"Copyright Owen Jones 2013 (c)"
By: Owen Jones
I have probably seen it rain in Thailand a thousand times over the
last ten years, so today was probably the thousand and first time, although it might be considered exceptional
because it was outside the traditional rainy or monsoon periods, but then weather patterns are changing anyway even
in our remote fleck of the country.
Warm Thai rain has never caused me any trouble before, as long as
it is outside the house, but it did today.
You see, the council has laid a new road through the village.
However, it is 12-18 inches higher than the old one and without gutters, which causes rainwater to flow off it and
into people's gardens, which are mainly bare soil.
The slope up from our house onto the road has become a muddy
puddle about ankle deep, but the slope down into the shop where I often enjoy a beer, becomes a slippery mud
So, having been taught to be cautious, but not having been taught
to be sensible, I took the side route down alongside the path in order to avoid the the well-trodden path, which I
thought would be more slippery.
There were about ten women watching me as first one foot and then
the other sank several inches into the mud. They started laughing as I took another step into the mire. They
laughed even louder, but I was half-way now and so had to go on, but my 250lb frame was causing me to sink deeper
"Oo, er, oh dear", I said, "Kee kon maak" (lots of
They laughed even more as I repeated 'kee kon' and struggled to
get out, making sure that I was smiling all the while in the way that Thailand is famous
My mother-in-law came out of the shop to see what the commotion
was all about. She gave me the look people give a dopey child, but came out into the mud to rescue
Don't get me wrong, my mother-in-law is lovely, but she found it
funny too and so would have to tell my wife. However, my wife takes things a little more seriously sometimes and
would probably see it as my loss of face in front of the shoppers, especially as the eldest woman there had had to
help me out.
About twenty minutes later, my wife arrived - the jungle telegraph
had reached her and she had come to investigate. I could hear the two or three old ladies that were still there
chuckling and repeating 'kee kon' to her. They kept glancing over at me and shaking their
I sat their drinking my beer, waiting for my wife to come over.
When she did arrive, all she said to me was: "Why were you saying 'lots of lemon shit'?"
"No, 'mud', I was saying 'lots of mud'", but as she pointed out,
Thai for 'mud' is 'kee korn'. It was lucky that I hadn't said 'kee khon', which means 'human
Sitting in the shop now, writing this piece, my shoes and feet
still caked in thick wet mud, I cannot believe that I had been so stupid as to walk off the trodden path either,
but at least it had made them smile for a while.
Well, more than smile and it will be more than a while before I
hear the end of the lemon shit saga too.
by Owen Jones
(c) Owen Jones 23rd March,
This story may not be copied in any way without the written permission of it's author, Owen Jones, but you may
link to it, if you so desire.