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Happy Falang

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  1. Twenty billion baht tram projects set to transform Pattaya! Image: Pattaya Watchdog Group PATTAYA: -- Two tram lines are "coming for sure" and are set to transform Pattaya, said a watchdog group on Facebook. Pattaya Watchdog posted a map of the Red and Blue lines that will go in loops around the beach and roads behind respectively. Phase 1 is the Red Line for which there is a budget of 8 billion baht for a planned 8 kilometer loop. This will go from North Pattaya along the beach and back again on Sai 2 road. The other project is the Blue Line that will share some track in North Pattaya before traversing a more inland route. The watchdog group said there was still some confusion as to the exact route the Blue Line it might take as the projects are still in the planning stage. The Blue Line is set to be built later with a 12 billion baht budget. A total of 103 million baht is being spent on "design" for the two lines. The existing roads will be used for the trams after earlier ideas for an above ground project were rejected, said the watchdog. A "switch station" to connect the two lines will be constructed in North Pattaya enabling transfers from one to the other. Parking will be available in a lot at the start of the route. The group said that the tram was the most eagerly anticipated addition to Pattaya in a swathe of infrastructure plans for the resort that include improvements to the Bali Hai and Koh Larn ports, roads to Rayong and Sattahip and drainage within the city. They said that the tram was still in the planning stage but was coming for sure. Source: Pattaya Watchdog Group
  2. Robbie Fowler in Thailand: A tale of big money and false hope They thought they were signing God – what they got was an ageing star with a paunch who in the fag end of his glorious career had come for one last big pay day. Robbie Fowler’s bizarre stint at then reigning Thai Premier League champions Muangthong United back in 2011 is a rather strange tale of footballing hype over reality, of fat pay cheques and shattered illusions. The fairytale for Thai football fans was short-lived, with Fowler back in England seven months later, significantly richer but a somewhat diminished figure. He was never to don his boots competitively again. It had all began with much fanfare and hope in Thailand, though the warning signs were there if you cared to look. Fowler’s previous club was Perth Glory in Australia’s A-League, who he had joined from North Queensland Fury the previous season. Fowler, who netted 183 goals in total for Liverpool over two spells, didn’t exactly set the world alight in Perth, scoring nine times in 28 matches, with his team finishing second from bottom. He was still expected to stay another year in Australia, but surprisingly told the club’s chairman in June that he was returning to the UK to “spend more time with my family” and “pursue my coaching badges”. To the football world’s (and Perth Glory’s) general astonishment, just a month later Fowler, then 36, announced he had signed for Muangthong on a one-year contract, in a deal reportedly worth 25-27 million baht (around £500,000). The deal was apparently wrapped up in just a week. He turned down a player-coach role with Peter Reid’s Plymouth Argyle to come to the Land of Smiles. “Fowler-mania” immediately hit Thailand, a country in love with the English Premier League, and Liverpool in particular. Fowler flew into Thailand alone one evening in early July, with a huge press pack there to greet his arrival at Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok. Excited airport staff got him to sign their shirts, and he was “educated” on Thai football in front of the cameras by Muangthong general manager Ronnarit Seu-vaja, who took him through a club programme and pointed out some of the team’s players. Fowler looked suitably bemused. Muangthong fans, albeit in small numbers, chanted “Fowler, Fowler” in the arrivals hall. Fowler offered awkward bowed wais, the respectful manner of greeting in Thailand. Three days of meet and greets and interviews continued, including a press conference with then newly elected Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and her son Pike. The slog tested Fowler’s patience – one particularly excruciating interview with Thai star “Woody” involved him asking whether Robbie was going to a be a “good boy” in Thailand. The happily married father of four managed to keep his cool and retain a friendly manner throughout, but his understandable discomfort was clear. Platitudes largely reigned in interviews. “The professionalism of Muangthong is unbelievable,” Fowler remarked, which may have brought a wry smile to those in the know to the chaos of Thai football. But Muangthong were surely happy with the publicity, raking back a little of the striker’s wages by flogging 10,000 No.9 Fowler shirts in the first week. One excited Muangthong fan While Fowler may have hoped to find refuge in his football, it didn’t happen. His first job was to get fit, and to his credit Fowler brought over his own trainer from the UK. He hadn’t played competitively since the A-League had ended that March and it showed in his rather rotund appearance. But he didn’t make his debut until August. Worse, it took him a full 250 minutes of playing time before he finally scored, a simple header from a few yards out in his side’s 4-1 win over Chiang Rai United. By that time, in a bizarre turn of events, Fowler found himself as player-coach. At the end of September Henrique Calisto was sacked after Muangthong’s loss to Kuwait in the AFC Cup. His first game in charge was a 3-1 win at Samut Songkhram, and then followed the 4-1 home thumping of Chiang Rai. But things began to unravel. While famously uncritical Thai fans were not overtly hostile, they were clearly underwhelmed. Fowler looked badly off the pace in games and the team were not even winning, let alone winning in the style Muangthong had become accustomed to. Expat fans especially were not impressed by Fowler’s frequent absences from Thailand and apparent indifferent attitude. He was happy to tweet about English TV but rarely talked about his club. The English language Thunderdome fan blog started a “Fowler out” campaign. Fowler attended former Liverpool player Gary Ablett’s funeral back home in England – but stayed on for another two weeks, missing two league games in total. Under Fowler, the team suffered more defeats in half a season than the two previous seasons in total. Particularly ignominious was a 3-1 home defeat to lowly Navy FC, their first home loss since their Division 1 days back in 2008. The club’s owner went public to express his dissatisfaction with performances. Fowler had inherited a sinking ship, but was going down fast with it. Muangthong eventually finished third, a disastrous 25 points behind their bitter rivals Buriram, who won the title. Fowler’s swansong was the 2012 Thai FA Cup Final in mid-January, which Muangthong lost in extra-time. Fowler actually lasted the full 120 minutes, and drew some praise for his improved performance. But with talk that Fowler was in continual talk with other clubs – including in India – it was clear this was not a marriage made in heaven and the commitment was not strong on both sides. A few weeks later, it was announced he had departed the club, with current Fulham boss Slaviša Jokanović taking over as manager. Fowler’s time in Thailand didn’t seem to put him off management, with him pursuing his coaching badges, in between TV work and running his property empire, back in England. He is set to complete his Uefa Pro Licence, the highest available qualification for coaches, this year. Fowler starred this year in The Jump on Channel 4 in the UK “I loved it,” he told World Soccer Talk in 2014 of his time as a manager in Thailand. “It really whetted my appetite.” Thai fans were, however, left more than a little shortchanged, especially by his time on the pitch. The sixth-highest goalscorer in the history of the English Premier League could barely hit a barn door. He scored just twice in 13 appearances. FourFourTwo Thailand judged him thus: “Fowler did not play well. He’d lost his desire and was slow in his responses. He had no speed and looked ill at ease on the pitch. His once mighty left foot that was feared all over Europe had disappeared.” Fowler never officially retired as a player – and was linked to lower league moves in England – but perhaps deep down realised the chance for more fat pay cheques was over. The time had come to call it a day.
  3. Fake Camels Toe Underwear is Apparently The Latest Fashion Trend. For many women, a camel toe is considered an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction. Certainly, no woman wants to be photographed in this awkwardly revealing state. Or so we thought. Apparently, some of them are fans of the camel toe underwear. The Online Slang Dictionary deAnes camel toe as “the visible cleft of the outer labia under tight clothing” or a “frontal wedgie” on women when they wear tight pants or swimsuit bottoms. The so-called “frontal wedgie” looks like the toes of a camel. Hence, the term, “camel toe.” It's easy to see how the wardrobe malfunction got its name. However, a company in Japan has manufactured underwear that has a camel toe shape on it. The fake camel toe mold — which is made of silicone or thick fabric — is sewn into the front of the underwear. These panties have been tagged as “Party Pants.” Some people have called them "shocking lingerie." Although the company started producing Party Pants several years ago, it’s only now that the product is selling really well. Trend analysts explained that Party Pants appeal to the transgender market — speciAcally men who are transitioning to becoming women. Those of them want to conceal their manly parts use Party Pants. Frankly, these don't look so appealing. Party Pants come in an assortment of colors and styles. Popdust reports that the skimpier styles are Atted with “a little curtain that you can wear if you want to hide the camel toe and then Oash it when the urge should strike.” Other retailers have also come up with more life-like camel toe underwear variants. These are so lifelike that they're creepy. Surprisingly, there are also women who reportedly buy Party Pants in order to be “more seductive.” After all, the product ads promise to “lift and separate” lady parts. Then again, we fail to see why this would be considered seductive, as camel toes only look very uncomfortable to us. But if you’re really interested to try it out, you can buy one here. We don't get why some women purposely want a camel toe. For those who really aren’t into camel toes, another Japanese company produces underwear that prevent camel toes. The camel toe-proof underwear is under the Cuchini brand. Its tagline? “Our lips are sealed.” Other retailers have also started producing variants of this anti-camel toe underwear. Will it catch on in Thailand...?
  4. Man Found In The Vietnamese Jungle Could Be The Missing American POW The Vietnam War was found in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia and lasted from November 1955 until April 1975. Thousands of American soldiers fought and died in the battle, with many others being taken prisoner by the Vietcong. Captured, tormented and starved by the enemy, many who were sent home were never the same again, whilst others remained lost and presumed dead, with little hope of ever finding them. One soldier who never returned home was Army Sgt. 1st Class John Hartley Robertson and apparently he found a new life in the Vietnamese jungle… Christian Missionary, Tom Faunce was spending his day in rural Cambodia in 2008, helping the locals to dig wells. Having taken a break during the middle of the day, Faunce overheard that news had spread about an American soldier who was living in Laos after surviving a helicopter crash back in 1968. Faunce was a solder himself, who had survived two tours of duty overseas and had seen many of his friends die. Seeing such death and destruction led to him moving to Cambodia. The news of a possible soldier having survived and making a new life for himself was something he was definitely he was interested in investigating. The story goes that John Hartley Robertson, a highly-decorated Green Beret, was involved in a helicopter crash. Injured, he ended up marrying the nurse who helped him in a North Vietnamese Army prison. Once John was free from the prison, using the women’s dead husbands ID, they fled to South Vietnam and he began living as Dang Tan Ngoc. The story is remarkable, although almost unbelievable. Tom Faunce however believed that the tale could quite easily be true, as having being thought of as dead for such a long period of time can cause a person to change. Faunce took it upon himself to investigate. Face to face with the man that could be the American POW, Faunce saw a slender man of six feet tall, with wisps of grey hair but shining eyes. He invited them into his home, but his wife lashed out at the visitors. Adamant that her husband was Vietnamese not America, ‘Robertson’ asked her to leave the room so he and Faunce could talk. When his wife returned, she explained that she was scared of what may happen if people found out that her husband had been smuggled out of prison years before. ‘Robertson’ went onto tell Faunce tales of his military career. ‘Robertson’ explained how he was enlisted in the army in Alabama straight after finishing high school and he went onto join the Green Berets shortly afterwards. Training as a paratrooper, he was sent to North Vietnam in the mid 1960’s. Whilst on a mission, ‘Robertson’s’ chopper was hit whilst flying over the South Asian jungle by enemy fire. Whilst most of his men were able to escape the falling chopper, ‘Robertson’ was stuck inside. Found battered and bruised, he was taken to a Vietcong hospital – which is where we met his future wife. ‘Robertson’ asked about his family back home, but sadly Faunce didn’t have any information on them. They visited the United States embassy to undertake a fingerprint test to confirm his identity and reunite him with his old life. n 2012, director Michael Jorgensen who was creating a documentary about the situation, sent Hugh Tranh to retrieve ‘Robertson’ from Vietnam and bring him to his home in Alberta where family were waiting to be reunited. Jorgensen’s documentary saw Robertson open up about his ordeal and explain how he was trapped in a bamboo cage and tortured before being sent to hospital. Robertson’s sister, her husband and her daughter all flew to Canada to meet him. With a translator to help the family communicate, Jean and her family were shocked by how different Robertson was. Awaiting the fingerprint analysis, Faunce was worried the man might not be who he said he was, and his worries were for good reason. The fingerprints weren’t a match. Maybe the man wasn’t Robertson, but another lost solider instead? With there still being some belief the man was Robertson, Faunce decided to reunite him with one of his old Beret buddies, Mahoney – a chance Mahoney jumped at. Upon meeting in a restaurant in Dong Nai, Robertson and Mahoney shared an awkward hug before they began talking. As their conversation continued, it became clear that Robertson didn’t recognise his old friend. After multiple factors going against Roberson being who he said he was, a DNA test was ordered. It would be the only way to get a definitive answer as to whether he was John Hartley Robertson. By the time of the documentary, much of what were believed to be Robertson’s friends and family had convinced themselves that the man was who he said he was. When the DNA results came back, it was revealed that he wasn’t John Hartley Robertson. But why would he say he was? The real John Hartley Robertson must have died a long time ago, whether it was in the helicopter crash or through torture from the Vietcong. The documentary, unclaimed, became that of pure fiction. Dang Tan Hgoc remains a mystery but it could simply be the case of an old man being swept up in a lie, or suffering from a mental illness that led to him claiming to be Robertson.
  5. It seams that every bar in Pattaya has the same people coming in and out with hands full of copy DVD's but with everything on the internet now and with my media android box i don't bother any more. I would buy in the past but i would always leave them in Thailand and never travel back home with them just incase i was stopped at customs. Do you still buy them ?
  6. It's been on the news