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  1. There are plenty of places around the island that hire out bikes and scooters and I hired a little automatic scooter from a place called Bum (I kid you not!) near where I was staying in central Chaweng for 250 baht. It's the best way to get around the island and I spent a day visiting the major sights such as Lamai beach, Hin Ta Hin Yai, the mummified monk, a couple of waterfalls, a couple of the northern beaches and the Big Buddha. Be safe and legal by wearing a crash helmet and take care as the roads are cracked and potholed.
  2. The myth of 'royal' Thai cuisine

    I always enjoy their Lahb salad. Beef or chicken with lime, mint, and onions. Lahb's one of my standard, favorite Thai orders here in America. While visiting Thailand several years ago, I was interested to find their authentic versions were actually quite close to what I'd always had here in the US (albeit a bit fresher/brighter due to the freshly ground spices and local limes). Royal Thai usually does a good version, though. I, personally, prefer the beef. Still haven't made it to Bambu- it's on my list! Added bonus- it's a light, fresh meal and great for summer. Not as heavy as a curry.
  3. If the government supports it, so do I. If the generals who launched a coup can have their crimes against the state absolved, why not Thaksin's alleged crime? If the previous government can authorise it's military backers to kill unarmed civilian demonstratiors, why not absolve Thaksin of a crime allegedly invented by his political opponents?
  4. Pattaya Beer Garden

    I have been involved with hundreds of promotions over my working life many of which were open to similar abuse. The nice thing is that people that abuse these sort of promotions are in a very small minority. Many business owners are scared to run promotions for fear of such abuse. It's a very minor issue and really should not be of concern. You may not believe it but most people have a good heart and are completely honest. The few ratbags out there have never diminished my belief in the basic goodness of most people. Freelancers never pay any kick back or fee to the Beer Garden. I would never allow it!