Weighing in on Bangkok: a Retrospective

(Since the holidays have kept me from writing for several days now, I’ve decided to offer a retrospective, of sorts, hoping a peek at past posts would offer decent reading in the meantime. 

The piece below was written nearly two years ago–January 4, 2009–just after this blog was born under another name.  Sara and I were living in Kentucky.  I was teaching writing at a local university, and Sara was considering a return to disaster response work that was expected to take us to Bangkok.  Initially this blog was meant to chronicle that adventure. 

In the post below, I’m moaning about a diet I’d begun as part of a New Year’s resolution.)

Okay, I got on the scales this morning–big mistake!  It may be that we are about to embark on a grand and exotic Asian adventure, but, God knows, I can’t do it fat!  I simply can not walk the streets of Bangkok like this–all 173 bulging pounds of me.

This is how it all went down.  Sara and I had agreed we would weigh on Sunday.  I had begun dieting a week ago but was too afraid to step on the scales.  Sara is to start watching what she eats on Monday.  Sunday then seemed a reasonable day to determine what we weighed.  While I may be a chicken shit when it comes to actually quantifying my size, once the decision is made to put a number on the situation, I want to get the pain over with as quickly as possible.  So when we woke up at 2 this morning to take the dogs out for their middle of the night pee, I brought the scales into our bedroom, as the floor in the bathroom slants too badly to weigh accurately in there, and proceeded to strip naked, because God forbid I weigh even an ounce more than necessary.  I even removed my glasses and seriously considered doing without a barrette but decided it unwise to try reading the numbers both blind and with hair falling in my face.  Then, stepping on the scales like the most over-sized contestant on the Biggest Loser, I was told I weighed a mere 75 somethings or other.  Now I may not have a completely realistic sense of what I weigh, but I did feel fairly certain I hadn’t been 75 pounds since I was seven.  And, of course, being without glasses I was unable to get the stupid scales to stop reading in kilograms and begin weighing in pounds, as I stood shivering and blind in a drafty 100-year-old house–not able to weigh having made the big decision to do so.  This did not sit well with me.  So Sara, who knows my inclination for throwing fits and was herself sitting warm and fully PJ-ed under the covers of our bed–decided to intervene.  After playing with the thing for a few long and chilly minutes and asking me where I had put the manual–when in fact she is the manual keeping half of this relationship–got the apparatus reading in pounds again.  You know something is not right with the universe when a book of directions is necessary for figuring out scales.

To make a long blog a little shorter, let it suffice to say I weighed a good many pounds more than I wished.  So I am an Asian bound woman on a mission.  I will not walk the streets of a Thai city like this.  I may be willing to wear my glasses the next time I weigh, but I will not make a big fat spectacle of myself on the sidewalks of Bangkok.

(Sara returns to Haiti soon, so in a few days postings should resume normally.)

15 thoughts on “Weighing in on Bangkok: a Retrospective

      • I’m a couple of months in. Am mostly reading in order, but occasionally get lured by interesting tags to jump around in time. In case you’re wondering, I’m reading the posts on my phone when I can’t sleep at night.

        I can’t think of particular posts (my short-term memory is shocking!), but I think definitely some of those where you describe life in Vietnam are interesting. I always find culture differences fascinating.

        There was one about a train trip between Hanoi and and Ho Chi Minh City.

        I remember there was one where you mentioned a holiday in post-Tsunami Thailand. With the anniversary of the 2004 Tsunami just behind us, that might be one to consider. Although I can’t remember how extensively you wrote about it.

        Sorry, that’s not much help to you . . .


      • Thanks, Lisa. I should actually read back through that material myself. I can think of a couple about the cultural differences–and, yes, the train post probably was interesting–if the post is anything like the journey itself–really interesting! I’ll take a look.

        By the way, my short-term memory is really bad also!


  1. Kathy–
    funny, true, and funny some more.
    I have not been on my scale in several months. Apparently, it was after pissing me off.
    so…now my favorite jeans are my “barometer”…


  2. I’m a shrinking clothes person. In fact, I was just noticing that and commenting to myself last night. For some reason, I seem to be going through an “always eating” phase. It is showing. I guess I have one more thing to add to my “new year changes” list.


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