MAIL BAG [email protected]
Granny lost everything in house fire
Last issue you reported on a house fire in Suan Dok, well that house is one
of our neighbors here at Magical Light Foundation. A small house behind Wat
Suandok belonging to a 83 year old widowed granny, Wandee Wanchai was
completely destroyed by fire on the morning of 25th January. She has been
living in that house almost all of her married life. She was in that house
with her elderly son when the fire broke out. She also has another married
daughter who is staying in Mae Taeng. The fire fully consumed her house and
partially destroyed and damaged a few of her neighbors’ properties too.
Investigation shows that the fire started from her house due to an
electrical wiring fault in her house. Her small piece of land has since been
cleared of most of the debris caused by the fire.
The local community in Suthep has set up a donation box on her property to
collect funds, but the priority of the Suthep communities was to use the
collected funds to help replaced damaged areas of the other houses affected
by the fire first. A few local charity foundations will be raising funds for
the granny to rebuild a simple house. The construction will start after all
the neighboring properties are restored. Rebuilding her house is expected to
start in about a month time.
Magical Light Foundation visited Wandee a visit on 13th February; she is now
staying with kind neighbors who have offered her a roof over her head. She
says she only had the clothing on her back when she escaped from the fire.
We asked her what she needed at this stage. She says that she was very
fortunate that well-wishers have given her clothing and other basic daily
necessities. What she needed most immediately was a mosquito net.
We went to buy her a mosquito net straight away and pass it to her on the
same day. Magical Light Foundation has decided to assist in raising funds to
help her buy household necessities and other furnishing when her new house
is ready by April.
Those who wish to help Granny Wandee please contact Magical Light Foundation
at http://magicallightfoundation.org/ for more information, we are located
directly behind Wat Suan Dok.
Magical Light Foundation
Why no public toilets?
I recently spent time at Kad Luang for the Chinese New Year festivities; in fact
I spent all evening there as my daughter took part in one of the contests. You
can imagine my dismay to find there were no public toilets! I asked around but
there were no mobile toilets set up at all.
My home is quite far away so going home was not an option and I couldn’t leave
my daughter too long so I just held it. For hours. It was pretty awful.
It made me notice however, that Chiang Mai has no public toilets. At least there
are a few gas stations in town that can be used and the occasional McDonalds I
suppose. But really, shouldn’t there be a few public toilets scattered in
heavily touristed areas? And shouldn’t there be mobile toilets, we call them
porta-potties in the United States but here I noticed they have a “toilet bus”
that can be parked nearby for visitors. I don’t know why that bus was not at the
Chinese New Year festival.
I realize that it is fairly costly and that it may be difficult to find places
to have a few toilets but officials here should really consider it, it would
make everyone’s lives easier.
I missed the plant fair at the Flower Festival!
I was so disappointed to find out I completely missed the plant fair at the
Flower Festival. I know that normally it is held at Buak Haad Park but somehow
thought that everything was being held at Tha Pae this year. I went to Tha Pae
and couldn’t find any plants or flowers for sale and so went home. It was too
dark to see the floats and while the electric light display was pretty this is,
after all, the Flower Festival and not the Electric Light Festival.
I found out later that the plant market was still at the park but unfortunately
for me, found out too late. I love going to the plant fair and buying an orchid
or two (or three!) and viewing the award winning bonsais and orchids. To me,
that is the best part of the entire Festival!
I don’t know why they split it into two different places on completely different
sides of the old city but I hope next year they consolidate it into one place
Now I have to wait a full year before the next one.
Disappointed orchid buyer
Dangerous driving statistics from the World Health Organization
A friend of mine recently compiled these statistics he found on the latest WHO
The most dangerous countries for being in a car (ie number of deaths in a car
per 100,000 people) for countries with published data on the WHO site:
9. Czech Republic
Amazing but true, Thailand is not even in the top 10 most dangerous. If you
include motorcycles then it’s a very different story.. of course. Also amazing,
despite Russia being the worst, only 10% of fatalities in cars in Russia are a
result of drunken drivers.
The WHO info shows road deaths per 10,000 of population then subdivides by
Motorcycle, Car, Pedestrian and Cyclist.
Whilst there are more road deaths in Thailand than the USA, there are less car
accident deaths per 100,000 of population in Thailand than there are in the USA,
in fact only 13% of road deaths in Thailand are in a car, a whopping 79% are
motorcyclists with the remainder being pedestrian and cyclist.
Other interesting stats about Russia, it has 84 murders per day in a nation of
143 million people. That’s one murder every 18 minutes. However... Russia is not
in the top 10 most dangerous countries to take a holiday.
Most Dangerous Countries to Holiday. There are the countries where statistically
you are more likely to be injured, killed or be a victim of crime.
Iraq, 2. USA, 3. South Africa, 4. Burundi, 5. Antartica, 6. Somalia, 7. Sudan,
8. Brazil, 9. Poland, 10. United Arab Emirates
What a surprise to see USA at number 2, however the numbers don’t lie.
Here is a link to the raw data: