 07:46:56 AM »
I took my brother to the top of the pagoda temple a little while ago and we looked out over Bung Kaen Kakhon, expecting to see a nice expanse of water. I was shocked to see that they appear to be filling it in! Trucks appeared to be bringing-in loads of soil.

It appeared to me that the recently-built bridge at the southern end would soon be crossing over land rather than water.

Does anybody here have any ideas on what's going on there?

Does anybody have any ideas on what's going on there?

Where to find . . . / Re: Pet Bird Cage.
« on: March 15, 2018, 06:47:11 AM »
Thanks folks.

I'll pay them both a visit next time I come into KK.

Visas, et al / Re: 90 Day Report
« on: March 13, 2018, 11:40:27 AM »
I've always found her to be very pleasant & helpful..

At Central a few weeks ago, a young woman sent me a huge smile and I thought she looked familiar but couldn't place her face. I returned her smile a bit shyly. Only after some thinking about it did I realise it was this young woman. She looked SO different in everyday clthes, not wearing her uniform!! It's good to be recognised and acknowledged by officials we have to deal with.

Where to find . . . / Pet Bird Cage.
« on: March 13, 2018, 11:00:23 AM »
I caught a very weak budgie during a rainstorm last week. Although he's stronger now, I don't want to let him free because I doubt he'd survive.

Does anybody know where I might be able to buy a cage for him? Not one of those tiny wooden cages but something a couple of feet long maybe, that'd let him move about.

Alternatively, is there anybody here who keeps budgies and could offer him a home?

Actually, it's a female bird :) .

Where to find . . . / Re: Ring Roads, Bypasses, and Bicycling
« on: February 23, 2018, 09:32:04 PM »
Not that it helps Rex in his quest but, in UK, a ring road can be a bypass but a bypass isn't a ring road.

In KK's case, if we had only the bit of the ring road that goes (say) east of the city, not the western bit, it'd be a bypass. But since we have 2 bypasses (east & west) that join each other, they make a complete circuit or 'ring'.

Roi Et's similar - north & south bypasses connect to form a ring road.

So simple.

I think the UK & US (probably NZ, Oz, Canada as well) terminologies are pretty much the same and this is just unnecessary complication. I certainly understand both without any problem at all.

Sorry Rex, this discussion of ring roads/bypasses gets you nowhere. Except that maybe you'll feel like going round and round the ring road (or 2 bypasses, if you prefer) and disappearing up your own ar53.

Open discussion / Re: challenge
« on: February 02, 2018, 07:14:34 PM »
If 'a' = number of big dogs then 'a+36' = number of small dogs.

a+(a+36) = 49

2a = 13

a=6 1/2 big dogs >>> 42 1/2 small dogs.

The show should have been shut down and the organisers prosecuted for cruelty to animals. But no cruelty at all involved if they'd allowed 50 dogs to enter.

And this whole 'Challenge' thread is based on a mistake in the wording of the question by whoever set the child's homework!!

Total rip-off. Even have to continue with the 90 day reporting!!!!!!!!!

If possible, the best  thing is to get Permanent Residency or Citizenship, which is actually pretty simple these days ...

... if you've worked and paid income tax in Thailand for 3 years (if I remember correctly) immediately prior to application and continue to do so during the course of the application.

Otherwise forget it.

Those among us who use an overseas income to help support our Thai spouse, Thai family count for nothing (except to our families). 

Open discussion / Re: Cost of living vs. Quality of Life
« on: December 07, 2017, 11:08:44 AM »
That was interesting Frank. Thanks.

Apologies if the following (and the original quote from me in your post) sounds critical of your stepson - it's not meant that way at all. Perhaps more a criticism of the Thai system.

I looked at the Council of Engineering (Thailand) website.

From that I found:-
- there are 4 categories of Engineer; Senior Professional (highest), Professional, Associate & Adjunct (lowest).
- Lowest grade, Adjunct Engineer, requires at least 2 years documented experience, gained in Thailand, and support from a SPE or PE who's familiar with the candidates work experience (e.g. a direct supervisor or engineer employed by current/past employers).

Admittedly, those criteria appear to be for a foreign applicant - although I'd imagine and hope they applied across the board.

A recent graduate cannot have accumulated the required 2 yrs. + experience and somebody who's been employed as sole engineer in a company cannot have the support of SPE/PE. So how can the Engineers' licence be granted in those circumstances?

Perhaps now we have some idea of why so many engineering products in Thailand appear second rate (or worse).

Wow!!! Way off-topic!

Open discussion / Re: Cost of living vs. Quality of Life
« on: December 03, 2017, 07:50:47 AM »
... farangs teaching them would not allow any questions to be asked in the classes and everything was a prepared set of words and sentences made up from the grammar portion of the class!

Maybe the foreign teachers had constraints put on the way in which they were allowed to teach by the type of Thai teachers mentioned by Kowpot. Grammar is taught (I understand) by Thai teachers while conversation is the teaching area for foreigners. I've heard many stories of foreign teachers being shown no respect and having their opinions & methods overridden by Thai teachers. Maybe the foreigners take the path of least resistance and accept the instructions from the Thai Head of Department. 

Many years ago, just out of curiosity and with no real intention of taking it any further, I visited the top local school to get a 'feel' for teaching English (or maths & science, which would have been my real area of interest, if I'd been serious). I was presented with a list of hundreds of words that I'd have to teach and the kids would have to learn, many being words that I'd never use in my daily life, despite having quite a wide vocabulary. Two I remember were 'beget' and 'beseech' - I didn't get beyond 'B' but there were many more such obscure words.

Oh, while I think of it, my stepson was 'taught' English about 25 years ago at the local catholic school. In 2010, the same teacher was still there, nearing retirement, and I was introduced to her. She understood almost nothing of what I said to her and anything she tried to say made almost no sense. It seems she'd made very little progress in her English over her career - how can someone like that teach 'their subject' to students? It's almost like me trying to teach Thai to another person.

As an aside, as a former professional Design Engineer with UK post-grad. qualifications, I'd be horrified if an engineering graduate, only 4 months out of university (if I read your post correctly - "... his starting salary four months ago ..."), was employed as Project Manager on a project I'd designed. A fresh-out-of uni. engineering graduate, with Bachelors or Masters degree but no working experience, is near the bottom of their career learning curve, not the top, and should have a number of years supervised working before being let loose alone. They certainly wouldn't be let loose in UK and probably USA too.

Open discussion / Does Anybody Here Teach at KKU?
« on: November 09, 2017, 07:56:50 AM »
I'm making some enquiries on behalf of my brother.

He has a Masters Degree in physiotherapy from University College London, UK Chartered Physiotherapist, many years practical experience in his profession and a very small amount of physio. teaching experience.

He wants a break from physio. and is considering teaching English in Thailand - and particularly KK since it's near my home - but NOT in schools or with children. He's also got a CELTA qualification from Chiang Mai.

Looking at the KKU website, there appears to be a physio. school at the university's Faculty of Associated Medical Sciences.

Just to keep my initial questions simple:-

Does anybody know whether or not there'd be opportunities for a NES to teach English in a medically-orientated environment, related to his profession, at the university?

Is there a preferred route for making applications for employment? To the English department or directly to the physio. school?

He expects to be staying with us in KK for most of March next year, when he'd be able to attend in person if required.

Maybe a spanner in the works - he's 58.


Open discussion / Re: Royal Crematorium Replica
« on: October 08, 2017, 03:24:04 PM »
On seeing the 'Closed' label in Screamer's posted map and seeing no trace of a temple in that location on Google Earth, I did what I suppose I should have done initially and did a bit of searching.

Result- Wat Pa Saeng Arun is now located about 1.6 km east of the junction of Sri Chant Road and Pracha Somason Road, east of Khon Kaen Hospital.

GPS co-ords. 16.42551N, 102.88619E

Open discussion / Royal Crematorium Replica
« on: October 07, 2017, 12:16:53 PM »
Can anybody tell me where Wat Pa Saeng Arun is in Khon Kaen? It's the location of the Replica of the Royal Crematorium and I'd like to take Mrs.m to pay her respects.

Being from out-of-town, neither my wife nor myself know this temple.

Visas, et al / Re: Should have I filed a new TM-30 after re-entry?
« on: September 11, 2017, 08:51:55 AM »
I, too, have never been asked for TM30 nor have I offered one but the receipt slip was in my passport, the IO saw it and took action.

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