Monday, 29 August 2011

Another new experience on the Equator - the arrival of Monsoon Season...

And a good evening to you from across the globe after another GREAT DAY in the Lion City. Okay, so I know that you're all expecting "Balls out in Bangkok Part 2 - the Tacy family edition," but as Muffin Puffin currently has both cameras and therefore ALL of our photos, I think it best to hold off until she returns. Don't worry, as I fully intend to get my commentary in there for both the past weekend and the one upcoming, but I really feel you can't tell the tale without a few photos. Bob, Jan - I know that you are very keen to see your two daughters together wreaking havoc in Thailand, but it will just have to keep one more week. Fret not, however, as they are doing fine and having a blast.
As for the Bull, life is good. On Friday I got up at bloody 5:30 AM for my run. The goal was an 18 K, and all the morning preparation started smooth. Water belt? Check. Camelback? Check. All the salt tablets and goo you can handle? Check. But there was one itsy bitsy thing I forgot to do - LOOK OUT THE WINDOW. In fact, I had just finished stretching and put on all my REDONKULOUS contraptions when I heard what could only be described as a hail of gunfire hitting the windows. I looked out to find nothing less than tropical depression style winds. Granted, it was no Hurricane Irene, but it was NASTY. Consequently, the Bull availed of the only option left to him - RUNNING 11.5 MILES ON THE TREADMILL. Yeah, it was pretty much the worst thing EVER. I was able to do it all without walking, but the pace wasn't great - 1:40ish. Miller - I would have been just under 2 hours for the 21 K - a far cry from that sub-7 I was bragging about just a scant 96 hours before.
I was obviously in (wet) Bangkok was well this weekend, but skipping ahead to today, I woke to find a sky BLACK AS MIDNIGHT looming for the ride in. And speaking of the ride in, have I complained publically about Grandma Moses yet? So every day for the past 8 months I've boarded a shuttle to go to work. It's an easy ride, and the 16 or so passengers all sit there in silence or speak VERY softly to their counterparts. I guess Jenny was my good luck charm, because the FIRST DAY after JT went on LOA, this lady - let's call her Flo - steps on the bus. My 20 minutes of blissful morning reading hasn't been the same since.
It doesn't matter where you sit on the bus. It doesn't matter where she sits on the bus. It actually wouldn't matter if a SPACE SHUTTLE took off in the seat beside you. She's THAT LOUD. Which of course there's only one nationality it could POSSIBLY be - dear ole' Flo is 100% American. Oh yes.
So this gal will talk to ANYONE, and it's classic because she's clueless to the fact that NO ONE WANTS TO TALK TO HER. However, as she's a sweet old grandmother, nobody has the heart to strangle her...I mean ask her to speak a little quieter. I am lucky because I board first and get one of the "single seats" on the side, but despite not ever having a conversation with her, I know her hometown, where she lives now, the names of her children and husband, what she does for fun, how she met her husband, his favorite card games, his favorite expressions when he plays the card games, her profession, how she negotiated the deal, what her children did this past weekend, the advice she's given them, and about a basquillion other things that I couldn't tell you about ANYONE I WORK WITH. I am trying to find ways to tune her out, but there is NO WAY I'm gonna read Noble House on that bus with her. I am too excited about that novel to try and slog through it whilst getting a recount of midwestern winters. SERENITY NOW!!!!!
Anyhoo (wow, to quote the Wild Card in the "Problem with Mr. Deets" blog - that was cathartic) - The point of all that was that I arrived at the office to find the sky pretty much the color of a Mordor winter - JET BLACK. I luckily managed to get my coffee and get into the office, but about 2 seconds later rain that could have cracked the pavement rained down for about 2 hours. I'm tellin' ya, folks - storms are NO JOKE out here.
And it should be noted that, whilst the Starbucks folks finally have my coffee totally right, they are REALLY STRUGGLING WITH WHY MUFFIN PUFFIN ISN'T THERE. Every day it's the same conversation:
Starbucks Lady (SL): "You want the grande coffee, is it?"
Sammy the Bull (StB): "Yes, grande with vanilla syrup."
SL: "Ah, can can. How many pumps you like?"
StB: "5 will do."
SL: "Ah, 5 is it?"
StB: "Yes. 5."
SL: "And you want the hot milk?"
StB: "Yes (resists temptation to say lah) - that is perfect."
(SL then looks behind me EVERY SINGLE DAY. There is NOBODY IN LINE)
SL: "Just the one?"
StB: "Yes. Just the one." (resists the temptation to say - just like all last week and the next TWENTY).
SL: "So, just one coffee, eh?" (Looks around again as if to prove that I'm either lying or trying to spite Jenny by not ordering her coffee).
StB: "Yes." (then, finally giving in) "She didn't come into the office today."
SL: (INSTANTLY HAPPIER) "Ah, okay, lah." (proceeds to make drink)
EVERY DAY. RINSE - REPEAT. Gotta love it. But hey, it just shows the profound effect Perfect Pumpkin has on all those around her!
Tonight was a pretty good session in the gym (other than the fact I arrived at my local to find it closed and had to walk 10 minutes in the wrong direction to the other one). I logged a 5K in 22:47, which is exactly a 7:20 pace. I wasn't as strong as the previous Monday, but on the whole I can't complain given how tired I was.
Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print. Chat tomorrow!
Sam and (soon to be following in the steps of Leonardo DiCaprio) Jenny

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