Schnuffi / Shnoofy

My neighbors got a cat. It is a cute black, brown and white kitten. Really cute as a button. I like cats when they are on my lap and we cuddle and they purr. The cat is called Schuffi a cuddly-cutesy pet name. But as far as cars go, she is no dog. What I mean by that is that unlike a dog, where the dog and the owner form a real bond, she is a cat and cats have attitude and – by golly – they have their own head.

So, Schnuffi comes meowing for affection, rubs her slender body against my ankle until I pick her up.

Then she rewards me with a few purrs.

Then she gives me this quizzical look that says, “Why don’t we go inside and curl up on the couch?” and I say “No”. Then being a cat she looks at me with some disgust and swaggers away, looking around curiously and ignoring me utterly.

And I, what do I do? I write this entry to share my hurt feelings with you, that I have been rejected by a cat. And that where I really love cats…..just not in my place.

Cheers

Markus \m/

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Where The Soul Breathes

Normally, I live and work in Bangkok. Bangkok is huge, hot, sweaty, smelly, dirty. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all of these things all the time at the same time. But it displays all these characteristics everyday, everywhere at least once a day. Yet, Bangkok has its moments. But one thing you can’t do properly, is to breathe fresh air. Crisp, fresh air, that fills your lungs and invigorates a person instantly. I have posted many images in this blog that show the many different, ever changing faces of Bangkok. So, now, I want to show you where a person can breathe deeply fresh, clean air and recharge – the German Alps.

These cows roam on pastures with juicy green grass and herbs. They bring wonderful fat milk with a typical milk taste. You can get the milk directly from the farmer. The milk you get here is just that, milk that comes fresh from the cow and it is indescribably good. So is the butter that’s churned from this milk and the cheese curd made from it. So are all the different cheeses. I really love this place. It is good for my body, good for my health and good for my soul. This area is a little bit of heaven, similar to Ladakh in India or Boulder, Colorado in America.

With a long, deep breath, stay sharp and exhale.

Markus \m/

Kanchanaburi…

You might wonder what Kanchanaburi was like. It was relaxing! I think these two images convey the vibe best.

Sunset over the river….all is calm.


In the morning the sun ruses iver the famous bridge and bakes the land. No winder, that again, all is calm.


Slender glasses, straws and fresh fruit mocktails, yes indeed, it was a good short weekend trip.


Cheers

Markus \m/

The Small Things

Kanchanaburi, famous among tourists for is bridge – the bridge on the river Kwai. Popular among Thais because they giggle everytime they hear a tourist mispronounce the word Kwai. You pronounce it Khwae not Kwai. Kwai is Thai slang for what makes a man a man – the drainage pipe through the amusement area. This becomes even funnier when one considers that there is a Khwae Yai and Noi amd big and small River Khwae.
Anyway, small things, easily missbalr things I saw in Kanchanaburi.


Tiny weed growing in the famous bridge between the tracks – nature ALWAYS finds a way to produce life.


Detail of a wheel on a locomotive tbe Japanese supposedly used to transport supplied along the death railway. Good old mechanical engineering is always beautiful.


The Missus and me strolling in the heat.

Cheers

Markus \m/

Social Observation

This weekend we rode to Kanchanaburi to get away from the city. We stopped at a Starbucks near the Porto Chino Mall. There we watched people. I find it fqscinating how different people socialize today than even 10 years ago.

Next to us was a group of five Thais in the late 20s to early 30s. I suppose they were friends. But all of them were staring into their smartphones, typing away frantically. It seems like we are losing the ability to be in the moment and enjoy it. I suppose, the give Thais were texting with their other friends making appointments to meet in the near future so they can then not talk to them while they are with them and text to their friends they are with now. I know this is all a little convoluted and sounds complicated, buy it is not. Because essentially, we are losing the ability to communicate verbally and we enhance our ability to comminicte through emoticons, acronyms and writting language that had been reduced to a very rudimentary level. 

That is a bummer. Because I would not want to miss the boisterous meetings I have with my friends and family when it gets loud, 5 conversations are happening at once and laughter and frustration is actually clearly audible instead of a smiley face, a “ROFL” acronym or a steaming turd emiticon.

Cheers Markus \m/

Mementos

Back in the day…like way back in the  day. Indonesia and Malaysia had a practice of making shrunken heads. While the thought is pretty horrific and the process is even more so, it is also a little bit fascinating.

When we were in Bali, I found  few fake shrunken heads, made from coconuts, that were used as scare crows, I suppose.


Pretty cool, huh. 

Cheers

Markus \m/

Paradise…??!

A few weeks a go we went to Bali. Unfortunately, I was sick for the entire time and did not make it out of the hotel room, except for two hours maximum per day. But all the  stuff we had planned, went the way of the Dodo. We explored Ubud. It could be a nice place. It’s location is fantastic, but its traffic and the pollution that goes along with it, is horrendous. I assume that most of you have this vision of Bali as this paradisical place of purity amd beauty. It is not. There is a real waste and pollution management problem.


Look at all the plastic stuff in this little river in the middle of Ubud. This stuff flows down the mountain and into the sea. Six years ago, we were surfing in Bali along the south coast and when I paddled out, I saw tons plastic bags and plastic bottles  floating in the sea. That a problem in my opinion, because it ruins the wnvironment and kills the expectation of why people come to Bali. My (unsolicited) suggestion would be to limit the number of visitors and increase prices and use the  revenue for investments in to modern waste management and energy generation plants.

Just a thought
Cheers

Markus \m/