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BANGKOK 18 August 2019 09:52


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About RocketDog

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  1. Agreed. I recently bought an Asus router and installed ExpressVPN on it. I let guests use the TOT router Wi-Fi channels and all my WiFi devices are on the Asus router. That includes the LG smart TV and most importantly the Roku stick. Roku blocked most of the channels I wanted when I went thru the TOT router with Thai IP address. Now Roku thinks I'm in America and I get everything available in America. Best of both worlds since the satellite cable box on another HDMI TV input gets the Thai channels. Your point about network privacy is also well taken and solved by the VPN.
  2. EVA to LAX via Taipei is the way to go. Done it several times and always pleased with service.
  3. I assume you are being facetious. I will answer you seriously though. It happens 7/24 every day hundreds or thousands of times.
  4. It is my personal opinion that speaking to someone on the phone while driving is a dangerous pursuit. Before I retired I traveled on a major interstate highway 80 miles each day with 70mph speed limits. I encountered drivers distracted by their phones several times a day and observed way too many consequent brushes with death. Some argue that it's the same as listening to music or talking to a passenger but I strenuously disagree. When talking to a remote party a large part of our brains is engaged in visualizing missing facial expressions and body language and attempting to perceive if you are being heard and understood. These factors are absent when speaking to a passenger. All of that said, I know that passing more laws is not the correct solution to everything. The average person in America breaks 15 laws every day it is said. It's a crazy world.
  5. Well, thankfully you paused to reflect on the fact that abusing gas pumps could have far reaching consequences. ATM machines very rarely explode when attacked. And BTW, was it actually grinning at you? That would have really pissed me off too. In the Kingdom it may have just meant that it was embarrassed.
  6. In the USA pointing a vehicle at any person and starting to move is considered attempted vehicular homicide and is prosecuted strenuously. Even some cops have faced this charge.
  7. I want to thank all who replied to and commented on my post regarding Thai attitudes toward road safety - or lack thereof. I wrote it in all respectful seriousness and benefitted from several thoughtful replies. To me this shows that TVF members and this forum can be a useful resource for all of us who ponder the mysteries of our adopted country. In that vein I choose to adopt Rooster's habit of referring to Thailand as 'the Kingdom' . It empasises the common observation that we ain't in Kansas (heaven forbid) anymore. I'm afraid I will never understand why they enjoy eating rotten fish however.
  8. Thank you for the reply. I am a closet anarchist myself, almost from birth. It has sometimes cost me but it has been worth it. Yes, I respect Thai people for this attitude and noticed it from my first days here. I felt immediately comfortable with the culture. I even admit to occasionally riding my bike on the shoulder counterflow to traffic, but I have stopped because it is hypocritical and dangerous given my general stance on Thai driving habits. I hope you are correct on your time estimate for inchoate change; that means I may even live to see it begin. As @Villagefarang pointed out in a previous reply, many Thai consider their fate to be out of their hands while western thought assures us that we can achieve anything we wish for if we just try harder; both are half truths at best. Perhaps you are correct that what isn't taught at home can be taught at school if done seriously and persistently from early age. I have seen personal change in my Thai GF's understanding of traffic danger and her own driving habits. We have spoken at length about the various nightmare road scenarios and she is seeing them through my eyes now. I am content to doze in the passenger seat now, when I'm not providing navigation services, when she is driving. I'm convinced that she is a better driver than I because she is inperturbable and gladly yields to those willing to risk their lives to gain a few seconds to their destinations. I may nash teeth but she simply smiles beneficently at the transgressions. You have widened my thoughts a bit.
  9. I agree. This is another observation I've pondered at length and even questioned Thai friends about. It seems to stem from their refusal/negligence to consider the future, even the immediate future. While I believe that I, and many westerners dwell too much on the future, not considering it at all clearly has a downside. The Thai "Mai kit mak" (don't think too much) can be taken too far. I watched my Thai GF balance a glass jar on the edge of the kitchen counter instead of pushing it a few inches farther from the edge. I asked her to consider the consequences and simple ways to prevent them. She saw my point and admitted that she simply didn't think that way. I don't believe that their brains are so different from anybody else's. Again, it is a cultural conditioning thing. So I must conclude that such things are not reversed by laws or posters or news headlines. It literally takes generations to alter. I must make it clear that I am happy here, like the Thai attitude about many things, and have altered my own behavior in some cases because I believe they have a better approach to life. The road carnage stands prominently above any other aspects of life here that bother me. I can 'live' with all the others, but maybe not with this issue.
  10. Rooster I can agree with you on the bulk of your stances. Above I quote you on the road death issue. As I have replied in many posts concerning road safety, I do not believe that road laws or police enforcement is the root of the problem with road carnage. You state that the Thai people are concentrating on young riders, motorcycles, and helmet law. Do you seriously believe that such "concentration" will yield any significant result immediately or in years to come? My judgment is that Thai people are culturally conditioned to accept death too easily. They seem to be disinterested in protecting themselves, their families, or other people they encounter on the roads (and sidewalks!). I simply cannot find any other explanation for their mass behavior as a people. Often times the simplest explanation for an anomaly like this is the correct one. There can be no doubt that this facet of their culture is peculiar to the global community; they simply have no rivals for this sanguinary distinction. If preserving life, a strong Buddhist meme, was truly important to them they would not let underage children drive motorcycles stacked 3 deep without helmets, lights, or safe tires and brakes. Likewise they would not engage in the reckless and/or drunken behavior that is commonly seen on Thai roads every single day of every single year. This issue confronts both citizens and visitors to Thailand on a daily basis and is quite literally a question of life and death. I consider your long experience here and your deeper understanding of Thai culture to be valuable. I would appreciate your opinion on why my thesis is right or wrong. If I am correct, then no amount of attention from private or government agencies will make any difference whatsoever. In that case we can all decide whether we wish to remain in a situation that is unlikely to change for decades to come, if ever. While I hesitate to describe Thai culture as one intent on murder, it may well be one careless of death. What say you? I'm sure many others would appreciate an expansion of your thoughts on this relevant topic.
  11. Sober advice. I am leery of keeping gold in bank vaults if it's at all feasible to keep it somewhere more local and secure that one can always access. Hole in the ground, safe in your house, etc? There are books available on hiding things in plain site in many standard household fixtures. I personally know a wiley Japanese woman who paints her gold bricks brown and uses them as door stops in her house. Banks have a way of closing down just when you need access the most. If a bank is between you and your physical assets such as metals, you have to ask yourself if it serves a needed or helpful function for the risk involved. In this case I suggest that it may not. Another thought is to split it between two or more bank boxes. If you insure box contents then you must reveal them.. That makes me nervous too. I also advocate gold jewelry over bricks or coins for storage in Thailand. Much more easily divided and easier to liquidate and/or transport across borders. I have not a shred of trust in banks, but have an account as needs must. Thanks
  12. Where can one purchase hormone replacement therapy (HRT) drugs like insulin, estrogen, testosterone, etc. in Thailand? Assume that the patient uses these on a regular basis, has a prescription or needs to renew the prescription. The insulin issue is especially pertinent for even short stay visitors because insulin does not store well and needs to be fresh. Can these be purchased at a pharmacy, a hospital, and does one need a doctor office visit first? For injectables, are syringes/needles generally available? Prescription needed? Are the prices reasonably aligned with global prices? Any observations or experience is appreciated.
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