I snapped the photo to the left upon arrival in Chiang Mai, Thailand, January 16, 2020. I’ve been here ever since, and from then to mid-May did nothing much but seek various forms of pleasure—not much discipline, thought, or control involved.
On May 18, 2020, the girlfriend and I got up early and drove the 1,000 kilometers to her rural childhood home. Three months later, and the picture to the right was taken yesterday, August 15, 2020. So, the contrast is seven months as an expat in Thailand.
It wasn’t really culture shock at all. To my mind, the essential characteristics possessed by self-sufficient, self-guided, honest, hard-working, and productive rural country folk cross all cultural boundaries and are far more important and meaningful than are the facades that the multi-cultural left intelligentsia would highlight and emphasize; for, their aim is to conjure victims, making you inferior by inference, especially if you are of the honest, hard-working, productive salt: inferior to surface trappings of their faux narrative selection, especially of the third-world. Mud huts? Even better.
I wasn’t culture shocked. Rather, I soon took account of important, critical, and boundless aspects. Things like children, family, village, food, work, and honor. Everyone works. No exceptions. And no, this is nothing like that display of hubristic, delusional grandeur in a snide-glib screed called “It Takes a Village”—the “village,” of course, being leftism and its mind-and-probity destroying indoctrination.
This isn’t perfect, of course, since it’s a current satellite image, not from the 1960s, but this was my free-roaming playground, growing up. All that green along the north bank of the Truckee river was owned by my grandfather.
Toss in the hunting trips for food, fishing trips for food, and vegetable gardens for food—the preservation through canning, freezing, and dehydrating—and the little businesses that provided dollars in trade, and it’s a far cry from the contrast of a country girl and some street-smart Brooklyn asshole or Park Street silver-spoon wanker.
So as I’ve written previously, all of this combined focussed me; and so I decided to build what was 2 small rooms of 400 square feet into 4 bedrooms, two full baths, large kitchen, and sitting room of 1,400 square feet, plus encircle the house with a wall, concrete, and tile which is serving us wonderfully during the daily heavy rains, now (90% reduction in tracked-in mud and dirt).
Lots of stuff focussed me, but none as profoundly as these three mignon objects of focus.
…The new 7/11, AKA ‘sewen’, 5 km away in Lalom, has a scale. In the first few days, I stepped on it with Yui present. 93 kilo (204.6 pounds). I only wear shorts, tank-tops, and flip-flops, so I take off 1 kilo (2.2 pounds) for each weigh-in. So, call it 204-205 pounds starting. At my worst in 2008, I was 240. At my best in 2009-11, 175. So, as I said, I gained about half of it back.
That picture to the right, above: 85.2 kilo (187.5 pounds). 6.8 kilo loss (15 pounds) in three months, technically, but I really didn’t start cutting down on booze and doing much for the first month. For several weeks now, I’m alcohol free and far better across all channels. My vision, focus, and purpose is crystal clear. I have shouldered all pertinent responsibilities and am seeing to them with no excuses, no evasion, and no moral uncertainty.
Here’s what I wrote yesterday on my social-media channels when I posted the juxtaposing photo collage:
January 17, 2020 arrival in Chiang Mai, Thailand vs. August 15, 2020 rural Thailand.
No booze, daily 18:6 or more fasting, whole food always, sunshine, sleep, and boom-boom.
On fasting? I use the fantastic fastic.com app.
So, as you can see, pretty damn consistent and August 9 was only the second or third time since starting that I missed the 18:6 target, and it’s always because of familial stuff, not caving to hunger. Just today, 11yo Chili and mom made some chicken and it just happened to coincide with 19:11 hours fasted on the timer, so I ended the fast even though I wasn’t hungry and wasn’t watching the clock (I was writing this). Also, about half the time, I’m pushing to 19:5 and 20:4.
It’s so liberating. Frankly, I barely pay attention to how much I eat in the window. I focus on 2 things:
- Target protein, lean preferred
- Eschew added fat, dribbles of salad dressing are OK
So that’s that. Big changes coming up, otherwise, mostly having to do with this blog. Steps taken so far:
- Much planning as to topics and posts contemplating stories, expat living, online entrepreneurship, writing projects and series, lessons good and bad
- Set up two subscription sites for early access to all writings, podcasts, video meetings, and even one-on-one consulting
- Gave notice to my three Facebooks groups with over 3,000 combined subscribers that I will depreciate them in a couple of weeks to focus on this blog and my direct social media channels (personal wall and the Free The Animal page on Facebook)
That push begins next. Here are the social media outlets where you can interact with me.
Here’s what I posted to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram just this morning, before drafting this, so you may be missing out if you otherwise like my style.
And with that, more details to follow within the next 24 hours. And here we go.