Tuesday of last week we went to our village for the day and spent most of the afternoon at the local pond = ΊθΝΉιΣ = bòr-nám with brother(-in-law), his wife who had returned to Thailand the previous day 19 days after being deported back to Cambodia, their young son, and a cousin of my wife and brother-in-law.

We just us two couples and the baby just sat around for a couple of hours talking and drinking whilst cousin went in the pond to check the fishing net that was strung most (all?) of the way around and after a couple of hours came back to us with about half a dozen fish. By this time my wife had gone for a 'swim' in the pond with a bar of soap and bottle of shampoo so whilst my brother-in-law and his wife arranged a camp fire Ubonwan cycled home to change her 'shirt' (a word she used for most items of clothing; she actually came back wearing the same wet shirt only having changed her pants) and bring back crockery and drinks etc., and a bucket of rice.

When she returned the campfire was going well and we were only waiting for the metal 'thingy' (it's a technical term for that item you put the fish in over the fire ) before the cooking could get underway.

Now it's surprising how many friends you find you have when you make a campfire cook out and we were joined by quite a number of people of the next few hours. Before we returned to my brother-in-law's home Ubonwan asked me if I minded if we stayed in the village for the night. Minded? I had *wanted* to stay a night as we built a small home last year. OK, 'home' isn't the word, we built a two room shack by putting up wooden posts and nailing corrugated iron sheets to it (not you typical Farang residence!) and I had never stayed there before. The home was totally unsuitable for me and my wheelchair but did I enjoy my night there? You bet I did despite the pain, I can't sleep on a hard surface and the matress was missing from our bed as it was over in our rented accomodation in the city.

I hardly slept that night what with the back pain, the smoke from the fires people always seem to light in the paddy field and the fighting cats running around outside. And my wife said she couldn't sleep because of the dust, after a month of living in the city with me she had lost her ability to ignore the dust... This shack has now been demolished and we have started to build a new block built two room home the first room of which was opened and blessed by a Monk last Saturday (again I haven't seen it as it is difficult to get to the village - we have to find friends with a vehicle to take me.)

The next day we went to visit a Temple.....

David