17 November 2011

Floodwaters In Retreat

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17 November: The floodwaters are giving way a bit. Our ground floor room (our former main living quarters) is almost dry, but outside in our courtyard and in our entrance alleyway it is still choked with filthy water almost up to the knee. The small soi off to our northeast is still deeply flooded. To leave our property, we still must use our elevated plank walkway and the ladder over the wall. Technically we are still flooded.
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However, the floodwaters out on our main soi started to go down dramatically yesterday afternoon, and today its sidewalk is completely dry. Floodwater remains in lower lying neighborhoods, such as our place and the soi to the nearest wat (Buddhist temple). It is hard to say when these areas, including ours, will drain.
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Yesterday I did not venture out; it was a rest day for me to catch my breath because my back, pelvis and knees are still screaming with unholy pain from this whole long ordeal. Today I stretched thoroughly and carefully, and then I walked (sauntered) my customary 4k walking route to the hospital and back, and for first time in weeks it was dry the whole way. My feet did not get wet once. Garbage removal was well done. It is almost back to normal in the larger neighborhood.
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I bought some token snacks (mainly small cans of cold coffee and chips) from the small sidewalk concession of a Chinese mother and her adult son on route, as I usually do every time I pass by them. They are treasured friends. Further on, the river was high, fast and brimming the levee as usual these days, but the water was contained. A lot of water is still streaming southwards.
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Many Bangkok residents who had a place to go up-country away from the floodwaters had left town weeks ago. A lot of them are still gone because their homes here are still flooded and there are no places to park their cars. So the streets and sidewalks are a bit less crowded at the moment and it was easy to walk fast.
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My friend who has a key-duplication stand across from the hospital has returned, and I talked with him today. He speaks very good English because he had lived in the USA for a few years at one time, and we chat whenever I pass by. He is a great guy. Recently he had gone up-country to stay dry and has now returned for business. I will bring him some keys to duplicate soon.
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Apparently this floodwater retreat will mean easier transportation into downtown Bangkok in the future, plus the ability to return home late, which is critical. Tuk is suggesting a couple of ventures outside our neighborhood in the next few days, so I am plotting to get her to agree to visiting a live music venue or two this weekend on our way home. Heh, heh. I’m completely evil, I know, but get over it! Even evil folks must hear the Blues and Rock n Roll now and then.
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-Zenwind.
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