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BANGKOK 22 February 2019 15:31


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  1. It's a wonderful sentiment, but unfortunately without a shred of reality. 'Back in the wild?' Do you mean where our houses presently stand? Or where our kid's schools were built? Perhaps they can roam freely over the lands taken over by the roads we drive to get to the market? Sure, there are pockets of 'wild' left in Thailand, where 'some' elephants are left to live in peace. But the herd size is 'controlled' (a polite way to say that some of the babies are not permitted to survive,) so they don't outstrip the available food supply in those 'pockets.' (This is what modern Game Laws all over the world serve to do... maintain healthy herd size for available habitat.) Somebody, be it Mother Nature or Man, has to feed the elephants. We've taken away most of the Nature. If we could remove 90% of the cities, towns, highways, and other man-made constructions that decimated the 'wild' lands where elephants once roamed freely, then it would be a perfect habitat for released elephants. There would be plenty of room and plenty of FOOD to support wild elephants. But right now, that just isn't the case. Sad to say it, but that's the facts. We have destroyed the natural habitats for so many animals, including elephants, with our rampant desire to build, build, build, for profit, profit, profit. As it stands, we have two choices. Feed the elephants (and someone has to pay for that food,) or dispose of them. They won't fit in our back yards.
  2. I think the problem that many folks encounter when trying (and failing) to use a translation app, is that they lack sufficient vocabulary skills in their own language to be able to find a suitable word that the translation app can translate correctly. It often does take some creativity. I ran into a problem at the talat when I wanted to buy some mint for a Greek lamb dish I wanted to cook. I knew it was common in Thai cooking so it shouldn't have been a problem, right? I typed 'mint' into Google Translate, showed it to the vendor who looked at me like I had three heads. He called over some other veggie vendors who all looked at the word the app produced, conferred among themselves, all of them shaking their heads, until one of them pulled out a handful of coins and offered them to me. And the penny dropped! I erased 'mint' and wrote 'peppermint' and was served immediately. That was three years ago, and I still get ribbed by some of those vendors asking me if I'd like to buy a building.
  3. With all due respect, I use Google Translate often when I'm stumped for a word in Thai. For that matter, I use it in Bahassa Malay, Mandarin, and the European languages as well. Generally speaking (no pun intended,) it never fails to solve the problem. But.., and here's the rub, it works well with 'words,' not with entire sentences. One has to learn how to utilize the translator and not expect it to perform miracles. Most translation apps can not handle idiomatic expressions, which means the user has to be educated sufficiently to recognize idiomatic expressions in their own language. "How's it going, dude?" will NOT translate to mean "how are you, friend?" Word orders are different in different languages too. Stick to single words and the translation apps can be a God-send when traveling.
  4. I can't speak for the others, but I would NOT use FedEx when I needed absolute speed. They often will not deliver on Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays, and even if one has specified and PAID FOR Overnight Delivery, if it arrives at their depot after 1pm on Friday, it probably won't go out for delivery until Monday, and the recipient will be charged for 'storage fees' for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, as well as 'insurance fees' for sitting in storage. I've had this happen to me twice before I learned my lesson.
  5. The title says it all. If you can provide a Google map reference, so much the better! Thanks
  6. When I first saw the heading, I thought you were asking where to get 'hysterical' air quality readings, and thought this was just the right place...
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