Little old wine drinker me, I’m praying for rain in California, So the grapes can grow and they can make more wine, And I’m sitting in a honky in Chicago, With a broken heart and a woman on my mind. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Sing it for us Dean. 🙂
I certainly enjoy a glass of wine or 3, plus I love living in Thailand. One of the few problems here however is the very high price of wine. In this photo blog I will give you some idea of prices & suggestions of where to drink wine at a (fairly) reasonable price.
I am a regular at this bar, but not as regular as I used to be. Last year they increased the price of a glass of red to B140 or $6.70 AUD, however there is a 10% discount if you have a member card which brings the price down to B126, still overpriced in my opinion. I must say however they do pour me a reasonable size glass for which I’m forever grateful. 🙂
I now drink elsewhere Friday, Saturday & Sunday during the English football season, as the TV volume is so high it’s uncomfortable for many customers such as myself.
This is what I mainly drink at home.
Probably because I’m a “Cheap Charlie”, can you believe we pay B1000 or $48 AUD for 3 bloody litres? In 2018 we were buying a 5 litre cask for that amount, then the Thai government jacked up the tax & excise.
In fact taxes on French, Australian and American wines, for instance, are as high as 400% including excise tax, municipal tax, health tax and import tariffs.
Five litre Australian cask
Amazing value at B315 or $15 AUD. So $3 a litre as opposed to $16 a litre in Thailand.
Foodland at Terminal have these Aussie wines for only $20 AUD. Of course you can buy it in Australia for around $8.00.
But wait, there’s more…….
Tops mini supermarket on the ground floor of my condo building at Markland on Beach Road.
Is there a better place to drink wine than here?
A fabulous September sunset from the Holiday Inn at happy hour. Every day between 5 & 7 pm a glass of Australian red or white wine costs B240 ++ for 2 glasses. The ++ is the killer of course, it takes the price up to B283, or $15.50 AUD which is a reasonable $7.75 each given the fabulous location.
Terrazzo Holiday Inn
As you can see it’s a nice place to sit & have a few wines. 🙂
The best value Aussie red in Pattaya
Can you believe Mathilda Restaurant on 2nd Rd only charge B420, or $20 AUD for this Aussie red? The price of food is very reasonable also.
That’s all for now folks
Thanks for visiting my Little old wine drinker me photo blog.
Before you leave please listen to Frankie reminiscing. 🙂
Tough times Thailand 2019 on two fronts, first we have Thai immigration making it more difficult for expats to live in this wonderful country, secondly the exchange rate for Thai Baht to the Aussie dollar (and other currencies) is hitting rock bottom.
The following 2 charts will highlight the situation.
This is not a travel blog, it is part of my personal photo history.
This photo blog covers from July 1st to December 31, for the first 6 months of 2019 please go to THIS LINK.
Australian $ to Thai Baht
In 2012 there was 33 Baht to the dollar, today it’s 21.
Australian term deposit rates
In 2012 they were over 5%, today it’s a miserable 1.5%.
Having said all that life is still very good in Thailand
Just ask my good friend Hamish, he hasn’t a care in the world. 🙂
Most afternoons I tear myself away from the computer & enjoy an afternoon coffee.
A small tip for a little lady
I often give this nice lady a B20 tip when I see her of a morning sweeping the road at Terminal 21, it’s just under $1 AUD. She gets so excited you would think it’s 200. 🙂 I’m guessing they don’t get paid too much.
Love watching the storms roll in
So exciting when the storms roll in over Pattaya Bay.
There’s nothing like a September sunset.
I was sipping a red wine at the Holiday Inn watching this magnificent sunset.
Flow Cafe Holiday Inn Pattaya is my usual venue for afternoon coffee, only a 150 meter walk from my condo at Markland in Beach Rd. The shot above is the hotel reception, turn left to fond the Flow Cafe Holiday Inn.
Terrific cakes & pastries.
Also meat pies, sandwiches & sausage rolls, and excellent coffee of course.
So many choices….
And such little time. 🙂
My favourite waitress
This lovely lady with the gorgeous smile is Opor, that’s the shortened version of her name, she always makes me a special coffee. 🙂
How sweet is this?
Opor takes great pride in her work. 🙂
Luckily I get a 25% discount.
For a small cost you can get a “Hi Club” Card which gives you the discount on food & beverage except for the specials.
Other hotel specials
Happy hour every day between 5 & 7pm.
Pizza happy hour
In fact they ate my favourite pizzas in Pattaya.
There are specials every day.
Every day is a good day at the Holiday Inn Pattaya.
Flow Cafe Holiday Inn
Thanks for visiting my Flow Cafe Holiday Inn photo blog, you will find me there most days around 3 pm. 🙂
This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate.
Shuck more oysters please they taste wonderful, and did you know that American and Italian researchers found they are rich in amino acids, which trigger increased levels of sex hormones. Consequently their high zinc content aids the production of testosterone.
This photo blog will feature many of the places in this wonderful world where I have indulged my love of this incredible delicacy.
I was in Sendai in Japanin June 2018 at Ostra de Ole restaurant & found that the Monday special offered half price oysters, I thought I was in heaven, sitting in a great little oyster bar drinking ice cold beer, listening to Abba singing Dancing Queen, & waiting on my 10 oysters to arrive. And as I said, tonight they were half price, 300 Baht or $12 AUD, priceless.
I’m a very happy guy.
My waiter Ryuichiro Yamamoto a nice young university student who was studying Space Engineering, rolled up with a bonus 3 oysters on the house.
Currently the best value oysters in the northern hemisphere. 🙂
Oysters from Cancle in France
A huge selection from the Brittany coast. For prices & information please check out THIS LINK.
Renowned for its oyster production, the commune of Cancale is located in Brittany, in the department of Ille-et-Vilaine. Fishing port, it takes place at the western end of the Bay of Mont-Saint-Michel, on the Emerald Coast, about fifteen kilometers from Saint-Malo.
People either love them or hate them. If you love them, head to the NSW mid-north coast, where a string of oyster farmers have opened up their doors to oyster lovers who know that fresh from the farm is best.
Thanks for visiting my Shuck more oysters photo blog. I’m planning to visit Canale in France in 2020 to totally pig out on their wonderful oysters fresh from the sea.
Beachfront restaurant Pattaya is aptly named Surf & Turf & is rated number 100 out of 1187 restaurants in Pattaya. For far better food photographs than in this post just check out THIS LINK for my previous Surf & Turf photo blog.
On the beach next door to the Long Beach Garden Hotel.
Beachfront restaurant Pattaya
A fairly ordinary front entrance.
Air conditioned inside section
It’s much nicer inside which you can clearly see.
Catering for the smokers
The further away from me the better. 🙂
Inside in the aircon.
Especially during the day the front area beside the beach is the most popular part of the restaurant.
Another outdoor area
There is quite a number of different sections in this popular Beachfront restaurant Pattaya.
This is the beachside section
No aircon but they have plenty of fans & there is usually a beautiful breeze coming off the ocean.
An unusual dish
My friend ordered snapper, as you can see the portion was rather small & there was a skewer of beef with it.
Pattaya coffee shop review from my perspective. These are the venues where I choose to spend my time and money. 🙂
The photo above is the Coffee Club at Markland on Beach Rd, this in fact was opening day on 31-8-2018.
Coffee Club Eggs Benedict.
Good quality food & coffee but far too expensive. For instance the equivalent of a Starbucks tall latte is B146 or $6.97 AUD, at Starbucks you pay B115 or $5.50 AUD. Even though they have a branch in my condo building I generally walk 200 meters to the Holiday Inn where I only pay B113.
The staff here are very friendly & the food & coffee is excellent. The large coffee is B150 which is what you would expect for a 5 star hotel. However as I’m a member of the Hi Club I get a 25% discount which brings the cost down to B113.
Bon Cafe import coffee machines from many countries around the world for including Italy, Switzerland, Spain, the United States of America, and other countries to satisfy their various types of customers.
Around 5 days a week I am at Central Marina or the Bay in Beach Road. The lovely girls put a candle in my croissant for my birthday. 🙂
My Starbucks breakfast of choice
Accompanied by a tall latte of course. Starbucks sell 4 BILLION cups annually. Which (divided by 365 days) means that roughly 10,958,904 cups sold daily between ALL Starbucks locations. So we are talking about 388 cups of espresso and/or coffee drinks daily on average per store globally.
This is Boonthavorn
Surprisingly they have the best value coffee in Pattaya. They are on Sukhumvit Rd,see the map below.
Just inside the front entrance on the left.
Top quality coffee for only B30, or $1.40 AUD.
Many thanks for visiting my Pattaya coffee shop review photo blog.
This is not a travel blog, it is part of my personal photo history, you may describe it as the melancholy musings of an old man. My answer to that is simple, it’s far better to be a “has been” than a “never was”. 🙂
Pretty woman stop awhile, Pretty woman talk awhile, Pretty woman give your smile to me, Pretty woman yeah, yeah, yeah, Pretty woman look my way, Pretty woman say you’ll stay with me, ‘Cause I need you, I’ll treat you right, Come with me baby, be mine tonight. It seems fitting looking back on a random selection of some of the Pretty women I have been lucky enough to know, that Roy Orbison should help me recall some of those wonderful memories.
That’s Karen Smith in 1985, my 3rd & last fiancee, I have never known a nicer girl.
Carol Aboud in 1978
This was taken on my birthday which fell on 7-7-77, Carol & I were an item (on & off) for around 4 years.
Sing it for me Neil. 🙂
Carolyn Clark 1994
I still see Carolyn when I’m on the Gold Coast, in fact in July 2019 we made a little promotional video for her boyfriend Andy Sims.
Next we have Glenn Frey sing a beautiful song, ok I know the song is Caroline as opposed to Carolyn, but you get the picture.
Now this definitely is a pretty woman.
Kelly Davis hailed from Tasmania, we knocked around together for a few months in 1991.
Kelly was a huge fan of Van Morrison so here is another one of my favourites.
One of the sexiest of all the girls I knew.
There is something about those Kiwi girls, hot, hot, hot. Karen Greenwood & I had an on & off relationship for over a year in 1991. She stuck around mainly because I lent her a car. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Now here we have a real wild child.
Allison Schroeder, 18 years of age & gorgeous. Of course I was only 45 at the time. 🙂
As they say in the classics, I was having the time of my life. 🙂
Allison was wild but Tanya was crazy. 🙂
Great company sober, but give her a couple of drinks too many & she would turn into a nightmare. This was 1989 on the Gold Coast.
Time to feature a triple treat.
Meet Kitty, Di Parko & Helen Burke, before you ask the answer is yes. 🙂
They don’t come any hotter than Donna Turner.
This was 1996 & she still looks fabulous today in 2019.
Lee Gregory was my 2nd fiancee.
Lee was from Adelaide where met, then we reconnected again in Melbourne in 1974. We had a fairly hectic dramatic short time together, travelled to Singapore & Bali & saw Frank Sinatra in concert in Melbourne on my birthday 7-7-74.
This is one of my all time Sinatra favourites, I can think of no better song to play when I think of Lee.
And they did…..
Teresa Hamilton-Smith & Helen Burke, we had a lot of fun together in 1982 & 1983.
Barbara Manneli aka the Gypsy.
The classic island romance, we celebrated the millennium on Koh Samui, 3 months later I flew to Italy to re-kindle the affair. Guess what? I didn’t make 1st base. 🙂
This one’s for you Gypsy.
Tall & tanned & young & lovely
This is Mel, we me on Copacabana beach, she had green eyes & was 6′ tall, say no more. 🙂
Bebel Gilberto will sing the song for us.
Someones knocking at the door.
Do me a favour open the door & let em in.
This is Emily at the Sheraton Mirage.
Was a Gold Coast meter maid.
Then there was Jill….
Cool, sexy & a lot of fun. Last time I saw her was in Sydney in 2102.
Back to the 60s
Veronica Crocker was my 2nd serious girlfriend, we dated for a couple of years when I was a teenager until the wanderlust took hold of me & at the ripe old age of 20 I sailed to England.
Dion DiMucci was a huge artist in the 60s, here are two of his songs. Both bring back great memories of my time with Veronica.
Teenager in Love
Take good care of my Baby
The old shipboard romance.
I needed to get over my long romance with Veronica & Leanne Scott on the ship to England seemed like the perfect solution. 🙂
Sing it for me Bobby……
Wendy Winspear, tall & gorgeous.
A lovely Dutch girl on the Gold Coast, sadly she passed away far too young around 2017, RIP.
My first fiancee, Melbourne 1970.
Paula Wills was an Adelaide girl living in Melbourne & working as a an hostess for Ansett. After 3 months living together I think we just ran out of things to say.
Dianne Parkinson in 1975
To say Parko bought some drams into my life is a gross understatement. Read about some of it on THIS LINK.
The sweetest Diane of them all.
Adelaide 1973 Diane Butson was one of my neighbours in a condo block on Anzac Highway. She was a dance instructor at Arthur Murray dance studio. A great girl & absolutely gorgeous. Follow THIS LINK for more old photos.
Great song from the Bachelors in 1964.
Another beautiful Adelaide girl.
Jan Seagers was another neighbour, we had some terrific times together. We caught up again in 2015, I had not seen her for 40 years. Check out THIS LINK.
Pretty woman stop awhile
Helen Burke from Melbourne, we really had some fun, played backgammon all through Hawaii & the California coast in 1982.
Linda Ronstadt will tell you about the coast.
Well by now you are bored silly by the memories & musings of an old man. But make no mistake, Glenn Frey will describe exactly how I feel today.
I can remember floating it on the highway at Ballina in the floods. I just pushed it 50 metres to the dry road.
When you owned a VW in the 60s……
Good things happened, for example “Veronica Crocker”.
EH Holden station wagon.
This was my next car after arriving home in 1965 after 18 months in England & Europe, including a 4 month stint as an officer on the La Maria.
A 1970 MGB, my first new car.
It set me back just under $3000, worth every cent. Purchased in Melbourne, relocated to Sydney for 2 years then moved to Adelaide in 1972.
A 1971 E Type Jaguar
Forget the photo quality the car was magnificent. I remember driving from Adelaide to Melbourne in the middle of the night in 5 hours 45 minutes.
When you drove an E type good things happened.
Meet Jan Seagars & my Doberman Ziggy, this was Lexton Grove Windsor in 1974. Three thoroughbreds together.
My two sports cars
One was a little faster than the other, but I loved them both. Madison was guarding the fleet.
The work horse
My Commodore station wagon initially was my 2nd car, in 2003 I took 3 Japanese students on a road trip which started in Surfers Paradise & went through Broken Hill NSW to Coober Pedy in South Australia. The next leg took us to Uluru aka Ayers Rock.
Boys must have toys
You may think this Lexus is a little out of character, I owned it for 3 years prior to moving to Thailand in 2011. Without a doubt it was the best value out of all the vehicles I ever owned. Paid $7,500 in 2008 & sold it for $7,000, it was as smooth as silk.
Well, that’s all folks.
Many thanks for visiting my Boys must have toys photo blog & indulging me in truck loads of nostalgia.
Surfing Duranbah Beach Australia which is officially known as Flagstaff Beach, is the northernmost beach in New South Wales. It’s at the mouth of the Tweed River and the rocky headland Point Danger, which also marks the Queensland-New South Wales border.
Sand transport system
The Project is a sand transport system that collects sand from the southern side of the Tweed River entrance at Letitia Spit, and pumps it under the river to outlets on the northern side. From there the sand is transported by waves and currents to nourish the southern Gold Coast beaches.
Great view of the beach
We are standing on a cliff in QLD looking across Flagstaff Beach to NSW.
Surfers waiting for a wave.
There seems to be many personal and indescribable experiences in their lives that keeps them paddling out again & again. Plus the willingness to wait for them often defines a surfer more than his or her individual ability.
Bring it on.
The waiting is really worth it.
Everyone loves the beach
Not just surfers, kids with their mums & dogs as well. 🙂
My friends from England
Joan Baptist & Bill Austin from Wiltshire visited Australia in 2010 & naturally I took them sightseeing along the coast. The following week we drove down to Sydney.
They actually got married in England yesterday August 3 2019 after being together for over 20 years.
It’s not just the board-riders who love to surf. Kite-boarding is an action sport combining aspects of wake-boarding, snowboarding, windsurfing, surfing, paragliding, skateboarding and sailing into one extreme sport. A kite-boarder harnesses the power of the wind with a large controllable power kite to be propelled across the water, land, or snow. Wikipedia
Surfing Duranbah Beach Australia
I’m guessing he is heading for a cold beer.
OK, I’ll meet you at the pub. 🙂
This is what the Beach Boys call a “surfer girl”.
Thanks for visiting my Surfing Duranbah Beach Australia photo blog.