Big day today. My trip to the local temple and the neighbor works on his house. 

Phai and I and her granddaughter rode motorbikes to the local temple. While Phai and Fa Sai had lunch with the head monk I walked around taking pictures. Then the head monk came out and gave me an amulet with his photo in it. He speaks no English but has always been very kind to me. He told Phai before she went to America that she was going to meet a falang there and get married. She said no way but six years later here we are. Phai asked him if I could go up in the new tower they built and he said sure. I did’t go because a dog was sleeping in front of the entrance. One of the other monks came over and moved him out of the way and took me up to the top. He spoke some english and was very kind to me. I have a few photos below but I don’t think they do it justice. It was an overcast sky so no nice bright blue background but also no hot sun.

The neighbor had a crew come in to raise their living quarters. I didn’t realize they were basically living below ground. Because we raised our land they were having flooding issues so this should fix that and make their living quarters much brighter and more comfortable. I walked over with Phai several times and was a major topic of conversation for all the workers who had all kinds of questions for Phai about me, about where we lived in America and a lot of others that I couldn’t understand. They are all super nice and we had a lot of fun laughing, although I didn’t always know what we were laughing at. 

Phai wants to have her oldest son visit us in Florida so I found a company via the internet with offices in Udon Thani and Bangkok that specialize in getting visas for Thais to come to America. There is no problem with the Thai government but a big issue with the American government. They want all kind of assurances that if a Thai comes on a tourist visa they don’t decide to simply stay in America. This company takes care of all the paper work and preps him for his interview at the American Embassy. He will know what questions he will be asked and how to answer them and have supporting paperwork like the deed to his property here which we are getting switched to his name, the fact that he has a son here, he makes a living in construction here, etc. We will drive with him to Udon Thani tomorrow to meet with the American that owns the agency for a no charge consultation to decide if we want to proceed. Should be interesting. 

I mentioned yesterday that I passed on a meal at McDonalds but I made up for part of it last night. When we went to get some groceries in Na Klang they had prepackaged french fries in the cooler so we bought a bag and fried them up last night. We even bought a bottle of ketchup. They were fantastic. I am supposed to lose weight here but the way am eating I don’t think it is going to happen.

I have been thinking about the fact that I keep using the names of Nong Dan, Na Klang, Nong Bua Lamphu and  Udon Thani without really giving you any frame of reference so I am including images of maps before so you get a feel for what I am writing about. I have created a new tab called “Locations in Thailand”.


The nice monk who took me up into the new tower.


The reason I didn’t go up myself. I didn’t want to wake up this temple dog.


The tower. There is a huge gong and large drum. They used the drum to call the monks to lunch.


The “community center” at the temple.


The bell tower.


This road runs through the temple grounds but is seldom used.


I guess monks need exercise.


I thought I was in the old west when I saw this on the temple grounds.


Monks wash there own robes and hang them out to dry.


A  view of the actual temple.


Those serpents on each side of the steps help protect the temple


The new main entrance. This was not there two years ago. 

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