As some of you may know, Alex took up the guitar about a year ago. He seems to have a knack for the instrument and most importantly, he enjoys playing. For the past few weeks, Yod, his instructor, has been away playing some gigs so Alex has had little time with him. I also have been away and busy and haven't went to his practice sessions for nearly two months. Alex likes to practice late at night, when everyone is asleep, so he turns down the amp and puts on headphones or plays the acoustic guitar. He doesn't like me asking him, "When was the last time you practiced," or "Have you been practicing," and he almost always tells me, "Listen whenever I play in front of you and then you'll know." In the 6 - 8 weeks since I've seen him play, he seems to have jumped up a level or two. His playing is definitely not perfect, but he's at the point where he can figure out how to play whatever it is he wants to play. He's playing a couple of songs at The Mall Bangkapi in a few weeks and while one or two of the songs are Thai songs, another of the songs is by Oasis. I didn't even know he knew of Oasis. Anyhow, I hope you enjoy the video.
Even before reaching the legal age of driving, I was always on the go. In my teens I was either lifting weights, listening to music, usually stoned, or going somewhere. I didn't care where I went, I just knew I didn't want to sit at home. I sat at home when I was forced to and that was it. When I was 17 I left home, never to return. Nearly 40 years later, nothing has changed.
I returned from Cambodia just before Christmas and have only been back for a month. Yet, I find myself yearning to go on another adventure. Sightseeing, going where tourists go, is far from satisfying. I need to go somewhere challenging, off the beaten track, where few travel.
For years I have been contemplating and dreaming of traveling to the Dark Continent. Not just anywhere in Africa, to places like the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Central African Republic, and Burundi. For the life of me, I have no idea why I find these places so appealing. Clearly, these are some of the most corrupt, dangerous, wild countries in the world. All I can come up with is that they are four of the least known, undeveloped countries in our day. Or maybe I'm nuts. How may people do you know who have photos from these countries? Better yet, how many people do you know who have really good or great photos from them? My guess is no more than one or two—if you're lucky.
Myanmar is another place that, aside from the major cities, remains free from tourists. After a dozen trips to Myanmar, I remain enthralled and eager to explore more of the country. My trip to Africa is now scheduled for the end of May. To me, this is a long way off. I may attempt to squeeze in another trip to Myanmar in February or March, but it depends on the status of my funds. Few people, including Burmese, ever experience or see the northern portion of Myanmar where I plan on going, a pristine area that time seems to have forgotten. It is just the sort of place I am looking to explore. It is an adventure.
My trips to Africa and Myanmar will both happen. At this point it looks like the African countries will be Malawi, Tanzania and Rwanda. I may pass on Malawi and venture into the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but more than likely I will wait for a second trip for this. The DRC is a difficult, time consuming place to travel and while my heart says go, my brain says wait until I have a trip to the region under my belt.
It's all going to happen, and as member's, you're going to get a ringside seat.
A week ago I started making some changes to everything related to An American In Bangkok. The changes may not be visible at first, but in time, I do believe people watching my YouTube channels and frequenting this site will see the differences. Like always, I have a long list of things to do and I never seem to get as much done as I want to—but eventually I will. At times it can be frustrating, depressing, and tiring, but there's no other way to make changes than to just continue making them until you reach your goal.
Today I received a package from a long time subscriber and good buddy Mr. Billy. Mr. Billy needed to go back home to the United States a few months ago so he's no longer in Thailand. From what I understand, he plans on coming back and should be back in a few months. Anyway, below is a short video I made showing what he sent me in a care package.
BTW - tomorrow I am contemplating a livestream from the Talingchan Floating Market. Going there means waking up around 4:30-5:00AM. Normally I would do this without giving it a second thought, however, for the past few days, I've felt lethargic and in more pain than usual. So...I may go, I may not, it really depends how much sleep I get and how I feel in the morning. My mind says do the stream, my body is telling me otherwise. We'll see in a few hours.
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