Sunday, December 12, 2010

Waiting for the Winter

Have we noticed the change? Do we realize it had happened? Never had I expected that the effects of global warming can be witnessed in the short 7 years I had lived in Thailand, at least that’s what all my surrounding friends are talking about. This winter…. ain’t no winter. I remember from the year I arrived till about 3 years ago, during the months of November to January, motorcycle taxi sheds in Bangkok will have small camp-fire set up burning in some kind of make-shift bin. Motorcycle taxi drivers could be seen cuddled up keeping themselves warm around, palms stretched out absorbing the warmth and rubbing their hands together from time to time. We walked in the cool dense air, I could have coffee outdoors under the sun and not break a sweat. Sip hot coffee from a ceramic mug in cold winter, I loved it. Where is that experience now?

Back then, there were always friends going up north and coming back to share their tales of how cold it was the chilly air they breathed and the romantic atmosphere that such months offered. But just a week ago, friends coming back from Mae Hong Song told tales of extreme heat and only the early morning hours which offered a hint of winter’s mark.

I was happy back in end of October, when the cool breeze came suddenly unexpectedly. Even down south Hua Hin was cold and I could still remember having that hot Japanese soup with me friend in the cold night air. I was sharing with my mates how great living in this Kingdom had been and that part of Unseen Thailand is the secret winter debut that not many had known. How happily telling them I was, how wrong I now am. Even the Bangkok media had predicted that this year we will be experiencing the coldest and longest winter, obviously they had been wrong so far. The cool spell was over after the first week of November and it never came again.

The winter solstice is 21 Dec 2010. The sun is now low and darkness sets in about 6pm. But where, where are you now, the long awaited winter we are all eager for?