Thailand Diary

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mad in pursuit Tuesday, 5.22.90, Bangkok

Chinatown. "Thieves Market" (Nakon Kasem) -- shops open entire front with overhead doors, mostly motors, metal coolers, sinks, machine shops. Tight squeeze in shops, sticky hot with occasional overhead fans. Must go through shops to get upstairs. Incredible traffic noise and speeding motorcycles.

Correction. Corrugated tin on roofs, etc. actually corrugated iron, lightly galvanized.

News item. anti-theft metal grille responsible for deaths in fire.

Chao Por = "dark influences" in reference to mafia-like influential figures in Chon Buri province (Bangkok Post, 5.22.90).

1988 mudslides due to massive deforestation caused more than 300 deaths. Stopped issuing new logging concessions. Also salt water intrusion in northeast. Per Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Maj-Gen Sanan Khachornprasart (referred to a Maj-Gen Sanan).

Armored Mercedes (The Nation 5.22.90). 1000 SEL stretched 15, 18, or 32 inches (4-door model) or 44 inches (6-door). 1000 SEL 15 -- 6.9 million baht. Options: desk units, storage space, telephone fittings in central arm rest, hydro-pneumatic suspension system. By Trasco International factory in Bremen, Germany.

Jim Thompson house. A sauna, but spectacular.

Durian. Dubbed the "dead dog" fruit by group because of obnoxious smell, but I liked it. Like avocado -- rich and slimy. Pods -- throw out hard seed.

Jackfruit. Green like durian, and same kind of pods. But sweeter, with a strong vanilla flavor, maybe touch of almond.