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I’m reminded of the words of Edmund Burke, as I sit and reflect on my return to Mae Sot.

Now, I would slightly alter this quotation for the sake of fairness.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good PEOPLE to do nothing.

When I visited Mae Sot a few months ago, I made some pretty rash and incorrect judgements based on what I had experienced over a period of a month.  Some of those experiential thoughts remain with me, but I am willing to openly admit I was wrong about some.

Once again, I must volunteer to eat humble pie, as I have many times in my life.

My state of mental health is no excuse for my mistakes and I will not hide behind that for one  moment.  Fact is, sometimes I am a bad tempered so and so.  I am often thoughtless, I often let my motor mouth off the leash before engaging my brain, or more importantly MY HEART.

I was having a discussion with a friend yesterday about the need for us all to take care of our own mental health, otherwise we cannot be a support to others.  I stand by that, even when that may mean saying NO to a call for help.  Unfortunately, this may seem selfish…..but is it?  If taking care of your own needs temporarily, energizes you to be able to help others, is that a bad thing?

What do you think?

Paradigm shifting as Stephen Covey writes about, (paraphrasing again) is the change of feeling which we might experience in the light of greater understanding and knowledge.

Yesterday I had two such “shifts”.

Someone I had met in Mae Sot a few months ago, who had been helping me with some printing projects had apparently, I felt, become “distant”.

When I arrived here, I was told that he had really been having a difficult time with work pressures and, these are my words “hit the wall” (a term often used by marathon runners).  On hearing this my feelings went from coldness to empathy and concern.

On my last trip, I had been given the absolute honour of being able to assist in a new project with Youth Connect in setting up a Hair Salon to facilitate a source of income and also to aid the training of young people who want to be in this profession.

Being remote from Mae sot for a few months, I had been asking for updates on how the project had progressed, but I had been given very little information, and started to wonder if this had been a bad decision on my part.

Consequently, on meeting with the principal staff at YC, and feeling a bit negative, I was preparing to wade in with pointed questions to try and get the project moving.  Little did I know that I was being kept in the dark, as some folk wanted to surprise me.  I went from sadness to sheer joy, on seeing what had been achieved, a modest salon almost ready to open, and with a list of clients waiting to have their hair done!!!

Have you ever felt these kinds of changes of perception?

I’m not really sure that there is much cohesion in these remnants of my mind, but they certainly all left their mark.

And here’s further evidence of how I can be so wrapped up in my own thoughts.  I was having lunch with my friend yesterday in Mae Sot, and was asked how the “Brexit” referendum had  manifested at home.  I waffled on for a bit and said that David Cameron was working his notice, when my friend said,

“What do you mean Theresa May is Prime Minister, she took over two weeks ago!!!”

All I can say is that I was so embarrassed, I had travelled 7000 miles to hear of a change of  leadership in my own country!!!!…….Have I had my body contorted, pretzel style, so much that my head has been firmly lodged in my own backside????????

Well, that just shows you, I am probably far LESS than just an ordinary bloke!!!

I wish you all peace, love and hope.



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