Sunday, February 26, 2006

Amazing Race 9

This guy, on the Amazing Race, is my friend's family dentist back in Mississippi!!! What a small world!

Don Knotts Slide Show on Yahoo!

Here is a very nice tribute in pictures to Don Knotts.

Don Knotts on Yahoo! News Photos

Thanks, Don

Don Knotts at age 81, died in LA of lung cancer. I have watched Don my whole life. His Barney Fife made me laugh, and still makes me laugh.

I love all the times that Barney got into trouble and Andy had to get him out. I read where the episode with the "Kerosene Pickles" and the one where Barney wants to sing in the church choir were his favorite episodes. I also like the one where he gets the motorcycle with the sidecar. Not to mention "Citizen's Arrest".

Besides Barney Fife, I loved him in "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken". I think that is my favorite Knotts movie. I also like "The Shakiest Gun in the West".

Don Knotts may have passed on, but mark my words, as long as there is television, Barney Fife will live on forever.

Thanks, Don, for all the years and years of happy laughter.

More free wireless

Yesterday afternoon, I booted up the ole laptop in the living room, and lo and behold, I found more free wireless internet! How cool is that! Sure is nice of someone in the neighborhood to not secure their wireless router. I guess they figured something out, though, because it didn't register as available later that evening or today.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Beijing becoming like Singapore

Well, in some respects, that is. In the AFP story below, there will be "civilization supervisors" giving out ¥50 fines "on the spot" for spitting on the street or sidewalks. I say, "it's about time!"

Beijing Tries to ‘Civilize’ Residents Ahead of Olympics (February 20, 2006, AFP)
Beijing will launch a major "civilization" campaign to target spitting, littering and etiquette in an effort to clean up the city's image ahead of the 2008 Olympics. Beijing would set up trash boxes and provide sanitary bags for people to spit into on major streets and step up the enforcement of on-the-spot fines of up to 50 Yuan (six dollars) for spitting elsewhere, the Beijing News said. As part of the campaign, which kicks off next month, more than 4.3 million Beijing families would receive a guide on civilization and etiquette, it said. More "civilization supervisors" would be deployed on public transport as pushing and shoving to get on and off, common in Beijing and other cities, came under scrutiny. Other rude behavior targeted by the campaign included littering and pets fouling the streets, the report said, without giving details of fines or other punishments.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

February 21, 1916

On February 21, 1916, my grandmother, Audrey Laverne Linville Saylors Childress, was born. I believe God smiled on that day.

I spoke with my Meme last night on the phone. At 90, she is going strong. She is working for the Lord. She doesn't complain. She is always gracious. She is a real lady.

Happy Birthday, Meme! I love you!

Friday, February 17, 2006

Free Wireless Internet

I am sitting in the Hong Kong airport, waiting to get on the flight to Bangkok to get home.  I opened up my computer to download pictures from my camera to my computer, and up popped a list of about 10 wireless connections.  The first unsecured connection I found, I connected!  So, with that, my picture downloaded became an opportunity to do a little email.  It was a good thing to, as a couple of folks made assumptions that I would be able to respond to my email last night, but I wasn’t able to.


I can’t wait to get home and see all three of my girls.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Hong Kong

Well, here I sit in the International House YMCA. Whoop-it-do. I have spent the day, and I mean the entire day, in a meeting. Tomorrow will be much of the same. It is, however, a very good meeting.

I have had the opportunity to see the apartment where we will be living. It is very, very nice. The location is absolutely horrid, but, the niceness of the apartment makes up for that.

There is a ship load of American Navy-men in town. One of them sat next to me at Starbuck's this evening. 20 years old. First time to be out of the US. He appeared to be lonely and really opened up. I had the scene all set to share some good news with him, but his buddies came in just at the wrong moment and said they all needed to leave. I didn't get his name. He has had a really, really hard life. I know my conversation was 'salty', but it wasn't 'beefy'. Maybe someone else will come along and plant. Maybe, just maybe, the salt was enough to get his mind and heart "in the mood".

I had dinner tonight with some friends who used to be in Chiang Mai, but are now in HK. It was really good to see them again. They will be our neighbors, well, sort of. Only a few hundred yards away as the crow flies, but, crows don't fly in HK. It is a long way to go to actually get to their flat.

I can't believe the prices of stuff here. All the restaurants charge $4-5 US dollars for a coke. Some of them don't give refills! I will learn to drink tap water, I think! Sticker shock is going to be the hardest part of living here.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Headed to Hong Kong

I leave tomorrow morning to go to Hong Kong. I'll get back home to Chiang Mai on Saturday. I should get to see the apartment where we will be living, once we move to HK. According to Yahoo! Weather, the highs in HK have been about 68. I am looking forward to that!

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Friday, February 10, 2006

Suite pix

Here are the pictures of my suite at Rama Gardens in Bangkok. I was upgraded then the room was comped. Not bad.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Home Again

I arrived safely home last night after a delightfully uneventful trip home from Bangkok. After a nine hour drive, it was certainly great to see my girls.

I did have a fun/interesting thing happen to me in Bangkok. The hotel that I ahve made so many reservations at for other people, did NOT have my reservation. The hotel was completely booked, they said, so they upgraded me to a suite, then comped my room! I took some pictures of the suite and will post them when I download them from my phone.

I also thought that my camera had been stolen a the meeting hotel, but, quite strangely, I found it in a bag that had already been packed before I discovered the camera missing.

Monday, February 06, 2006

God Bless Oklahoma

I have some friends (really) who, after having lived overseas, are now moving to Oklahoma. The husband is originally from Oklahoma, but the wife is from California. Despite all my goings on about how good Oklahoma is, I know that it isn't really "the cultural center of the universe", as Hoyt Axton once said (in a Pizza Hut commercial). But I digress.

She sent me a copy of a letter she had sent someone else, chronicling her experience and feelings. I must say, it is the most wonderful tribute to Oklahoma I have ever read by a foreigner, er, transplant. I did, however, have to throw in a couple of pointers that I think merit reproducing here for all to see:

1. We are not from the “South”, however, we identify with them more than we do “those Yankees”.
2. Oklahoma lives in the shadow of Texas. Actually, that is fine. It keeps out the riff raff! We just call it “Baja Oklahoma”
3. Determining your children’s fate (that of being Okies) is not necessarily a bad thing. There are many great Okies. Your husband is one of them.
4. “Sooners” is now a term of respect and awe; not of derision and scandal. Learn that lesson quickly so as to not offend.
5. Local Oklahoma politicians are still Democrat; old fashioned democrats who are considered conservatives. You can’t really trust the local Republican politicians, as they are liberal. Now, on the national scale, it is kind of backwards. I think most Oklahoma democrats are actually just republicans waiting for everyone else to make the move to the “other “ party.
6. Stay away from mobile home parks in storms. They are simply “Tornado Bait”.
7. OU or OSU; you are simply going to have to make a choice. Sorry, no rooting for Bruins or Trojans anymore. (When in doubt, choose "Sooners!")
8. When Okies first went to California, they were looked down upon. I think you will be treated well in the reverse.
9. Buying your clothes at Wal-Mart and Penny’s is not a sign of being gauche; it is a sign of wise spending.
10. If you really want to impress folks at a party you are hosting, be sure to serve L’il Smokies.

I hope you learn a little bit about Oklahoma here, or what we like to call "God's Country".

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Starting to pack

Well, I am starting my own personal packing process and will leave here tomorrow afternoon. Tony Roma's, Here I Come!

I can't wait to see my girls on Wednesday.

A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. of the Day

T - Time to be finished.
I- I want to go home.
R- Rational thought is not longer an option.
E - Exhausted beyond belief.
D - Do you really want me to go on?

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Drawing to a close

My meeting is quickly coming to and end. Many folks, including my wife and kids, have already departed. I get to be on the clean up detail and don't get to leave until next Tuesday. I'll spend the night in Bangkok, (eat at Tony Roma's!) and then drive on home to Chiang Mai on Wednesday.

I am really, really, really, really tired. I need a day off.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Wonderful Day

Today, I had the happy honor and privilege to baptize my younger daughter, Emily. She asked Jesus into her heart about two years ago, but has been a little scared to be baptized. She decided a few weeks ago that she wanted to be baptized at our big meeting this week. So, this afternoon, at about 1:30 pm, we went to the small pool nearest the hotel and in front of 40-50 witnesses, she was obedient in baptism. It was a most happy day!

I asked her if she would prefer to be baptized in the ocean, because I thought that would be a cool memory. She asked me if people could hear her answers if we were in the ocean. I told her that they probably wouldn't be able to. She said "then I want to be baptized in the pool, so I can tell everyone that I have asked Jesus in my heart!"