Daily Phuket #48: 8 May 2021 – Endlessly Waiting

This was a rough week. Was it my worse week since coming to Thailand more than 16 years ago? If not, it certainly is close. The bottom line is that all we can do is wait and see what happens next. There is nothing else to do as we are all stuck with the important questions left unanswered. When will we (teachers) be allowed to work again? Will we need to be fully vaccinated before that can happen? How can we get vaccinated when the Thai government and foreign embassies refuse to help? When will the money run out? Will patience run out before the money? And why has this entire nation turned against foreigners to such a degree yet still bemoan the fact that the lack of tourism from foreigners is killing the country?

I suppose I should add, when will the Indian variant of the virus arrive and will Thailand do anything to prevent its spread as the nation seems unable to contain what is here already?

Depressing, sure. I cannot stop thinking of these, trying to come up with reasonable answers and how to avoid the inevitable.

I did immerse myself in blogging about stamps over the last few days. I think I posted an average of eight New Issue announcements on Philatelic Pursuits each day of the past three. I also posted an article or two on my postcard blog. Tracking down dates, information and high-quality images from postal administrations around the world and then researching and writing-up the subject matter portrayed on brand-new stamps is quite time-consuming but it gives me something to do rather than think about what is happening outside of my own front door. I really do enjoy it.

Reading also did the trick, as always. I finished two books this week — one novel about the Navajo lands around my former home, the other a history rooted in a region that I desperately want to visit –and am making good progress on an amusing memoir of life as a bookseller in Scotland. Quite a variety!

Today’s photo reflects even more waiting. I was sitting outside of my home for several hours this afternoon, waiting in vain for a grocery order that never arrived. I spent most of the week on a virtual starvation diet and began refilling bottles of water to put into the freezer to cool them down faster. I spent several days deliberating about doing another online grocery order and finally decided that was a better option than trying to find a place still open (my local 7-11 is now closed which, considering the events earlier this week, I am not sad about in the least).

But the order never came. They did, however, charge my card; “your card will not be charged until AFTER delivery is made” the FAQ’s in the app read). When I called “customer service”, they truly lived up to the reputation of it being “anti-customer service” with the “gentleman” lying to me, no apology, no resolution. Just more Thai anti-foreigner thievery. I shouldn’t have been surprised. Corruption and xenophobia have been endemic in this nation for a very long time. But in the last month, they have risen to Olympic-like levels and few can escape. It is all just sport to them.

For this evening, hunger finally won out and I made a pre-curfew dash to a mini-mart several blocks away where I bought a few things to keep my stomach from growling through the weekend. At least my faucet works so the cold bottles of water will last forever. With the length of time to wait the big unknown factor, every baht counts (and I will be calling my bank on Monday to get the grocery charge reversed).

Hopefully, this next week will be a lot more positive. It certainly cannot be any worse. I think. I hope.

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