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MekhongKurt

Bea meetings

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Starting this coming Sunday (September 7th) The Bangkok Expats' Association will be meeting at The Bourbon Street Restaurant in Washington Square off Sukhumvit Road and Sukhumvit Soi 22 3-5 P.M.  *Social* (only) meetings will continue on Tuesdays 5-8 P.M. at The Office Bar & Grill just off Sukhumvit Soi 33.

This coming Sunday (the 7th), noted locally-based Canadian novelist Christopher G. Moore will be speaking about his fiction in general and his dark hero, Vince Calvino, in particular.  If you aren't familiar with Chris's works and would like to take a look, they are widely available in Asia Books and other bookstores, and you can order them online at his website at http://www.cgmoore.com.

On Sunday the 14th, locally-based American novelist Dean Barrett will be making a presentation about his novel "Memoirs of a Bangkok Warrior," which is based on his experiences in Thailand in the 1960's with the [American] Army Security Agency, for which he worked as a Mandarin language expert.  He will be contrasting the Thailand of today with the Kingdom as it was almost 40 years ago.  Visit his site at http://dean-barrett-thailand.com for further information about his work (and a lot more!).

The following Sunday (September 21st), Police Senior Sergeant Major Kanit will be making a presentation about visas.  PSSM Kanit has spent most of his career in the Immigration Bureau [though he's currently assigned elsewhere as a criminal investigator, something he does excellently] and will be explaining the types of visas available, the requirements and procedures for applying for each type, and the new visa-fee schedule that went into effect late last month.

Not yet scheduled but formally committed to speak to us are Andy Wing, owner of Expats' Motors, and Richard K. Diran, adventurer extraordinaire, professionally-trained oil painter, self-taught pro-level photographer, published author, and Burma expert.  And if those weren't enough, Richard also holds a black belt in karate -- which he obtained in Japan -- and he speaks fluent Japanese.  Andy will be available to discuss the in's and out's of buying a second-hand vehicle in Thailand.  For exhaustive information on this subject, see  http://www.geocities.com/kfarang/expat_motors.html, which is Andy's web site.  Richard will be speaking about the rapidly disappearing hill tribes of Burma, about which he is an internationally recognized expert and who are the subject of his excellent and beautiful photo/text book "The Vanishing Hill Tribes of Burma."  To read some samples of Richard's philosophical essays, visit his home page at http://bangkokatoz.com/Diran_Homepage.htm.

In other news, we will begin accepting membership dues, tentatively set at 500 baht/year, Sunday, September 7th, now that we are formally moving forward with registration as a non-profit organization (had a meeting with the lawyer this past Tuesday).  On the 7th we hope to elect a new president, who by law must be a Thai national of legal age with no criminal record.  If you know an appropriate Thai and wish to nominate him or her, please send me the particulars -- full name, age, academic and other qualifications, and position -- at bangkokexpatsassociation@thai.com.  Of course, please check with the potential nominee to gain his/her consent first!  Also, another requirement is to have 9 other officers, but they can be anyone (including foreigners here on tourist visas), so if you or someone you know is willing to stand for election, please be there or bring the other person this coming Sunday.

Hope to meet you soons!

Kurt T. Francis, Acting President

The Bangkok Expats' Association

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seems strange in your last newsletter about the BEA the fee was 200 baht now 500, why the sudden jump ? if a non profit org.

Confused !!

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Hi, Atiga --

Without exception the people with whom I and Bob (the only other current office-holder in the BEA) have spoken have urged us to propose a higher membership fee so as to provide The Bangkok Expats' Association with a reasonable operating capital.  Although 500 baht is substantially higher than our originally proposed 200 baht, we believe that a fee of about US$1/month is still within reason -- and certainly anyone for whom that dollar a month makes a difference ought to be giving careful thought to any extraneous expense!

You clearly pay close attention to what's going on, so I hope you elect to drop by and introduce yourself -- you're very welcome, and I would truly enjoy the opportunity to meet you.  But even if it's not convenient for you to come around, I do want you to know I appreciate your observations.

Godspeed and safe journey --

Yours,

Kurt T. Francis, Acting President

The Bangkok Expats' Association

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I forgot to mention that I personally have spent about 4-5K baht for Association expenses already, and Bob has spent that much or more.  While we neither one plan to ask for reimbursement, it would be nice for the Association to be able to pay it's own way.  I hope that doesn't sound unreasonable.

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Those names sound familiar, Moore and the other fella.... aren't they the ones writing on nightlife or do they also write other, more interesting stuff? Just curious.

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