Thursday, December 29, 2005

Phi Phi

SO here I am on Phi Phi, trying to look like I know what I'm doing. There is a lot of info to absorb. Already I have done 2 courses - rescue and emergency response. Damn, there's a lot to get into my head.

Yesterday I ate chicken feet for the first time...not bad. Don't ask how that happened. They were actually quite good. Check out TransportCaff for a recipe of sorts.

Anotehr thing. This keyboard has Thai writing on it, which makes me long for the Das Keyboard.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

A-41 (collected)

Episode 2 of the Visa saga saw me returning to the Royal Thai Consulate to collect my passport, which now contained the royal chop. That only took 2 minutes.

But that's not what I wanted to talk about.

What I do want to yammer on about is the amount of space the visas end up taking in one's passport. You can get 10 or so chops on a page under normal circumstances, but a visa requires an entire leaf unto itself. What a waste. I'd like my microchip now please. Just embed the thing in pip and let me get on with it.

Das Fingentypenconfusen

The mind boggles. Here's a keyboard that doesn't have any letter on it. The inventors claim that it turns you into a superduper fast typist because you don't have to think about the letters.

Check out the Das website here.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Number A-41

If you ever want to remind yourself of your place in the universe, all you have to is wait in one of those diabolical queueing systems for your number to come up.

There were 20 people in front of me at the Royal Thai Consulate this morning, and I waited over 2 hours before I could hand ion my Visa application. When my turn finally came, my request was processed in under 3 minutes. Sign. Pay. Hand over photograph. Receipt. Chop. Thank you. Which makes me wonder what the people who seem to be engaged in discussion for half an hour at a time are up to. Endless discussions, rifling through papers, dropping things, rooting in bags, pressing of ears against the bullet proof glass to hear properly.

In certain circles we talk about those who are constitutionally incapable. I give you the Visa queue as proof.

And speaking of embassies and consulates; it's inetresting that you can literally walk into the grounds of most of the sovereign buildings - say hello to the guard, state your business and proceed. Not so the American Consulate. At leat 2 layers of fencing, dogs, armed guards, armoured cars. Whatever happened to "bring me your weak, your downtrodden, etc?" Not sure who's foot the down trodding boot is on these days.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

There's a lizard living in my motorcycle

I kid you not. This morning as I was thundering along, I espeyed a small lizard clinging to the fairing of my bike. At first I thought a piece of grass had become lodged there, but on closer inpection it was indeed a lizard.

The poor bugger was clinging on for dear life in the 80km/h headwinds. As I stopped at a traffic light, he found better footing below the rim of the fairing, and then managed to creep into the gap betwen the dials and the front of the fairing. I slowed down by then to give him a more comfortable ride.

I hope he's still there. One more reason not to wash the machine.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Open sauce

Frankly I couldn't give 2 shits about the browser wars. Back in the day I used Netscape 3 - simply becasue IE 3 was dodgy. But from IE 4 onwards, Bill's browser was better. What I dug most about the good ol' days was that there were a zillion little useless apps that you could plug in.

Firefox has returned us to those heady days. My browser now sports the ability to have coloured tabs, close buttons on each tab, an image and text zoom function, an IP address capturer, a colour picker, FTP client (not just file view like IE), an RSS reader...infact endless numbers of really groovy meaningless functionality.

Now all I need is a broadband service provider with an actual working line and a willingness to respond to problems in les than 6 weeks.