Today’s post see’s the final part of the interview I carried out with Valerie Wond an English teacher from London, England, that lives in Thailand.
In part one Valerie gave us her great story on how she came to live in Thailand and make Thailand her home. It’s a journey that saw her working all over Asia as an English teacher, but Thailand was always the place she returned to.
In part two Valerie gave us her personal favourite food and travel choices from Thailand and managed to throw in a bit of Sek Loso (Thai rock star)
In part three Valerie gave us tips for adjusting to life in Thailand.
In part four today’s post and final part it’s all about Valerie.
Trevor: If you were to split life in Thailand by living 4 days a week in one place and 3 days a week in another where would it be and why? Of course one of those places might well still be Bangkok.
Valerie: Well I’d have to reluctantly quit my job to do that as I teach 5 days a week and absolutely love my current school.
That said, if I didn’t have to work, I’d spend 4 days a week in Pai a small town in northern Thailand’s Mae Hong Son Province,
near the Myanmar border, about 50 miles/80 km north of Chiang Mai. Simply because I’ve never been there and I’ve heard it’s very nice. Also, I could catch up with the ‘Thai Jack Sparrow’ as I’ve heard he lives there. I find him fascinating!
Trevor: The Thai Jack Sparrow?
Valerie: Thai Jack Sparrow? He’s was a ‘trinket’ seller in Khao San Road, Bangkok for a while. Always dresses up like Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp, Pirates…). I kind of liked him and could catch up with him in Chiang Mai.
Trevor: If I catch sight of him when I am there Val, I will tell him you are on his trail.
The Thai Jack Sparrow
The rest of the week I’d like to spend in Chiang Mai as it’s not too far from Pai, and I have a few Facebook friends that I’d love to see for the first time who live there. You know who you are! Also, Sunday roasts at the local pub and good live rock music to be heard.
Karen Hill people Mae Hong Son
Trevor: Pai is also an area I intend to explore in the future. I have been up to Mae Hong Son before and found the whole of that region very enchanting. Mae Hong Son is the most mountainous region in Thailand and the most sparsely populated The area around Mae Hong Son is absolutely stunning. For those who love breath-taking scenery and escapism to peace and quiet then this is your area
A recent guest on the blog Miss Kasinee Silapee who loved the area and in particular Pai said ”Nowadays, it’s really convenient for everyone to find accommodation in Pai and there is every type of accommodation that you could dream of, such as The Bungalows in the rice field, the cottage on the bank of the river or hotels inside the town. During the evenings, inside the town centre will transform in to a night bazaar or the night market and the vendors will sell all kinds of creative products.
When you come to Pai, you must be an early bird, if you want to see the fog sea. You will need to leave your accommodation about 5 a.m.and arrive there at 6 a.m. to see the Fog Sea. The view is so beautiful it takes your breath away.
The Fog Sea Pai – Northern Thailand
Trevor: Can you give us three of your favourite Thai songs?
Valerie: This is very difficult for me as I love all of Sek Loso’s songs but here are just 3 of my favourites. Not just because of the songs but because I love the videos too…
Trevor: At this point Valerie informs me that it’s impossible for her to choose just 3 favourite Sek Loso songs so I hope you all like Sek as here we go.
First one is a great song and I certainly agree. Jai Sung Ma ( ใจสั่งมา) Sek Loso
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CV99SyDATDs&feature=share คิดถึงจังเสก The old classic ” I can’t tell you why” – Sek Loso
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EFahOfaZg-k&feature=share เพลงหว่งใยโดย – Sek Loso
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGL9myuAlHY&feature=share ซมซาน – Sek Loso
And Finally Rooy Yim Nuk Soo ” The smile of a fighter) – Sek Loso
Trevor: If there were no restrictions caused by money or time. What would the perfect day look like from morning to night for Valerie Wond.
Valerie: A Perfect Day in the life of Val Wond! Well…you asked for it…
I would be picked up, not too early, by Sek Loso’s private chauffeur, and taken to a secret location to meet the man himself. Of course there would be champagne and red roses in the back of the car and non stop videos playing of all my favourite Sek Loso songs.
Upon arrival, the door would swing open and there would stand Sek, with open arms, ready to give me a big kiss and a hug.
We would walk hand in hand to his roof top terrace overlooking the sea and sit down and enjoy the beautiful view, a deserted white sand beach, palm trees gently swaying in the cool breeze and maybe 2 dogs playing together in the sea.
Sek would whip out his….guitar, and begin serenading me whilst being served with fresh seafood and ice-cold wine.
The next part of the day, I’ll leave to your imagination…
Around 5pm we would go down to the beach for a swim and play with the dogs. Then Sek would have to go and get ready for his concert that evening, at which I would be the Guest of Honor!
Backstage, all kinds of food and drinks would be served to me, and I would meet the other members of his band.
Around 10pm, the show would begin, and I could watch him from the wings. Of course, he would dedicate one song especially to me, glancing at me from time to time with that lovely smile of his.
Finally, it would be time for home and Sek would cuddle up next me on the back seat as we watch the stars high up in the sky as we travel back home!
Trevor: Let the dream building begin and I have actually found a deserted Thai beach already Val.
Trevor: When I said a perfect day I did not realise you had it planned out from dawn to dusk including every little detail. That plan is ready to go. All we need to do now is notify Sek. I expect you have his mobile number no doubt.
Trevor: For others who can’t get enough of Sek Loso or who now can’t after listening to Valerie’s Sek song choice, there is a place you can go. Val will be found daily at the ” Sek Loso fans worldwide facebook page (after teaching is over of course), of which she is a proud member. For any Sek fans that don’t know about the group here is a link to the page.
Trevor: Do you have a dream or an end goal you are aiming for, the one thing you really want to achieve or perhaps you have already achieved it?
Valerie: My dream is very simple really but very hard to achieve. It is to be always happy.
Trevor: I don’t believe you are ever in any other state than happy Val as you are always so bubbly.
Valerie: Oh no, I am not always feeling happy. However If I’m feeling sad I keep it to myself, like ‘The Smile of a Fighter’.
Trevor: I’ve heard that before some where. Oh yeah of course it’s a Sek Loso song.
Smile and Grace
Trevor: If you had to give one piece of advice (not already given here) to any newly arriving Westerner planning on a life in Thailand. What would it be?
Valerie: Take care of your health. You can be the richest person in the world but without good health you have nothing. And without good health you cannot enjoy the riches and rewards of Thailand that are here for all to enjoy!!!
Trevor: I wholeheartedly agree Val and can find nothing to add to that, you have summed it up completely
Trevor: So you are not due to move back to England at any time soon then?
Valerie: That is correct. I know I would be very unhappy in England. Thailand is my home now.
Trevor: Finally Valerie I would like to thank you for your valuable tips and insights, brilliant animal causes, fantastic story and letting us in to the world of Valerie Wond, super English teacher in Bang Phi- Samut Prakan Thailand. You are a true blueprint on successful living in Thailand. It’s been a real pleasure having you on the blog Valerie and I know it won’t be the last. Thanks Valerie.
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