It Will Be Alright
Stress from the last weeks of working, saying good bye to friends, packing, moving, 24 hour travel day, Vince getting sick a day later, the country imposing Martial Law and the two days later a Coup D'etat, fielding notes and emails from concerned family and friends to let them know we are alright, finding a place to live, moving from the hotel to the condo, going to the hospital twice, changing the side of the bed we have slept on for 40 years because the air conditioning was blowing full blast on me, going to the grocery store for essentials and not being able to read the labels or understand what anything is, after the first 12 hours in the condo we have a bad sewer gas problem, the new halogen lights under the kitchen cupboards could cause a fire, realizing that being on the 19 floor we have very low water pressure and the walls have no insulation so our Caucasian neighbor decided on Saturday night to play his music so loud he had neighbors ringing his door bell, Oh, and we have ants..............The Adventures Begin!
This is life and all of it could happen anywhere we move. You have heard the saying: If life gives you lemons, Make Lemonade ! I decided to feed lemonade to the alligators we are currently up to our asses in and after having a long heart to heart talk via Skype with our son and daughter in law I am feeling better and taking control of my reactions to my circumstances. Some things I cannot control........but I can control how I feel and react to them. They also gave us good advice....”Your support system and friends are more important than you know, let them help you and ask for help when you need it.”
How I have managed........
The Stress of Saying Good Bye
I had my friends draw on my luggage and we laughed till our sides hurt.
Packing My Two Pieces of Luggage
When I felt overwhelmed I walked away to try again later. I did bring special things that hold
meaning and make me feel loved.
The Country Imposing Martial Law and the Coup D'etat
We have a network of friends that live here and are following the news sites and more importantly watching and sensing how the locals are feeling and behaving. I'm sure it is stressful for them, but outwardly they show no signs of hostility, anger or militant behavior. Things go on as normal, people going to work and school, shopping, selling, laughing, laundry, lunch and life. Everything is as normal as it was before.
Finding a Place to Call Home
It was easy and the place is lovely with a view of the mountain and the Mae Ping River. More
on the condo later.
Going to the Hospital....Twice
Vince rarely gets sick, but when he does he goes all out. The hospital is a 5 minute walk from
from the condo and we now know how the system works. Both times were easy, under one
hour, the staff and doctors spoke English, and the cost was extremely affordable. We went away feeling comforted and at ease.
We Changed Sides of the Bed
The air conditioning was blowing on me full blast because we had not figured out how to use
use the controls so we decided to change sides of the bed we have slept on..........for the past 40 YEARS! Five days later we switched back and now know how to use the remote. Given all
the stress we are currently under this was a real stupid thing to do! We are better now. :-)
We have a dear friend that lives in the same building, her name is Ursula and she is a lifesaver! While Vince was still in bed sick she took me to the grocery store and helped me navigate my way around and find some essential things we needed. She did such a good job I was able to go back by myself the next day for more things. Imaging going to a store you have never been to before. Of course, you don't know where anything is. Now imagine ALL the labels on every single item are in a different language. The only thing I had to go on was the general theme of the items surrounding the thing I was looking at. I wanted dish soap.......the package had flowers on it, upon closer inspection of it's next door neighbors it was clothes soap. I finally found a package that had a picture of dishes! I was so proud and excited! I managed to giggle my way through the store and was thoroughly exhausted when I got home.
They are the tiniest nearly see through ants I have ever seen. I had to use the flashlight app on
my phone to be able to see where they are coming from. Of course it is from the drains in the
bathroom AND inside the wall. I bought cheap vodka to spray all the surfaces as a disinfectant
and I need to clean up immediately after making or cutting or having any food out. My kitchen is free of ant food and they are going away. But in wiping down everything initially I probably
killed several hundred of them. It felt horrible! Those of you that know me have seen me gently take spiders and bugs outside and move snails off the sidewalks.
We noticed sewer smell the first night in the condo. I thought it was just dry traps so I poured gallons of water to flush while taking two days to use the vinegar and bleach. It didn't work. We told the property management woman we have been working with and she immediately called the owner who came the same day from 3 hours away to check it out. He is from Ireland and has a Thai wife and children. He couldn't have been nicer and after checking things out he brought a plumber the next morning to see what can be done and he told us if it cannot be fixed, he will give us our deposit back. More on this later.
Low Water Pressure
Being on the 19 floor the water pressure is very low. It takes a while to rinse shampoo....on the on the bright side, I have always like to take long showers!
The owner did a wonderful job with remodeling the unit and it has granite counter tops and very nice cupboards. The task lighting shining down on the counter is recessed under the cupboard.
I had the lights on for about 15 minutes and reached to get a cup. The cup was hot! I then felt
the the inside of the cupboard and the wood was so hot I couldn't touch it. Way scary! I let the owner know I am not able to use the lights for fear of fire. He was very concerned and will be
fixing the problem by changing them to LED's.
Saturday night.....well technically Sunday morning at 2 am he decided to blast his music. I now
know the walls have very little if any insulation between units. Vince slept through the first 4
songs and one of the neighbors was ringing his doorbell. He turned it down one notch and kept
playing for the next hour. I was wide awake and realized my foot was tapping to the music. It was like I had no control! The music was heavy on the bass, remixed 80's with a rap overtone. One song was “Time of my life” from the movie Dirty Dancing.......very odd, but there was my
foot tapping again. So I decided to get up and dance in the dark, in my large open living room/dining room while looking at the city lights in the distance. Yep.......Lemonade!
We met him in the elevator the next day and he apologized profusely for disturbing us. He said he came home in a very good (wasted) mood and was sorry for the noise. I told him that I
decided to dance to the music and did enjoy myself. You should have seen the look on his
adorable 34 year old face!
As our friends were adjusting to the thought of us moving to Thailand I remember them asking, “What are you going to do to keep busy?”