November 2007 Archives

Over the last few decades, the Gulf of Thailand just south of Bangkok has been eating up land at a rapid rate. The people of a small village on the coast, Ban Khun Samut Chin, have had to move their homes further inland several times to escape the encroaching water. The village temple, Wat Khun Samut, is still in operation in its original location, although water sometimes laps against its walls during high tide. The monks also had to raise the floor of the temple about a meter to keep it dry at all times.

Some point to global warming as the cause of the "rising ocean", but part of the problem is that people have cut down all of the mangrove forests that kept the soil in place. And add that to the common problem of eroding land at the mouth of a big river (like in New Orleans) and you have an ocean shoreline that is steadily moving closer and closer to Bangkok.

Back in September, Piyawat and I decided to see this for ourselves, so we headed over to Samut Prakan, Bangkok's provincial neighbor to the south, to visit the temple in the middle of the ocean. Our tour guide for the day was Richard Barrow, the webmaster of an incredible set of websites called Paknam Web. I have been reading his blog and visiting his sites (like the excellent Learning Thai Language site) for a long time, so it was great to finally meet him in person.

In any case, at the time, I never got around to writing about our little trip, so I will let Richard's description and photos fill in the blanks. If you want to read more, you can see many of his blog posts about the village and the temple, with some very interesting photos of the temple.

Just in case there are still people who come to this website even though there hasn't been any new content for almost 40 days, don't worry, I'm still alive!

There hasn't been much news to update lately, other than work that continues on the ITS4Thai website. The company has been growing a bit this month: I increased the size of the office by taking over the vacant office next door, and I hired 2 new part-time employees. So some days there are five of us here working on the website. And that doesn't include those who are contributing to the site but who don't actually work in the office: 3 graphic designers doing illustrations, 2 web designers creating a beautiful look and feel for the site, 2 Thai language lesson writers, 1 audio technician, and one HTML coder (who happens to be doing the work from Iceland at the moment).

Wow, that's a pretty big team.

But we are getting very close to launching the official site. I will be leaving for the US for my annual Christmas trip in about three weeks, so hopefully the site will be ready before then. I think we'll make it.

In other news, I hope to make up for my lack of interesting stories here by going on a trip to... *drum roll*... PERU! I had some miles that were expiring, so I booked a free ticket to Lima. It will be a bit of a brutal schedule getting there and back, but I'm sure I will write more about that later. In the meantime, I better get back to website coding...

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This page is an archive of entries from November 2007 listed from newest to oldest.

October 2007 is the previous archive.

December 2007 is the next archive.

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