Published Articles

Kanchanaburi: The River Kwai. "A First For Me"

An edited version of this letter was published in To Thailand With Love, ThingsAsian Press, 2013

Kanchanaburi
Thailand

December 5, 2004

Dear Family and Friends,

I am resting on a chaise lounge, on a raft, after a brief and breathless swim in the swift, churning currents of The River Kwai. Life vests courtesy of the hotel.

To my right the sun is disappearing behind the hills across The River.

At this point on its journey from Burma to The Gulf of Siam, the narrow River Kwai is slicing through the steep green and brown hillsides (it's winter now), exposing several black and gold vertical stone outcrops.

So, if the hills are so steep, where exactly is this hotel? On The River, my friends, on...the...river.

Bangkok: "Halloween"

An edited version of his letter was published in To Thailand With Love, ThingsAsian Press, 2013

"The Hot Dog Man"

Bangkok, Thailand
Monday, October 30, 2006

My Dear Fellow Gourmands and Ghouls,

“English Solutions,” my occasional school employer, sponsored their annual Halloween party on Sunday afternoon.

The owners of the school, Brian and Jason, own a large house near the school. They redecorated many of the rooms into “haunted houses” and party rooms.

About one hundred and fifty young children from six different Bangkok orphanages were invited.

The New L 00 k

An edited version of his letter was to be published in To Thailand With Love, ThingsAsian Press, 2013. But at the last moment, the Editor made a different decision.

Bangk0k Thailand

02 August 2008

My Dear My0pic, Hyper0pic, and Fellow 20/20 Friends,

My classmate Jack Calabro had a neat trick.

My Taft High School classmate, and later, my University of Illinois graduate school classmate, Jack protected his mother from unnecessary worry.

Jack's mother wanted to know when we were leaving Champaign-Urbana, Illinois and when we would be arriving in New York. We would be driving all night across Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio, with a slight dip into West Virginia. As dawn arrived, we would steer into the sunrise across Pennsylvania to New Jersey and then north to New York. That's a long drive, even on Interstate highways. A mother could worry a lot.

So what was the trick? Jack knew when we were leaving and could estimate when we would arrive. So, the "departure" time he gave his mother was actually our arrival time! She was so surprised!

Here's my contribution to the concept of worry avoidance:

I am pleased to report to you that I have undergone and recovered from two lens replacement surgeries.

{C}

Spirituality at a Bangkok Synagogue

This essay was published in To Thailand With Love by ThingsAsian Press.  2013

 

As I descend towards Suvarnabhumi Airport, Wat Sothon Wararam Worawihan appears below.  Since the population of Thailand is 95 percent Buddhist, a temple complex near the airport is not unexpected.  What is unexpected is the large Aeyatul Muslimin mosque that towers beside the airport expressway en route to downtown Bangkok.  

Most Thai Muslims live in Southern Thailand, near Malaysia, but there is a sufficient population in the capital to support more than 100 local mosques.  Citizens of the Hindu faith maintain several mandirs.   

Christians of every denomination attend large churches or smaller neighborhood assemblies.  

As an American Jew who retired to Bangkok, I expected to find a semblance of Jewish life in this city.  But what took me by surprise was the vibrancy of the small yet devoted community.  I met Jews from the Americas, Israel, Australia, France, England, Romania, Hungary, South Africa, Afghanistan, and the Middle East.  

To Vietnam With Love

Bangkok

Thailand

12 August 2008

Hello Everyone,

Finally!

Yes, finally, I am pleased to announce that I am in print.

One of my travel letters was selected for inclusion in a new book called, "To Vietnam With Love, A Travel Guide for the Connoisseur" edited by Kim Fay.

"To Vietnam With Love" is part of a series of books from ThingsAsian Press. The first book in the series, "To Asia With Love" was so successful that the editors and the publisher decided to produce books on individual countries.

Phnom Penh, Cambodia: "Serious Police, Serious Mud, Serious Sights"

My muddy mis-adventure was published in To Cambodia With Love.  ThingsAsian Press.  2011.  pg 150.

Phnom Penh
Cambodia

Dear Family and Friends,

July 1, 2002

The rain is incessant so Jeff and I decided to skip the beach at Ko Chang and go directly to the Cambodian border. I misplaced my passport photos so the border guards ripped me off for a couple of extra dollars for the visa. We spent the night in Koh Kong - a dusty and unappetizing place. Actually the hotel was comfortable and had a lovely garden.

The next day, Jeff and I had a disagreement. He was in a hurry to get to Phnom Penh. I wanted to travel slowly to Sihanoukville. So we compromised. He went his way. I mine.

Now, here's an adventure to remember:

I made a reservation on a mini-bus that was due to pick me up at 8:30. It arrived on time at 9:15. After fifteen minutes on a rutted dirt road we were stopped by the police and abruptly sent back to town to the police station.

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