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December 2019

A publication by the Samutprakarn International Ladies’ Club












Hello Ladies Greetings!



Yes it is that time of the year again when we are all celebrating. For some of us, it is the celebration of the biggest religious festival of the year and for others it is simply a celebration for the end of term and a holiday to look forward to. All of us though will hopefully be celebrating by spending time with family and friends. I do hope you will be celebrating with SILC too at our Christmas Lunch on Thursday 12th at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Asok. We are expecting a visit from the man in red himself to hear your wishes, Christmas carols, seasonal games and festive photos! Plus we have further cause for celebration; Read all about our exciting fundraisers and just how much we raised in this newsletter. It is amazing just how much a difference our small ladies club can make thanks to all of your enthusiasm and time (and your spending!).

Merry Christmas everyone and see you in the New Year.

y e c Tra



* thb

That’s the fantastic amount we raised at this years SILC Bazaar! * This figure includes the cost for producing our fabulous teatowels that we will continue selling during the year ahead

A huge thank you to everyone that made this happen - our ladies who worked behind the scenes doing administration, those who volunteered on the day, manning the SILC concession tables and everyone who supported us by shopping at the Bazaar, donating second hand items and providing baked items for us to sell.

In the coming months, this money will be distributed to worthwhile community projects in and around the Bangkok area. We will keep you up to date with how it’s being spent- expect to see lots of happy faces of the recipients in the next newsletter!

Self Defence Class





Craft club

Pilates Macarons



Craft club

Wednesday 4

Thursday 5









6 Mahawong Christmas Party

Mahjong Yoga



Prakkasamai Christmas Party

Christmas Lunch

Mahjong Yoga






















Public Holidays School Holidays

THINK PINK TENNIS TOURNAMENT “Thank you and your colleagues for so kindly arranging this event and for raising 140,640 Baht for the work of the Queen Sirikit Centre for Breast Cancer Foundation who work with the poorest breast cancer patients . The funds will support the Pink Park project which is a Centre offering care to the most underprivileged patients, giving opportunities to recover from breast cancer and to receive treatment and rehabilitation both physically and emotionally, away from their desperately poor homes in slum communities . Pink Park will also be a sanctuary for patients who are near the end of their lives and need a place to pass away in a clean environment, pain free and with dignity . Twenty years of experience working in the slum communities of Bangkok , screening for breast and cervical cancer at the QSCBC has shown the urgent need for Pink Park. Thank you for your continued support.�

Khunying Finola Chatamra Hon Advisor Queen Sirikit Centre and Foundation for Breast Cancer and Foundation.


Learn the art of making French macarons, a meringue-based confection. These little treats are not only pretty to look at, but are bursting with intense flavour. Priscilla will teach you how to create this popular French dessert from scratch, and you will be rewarded with beautiful thin shelled macarons to take home to share with your family and friends. Ingredients, tools and recipes provided. Tuesday, December 3rd | 9:30 am - 13:00 pm| near Asoke BTS | 1,000 THB RSVP: silc.activities@gmail.com


CHRISTMAS PARTY AT THE PRE-SCHOOLS! The craft mornings with the kids always involve laughing, dancing and (the best part) hugs! We go once a month to do crafts with them that support their learning in the English Program. This month it is their Christmas parties. So come and join us for Christmas themed crafts, carols, present giving and lots of fun and laughter.

Mahawong: Friday 6th at 9:00 - 11:00 Prakkasamai: Wednesday 11th at 9:00 - 11:00

RSVP: silc.community@gmail.com Many of the ladies who volunteer are happy to offer lifts, if you need one!

MAHJONG Our group of Mahjong ladies is growing steadily and ranges from novices to experts. We meet most Wednesdays at members’ houses. Please get in touch if you would like to join us! silc.mahjong@gmail.com

CRAFT CLUB Most Mondays a group of enthusiastic and creative ladies get together to do crafts. Come join us. Everyone is welcome and no experience is necessary!

We take it in turns to meet at members’ houses so please contact silccraft@gmail.com to find out more.

CALLING ALL KNITTING LOVERS We are doing woolly hats for patients in the cancer wards at the government hospital. If you love knitting join our “crafty ladies” or if you prefer to knit in your own time, please help us to knit some hats and donate them. Send us a message to: silccraft@gmail.com

Yoga If low impact, good posture and respiratory techniques is your thing; join us every week. Wednesday | 9:00 am - 10:15am | Near On Nut BTS | Fee 200 THB Please contact silc.activities@gmail.com

Golf If you’d like to try or are a regularly player, get in touch to you join our SILC ladies that meet in 2 different locations to help the convenience. Please contact: silc.activities@gmail.com

Tennis Perhaps you last played at school or maybe you play regularly. Whatever your level, please get in touch and we can find you a tennis partner. Please contact: silc.activities@gmail.com

Pilates Low impact and strength building, pilates is perfect for all. Join us weekly with a Certified STOTT teacher. Tuesday | 8:00 am - 9:00 am St. Andrews 107 (Bearing BTS) | Fee 350 THB Please contact: silc.activities@gmail.com


Our November Photography Workshop was a full morning of information, learning and enlightenment in the art of taking a great photo. Using both real cameras and I-phones, we looked at techniques and apps that can really bring that ‘perfect picture’ to life. We then put our new knowledge into action on a walk and shoot activity, looking at familiar things with a fresh eye. Thanks go to our fantastic teacher, Dennie Cody, who even presented us with our very own black and white portrait.

Loy Krathong Workshop Learning how to make Krathongs at Jimmy’s was a blast! Jimmy’s dining table was scattered with toothpicks, incense sticks, candles, scissors, banana leaves and pretty flowers. Jimmy was an extremely patient and lenient teacher, who gently guided each participant. It was a very enjoyable session with lots of laughter and chatter. Everyone tried hard to make their Krathong as pretty as possible. Individual creativity shone through at the end of the session, when each participant showed off their work art.

For a perfect closure of November, some members joined the Karaoke night. The place was the ideal spot as it provided a relax and family atmosphere. Everyone had a go, there were even duos, and some hidden “singers” between our members!! Great songs, food, drinks, and even a “Christmas Tuk Tuk” photo as a souvenir for the night.

This month we celebrated the traditional Thai festival of Loy Kratong with our local pre-schools. The children, in colourful traditional dress, prepared beautiful kratongs using all their cutting, sticking and creative skills with a little help from our enthusiastic volunteers. The kratongs were floated in the little stream around the school or taken home as proud souvenirs. Thank you to everyone who joined us and special thanks to our young volunteers at Mahawong- we couldn’t have done it without you!

Santa’s helpers are very busy tying colorful ribbons, to nicely decorate each gift ensuring that they are all perfect for delivery this 6th and 11th of December to the pre-school kids.

TEA TOWELS Painstakingly drawn by pen and ink by Vera Canters

There are 2 designs - ‘People of Thailand’ and ‘Places of Thailand’ - 200 thb each If you couldn’t join the bazaar and want them for gifts or for yourself, there are still available: silctreasurer@gmail.com

! DECISIONS After a 20 year long journey all over Asia and Eastern Europe, there came the time to make a life changing decision. Let me explain ourselves a little more before I start this story. We, Marieke and Huib, are a Dutch couple, married for 31 years and the very proud parents of two grown sons. We started our expat life when the boys were 6 and 9 years old. We’ve lived in Prague, Shanghai, Manila, Guangzhou, Shanghai again, Kiev, The Hague, Shenzhen and Bangkok. Huib started working for Tesco in Bangkok in October 2016 and we were supposed to be there for 4 years. Unfortunately the company started to reorganize after just 10 months of the contract, and usually it’s last in, first out. Which is exactly what happened. We stayed in Bangkok for quite some time after he stopped working, but inevitably life got too expensive in Ekkamai and we had to make a decision. We did the visa runs on tourist visa for a year and the last time we came back to Bangkok, we were almost denied access. You can imagine my panic: our apartment in Bangkok was filled with our own furniture and all the memories of 20 years abroad, and if they wouldn’t let us in anymore, who would take care of packing up etc.? We applied for and got a retirement visa and decided to move to a place that had cleaner air, a slower pace and a beach. Conducting job interviews are initially always through Skype or Facetime anyway, so it really doesn’t matter where you physically are at any given moment. We’d been to Koh Lanta several times for a short holiday, flying to Krabi from Don Mueang and taking a minivan from there. The ferry will take you to Lanta. The entire journey takes about half a day, the drive from Krabi airport to the island is around 2 hours, including a very rustic short trip on a ferry boat.

The island is pretty unspoiled. There are no nightclubs yet. There is no sex industry yet. There are too many restaurants and places to stay. I deliberately say too many, as there is a very short high season here: from November until January and after that is pretty much back to local. So many establishments close down in May, to open again in October. People leave during this time as well. We moved to Lanta on May 3rd. We hadn’t realized things going the way they do at the island, so our house is located pretty much all the way down south, where hardly anybody comes during low season. What a fabulous peace and quiet here! In June you could shoot a canon in the streets without hitting anybody. Except some monkeys perhaps. Monkeys are a pest on the island. Definitely NOT cute. We have the long tailed macaques here and rumor has it, that they moved a couple of truckloads of them from Krabi (much more touristic) to our island, to get rid of them. They breed faster than rabbits it seems. Our landlady told us that the government has started a sterilization program at the National Forest, all the way down south of the island, as there were too many accidents with monkeys. It helps that the Pimalay Resort complained.

This is a 5 star resort very close to our compound, partly owned by the Royal Family. So if Pimalay complains, action is taken. Roads are fixed, monkeys are being neutered etc. Life on an island sounds idyllic and it pretty much is, provided that you can make it work with just the two of you.

Every month we make a road trip to Krabi to go to Makro. And actually only to buy unsweetened yoghurt and meat. We take our chill boxes with ice packs and go after ‘rush hour’ (the ferry can be busy early mornings), have lunch in Ao Nang, do our shopping and drive back. I love to cook and we usually eat at home in the evenings.

We bought an old Toyota, because the motorbike is wonderful here but the distance to Saladan from our house is too long, about a 45 minutes drive on very bad roads in the blistering sun. The car has a dual function for me: it is a comfy and safe means of transport and if I get overheated, I just go for a drive with the aircon on full blast. It’s hot and humid here… There is no aircon in any of the living areas, only in the bedrooms. So ironing is another favorite pastime for me: I use the guest room for ironing and of course with the cold air flowing! Our house overlooks Kantiang Bay. From our terrace we look at Koh Ha floating around in the Andaman Sea, closed during low season but just reopened again for snorkeling and diving trips. Koh Ha (5) contains 5 small islands around which you have a great variety of fish and rocks, caves and other interesting things to see underwater.

All other stuff you need is available on the island. There is a market every day. Each day of the week on a different, but set location, so that everybody has access. Fruits, veggies, fish, seafood, eggs, food stalls, some non food stalls. I love wandering past all the stalls and buy what we need. They now know that we live on the island and when they see me, someone always starts yelling “no plastic”! I take my little laundry nets for tomatoes, grapes, mushrooms etc. with me, and I have shopping bags for all the rest. It caused quite a few hilarious moments in the beginning, women looking at these bra bags wondering why on earth I put mushrooms in them. But now they all know and they all appreciate you not using any plastic bags. It is a simple life here. Although neither of us ‘work’, we are never bored. The beaches are beautiful, the people easy going, the weather is predictable, the sea is always something to look at as an ever-changing picture.

Sunsets never get boring.

On Sunday afternoons between 4 and 6 pm we volunteer with Trash Heroes. This is a non profit organization that cleans up beaches (or small islands) every week another part of the long stretches of beach around the island. We usually get around 30 volunteers and pick up around 20 bags of rubbish. What we can recycle goes to the recycle shed on the island, the rest is just put with the rubbish on the side of the road. It is very rewarding to look at all these bags of rubbish around 6 pm, with a gin and tonic to look forward to after. We go to the gym every other day and I help at the Lanta Animal Welfare center here. This is a wonderful organization which shelters wounded or abandoned animals. A bit like Soi Dogs. The locals support them as well, they get the medical treatments for their animals for free if they can’t pay, provided that the vet is allowed to sterilize. The shelter has a very good clinic, the only one for 5 islands. They do a ‘mobile clinic’ as well, going to 4 surrounding islands to pick up strays and to help locals take care of their animals. They shelter dogs and cats, but treat cows and goats as well.

Or kites, or monitor lizards, slow lorises, or whatever is brought in wounded. Of course we have adopted a kitty as well: our little Koh is now 7 months old and we are totally in love. I am guessing Lanta will follow at some point…. We don’t miss Bangkok really. We do go back once in a while, either for a conference (husband) or an overnight stay with friends before a flight to somewhere else. We truly enjoy being back in the big city for a couple of days, but I can honestly say it drove me crazy last time. The smell, the noise, the pollution, the traffic. I don’t miss that. I sometimes miss my friends, the Mah Jong games, SILC trips and things like that. And a shopping mall…. That is something I do miss. Not that I went there so much, but if you don’t have them, it’s weird. I loved wandering around shops in a nice, clean, way too air conditioned shopping mall! Neither of us has regretted the decision to move to an island. We do hope there will be another interesting job in the foreseeable future, but if it takes another year, we’re not sorry really. Life is truly wonderful here. At the moment we have friends over, December will be very busy with guests as well. If any of you SILC ladies is interested in coming to Koh Lanta, you can always ask me for advice on where to stay. Or even use our guest room! Wishing you all wonderful holidays and a bright and shiny New Year, All the best

Marieke Kraaijeveld

We need you!! Do you have skills that would like to keep sharpening? Would like to do something that will positive impact others, with your free time? Our club has lots different opportunities that you might like to explore - membership, finance, marketing and activities all need organising and we are always looking for volunteers. Or maybe you could see yourself as the next Chair or Vice Chair of SILC? Get in touch and have a chat! Contact: silcchair@gmail.com

SHORT TERM PROJECT Do you know your way around Excel or Google Sheets and like chatting with people? If so please could you help us with a small short term project? Please contact: silcchair@gmail.com

Jane Campton

Kinna Mills

Sonica Jindal

Joy Smuthwate

Shirley Chan

December Birthdays: ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ●

Alex Rogan Amelia Deely Irma Leiler Jane Campton Kanako Kuwahara Mayuri Baishya Melanie Kupiec Ricoh Bosati Rikako Fukushima

● ● ● ● ● ●

Sachiko Vithoontien Sayamal Matikornkul Shulpi Banerjee Tanya Lyngdoh Terusa Kuba Vicky Chou

Sorry if we have missed including your birthday. You might have omitted to provide it in the enrollment form ? Please update your information to silcthai@gmail.com

AIMS & POLICIES Organisation of the Club SILC creates an opportunity for women of all nationalities living in Samutprakarn and Bangkok to meet and participate in a variety of activities. We invite members to join monthly events and interest groups. Members pay an annual fee of 1000 Baht from September till August each year. We also have a half yearly option of 500 Baht from February till August. Privacy The membership list is for the sole use of SILC members in a social setting and may not be used for commercial purposes. E-Newsletter The e-newsletter is published ten times a year with articles and information on club activities. Contributions are welcome and can be sent to the newsletter editor. Committee Meetings These are held the second Monday of each month and are open to all members. Please inform the SILC Chair if you wish to attend. All SILC events are subject to change. Please confirm your attendance with the relevant contact, and advise of any cancellation as soon as possible so another member may take your place.

Committee Contacts Chair Secretary Treasurer Membership Community Projects Activities E-Newsletter & Ads General Administration

silcchair@gmail.com silcsecretary@gmail.com silctreasurer@gmail.com silcthai@gmail.com silc.community@gmail.com silc.activities@gmail.com silcmagazine@gmail.com silcbangkok@gmail.com

ADVERTISE HERE! SILC News goes every month to over 200 SILC members throughout Bangkok. Advertisements for charge.

non-profit community events are welcome and free of

Personal advertisements for SILC members will be distribute free of charge. Email reminders for SILC members and non-profit community events will be sent out free of charge; other events must be advertised in our magazine. RATES


Full Page Half Page Quarter Page

1500 Baht 800 Baht 400 Baht

Member - 25%


3000 Baht per year

Only one discount may be applied.

Annual contract (10 ads/year) - 10%

Advertising requests and payment must be received prior to the published deadline. To advertise in the Newsletter, please contact: silcmagazine@gmail.com To advertise on the SILC Website, please contact: silc.websites@gmail.com To arrange payment, please contact: silctreasurer@gmail.com

www.instagram.com/silc_bangkok www.facebook.com/SILCBangkok www.silcbangkok.com SILC News Copy Deadline for e-Newsletter:

December 12th If you have any activities, events, book reviews, recommendations for holidays or items for our bulletin board please forward them to the Newsletter Editor: silcmagazine@gmail.com

Profile for SILC Newsletter

SILC News December 2019  

Find inside information for our SILC Christmas Lunch, Christmas Party at the pre-schools, and a yummy activity for December. Take a quick lo...

SILC News December 2019  

Find inside information for our SILC Christmas Lunch, Christmas Party at the pre-schools, and a yummy activity for December. Take a quick lo...