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On the Road in Isaan

First published 6 April 2022

We don't get out as much as we used to these days for various reasons. An afternoon on the road today delivered a few Isaan insights and photos, which I am pleased to share.

First stop was my wife's older brother Orr who is a fisherman in a village one hour's drive from us close to a big man-made lake called Ubol Ratana. The two cars belong to their daughter and son-in-law.

He and his wife work hard, but have very little. When I visit there's always a hunt for a chair, because they don't have any. It is interesting therefore, to see that their daughter and her husband are able to build a new house on the family land next to the parents. How wonderful that the next generation can break out of poverty and yet still have a strong commitment to home and family. We are invited to the house blessing tomorrow, but I am not sure that we are going.

Mostly built by the daughter and husband. A simple structure but with free land, a start on the housing ladder that most western kids will be mortgaging their lives for decades to come.

A photo of contrasts. Orr's house and land with the new house in the distance. Rough rural v's the next generation. Not good or bad, just different.

Another typical Isaan village house, where the family would have lived upstairs and the livestock underneath back in the day.

An artistic photo, just because I liked the image. No glass in the windows. Just shutters.

Fish drying in the road outside. Orr does a daily run that includes the family farm each day to sell fish and anything else he can make money from.

Gaun is always on the lookout for new plants for her gardens and has found one here.

A short distance away is this house being built by friends. They have their house-blessing happening in a week that we're attending, so are free to move in after that.

A nice undercover outside area that is so essential for this lifestyle in my opinion.

A swimming pool to go at the end of what will be a courtyard overlooking rural Isaan.

On the way home we spotted this truck, which is hard to miss. It runs through our village regularly, but we have missed seeing it the last year. A friendly husband and wife team, who were happy to see us.

He's a character, but you might have guessed that.

Choosing two new sticky rice baskets.

They have cheaper ones with plastic bottoms or these which are the real deal. 150 baht each.

These mobile vendors make an essential part of the daily Isaan life we all enjoy so much.

Thank you for reading.



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