Dear Chiangmai Mail,
Congratulations on your 1st anniversary and we are very pleased to have now
a weekly English newspaper here in Chiang Mai as well. You have been
extremely helpful to promote the events of the Amari Rincome Hotel all the
time, which was very effective and we got a great response. It is also very
interesting to read all your articles about CNX and the region as an
expatriate. This sort of information I missed out usually during the last 7
years. We wish you much success for the future and keep up the good work and
Marc + Luxami Dumur Utaipol
(Formerly Amari Rincome Hotel)
Congratulations to the
On the occasion of the 1st anniversary of Chiangmai Mail
we would like to congratulate the whole team.
Within a remarkably short period, you achieved to
institute a devoted and entertaining newspaper one is indeed looking forward
to every week. Because of your excellent internet presentation, it is easy
for us to read every issue regularly, even in Germany.
We certainly wish for your continuing growth in future,
and that you will be able to retain the success you deserve.
Keep up the good work.
Monika and Harald Eimermacher
20 October 2003
Congrats on your one year
Congrats on the one year anniversary! I hope for continued success. I’m so
proud to be a part of the publication and hope that my small contribution
will help increase interest and the circulation. Thanks so much for the
opportunity to write.
Time passes fast!
Dear Michael, Marion and the Chiang Mai Mail Team;
I just saw that you are 1 year old already! Time passes fast! My sincere and
genuine congratulations. The first year is the hardest, the second is
harder, and then I am told, things do improve. Lets hope things improve for
all of us sooner rather than later.
Sincere best wishes,
Daniel and everyone at Citec Asia
Dear Michael and Marion,
Having seen the start up of your business enterprise in Chiang Mai and the
growth rate in regards to circulation, advertisement sales and number of
editorials, (I like the one in your “Letters” section) I would like to
extend my heartfelt congratulations to your first anniversary. Being not
able to subscribe and receive the paper here (I tried that one with your
sister paper, the Pattaya Mail, but have received out of 10 only 5 issues,
the mail and postal system here is supposed to have some flaws), I look
forward in getting a good “sniff” at it every Saturday evening through
the internet. Just received an oversized letter, which was sent by mother
end of June by registered mail. It arrived here by mid July and I got a
reminder on Wednesday (mid October) to pick it up. I thought it might be
better to send my secretary to do this kind of thing, thinking about how a
post office here would look like and that they might walk me through
catacombs full of foul wooden shelving and rotten paper smell.
My secretary was welcomed by a stern warning not to have
mail stored for such a long time with the post office because of lack of
space. They had already sent two reminders previously (which we never
received). However, against the payment of a storage fee (believe it or not,
a letter containing 8 photos and a greeting card from my mother), they would
certainly forget our lack in cooperation to be available as a recipient for
the past 3 months. Sorry, I’m drifting away from the purpose of my address
to you, but I wish you all the best for all future endeavors and look
forward to a similar operation of yours here in Myanmar.
“Hey Lin Hui.” “Yes Chuang Chuang?” “Did we make
it in time to beat the rise in immigration fees?” “I hope so, we’re
not old enough to get a retire visa.”
What does Myanmar and Thailand, in particular the city of Chiang Mai have in
common? The baht busses and the public transport vehicles do stop and go
wherever and whenever they would like to.
is the difference between Chiang Mai baht busses and public transport in
Yangon? The number of people on one bus is tenfold the number a baht bus
driver would take on in Chiang Mai, and I hope I do not give them an idea of
how much more money they could possibly make per ride.
All the vehicles here have brand names, Daihatsu, Toyota,
Mazda, just to name a few, and all have one thing in common: they are more
than 20 years old. Their tires do not have a millimeter of profile, which
makes them easy turning into curves and corners without the driver having
spent too much effort turning the steering wheel into the direction he
intends to go.
all have added space at the back, a platform, which fits another 10 people
standing during peak hours. Price for a ride is 20 kyat, the equivalent of
80 satang. That sounds cheep, but with 80 persons and space for 20, I would
prefer spending a bit more and have fewer elbows in my face, less hands on
my buttocks and a better smell in my nose, if you know what I mean.
Sitting next to the driver costs an affordable 50 kyat or
2 baht. I was told that accidents do not happen often here, which is
actually a surprise, but occasionally you see a person falling off the
platform, either being pushed from the inside by someone preparing himself
to get off at the next stop or slipping out of the sandals because of the
Still alive and kicking in Yangon
We really must thank Ike Burnett for his most informative dispatches from
Burma. Previously I had thought that the issues facing that unhappy country
were trivial ones such as an oppressive military dictatorship, desperate
poverty and ongoing civil war. How much more disconcerting it is to learn
about real issues and challenges such as traffic jams, golf course
conditions and worst of all ... body odour.
Faced with such an appalling situation it is unsurprising
the country is in such a mess. His last report on the deplorable body odour
situation was particularly enlightening. No wonder about half a million
internally displaced people (IDPs) cower in disease ridden jungle. It
becomes clear why over a hundred thousand refugees in Thailand live in
perpetual dread of being returned. Suddenly the term refoulement has new and
poignant meaning. Little wonder then, too, that between two and three
million Burmese are prepared to endure exploitation and abuse by Thai
authorities to work illegally in Thailand.
Previously I had imagined that in denying basic
humanitarian assistance to the IDP population, Thailand was participating in
a massive crime against humanity. Lack of food, shelter and basic health
care is distressingly the least of their concerns. Obviously the situation
is far worse than previously imagined. Relief NGO’s have got their
priorities all mixed up and it is the chronic and appalling lack of body
deodorants which much first be addressed as a matter of urgency.
Those groups working inside are also clearly misdirecting
their energies. Instead of wasting their energies with HIV clinics and
education it is rather golf clinics and coaching which is needed. Although
Burma spends less of it’s GDP on education than any other nation on earth
bar one, none of this reaches the vital golf sector. If golf education is
neglected then how will ordinary Burmese people be able to benefit when the
SPDC next decide to arbitrarily confiscate, without compensation, more
farmland for golf courses?
We hear a lot, too, of the need to free Aung San Suu Kyi,
Min Ko Niang and over one and a half thousand other political prisoners.
Only Mr. Burnett has identified the impossibility of further progress
without the liberation highly paid ex-pat execs in air con taxis from the
tyranny of gridlock. What makes this all the more galling is that while
atrocities like these are perpetrated upon ex-pat execs a frivolous debate
twitters on about whether what is being done to the Karen and the Shan
people constitutes genocide or a plain old garden crime against humanity.
We have no need to thank Mr. Burnett for reminding us all
of the charms of Chiang Mai. That much is axiomatic. But it is in alerting
us to the real problems of Burma with his impassioned reportage that he has
done us a great service.