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  1. From Pattaya News Lone Kuwaiti Tourist Fights Off Five Young Teen Robbers in Pattaya Pattaya police successfully apprehended five teenagers on Monday following their failed attempt to rob a Kuwaiti tourist on Soi Yensabai. The thwarted robbery occurred at around 3:00 AM on January 22nd, along Soi Yensabai in South Pattaya. Mr. Mobaruk Ali, a 23-year-old tourist from Kuwait, had been in Pattaya for just two weeks when he encountered a group of five teenagers armed with knives. In a brave act, Mr. Mobaruk resisted the robbery attempt. With the assistance of local residents who intervened, the group of teenagers dispersed and fled the scene. Seizing the opportunity, Mr. Mobaruk used his mobile phone to record a video while chasing after the suspects.
  2. From Pattaya Mail Transvestite snatches 300,000 baht gold chain from Swiss tourist Sympathetic bar girls console Swiss national Mr. Philippe Bocion after a transvestite Suntorn Huajaipet (inset) snatched his 300,000 baht gold chain in Soi 6 on Pattaya Beach. PATTAYA, Thailand – In a swift operation, the Pattaya Police investigation team successfully arrested 28-year-old transvestite Suntorn Huajaipet, a primary suspect in a robbery case. They also confiscated a 2-baht gold necklace valued at approximately 68,000 baht, two wrist bracelets priced at 68,000 baht and 34,000 baht respectively, a lion-shaped gold wrist bracelet worth 35,500 baht, and 20,000 baht in cash. The arrest came rapidly after 60-year-old Swiss national Mr. Philippe Bocion reported a robbery in Soi 6 on Pattaya Beach at 1.30 a.m. on January 20, detailing an encounter where a transvestite forcefully attempted to hug him, resulting in the snatching of his 10-baht gold necklace valued at approximately 332,000 baht. Responding promptly, police officers were dispatched to the scene, utilizing surveillance cameras to identify the suspect, who confessed to the crime, disclosing that the stolen item had been sold. With the obtained funds, the suspect purchased the confiscated gold items while retaining additional cash. The recovered items stand as crucial evidence in the ongoing investigation. Pol. Col. Nawin Theerawit, Chief of Pattaya City Police, underscored the impact of the suspect’s actions on Pattaya’s tourism image, emphasizing the police force’s swift response to detain the culprit and ensure the return of stolen property to the victim. The entire operation, spanning from investigation to arrest, concluded in less than 24 hours. Chief Nawin further emphasized the importance of safeguarding high-valued items by keeping them at hotels or residences for enhanced safety while enjoying the sights and sounds of Pattaya nightlife.
  3. If the reference was to restaurants and eating out, I prefer Thailand. If it was about buying food to prepare yourself, the sheer abundance and variety of food available in the US is an advantage. I come to bkk for extended periods and stay in Airbnb where me or my friend cooks one meal a day so I'm familiar with the markets (get most of my stuff in Foodland).
  4. NOTE -- "ER" stands for Extended Range. From the BBC Second model to be inspected after 737 Max 9 blowout Checks are to be carried out on a second Boeing aircraft model following the blowout of an unused door on one of its planes earlier this month. The US Federal Aviation Administration grounded more than 170 of the 737 Max 9 fleet after a cabin panel broke away thousands of feet above the ground. On Sunday, the agency said airlines should also inspect older 737-900ER models, which use the same door design. The FAA described the move as an "added layer of safety". It said there had been no reported issues with the 737-900ER, but that it uses the same style of panel to "plug" an unused door as the plane involved in the terrifying 5 January incident.
  5. Not just in Thailand, that's for sure. I wanted to buy a really nice silk scarf for my late sister for Christmas many years back. Went to a high-end store and selected one I saw displayed in the window. Clerk asked me if she could wrap it up for me and I said "sure." When I presented it to my sister after Christmas dinner it turned out to be a different scarf altogether.
  6. From Thailand News Agency The Immigration Bureau (IB) has introduced an online reporting system for foreigners staying in Thailand for more than 90 days, marking the first-ever implementation of this service. The initiative, initially targeting investors under the promotion of the Board of Investment (BOI), is expected to stimulate the economy and boost tourism in Thailand. Pol Lt Gen Itthipol Itthisarnronnachai, Commissioner of the Immigration Bureau, along with relevant authorities, announced the commencement of the “90 days online notification” service. This allows foreigners to report their residence status when staying in the kingdom for more than 90 days through an online platform. The system aims to provide convenience to international tourists, enabling them to submit advance notifications 15 days prior to the expiration of their 90-day stay. Notifications can be made at any time through the online portal at www.immigration.go.th. Once registered, users will receive a password via email, allowing them to log in and submit their 90-day notification. Approval results will be sent via email or accessed through the website www.immigration.go.th. The first phase of implementation will target investors falling under the BOI’s investment promotion, expanding later to include other visa types. This strategic move is anticipated to garner positive responses from the international community. For the “90 days online notification,” there are three reporting channels: 1) reporting in person, 2) designating a representative, and 3) sending the notification form to the Immigration Bureau via registered mail. This project represents a new dimension in providing services through the online system of the Immigration Bureau. Additionally, the Immigration Bureau offers an e-Extension service, allowing foreigners to apply for a visa extension online. Applicants can fill out the required information at any time, submit it online, meet with an officer to confirm their identity, and receive a visa sticker in less than 5 minutes. This aims to enhance efficiency and convenience for foreign visitors. The Immigration Bureau anticipates that these service enhancements will stimulate the economy and promote tourism by attracting a significant number of foreign tourists and investors to the country.
  7. From Pattaya Mail A CCTV camera catches the moment when the drunken thug assaults a foreign tourist, all caused by a dispute over the 200 baht price tag for a bottle of beer. Recent concerns about disruptive incidents affecting Pattaya’s tourism image reached a pinnacle when an individual armed with a knife assaulted a foreign tourist in Jomtien. The incident which occurred at the intersection of Soi Na Jomtien 20 escalated due to reported dissatisfaction with beer prices set at 200 baht per bottle. Police arrested the suspect, identified as 52-year-old Bunsuk Kwan-on on January 19. Bunsuk was apprehended near the crime scene and found in possession of a fruit knife, believed to be the weapon used during the incident. Authorities also seized his clothing from the attack and a digital camera. During questioning, Bunsuk admitted to being the individual captured in CCTV footage. He claimed to have intervened based on a young woman’s harassment allegations by a foreign national, insisting his actions were misinterpreted. Notably, Bunsuk exhibited signs of intoxication, along with a lack of remorse and humorous remarks. As the investigation continues, Bunsuk Kwanoen faces charges of physical assault and carrying a knife in a public area without reasonable cause. ================== From Pattaya News
  8. Is this a Pattaya-centric problem? This will be my 22nd year in Bangkok and never ran into this problem.
  9. No need to view it that way. The net effect of such a decision would actually raise the residual intelligence level.
  10. NOTE -- Russia and the Afghanistan disagree on how many Russian citizens were on board. From The Nation Two Russian citizens were among the passengers on a charter flight destined for Moscow that went missing over Afghanistan, as reported by Russia's state-run TASS news agency on Sunday, citing a source "in the operational services." A manifest list for the plane, published by the SHOT news outlet, indicated that the entire crew were Russian nationals. Russian aviation authorities announced on Sunday that a Russian-registered plane, believed to have six individuals on board, disappeared from radar screens over Afghanistan the previous night, following reports of a crash from local Afghan police. According to Russia's RIA news agency, the flight was a medical evacuation mission from Thailand to Moscow. The Russian Consulate in Bangkok stated that the plane was conducting a medical evacuation from the Thai city of Pattaya, transporting a Russian woman accompanied by her husband. The spokesman for the Taliban government in Afghanistan, Abdul Wahid Rayan, attributed the crash to an engine problem in a statement on the social media platform no X (formerly Twitter). He also claimed that there were "seven Russians abroad" and alleged the aircraft belonged to a Moroccan firm. The Falcon 10, an early business jet manufactured by the French company Dassault Aviation between 1971 and 1989, remains popular on the secondary market despite its age.
  11. You mean he's not a muscular young middle eastern guy? 🙁 You certainly seem to be giving it your best effort. Not to worry; your luck will change when you hit Super A again. 😂
  12. Not available: They've temporarily removed themselves from roster due to day job or other commitments. Not yet notified of employment: They've not indicated that they're available that day. Ready: They've made themselves available within short time frame (a few may be hanging around shop). Public: Tip for going to your hotel/place. ====================== You may also see ""HOT" on photo of various guys. It's been my experience that no special consideration should be automatically given. (Above are my understandings of terms. Possible I lost something in translation. 🙂)
  13. One Spa in Saphan Kwai website identifies their guys in four categories: top gay, top real man, bottom, and both. They have sophisticated filter options so you can search by category. I just checked and out of nearly 250 masseurs, 6 are bottoms and 83 are both (top and bottom). https://onespa.love
  14. From VN Express By Phong Anh January 20, 2024 Thousands flocked to the Night Street in Ho Chi Minh City’s Thao Dien area, home to the southern metropolis's largest expat community, on its opening evening Friday. Crowds gather in the pedestrian-only “entertainment zone” bordered by Xuan Thuy, Quoc Huong and Nguyen Van Huong streets from 7 p.m. Security forces were also present to ensure safety and order. This was the first night street in Thu Duc City – Saigon’s “city within a city” – and it would be open from 7 p.m. every Friday and Saturday until 2 a.m. the next day. The event predominantly features food stalls. For a six-month trial period there will be jazz and rock concerts, don ca tai tu (traditional southern Vietnamese folk music ) performances, and a variety of shopping options and activities. Inside the night street zone, Thao Dien market and a riverside park at the foot of the Saigon bridge are pleasant places to enjoy local culture and the scenery near the water. In the near future, the area expected to open a river bus route. HCMC currently has eight night street zones, including the Bui Vien and Nguyen Hue pedestrian-only streets in District 1.
  15. Although it's mostly lost from the annals of history of the second world war, Japan was among the nations laboring to develop its own nuclear weapons. According to Wikipedia, "Japan had several programs exploring the use of nuclear fission for military technology, including nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons. Like the similar wartime programs in Nazi Germany, it was relatively small, suffered from an array of problems brought on by lack of resources and wartime disarray, and was ultimately unable to progress beyond the laboratory stage during the war. "In 1934, Tohoku University professor Hikosaka Tadayoshi's "atomic physics theory" was released. Hikosaka pointed out the huge energy contained by nuclei and the possibility that both nuclear power generation and weapons could be created. .....The leading figure in the Japanese atomic program was Yoshio Nishina, a close associate of Niels Bohr and a contemporary of Albert Einstein.[6] Nishina had co-authored the Klein–Nishina formula.[7] Nishina had established his own Nuclear Research Laboratory to study high-energy physics in 1931 at RIKEN Institute (the Institute for Physical and Chemical Research), which had been established in 1917 in Tokyo to promote basic research.[8] Nishina had built his first 26-inch (660 mm) cyclotron in 1936, and another 60-inch (1,500 mm), 220-ton cyclotron in 1937. In 1938 Japan also purchased a cyclotron from the University of California, Berkeley. "In 1939, Nishina recognized the military potential of nuclear fission, and was worried that the Americans were working on a nuclear weapon which might be used against Japan. However, the Japanese fission project did not formally begin until April 1941 when Yasuda acted on Army Minister Hideki Tōjō's order to investigate the possibilities of nuclear weapons. Yasuda passed the order down the chain of command to Viscount Masatoshi Ōkōchi, director of the RIKEN Institute, who in turn passed it to Nishina, whose Nuclear Research Laboratory by 1941 had over 100 researchers. The second RIKEN cyclotron, completed in 1943 "Meanwhile, the Imperial Japanese Navy's Technology Research Institute had been pursuing its own separate investigations, and had engaged professors from the Imperial University, Tokyo, for advice on nuclear weapons. Before the Attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Captain Yoji Ito of the Naval Technical Research Institution of Japan initiated a study that would allow for the Japanese Navy to use nuclear fission. After consulting with Professor Sagane at Tokyo Imperial University, his research showed that nuclear fission would be a potential power source for the Navy. "After the Japanese Navy lost at Midway, Captain Ito proposed a new type of nuclear weapons development designated as "B-Research" (also called "Jin Project", Japanese: 仁計画, lit. "Nuclear Project") by the end of June 1942. By December, deep in the project, it became evident that while an atomic bomb was feasible in principle, "Japanese scientists believed that it would be difficult for even the United States to realize the application of atomic energy in time to influence the outcome of the war." "By February 1945, a small group of scientists had succeeded in producing a small amount of material in a rudimentary separator in the RIKEN complex—material which RIKEN's cyclotron indicated was not uranium-235. The separator project came to an end in March 1945, when the building housing it was destroyed by a fire caused by the USAAF's Operation Meetinghouse raid on Tokyo. No attempt was made to build a uranium pile; heavy water was unavailable, but Takeuchi Masa, who was in charge of Nishina's separator, calculated that light water would suffice if the uranium could be enriched to 5–10% uranium-235." For additional details https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_nuclear_weapons_program#cite_note-Grunden_2005_107–130-9
  16. The building of the bridge inspired the 1952 novel "Bridge on the River Kwai" that was followed five years later by the film of the same name. Although largely fictional, the movie, directed by David Lean who five years later went on to direct "Lawrence of Arabia," was wildly successful. Featuring Alex Guinness in the leading role, the sound track is one of its most enduring legacies, the Colonel Bogey March. (I agree that visiting the cemetery at Kanchanburi is a very moving experience.
  17. From Inter Press Service News Agency Tompoun children want to show me the ghost forest, but they are still afraid. Credit: Kris Janssens / IPS RATANAKIRI PROVINCE, Cambodia, Jan 18 2024 (IPS) - “What on earth are you going to do in Tropeang Krohom?” The driver of the minivan turns his head and gives me a puzzled look. Few passengers want to be dropped off in a settlement between two provincial towns. Tropeang Krohom or ‘Red Pond’ is located at a junction of the main road. The name refers to the typical blood-red earth in this province of Ratanakiri. From this point, a motorcyclist will take me to his village. It is a ride of more than two hours, along bumpy and unpaved roads, with large trails of dust behind passing trucks. The leaves of the grayish-green trees are covered with a thick layer of the same red sand. Everyone is en route to somewhere. Some are packed lightly, others carry cartloads of vegetables, cassava or sugar cane stalks, to be transported from the field to the market. A street vendor travels from one village to another on his motorbike, loaded with small items for sale such as soap, candy, or soft drinks. About 1 percent of the total population of 17 million inhabitants live in this area. This province mainly consists of villages, each populated by 60-something families, spread across vast valleys. I go to Kbaal Romeas (literally ‘head of the rhinoceros’) next to Srepok, a tributary of the Mekong. Cambodia’s northeast is home to more than 20 ethnic groups or Indigenous People. They each have their own story and particular customs, from death cults to love huts, and they have specific languages, although nowadays rarely used. Young people prefer switching to Khmer, the language of the largest Cambodian ethnicity, which is slowly wiping out the others. In this province, the clash between tradition and development became painfully clear in 2017, when a huge dam was built at the confluence of the Srepok and the Sesan rivers in Ratanakiri’s west. The power plant turned an inhabited area of 34,000 hectares into a huge water reservoir. Thousands of residents had to be relocated to a place with newly built houses and expansion options. But about 50 ‘Pounong’ families refuse to leave. At first, they used small boats to row over the flooded village road. Later, the typical shaded areas under the stilt houses slowly filled with water. Today, the villagers live a little further away, still within rowing distance of the old spot. Ironically, this area close to a hydroelectric power station is not connected to the grid. People here don’t want to pay for electricity from that ‘doomed’ dam anyway. A Cambodian NGO supporting the stubborn resistance is providing solar panels to power night lights and to charge mobile phones. “I have been to the new village a few times to visit a sick relative, but I will never live there,” says Poo, 64. He shows me his rice field, which has just been harvested. “This land is my identity,” he adds. I know a few Cambodian words for “tradition” or “origin,” but this man uses them all in one sentence. According to many ethnic traditions, bodies are not cremated as in the Buddhist culture, but buried. This also goes for Pounong people, who believe that the spirits of the deceased are still wandering around the burial site. This is the main reason why the community doesn’t want to leave. Continues with photos at https://www.ipsnews.net/2024/01/centuries-old-rituals-slowly-fading-away-cambodia/
  18. From NHK Newsline A Japanese steam train that used to run on the Thai-Burma 'Death Railway' plies the rails in Thailand today thanks to the loving care of Thai mechanics. Continues with video https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/videos/20240117203211249/
  19. Recently noticed I hadn't received mileage credit for my last trip to bkk so called airline customer service. Since I was crediting miles to a partner account, they told me to contact that airline to initiate the process. Thought it was unusual work around but I followed through. The partner (AA) took my flights numbers and ticket number and said they would submit form to carrier (CX). Five days later received email from AA customer support, requesting copies of ticket receipt and boarding passes. I hadn't retained boarding passes for outbound flights but did manage to find my return boarding passes still in my carry on backpack. Sent those along today. Lesson learned: Don't dispose of those boarding passes until you've seen the miles on your account, especially when itinerary involves partner carriers.
  20. From The Nation Tourism and Sports Minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol on Wednesday unveiled seven policies to promote the tourism and sports industry in 2024 to secure the revenue target for tourism set by the government of 3.5 trillion baht, the same amount as was recorded in 2019 before the pandemic. Sudawan said total tourism revenue in 2023 was slightly over 2 trillion baht, missing the target by 380 billion baht. For this year, the ministry is eyeing the same revenue as in 2019 as it believes the tourism industry will fully recover from the impact of Covid-19. Sudawan explained that of the 3.5 trillion-baht target, 2.3 trillion baht would be coming from foreign arrivals of about 40 million people. Domestic tourists, meanwhile, will contribute 1.2 trillion baht from around 200-220 million persons-trips. The ministry said the policies to help achieve the target will focus on promoting Thailand as a quality destination, improving tourists’ safety and convenience, as well as promoting the country’s soft powers to attract foreign visitors. The seven policies are: 1. Focusing on quality tourism aimed at both domestic and overseas target groups. This can be achieved by promoting big events in Thailand all year round, including the Songkran festival and Chinese New Year, as well as events in second-tier provinces. 2. Harnessing all forms of soft power to attract visitors to Thailand, such as sports events and other cultural products. 3. Improving safety and hospitality standards to ensure foreign arrivals of a safe and convenient stay in Thailand and working with law enforcement in eradicating practices that take advantage of tourists. 4. Working with local communities to further promote sustainable tourism. 5. Using tourism to strengthen relationships among countries in the Southeast Asian region through the Asean Connect initiative. 6. Promoting physical activities and basic sports across all regions of Thailand, including activities for seniors, the disabled and the underprivileged, as well as e-sports, which have high economic potential. 7. Hosting international sports events in Thailand and preparing Thai athletes for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. As for revenue from sports, the ministry aims to secure a 1% share or 455.8 billion baht of the total revenue of the global sports industry, which is worth 45.58 trillion baht.
  21. From Pattaya Mail By Barry Kenyon Anticipating the legalization of gay marriage later this year, the Thai health department boss is advocating revision of the Surrogacy Act to allow homosexual couples to adopt a baby via a surrogate mother. Director general Atchara Nithiapinyasakul said the move was part of her recommendations to tackle the falling birth rate in Thailand where annual deaths now exceed births. Thailand is facing the prospect of a severe shortage of indigenous employees and intense international competition for more guest workers from neighboring countries. Thailand’s laws are now strict after a slew of scandals in the past where Thai doctors and Chinese agents were involved in international surrogacy syndicates. Current legislation bans all commercial surrogacy and largely limits heterosexual couples who have been married at least three years – at least one of whom must be a Thai national – to having the services of a female relative who is willing to carry and give birth to the baby solely for altruistic reasons. All other avenues such as surrogacy tourism or international or cross-border surrogacy are banned, as is homosexuality in this context. Dr Atchara said that the collapsing number of births in Thailand needed urgent attention lest, by the end of the century, 14 million Thais of working age will have the responsibility for the care of nearly 2 million pensioners. She said paid maternity and paternity leave, child allowances and fertility clinics were all needed as well as changes in the current law. “This is not just a matter of fertility but also of national security,” she said in her proposals to the Thai Cabinet stressing that the pool of economically active Thais is shrinking fast. Assuming that gay marriage soon becomes legal in Thailand, which is very likely in view of the support by major political parties, the surrogacy issue is one of many diverse subjects – including pensions and wills – which will require attention in numerous laws and directives often dating back decades. Many health experts agree that the legalization of the surrogacy industry would better protect the natural mother’s rights and stamp out the underground market. Some go further and argue that the sending of frozen eggs and sperm abroad should also be legalized to create income for the national coffers.
  22. If you're wondering why money changers are so demanding that US $100 banknotes are in pristine condition it's because it's among the most frequently counterfeited note circulating in the Kingdom. So brazen are the crooks who deal in the business that they've now begun offering their wares on LINE. This Bank Post article describes how police ordered $80,000 in bogus currency and nabbed the sellers at the transfer point. https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/2725727/duo-arrested-with-fake-dollar-bills-worth-b2-8m
  23. From Pattaya News Korean Tourist Reports 200,000 Baht Gold Necklace Stolen by Transwomen on Pattaya Beach A Korean tourist in Pattaya is calling for justice after he claimed to be robbed of a nearly 200,000 Baht gold necklace by transgender suspects on January 11th, 2024. Seongmu Heo, 51, and his Thai friend, Ms. Surat Kongin, 43, took the incident to The Pattaya News on January 16th. They claimed that Mr. Seongmu was robbed by a group of three transgender women near Soi 5-6 on Pattaya Beach on January 11th. Ms. Surat stated to The Pattaya News that Mr. Seongmu traveled to Pattaya on January 1st, 2024. On January 11th, he had finished dinner on Soi 2 and decided to go for a walk at the beach around 8 PM. Then Mr. Seongmu described a group of three transgender women approaching him and asking if he wanted to accompany them for erotic services, which he declined. They subsequently attempted to hug him, to which Mr. Seongmu responded by pushing them away. The group then left; however, upon checking his neck later, Mr. Seongmu discovered that his 5-baht-weight gold necklace, worth over 190,000 baht, was missing. The Korean tourist immediately reported the theft to Pattaya Police. However, Mr. Seongmu alleged that he was later informed by the police that the crime scene area did not have a CCTV camera and that the police still weren’t able to find the suspects. Disappointed with the police response and the lack of leads, Mr. Seongmu publicly urged the police to prioritize his case and apprehend the suspects as soon as possible. He felt the police hadn’t done enough to solve the case, citing the necklace carried a high value, and it has been days since he reported the theft The Pattaya News will provide the police’s response as soon as it becomes available.
  24. From Pattaya Mail By Barry Kenyon Around 10,000 British nationals living in Thailand have been given the chance to vote even if they have lived overseas for more than 15 years. The total worldwide is believed to be over three million, a massive theoretical boost to the UK electoral franchise. The move follows a change in the law which abolished a previous residency curb and is well in time for the next general election, likely to be held later this year. The detail continues to emerge. Expats will have to scan their passport and prove their national insurance number and date of birth. Documentation will also be necessary to show the last UK address together with the expat’s full name. This could be a UK driving licence, even if expired, credit card statement, correspondence from UK central or local government or the inland revenue or other foolproof evidence. For those without such guarantees, an “attestor”, a UK voter, will be able to attest personal details. Pattaya Mail asked 40 Brits, mostly in Jomtien, if they were likely to vote and handed them a summary information sheet. Many said that the registration detail was too complex and noted that a reapplication every three years was required. “There are too few world expats spread around 650 UK constituencies and most simply won’t bother to register online or by snail mail,” said one 68 year old. Another stated, “What expats want in Thailand is the unfreezing of their state pensions, not the chance to dance round domestic politics.” But others were more optimistic, believing for example that getting involved in British politics was the best way of unfreezing state pensions or restoring the right of the British embassy in Bangkok to issue confirmation of income letters to British retirees. Those surveyed were interviewed on January 16 and included 30 men and 10 women. In answer to the question “Are you likely to vote in the next UK general election?” only eight answered in the positive. The rest were unlikely voters or plainly uninterested. However, one respondent did admit that Pattaya’s British expats were mostly over 70 and notoriously indifferent to home politics. “They fled abroad to get away from this stuff in the first place,” he said.
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