Mostly, for this post, I’ve got some random photos taken recently but I also wanted to discuss my latest banking foray.
It turns out that it’s not a good idea to forget your PIN for your ATM card. I received an ATM card when I opened my Bangkok Bank account in January, but I never used it until last week. The reason: I couldn’t touch the money, as it was supposed to be my income guarantee for my one-year visa.
As it turns out, my monthly income verification from the US Embassy in Bangkok was sufficient and I never actually needed to transfer a large sum to a Thai bank after all. Not a problem, though, as now I have a bank account that I can withdraw money from without about $11 in bank fees every time I make a withdrawal. With a local bank, I have no withdrawal fees.
So, it’s all good on that aspect but when I finally decided to try my ATM card last week I found out that I had forgotten the PIN. Thought I remembered it, but I was wrong. The ATM machine ate my card as a result.
It was on a Sunday and while the bank was open I was told to come back the next day because they didn’t have the key. So I returned the next day, when I was told my card was not found in the machine. After a long, drawn-out discussion, they finally found my card, but because it didn’t have my name on it I could not identify it. I had to go back to my bank to order a new one.
Back at Bangkok Bank, the lady was very polite and patient in helping me apply for a new card and PIN. There was a 100 baht ($3) fee, which I was glad to pay. was told to come back in a week to pick up my new card, which I did today.
And I am happy to report it worked! After six months, my banking situation has finally been resolved.
Incidentally, I will have been in Thailand for six months as of July 8.
Now here are a few photos, with explanations:
This is what the basement at the Market Village mall looks like. Can you imagine trying to find your bike in this maze. Luckily, there is signage, as you can see.
Speaking of Market Village, they often host a vegetable bazaar in front. Durian on sale below
Just the late evening light and clouds on Hua Hin beach
Photos inside immigration, taken secretly.
Where I take my good shirts to be laundered. Two pretty ladies run the place. 20 cents per shirt, washed, ironed and folded.
Of course, everywhere I go, I carry a little bit of Costa Rica with me. Pura vida.
This is how I dry my clothes. Fortunately, the apartment comes with a washing machine.
On the 4th of July, I took my flag off the wall and hung it outside my apartment.
With the birth of three more, we now have 11 cats on my cul-de-sac. The latest three are from Little Mama, who is the one of the group that lets me pet her. She’s also the loudest and makes a habit of showing up at my door loudly calling for food, which I’m not providing anymore.
The little white and slightly orange kitten is a female, no name yet. The other with the striking markings on his/her face I call Splash. (It looks like someone splashed the colors on him/her.
Finally, that’s Little Mama rubbing against the fence.
Finally, I’ve been doing some house hunting when I’ve had the chance and felt motivated. No rush, I have 6 more months on my lease, but I should find a place while we’re in the slow season and before October, when the rents will rise.
The street above is one I’ve checked out. I also walked through another two-street neighborhood that looked like this but the rents were a little higher. There are several 2-story townhouses available on the street above, one for 10,000 baht/month ($285) that has two bedrooms, two baths, furnished, A/C, but no washing machine or Internet.
The second I looked at Sunday and it was similar but a little bit better, but there was no furniture and, unbelievably, no kitchen. There was a room in the back that could be a kitchen but the unit did not have one. The lady showing me the unit said they would put in a kitchen and bring the furniture in and I can see it again next week. We’ll see. This unit does have a washing machine, A/C, two baths, two bedrooms. However, the monthly rent is 12,000 baht ($342), but I’m hoping I can play one apartment off the other and get the better one (if the furniture and kitchen are good) down to 11,000 baht.
Here’s the unit for 10,000 baht: