Vol. VIII No. 1 - Tuesday
January 6 - January 12, 2009



Home
Automania
News
Book-Movies-Music
Columns
Community
Art, Music & Culture
Happenings
Dining Out & Entertainment
Features
Letters
Social Scene
Sports
Chiang Mai FeMail
Daily Horoscope
Cartoons
Happy Birthday HM Queen Sirikit
Current Movies in
Chiangmai's Cinemas
Advertising Rates
Classifieds
Back Issues
Updated every Tuesday
by Saichon Paewsoongnern


OUR COMMUNITY
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

A glittering evening at Dalabar

‘Toys for Thailand’ gals in town again

Santisuk School students enjoy their ‘After Christmas Party’

GI certificate may revive Lamphun silk brocade manufacture

2009 Umbrella festival expected to be bigger and better

Scorpion Queen aims for prickly record

‘Triple’ party at the Herbal Garden, complete with delicious pies

A glittering evening at Dalabar

One of the gorgeous gowns designed
by Yodaya is worn by an equally gorgeous model.

CMM Reporters
To round off Christmas week, a special cocktail dinner was held at Dalabar on December 28. A combination of delicious buffet food, including roast suckling pig and a selection of hors d’ouvres, fine wine and great jazz was rounded off by a spectacular fashion show featuring the latest creations of designer Yodaya – and what amazing creations they were! Modelled by tall, slim and undeniably beautiful ladies, the vibrant colours, stunning designs and glittering decorations wowed the audience. Guests included the Thai Channel 7 TV star Khun Kelly, with his lovely girlfriend, model and actress, Nammthip Thanapat. Tannanan Willson and friends were there, plus a crowd of Chiang Mai’s ‘beautiful people,’ all ensuring that local and national paparazzi had a very busy night!

 

‘Toys for Thailand’ gals in town again

Volunteers with the kids at Wat Don Chan.

George Powell
Two gals from California rode into town yet again last week on a mission, to get wish lists from schools for underprivileged kids and do their best to fulfil them. Sasha Bilar, a native Thai, the owner of Spectrum Video Inc, and Maria Miller, a professor at Palomar College in the San Diego area have both been coming here regularly since the tsunami hit. Their very own charity, Toys for Thailand, has evolved from cuddly bears and dolls to toilets, beds and anything else that teachers and students need which there meagre budgets can’t provide. The great thing about this secular and tax exempt charity is that all the donations it receives go directly to supply the kids’ needs. All volunteers pay their own expenses, and local businesses donate their resources towards the charity’s effort.
A fine example of how this works is that when Toys for Thailand volunteers realised that the kids at Wat Don Chan needed beds, they bought the steel themselves and had 30 three-level bunks made, three kids to a bunk! When the beds were finished, they simply went out and bought 90 mattresses. Result – 90 kids sleeping in beds. Marvellous! Because the children need shampoo and feminine products on a sustained basis, a wish list has been placed on a whiteboard, with a donation box allowing donors to take on a project they can afford. A group of local people decided to join in and help out, much to everyone’s joy.
Christa Söllner, from Germany, is working on buying the materials needed to erect two buildings at a Shan School in Mae Hong Son province, in memory of her husband Dr. Horst Söllner. Jack Moersbaecher and Joe Evans bought up barber equipment which had been requested by that school and also by a Red Karen school in the same area. Joe, a large, very friendly and enthusiastic guy, is a local contact for Toys for Thailand, and can be reached at 085-714-2550. To learn more about the charity itself, please visit their website, at www.palomar.edu/toys or email [email protected]


Santisuk School students enjoy their ‘After Christmas Party’

Michael Davies
It may have been the day after Christmas, but that didn’t matter a bit to the student body of Santisuk School in Region IV School District. Santa Claus, the students and their teachers welcomed FERC board members and visiting magician Nick Wiszynski to a great holiday celebration that combined music, gifts and Nick’s magic act, along with unexpected rain and miscellaneous dogs wandering in and out of the covered sala. The student body president, Wutthanan Phonyangnork, is also a FERC scholarship recipient. During his speech, Wutthanan said ‘This scholarship makes a poor boy be a good student.’

Magician Nick Wiszynski with fascinated students at Santisuk School.

Santisuk School is a self-sustaining school, a designation given to only two other schools in all of Thailand. Sixty-five percent of the students are tribal children and thirty-five percent are Thai. About half of them live at the school because the distance to their villages is too far for them to travel every day. With their teachers, they grow vegetables, herbs and fruits in their gardens, raise pigs and chickens and care for three fish ponds. The food that is raised and grown is part of the children’s diets, and they are also taught food preparation as well as other life skills. This unusual school is a ‘home away from home’ for 400 students, each of whom has a job to do in preparation for any activity. The school is presently seeking volunteer English language teachers, and can offer room and board for long-term volunteers. For further information on the scheme, please contact Frank Weicks on 083-762-2744.
FERC board members led the students in stirring renditions of ‘Jingle Bells’ and ‘Frosty the Snowman,’ then helped to give out gifts to every student and tossed candy treats into the assembly. However, it was magician Nick Wiszynski who captured the imagination and the hearts of the students with his magic show, then sat with small groups to perform magic in a more personal setting. It was easy to tell how fascinated the youngsters were – they barely moved during the show, and their “oohs” and “aahs” were evidence of their enchantment.
For further information on FERC, please visit their website at www.thai-rural-education.org.


GI certificate may revive Lamphun silk brocade manufacture

CMM Reporters
Lamphun is famous for its production of silk brocade (yok dok), traditionally woven on handlooms in a complicated process from a combination of silk thread and gold and silver thread, and traditionally worn by the Kings and Queens of Thailand.
Sadly, sales and profits are dropping, due not only to the world economic crisis, but also to cheap imitations of the famous fabric being sold to unsuspecting clients. However, in October, Lamphun silk was awarded a Geographic Indication (GI) certificate from Thailand’s Intellectual Property Rights Department, and registered for domestic protection.
The beautiful fabric, famous in Thailand for its quality and historical Royal connections, was first introduced into Lamphun one hundred years ago by the Chiang Mai Princess Dara Rasamee, who became the fifth wife of King Chulalongkorn the Great, and learned the weaving process whilst she lived at the Royal Court. When the Princess returned to Chiang Mai, she taught the techniques to relatives, and thus began the production of the silk brocade in Lamphun.
The GI certificate is given, not to a company, but to a group of producers in the same, traditional area, and cannot be transferred outside the area. This protects the product, unlike a patent, which can be sold and its manufacturing area transferred anywhere in the world. For Lamphun weavers, this means that they will be able to charge a realistic price for the silk, which reflects their increasing costs, and the uniqueness of their product. It is also hoped that the silk and its weavers can be promoted as a tourist attraction.


2009 Umbrella festival expected to be bigger and better

Saksit Meesubkwang
The annual Umbrella Festival held in San Kamphaeng will run from January 16 to 18, and will be sponsored by the Chiang Mai Provincial Administration Organisation and the Tourist Authority if Thailand. It is expected that 2009’s festival will be more extravagant than in previous years, and the total number of sponsors is higher.
A highlight of the festival will be the ‘Miss Umbrella’ beauty pageant, and a giant umbrella will be created to mark the occasion. Over 50,000 visitors are expected, generating at least 10 million baht for the local community, although the recent political turmoil may result in a smaller number of foreign tourists. Local communities are hoping that the new government will restore confidence amongst foreign visitors, drawing them back to the kingdom.


Scorpion Queen aims for prickly record

Vimolrat Singnikorn
Believe it or not “Nong Na”, the Thai Scorpion Queen, is at this moment writing herself into the Guinness Book of Records in Pattaya.

Nong Na settles into her new “home” as she prepares to break her own record by living with 5,000 scorpions for 33 days and nights.

The one and only Kanjana Ketkaew, aka Nong Na, 39, has just set a new world record by keeping a very large scorpion in her mouth for 2 minutes and 3 seconds without being stung to death.
Not satisfied with that feat, at Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Pattaya, Nong Na is attempting to break her own world record of six years standing by living with 5,000 scorpions over a period of 33 days and nights. She has expressed confidence that she will be able to accomplish the feat.
The Scorpion Queen stepped into the glass room at Ripley’s on December 24 and will live with the black stinging roommates until January 24. The rules say the Scorpion Queen can come out of the room for 15 minutes every 8 hours and three times per day for 45 minutes for a total of 33 days.
The scorpion used for the mouth record put up a fight, struggling all the while to come out during the Scorpion Queen’s effort to keep it in her mouth for as long as she could. Nong Na had to use her tongue and was able to keep it in there for the two minutes and three seconds to set a new Guinness book record.
Asked what her secret method was, she simply said that as she didn’t harm the scorpions, they returned that courtesy.
We’ll gladly take her word of mouth for it.


‘Triple’ party at the Herbal Garden, complete with delicious pies

Elena Edwards
As if Christmas and New Year weren’t enough, there was a birthday as well to celebrate for Bud and Noi Sweet at the Sweet Herbal Garden and Clinic. Invitations for December 27 went out by email and word of mouth to all their friends, including the mostly Doi Saket-based owners of a good number of gorgeous classic cars, the ‘star of the show’ being Miew’s newly renovated and stunning shocking pink and cream Opel Estate.

Bud and Noi Sweet at their ‘triple’ party at the Sweet Herbal Garden and Clinic.

The Sweet Herbal Gardens and Clinic, run by Bud and Noi, was the perfect setting for a celebration, as Noi, originally from Korat, also operates a cooking school at the venue. The resultant delicious spread she provided for her guests met with instant joy and great approval, so much so that a guest waxed lyrical online about the apple and pumpkin pies! Even the classic cars, one of which was running, happily enough, on the new ‘hydrogen fuel cell,’ took second place to the food! Music and beautifully dressed Thai traditional dancers kept guest fascinated and very happy throughout.
The 10 rai of lush herbal gardens and grounds is the project of both Bud and Noi; the clinic and cooking school is Noi’s alone. The Mor Noi clinic is holistic and traditional Thai medicine-based, using herbs grown naturally and organically in the grounds. Noi (Dr. Amporn Srakrupan) has a doctorate in herbal medicine, and eventually realised her dream of her own clinic when the Mor Noi was completed, certified and opened in June 2006. She has ‘healing hands,’ and uses her gift to great effect with her patients.
As well as all this, Noi’s cookery school also offers a home-stay facility for its students, charging from 350 baht per night, including delicious meals. She and Bud have been together for 26 years, although Bud spent much of his time working in Saudi Arabia until his retirement in 1998, when he settled down at the Herbal Garden to enjoy what both have them had created over the years.
You can find the Sweet Herbal Garden and the Mor Noi Clinic at 75/1 Moo 7, Tambon Nongjom, Amphur Sansai, approximately 30 minutes’ drive from the city centre. If that sounds confusing, you can call for directions and more information on 053-353-556 or 086-659-9958, email on [email protected], or visit the website at www.mornoi-clinic.com.



Chiangmai Mail Publishing Co. Ltd.
189/22 Moo 5, T. Sansai Noi, A. Sansai, Chiang Mai 50210
THAILAND
Tel. 053 852 557, Fax. 053 014 195
Editor: 087 184 8508
E-mail: [email protected]
www.chiangmai-mail.com
Administration: [email protected]
Website & Newsletter Advertising: [email protected]

Copyright © 2004 Chiangmai Mail. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Advertisement