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My Corona Diary December 2020 - 2021


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I dream and beam myself back to my favourite beach, Hat Tung Wua Laen near Chumpon, almost 500 km south of Bangkok on the Gulf.

Lumbago - a visit to the local hospital.

A lumbago? Low back pain? How so? Tell us!
You are in an area of the world where temperatures between 30 to 32 degrees are normal during the day.
In the evening and at night they rarely drop below 24 degrees.

I was sitting in my office, my offive on the far right of the picture; with my computer, my books etc.. They all have free WiFi here, so super convenient access to the internet for me. It was glorious weather and hot. Hardly a breeze stirred. As the hours passed, my body heated up; I sweat a little. It was what I felt to be 32 degrees.



There is also something to eat and drink; a papaya salad with some seafood, the obligatory rice. Plus coffee and several bottles of water. See for yourself.


In the late afternoon around 4pm, a light wind started blowing from the sea in a northerly direction. The air of the wind was relatively "cool"; maybe only 27 or 26 degrees. The wind blew directly into my back. I found the breeze pleasant, of course. But an hour later it happened. I felt the tension down in my back. I could hardly stand up. The two service girls came running and helped the farlang. They grabbed my backpack, strapped it to my back, I paid, thanked them nicely, smiled as best I could with my paralysed right side of my face, said goodbye and hobbled the 400 m back to my bungalow on my cripple stick in great pain.
The other morning when I woke up at about 7 o'clock, I noticed that the lumbago had taken hold. Experience shows that it takes about 2 weeks to relieve the cramp.
That is too long. You need a doctor.
After the morning toilet I informed my bungalow family.
"Khun Charly, go Chumpon Hospital".
I took the songtheo right at 8.30am. My bungalow boss told the driver,
"Drive the farlang to the hospital."

There it is. In the end, it seemed to me that this provincial hospital is medically equipped with everything German hospitals have to offer.
I went through a registration and admission procedure, name, nationality, current local address, etc. I was asked about any allergies and intolerances. Then heartbeat and blood pressure were taken (137 over 78; heartbeat about 80 per minute). The data is a bit high; but I was excited and in pain; so from that point of view everything was normal. Everything was noted on an A4 sheet and at the same time all these data were computerised and stored in the hospital's network.

In Bangkok, I had my friends translate a German text about my stroke into Thai.
I had it with me and it turned out to be very helpful.

ผมเผชิญกับความทรมานเฉียบพลันกระทันหัน ที่ทำลายระบบประสาทในสมอง
ด้วยเหตุนี้ผมจึงไม่สามารถเดินได้ปกติ รวมทั้งมือและนิ้วเคลื่อนไหวไม่ได้
มันน่าเศร้า ผมเคยมีสุขภาพดี เคยออกกำลังกายบ่อยครั้ง
อาทิ เล่นสกีหิมะ ยิมนาสติกและการลดน้ำหนัก

Here is the text with translation:

No, it was not an accident that paralysed my right side of my body.
There were no broken bones and no plaster casts. I suffered a stroke. This stroke destroyed the nerves in my brain that control the right side of my body, and control the movements of my right leg and hand. These nerves are now broken, and because of this I can't walk properly or move my right hand and fingers. It's terrible. I was so healthy. I always did sports: cross-country skiing, gymnastics and a little weight training. I was always slim, athletically trained.

to be continued ...


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After waiting for about 5 minutes, I was taken to a doctor's office.
He had my patient file and all my data on the screen, which was on his desk.

"Hello!" "Sawasdee kraph!"

I told what happened:
"Cool wind in my back - lom jen - and now horrible pain in my back.
The Brits call it 'low back pain' or 'lumbago'.
We Germans call it 'Hexenschuss'. Hexe means witch and Schuss means shot."

"Ahh, yes, I understand what happened and I know the pain you have."
the doctor replied and after a few more seconds he continued with a broad roguish smile:
"I remember once Eric Clapton 'shot the sherrif'. You was shot by a witch!" and after a short pause he added
"or was it a bitch, a puu-ying (woman)?"
[I had to explain the English word "bitch" for my German readers, because most of my readers don't know this term].
Now you have to know that bitch is a nasty swear word and means something like slut, hussy, wench.
I understood the clearly erotic allusion.
You can tell me a lot about a cool wind. You've gone too far in bed with a puu-ying (a woman).
That or something similar is what the doctor will have thought. With feigned indignation I replied:

"Doc, you read my text, you see me here like a handful of misery. I am a single man, at home in Germany, and I am single here in Thailand! Stay away from the ladies, so no cares and no worries! Women are always a costly affair, an expensive pleasure anywhere in the world.
Furthermore after my stroke nothing goes any more. It won't work! Do you understand?"

"Yes, yes" replied the doctor, "it was lom jen - cold wind. I was only joking."

Then he stood up, looked at the affected area on my back, felt the aching muscle with his fingers.
"We'll give you an injection; and I prescribe a few medications."

We said goodbye with a wai - as is proper - a nurse entered and I was led into the treatment room. There, an obviously experienced nurse was waiting for me. I lay down on my stomach on the couch. I pointed with my left hand to the place where she was to place the injection.
I felt the puncture and the slow seepage of the fluid. After a minute everything was ready. The puncture site was dabbed with cotton wool; a plaster on it. All was well.
I stayed on the couch for a few more minutes. Then the nurse led me to the front; there, right next to the pharmacy, was the hospital cashier. How convenient. Cost: 940 Baht. (about 25 Euros). I got my medication. There were 2 ABC plasters and a tube of "burning ointment" à la Finalgon extra strong.
I said goodbye with a wai, raising my paralysed right hand to face level with my left hand and bowing slightly. The girls in the checkout and also the one from the pharmacy were pleased; they also greeted me with a wai. The injection began to work. Already somewhat relieved of the pain, I hobbled to the exit on my cripple stick and left the hospital relieved.


Enough for one go.
Stay tuned. There is more to come.
Live from a beach in the south on the Gulf, 1 pm local time.
Anno domini October 2015


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The Bangkok Post reports that "summer" has arrived in Siam. Temperatures are going up to 35 - 38 degrees.

https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/2272643/summer-has-officially-arrived#:~:text=The Meteorological Department announced on,to southeasterly%2C the department said.

A high-pressure zone from the North Sea over southern Scandinavia to the Baltic states will bring Germany sunny but very cold temperatures at night.
I'm back in my home town of Düsseldorf on the Rhine.
Here, the weather is sunny during the day with temperatures of around 5 to 8 degrees; but at night it can drop to minus 4 degrees. 4 degrees below zero!!! horrible. That's what I call contrast.
brrrrr ... cold, very cold.
No sign of spring.


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I would like to be in Pattaya right now.
I am on the beach of Jomtiem near Soi Welcome; lying in a deck chair, reading a book, dozing off, going into
the sea and bathing and enjoying the pleasant coolness of the water. Later I drink water and eat pineapple,
watermelon, a Java apple and durian.
Oh, life would be wonderful.

I would like to be in Jomtiem right now - despite this first heat wave with temperatures of over 38 degrees.
It's still better than Germany in March.

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In the summertime.

Since the beginning of March there has been an area of high pressure over southern Scandinavia, which is now shifting towards the Baltic States on 10 March. This high pressure provides sunny, dry but cold weather in Germany.
For more than 10 days we have had sub-zero temperatures at night and during the day the temperature rises to 7 to 10 degrees.
March, the days become increasingly longer, the nights shorter; the power of the sun increases; slowly the temperatures rise.

I go for a walk in the open air; I march through small forests and walk along country lanes. I observe nature, the farmers' fields; in two or three weeks nature will explode, bushes and trees will turn green again within a few days, spring flowers like daffodils, marigoldsdaffodils, pansies will bloom, the wheat and other grain in the fields will germinate and sprout.
As I stroll through the woods and fields in the cold wind but sunshine, scarf wrapped around my neck, jacket zipped up, a warming hat on my head, my thoughts begin to wander, they take on a life of their own.
Suddenly I am back in 1970; the end of July. Together with a friend, I am on a three-week holiday on the Costa Brava in Spain. We have rented a whitewashed bungalow not far from the kilometre-long sandy beach for a few Spanish pesetas and enjoy the beach life during the day and the lively nightlife at night in this holiday resort popular with German and French tourists.
On our blanket next to the bath towels, we always had a transistor radio that provided us with lively pop music from the local station (somewhere in Barcelona).
One song was played at least once every hour; it was brand new and the song caught the ear immediately.


In the summertime.

We all know this song.
In the Summertime was written for the British band Mungo Jerry in 1970 by the singer of the band Ray Dorset and is still considered the best-selling summer hit of all time.
The music of In the Summertime is catchy with a simple melody that has a strong recognition value.
What is special and striking about this song is the sibilant sound that is repeated three times and then followed by a moaning sound: chi - chi chi - aahh --- chi - chi chi - aahh
The Banjo player blows over a bulbous wine bottle, much like a jug band, and together with guitarist and singer Ray Dorset's stomp board, clacking upright bass and honky tonk piano, creates a distinctive rhythmic swinging drum-less good-time sound that is a mixture of blues, skiffle and Latin music.

The lyrics celebrate the carefree summertime with trips, alcohol, cars and girls and reached the status of a typical summer hit due to its perfect timing.

So, dear people, let us once again dive into our youth and sing along loudly full of youthful energy In the summertime chi - chi chi - aahh chi - chi chi - aahh


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  • 2 weeks later...

On 21 March we had the equinox. The sun is then perpendicular above the equator and then moves to its highest latitude, the Tropic of Cancer, until 21 June.

For us in Central Europe, this means that the days now become longer and longer, the nights shorter and the power of the sun increases. Spring begins, the temperatures rise.

The pleasant months of the year are here.

In our Düsseldorf garden the spring flowers are in bloom, such as snowdrops, daffodils, a few hyacinths. The tulips will soon follow. But the fruit trees like apples and pears and also the currant bushes are not green yet.

We have to wait a few more days.

The other trees in the wild like lime and oak, beech and chestnut, maple and birch are also not green yet.

Here is the still bare lime tree from the Stoffeln beer garden.


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On Saturday 19 March 22 I was out and about in Düsseldorf city centre. I strolled along our famous Königsallee; a mile to see and look and to be seen.
Many cafes line the wide pavement; tables and chairs invite you to stay. Here you can enjoy many different coffee specialities:
There is the classic brewed coffee, the latte and the espresso, the cappuccino, the creamy delight, the latte macchiato, the mocha and many other coffee specialities.
Plus cakes and pieces of cake in all variations, the famous Sacher cake or the Black Forest cherry cake. There is something for every taste and every appetite.

Here is a photo taken sometime in summer; a typical scene on Königsallee.



I enjoyed the stroll along the "Kö", then along the Hofgarten, an adjacent park, towards the Altstadt - downtown.
The city was full of people enjoying the warm spring sunshine and the beautiful weather.

Later, I met my friends in one of the trendy cafes that exist in this area there.  For three hours we discussed and exchanged ideas about God and the world, about all and sundry.

The last few weeks our meetings were always in a depressed mood. Our long-time mutual friend - I have known him for almost 50 years - died 5 weeks ago as a result of his devastating stroke. He is irreplaceable in our discussion group, he was the best of us, his contributions to the discussion were razor sharp, brilliant, knowledgeable and very often very get backed up by philosophical and sociological theories. He was the intellectual among us, he had a doctorate in the humanities.

Dear Bernd, I will follow you soon, I will succumb to the constant high blood pressure attacks that have been plaguing me for about 9 months sometime in the near future.


In memoriam – our friend Bernd.


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