The Bras of Asia
We are in the land of tiny here. Tiny ladies, tiny
babies, tiny seats, and alas, tiny clothes. I can cope with shopping for a
blouse, where the large is too small, and the extra large sometimes fits.
But I found myself in the embarrassing position of needing a new bra!
I have walked past the lingerie departments in Thai
stores, fascinated with the array of color, lace, bows, sequins,
rhinestones, and flowers. However, the most remarkable thing about the
department is the size of the underwear. It all looks like it was made for
six year olds who’s mothers doesn’t feed them. The panties could be lace
gloves, for a formal evening out. The bras would work well as sleeping masks
on a long flight. As one of my friends said the other day, “It looks like
everyone in Thailand wears training bras.”
So, I sheepishly sneaked into the back of the department,
hoping I wouldn’t be spotted. That didn’t work, as the salesgirls number
in the hundreds, and they are very attentive. The tiny little salesgirl in
her size 2 shoes approached, and asked in a tiny, gentle voice, “May I
help you, Madaaam?” I explained I wanted a white bra!!! White? The look of
shock and disbelief come over her tiny face. In this world of pink with
sequin, blue with white flowers, black lace over red silk, this remark
caught her off guard.
The largest size around here is 80. With my farang body,
that works, if I don’t breathe too deeply. The cup size is not a problem.
C is the biggest, and there are A’s and B’s all over. The difficult part
is that the girls here want to look busty, so most bras have five cm of
padding. Which means to fit into that tiny space left, you must average a
minus-minus AA. This type doesn’t work because when we travel, I need
clothes that dry quickly. I would have to hang it out the bus window all
day, which would not do well on dusty roads.
While in my last moments before entering the changing
room, a tiny new salesgirl walked over, and asked my size. While trying to
tell her, she reached over, (with her tiny little hand), and squeezed my
right boob, with all the professionalism of an expert salesgirl, to see what
size I was. I tried to retain classic composure, well, that wasn’t easy.
With my three choices, I entered the dressing room, fully
expecting to be accompanied by a team of salesgirls. Much to my relief, they
let me enter alone, while smiling at me in a tight little group. The smiles
looked controlled, as if they were going to throw themselves on the floor in
fits of laughter, once I stepped inside.
While paying, I felt a great surge of satisfaction and
accomplishment come over me. I had survived the most dreaded mission in
Asia. Forget the elephant rides, the near death misses in a tuk-tuk, and
muddy treks. Forget the overcrowded ferries on the Mekong, and surviving
meals of unknown content, I have survived “The Bras of Asia!”
CEC goes to the dogs
At the Chiang Mai Expats Club meeting, it was announced
that Joe Sander’s hike for next Saturday will be a 3-4 hour down hill
hike from the top of Doi Suthep to the Wat. Not difficult, but walkers
should be fit.
Dhunjibhouy during her heart-warming speech.
Horst, the cultural representative announced that one of
the upcoming outstanding exhibits will be at the CMU Faculty of ART
building on Print Making, opening will be March 9 at 6 p.m. The Classic
Cars of Lanna Club was introduced, which meets at
the Gymkanna Club the first Thursday of every month and there will be a
rally at the Orchid Farm on Mae Rim Rd. on Sunday.
Roshan Dhunjibhouy from the Lanna Dog Rescue was the
guest speaker. Roshan told us that the Dog Rescue is three years old and
described how it grew to the hard working organization it is today. The
philosophy of the organization runs parallel to the Buddhist teaching of
giving “metta” or love to all living things – all are worthy of our
consideration down to the smallest organism. She showed pictures of
starving and suffering dogs, and showed before and after rescue pictures.
In Chiang Mai there are about 30,000 stray dogs. Their
biggest problems are diseases and finding adequate food. The government
offers free sterilization for one month of each year. Often nuisance dogs
are captured and sold to a meat market or just poisoned by irritated
neighbors. Often irresponsible pet owners abandon their dogs (or cats) when
they go back to their native countries.
Currently the Rescue uses wats for dog shelters, where
they can be relatively safe and well-kept. Monks are asked for their
cooperation and are given some education on taking care of the animals.
Mass sterilization is taken to the wats. Many people feed hundreds of dogs
every day and will often alert the Rescue if there is an injured animal.
Lanna Dog Rescue has some wonderful aims. They will soon
get an office, they would like to open a shelter where the homeless can
stay and from where they can be adopted. They want to take education
programs into the schools, and train dogs to assist disabled people.
Lanna Dog Rescue is always in need of food for the dogs,
fund raising help, people to adopt dogs and, of course, money. They want to
relieve suffering as well as make Chiang Mai a more attractive city.
The next meeting will be March 11, at which Tom Matty will present
pictures and speak about a beautiful, old wat that he discovered.
300 ancient photos of HM King Chulalongkorn on display
Kittiyaporn Kanjam and
Pinutda Suwanchaisri (student trainees MFLU)
An exhibition graphically depicting a century of Thai
history and events opened on February 17 entitled “100 Years of Thai
Photography”. The exhibition was held to honor HM King Chulalongkorn as
the Father of Thai Photography and to commemorate the 100 years since the 1st
Thai Photo Contest. The exhibition was first held at Wat Benjamabopit
Dusitwanaram, Bangkok on November 25-27, 2005, on the occasion of 60th
anniversary of HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s ascension to the throne.
exhibition presents more than 300 old pictures
Chiang Mai Photo Business Club and Denchai Trading Co
organized this photo exhibition to honor HM the King, with the added
benefit of promoting knowledge of photography to people and an ideal
opportunity for the younger generation to experience the history of
The exhibition displays more than 300 old pictures, many
of which are quite
rare. The photos include pictures taken by HM King Chulalongkorn, pictures
of King Rama V, Rama VI, and Rama IX going about their royal duties, old
photos of Wat Benjamabopit Dusitwanaram in the past, and many photos
depicting important events in Chiang Mai’s history.
As well as the photo exhibition, there was also a
seminar, special lectures by professional photographers, and demonstrations
of photographic techniques, which were attended by large crowds of eager
historians and budding camera buffs. The exhibition will be open until
March 5, 2006 at the exhibition hall 2nd
floor of the Denchai Trading Co.
The opening was presided over by Thongchai Wongrianthong, Chiang Mai
deputy governor, together with Chalermchart Nakarangkul, managing director
of Denchai Trading Co., Sawat Patipanpresert, chairman of the Photographic
Federation of Thai Society, and Santipong Pratipsawangwong, chairman of
Photo Business Association.
of Technology Lanna student’s exhibition supporting design works
show showing student’s works.
Kittiyaporn Kanjam (Student Trainee (MFLU)
The Northern Village of Central Airport Plaza was the
venue for the Department of Industrial Design, Rajamangala University of
Technology Lanna, Northern Campus exhibition “The 3rd
Colours of Asia” to highlight the combination of Thai and Chinese
ideas shown in the exhibition.
The exhibition was arranged to showcase the designs of
the 4th year students of the
Gems and Jewelry Technology program, who have applied their ideas and
creative principles to make real works of art. The talents of more than 50
students were ably demonstrated in the decoration contest where the
students had created beautifully decorated items using Thai glass beads,
fashioned in both uniquely Chinese and Thai cultural styles, aimed to
support and distribute the culture of each country.
The incredibly high standard of the students work on
show at the exhibition indicates a bright future for the new generation of
decorative designers of Thailand. Chaiyong Ueawiriyanukul, president of
Rajamangala University of Technology Lanna opened the exhibition.