Old Patong: Knoc and Guitar Noi Paint Our House

Our little house near the waterfall in Baan Nam Sai Yen needed some sprucing up, so we hired local fisherman Knoc and our good friend Guitar Noi to do some light painting.

The crew arrived about 10am the next morning, although an 8am starting time had been arrived upon the previous day over Mekhong, Sprite and Menow at Thai Garden.

Patong Patty and I had gotten some informative and insightful information from our Maid Ett, her friend Lek and a few of the local villagers that happened to stop by to wash clothes in our front yard.

Since it was that time of year when the piped water supply dried up, we however had two water supplies, the village pipe and our private water supply from the nearby waterfall.

Along a few hundred feet of that white plastic tubing, we still had water! The waterfall never went dry!

When we first moved in,after noticing daily, several snakes scurring about what used to be the front yard garden, we quickly ordered 500 bricks, hiring the locals to tear out the garden, snakes in all, and cover the entire front and back yard[very small 30’X10′], we felt safer without all the snakes, our village pals would identify each one as it slithered into the jungle next door, ah, the rainbow snake! is it deadly, OH YES!, etc,etc,etc. This went on for several hours, but the bricks were in place, and our front yard became a natural place for the locals to wash their clothes during the dry season.

Our Maids sister, Pooi, was somewhat excited after seeing our “farang” hognam, she told some of the others that it was an apparatus to teach babies how to swim…:-)

Anyway, Knoc and Guitar Noi finally arrive, Patong Patty showed them the roller brushes with long handle to reach the ceiling, Guitar Noi thought it was too messy, some of the painting showering him as he stood directly under the dripping roller. He decided to use a small, 2″ brush, thereby taking a few days to do a 4hr job,but we’d lived in Thailand for several years now and we all knew that time was really little more than an abstract idea of Westerners and need not apply to most things in the Land Of Smiles.

The work went alone fairly smooth, it got hot and Knoc took off his shirt, we both immediately noticed that Knoc had several LARGE tatoos across his chest and back. We inquired and he told us they were Buddhist and gave him much “power”. Knoc also had a hand full of “lucky” amulets hung around his neck on a chain, a bullet which would keep him free of getting shot, a snake fang, which would protect him from getting bitten by snakes, a little piece of leather, which somehow kept his from being crushed by an elephant, a medallion of a person he called “the head monk” and a small fish hook which would keep him safe while fishing!

Guitar Noi had a chain also which only had a small buddha enclosed in plastic.

Although we did not use the bright pink paint the Maid thought would be best, our beige painted ceiling seemed to go well with the bamboo we had covered the lower walls with.

Patong Patty had several TOT posters framed, we really liked the one with all the tropical fruits of Thailand and several others that gave the bamboo covered walls an artsy flair.

After several days of this remodel, which also including Knoc taking a large hammer and dismantling the two foot high king size bedframe made of cement blocks, covered with cement, we later made this room a small kitchen, but on hindsight, we ate 95% of our meals along Patong Beach…

After paying Knoc and Guitar Noi their wages, we went over to Nois house and his wife Lek showed Patong Patty where fried cashews with chili and salt came from! Noi had a cashew tree in his yard, after Lek and Patong Patty picked the cashews with the red fruit off their tree, Patty noticed the acid from the cashews had burned her hands, they didn’t hurt, but they were discolored for a week or so, after that she picked the cashews from the tree with gloves on…

When Guitar Noi mentioned to his wife Lek about our “teaching babies to swim” apparatus, we all laughed and laughed…

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