Saturday, June 8, 2013
Baby Birds and More Nichada Info
Yes, we now have TWO baby birds!
After finding both babies on the ground yet again yesterday afternoon, I used some twist ties to level the branches and give more support to the nest. I thought the mother might have pushed them out but the babies squirm around so much and, with the nest being at such an angle, I think they just rolled out. The mother returned to the nest the minute I left and is busy mothering them. I am keeping a vigilant watch to make sure there are no more roll outs. Such drama!On to more important information about moving to Nichada and/or Bangkok and/or Thailand...
Golf Cart Repairs
We use Weera (telephone at 085 922 0511). I don't know if Weera is his name or the name of the company (or maybe neither) but if you call or text him, 9 times out of 10 he is at the house within 30 minutes. Fabulous service, good rates and he does speak decent English. There is another company that sells and repairs golf carts in Nichada. I think they are called Marshall and are located next to the 4 Legs pet groomers near the Expressway gate. However, I have not used them nor do I know anyone who has.
There is a non-denominational Christian Community Church located within Nichada. It is very well attended and (I believe) has youth groups for middle and high school students, all kinds of bible study groups, child care during services and I do know they do a lot of community service work in the Nonthaburi area.
There is a Catholic church, Our Lady of Holy Rosary, about 15 minutes north of Nichada. They have an English speaking Mass on Sunday afternoons and offer religious education classes. We attend Holy Redeemer which is, literally, right out the back door of the US Embassy on Ruam Rudi. They have several English masses. There is also Assumption Cathedral which is located downtown near the Chao Phraya river, Mandarin Oriental hotel and the French Embassy. I think all of these Catholic churches have websites where you can find Mass times, directions, etc.
There is a large Mormon community in Nichada and they have a newly constructed worship center very close to Nichada on Changwattana. I believe there is a youth prayer group held at a home in Nichada on weekday mornings but the family that has hosted is moving and I don't know if, when and where it will continue.
Good luck with that! Getting the car repaired has probably been one of the most frustrating (and expensive) experiences for me in Thailand. This information really only applies if you are bringing your American car or importing a car from Japan or another country. Most of the corporate employers here (Chevron, Ford, Exxon) either provide a car and driver or a vehicle allowance and manage the maintenance work internally and at their cost.
There are all kinds of car dealers (Toyota, Ford, Volvo, Nissan, etc.) near Nichada and very easy to get to. I know a few people take their cars to private mechanics and you can ask around for recommendations. The big problem is that there is little to no English spoken in many of these places so communicating what you need repaired is next to impossible. I took PeePorn with me to the Toyota dealer the first I went and she helped translate but it wasn't, by any means, perfect. The last time we needed the car maintained, we hired a friend's driver who speaks excellent English (and whom we trust) to take it to a mechanic and have all of the work done. It was one of our better ideas for sure!
Be prepared for long delays if parts need to be ordered. In mid-December 2011, I took the car in and was told it needed part X which had to be ordered from Japan. Fortunately, I was able to continue to drive the car because part X arrived in mid-March 2012! My neighbor was not so lucky - she took her car in for electrical repair work and I think it was almost 2 weeks before she had her car back!
If you bring your American car with you, you might need to order the parts on-line (the mechanic will tell you exactly what parts to order) and then he will complete the repairs after you receive them from the U.S. or Japan.
Propane Tank Refill
Unfortunately, when I sold our barbecue grill, I gave the new owner all of the information I had for it, which included the telephone number for the man who delivered the refills for its propane tank. He transports about 10 propane tanks at a time on the back of his motorcycle (!) and usually responds to service requests within a couple of hours. If you bring a grill from the US, it will need to have a special adapter installed and he can do that for you as well.
Bicycle Sales and Service
There is a small bike shop on Samakee Road, west of Nichada. He sells bikes and also does repair work. I think his prices are good. The only "cons" are that the shop is not reachable by golf cart and the parking lot is minuscule. In addition, you must back out of the parking lot on to Samakee Road which can be quite busy. He might offer a pick-up and delivery service but I never thought to ask.
If you are without a car or golf cart for a few weeks, the Villa Market does make deliveries (not sure if there is a fee or not). You can open an account there as well for your maid/kids to charge items to.
There is a milk/egg/other miscellaneous grocery products service that delivers in Nichada Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. I don't know how you contact them but you will see them driving around the neighborhoods (tan pick up truck) and they will most likely make contact with new residents. You can schedule weekly or bi-weekly deliveries with them as well.
There is also a gourmet bakery/food service, Urban Pantry, that delivers to Nichada once a week. I can only find the link to their page on facebook. However, if you can somehow get added to their email distribution list, every Monday you will receive the menu for that week and information on how to order. I think their prices are a little high but the food is good quality and since there are no other convenient alternatives, it is worth the splurge once in a while.
Wine by Vinum Lector delivers wines to Nichada (and downtown) on Thursday afternoons. Delivery is free is you order 6 or more bottles. Contact Mari at firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the email distribution list for the list of available wines for sale. I think their selection is amazing and the prices are very good.
The Expressway is a toll road. I would suggest purchasing an EZ Pass upon your arrival as it will certainly speed your trip downtown.
That is all I can remember for now!
Have a great Sunday!