Newsletter #6 Dec 2010

Tacomepai Newsletter Number 6

The ‘Happy Rice Harvest Festival (and Christmas)’ Edition

Greetings Friends,

And so, just to add the extra little bit of sparkle to your Christmas festivities, here is the next instalment of

‘life here at Tacomepai!’.

Recently at Tacomepai…

The new land is looking fabulous, all thanks to the fantastical Christine and Francis who sacrificed comfort, friends, and the opportunity to shower, in order to transform the farm from an overgrown jungle into a vegetable producing paradise. With their efforts, plus an extra dam built in the river, a soon to be built well and water pump, the new farm is well on its way to having long term residents and a proper reforestation programme.

Which is all extremely wonderful as our much loved Lucie and Leo from France are hopefully soon sending over the first volunteers from the PaiNai association We hope to see you soon!

Unless you have living in a small box with no outside communication (or have been to lazy to read our newsletters up to now) you should all be aware that we have just had our 4th Rice Harvest Festival. Much fun was had by all with good music, good food, and a lot of Tacomepai loveliness! Attempts were made to keep the farm an economic free zone during the festival, with exchange rather than trade, but the Baht won out in the end. We will try again next year.

Tacomepai coffee is here for the second year running! Orders will have to be placed fast as supplies are limited, (current value is approximately $23.69 per gram, due to the ridiculous amount of time spent picking, shelling, cleaning, drying, dehusking and roasting…). Interested buyers please get in touch.

Currently at Tacomepai…

Work is underway to prepare the farm for our next permaculture course (9th-24th January), with areas to

demonstrate design, garden work, building, composting, and more. We also have dates set for a third course

from 16th – 30th June 2011. Please spread the word, or if you can come join us for the course!

The local school is looking lovely after Sandot and a few willing Tacomepioneers took on the challenge to

design and plant an organic, permaculture vegetable garden. The garden is now being managed by the school children, and building work is ongoing. Thanks to Chris for all his dedication to this project.

Our good friend Na is also busy working hard on a building project in a village on the northern Myanmar

border. He hopes to complete a mud built school over the next few months, with the help of volunteers and



The Future…

As so the time has eventually arrived when our beloved Sandot is actually, seriously considering taking a

proper holiday! If all goes to plan he will be off adventuring the world (or at least beyond Pai) in the next

couple of months. So make sure you keep a look out for the long awaited bamboo aeroplane, and keep your

couches free in case he happens to drop by for a visit…

Arrivals and Departures….

Rumours have been drifting through the Tacomepai air that the elusive Mae Wong is set to return to her

deserted buffalo hut. We hope she travels safely, and not barbequed and marinated with spicy sauce,….

Silvia’s three pups are doing well, although Matt does not appear overly impressed with the situation.

And finally before we depart from your lives once more we’d like o say a big thankyou to Laura and her

family for donating yet again to our project.

Much love

Sandot and family and everyone else

Newsletter #3 July 2010

July 2010

‘The Global Warming is a ***t / Super Thanks Everybody’ Edition

Greetings lovely people,

I can’t believe it!!! It’s TacomePai Newsletter Time.


Recently at TacomePai,

After many long hours spent collecting seeds, potting compost, watering and watching things not grow, the young trees we have managed to produce have all been planted out on Tacomepai.These include teak, cotton, mango, papaya, jackfruit and redwood In addition, a farm near Pai cut down all their banana trees for more space to build guesthouse. Sandot was not going to sit by and watch the unnecessary death of so many trees so we collected all and replanted them at TacomePai. With these banana plants and the ones from the nursery over 200 have been planted within the last 6 weeks.

Mei Wongs (the buffalo’s) hut was built next to the upper rice fields in June. Mai Wong seems very pleased


Currently at TacomePai

The water shortage caused by global warming is affecting the farm in many different ways. For the last 2 months Banana’s have no longer been able to be consumed because their skins are cracking well before they are ripe. Sandots parents have assured us in their history on the farm and in the area this has never happened before.

The last month volunteers from tacomepai along with locals from around Ban Tin That have been busy preparing and planting in the rice fields. However the uncertainty of future rainy seasons has motivated Sandot to experiment with different forms of dry rice planting, hoping to find an effective way to reduce dependancy on water availability. If successful, Sandot will be able to pass this knowledge on to neighbouring villages to prepare for the upcoming years.

The Future

Sandot and the team will soon be busy upgrading the school house to make it a more versatile working environment. With our up and coming Permaculture course we need a spacious and functional learning area, and will be a good start towads developing the farm as a educational centre.

The development of Tacomepai as self sufficient and sustainable is progressing with the purchase of our first solar panal. This was intially planned to be used on the new land, but as we are still unable to develop there due to lack of funds, the panal will be installed at Cat’s house in the bottom rice field.

As just to be annoying and remind you all yet again (this will continue to happen for the next few months) we are having our Rice Harvest Festival on the 17th, 18th and 19th December, and our first permaculture course in October. If you can make it or think you can persuade your friends to come we will be delighted!

Check out our website for more info


Special thanks

A huge thank you to anyone who has stayed at TacomePai, whether it be for 1 day or 1 year. Your contribution no matter how small or large is greatly appreciated. Wether working in the rice fields, cooking for the people, playing guitar, teaching others yoga or simply patting matt the dog we thank you. Some people who have stayed have given more than expected and we would like to take this time to officially thank those people.

Christin Vidol from France who built the tree house, and made a major donation of 130,000 Baht towards the New Project

Stevo from Hawaii who donated what was needed to build the nursery house and nursery house water system

Laura Pipi Lemon from London who’s parents own a Thai Restaurant called Bedlington at 24 Fauconberg Rd, Chiswick, London. After telling her parents about Sandot’s Vision her parents vitited and donated 165,000 Baht that helped buy the new land for the New Project. Laura also intends to volunteer for 1 year with her boyfriend next year in August

Thank you Leon from England who donated 30,000 towards the New Project.

Mansaku Asano from Japan who donated 60000 baht to build the house for the New Project. He visited again in July wanting to see New Projects progress but was a little sad because we are still unable to plant at the new project until we can install the new water pump system (this is the main thing we need money for)

Before we go

From the responses from our last newsletter it seems some of you are still keen to help out where you can even if you can’t make it back to the farm for a while. We woul therefore like to make a plea for help, suggestions or advice on how to approach fundraising. Any experience or contacts would be very much appreciated as we are all fairly clueless on how to successfully go about this task.

And last but not least we would like to say our farewells and say a big lovely thankyou to Sam, Corado and Sarah, all big characters on the farm and who will be missed.


Right, that’s it for now. We will give you another exciting Tacomepai update next month (or whenever Matt can be bothered writing…).


Hope you all well and happy



Sandot and everyone else.

Newsletter #2 June 2010

Greetings lovely people,

It’s everybody’s favourite time, TacomePai Newsletter Time!

Before we inform you of the news from TacomePai we would like to thank all that responded to our previous and first edition of this Newsletter. Your words of appreciation were read with great delight.

Recently at TacomePai…..

The mango season has passed and what a blessed time it was. Throughout May over 400kg of mango’s were consumed gleefully at the farm and sold throughout Pai in Sadot’s Car dubbed ‘The Mango Mobile’. Many residents have become saddened now they have had to change their diet that consisted of up to 8 mangos a day. Most of us have accepted our lack of mango intake but if you find yourself around the kitchen at 6:30am you will usually find Cat screaming at the bananas ‘Why aren’t you mangos!’

Thanks to the effort and time of many, Matt’s (not the dog’s) house was completed in early May. Matt can be found most days down at his new house where he claims he is writing while many rumours suggest he spends the days drinking lao kao and sharpening his machete.

On the 26th of May, Sandot, Ajan Noi and 6 others from the farm squashed into Sandot’s car and headed south to Chiang Mai where they were greeted by a group of Thai Eco Warriors that call themselves ‘Agric Nature Farm.’ It was an amazing experience for all that were present and gave us a chance to raise awareness of what Sandot is doing at TacomePai. We were also able to bring up our thoughts regarding the excess of plastic used in Thailand and the group decided to bring this topic up at their next meeting in 2 months. They also quite liked our bamboo collection of cups, plates and spoons so much that they intend to use them in meetings in the future.

A new addition to the farm to help us plow the rice fields is Mai Wong the buffalo. Mai Wong enjoys grazing the paddock when the heat gets a little too much taking a swim in the natural pond.


An unfortunate departure from Tacomepai however has been the lovely Mong, who has moved on to the big city of Chiang Mai. The farm is definatly more quiet without him and his antics, but we hear he is doing well and is happy.

TacomePai at present….

Much time recently has been spent down the road from TacomePai at,  ‘The School Project’ that intends to teach local people efficient and eco friendly ways of farming. We have been busily building a garden in the village with a well, moat and bamboo hut, and had the grand opening on the 14th June which was a huge success.This is great progress towards Sandot’s vision of educating the local people towards protection of the forest and a more self sustainable future.

The arrival of Mai Wong was a positive and exciting moment for all, not excluding Mai Wong who was so excited she decided to knock over several fences down near the swimming pond. Building of new Mai Wong proof fences will be under construction soon.

The rain we have all been waiting is finally arriving, though it is still not as continuous as we would hope. Thanks Global Warming. We are busily planting as much from the nursery as we can both here and on the new farm.

Speaking of the new farm, a large focus currently is fundraising for the production of a well, 2 dams and 4 water towers with a drinking water filtering system. All together this should cost about $7000. With the delay of the monsoon in Ban Tin That it is imperative to get the infrastructure of the water system begun as soon as possible to allow future development of the land. If you would like to donate or could help us in any way with fundraising we would be greatly appreciative.


As you’ve hopefully already seen we are having our first Permaculture Course in October. If you would like to join the course or think you can help in any way towards advertising then please get in touch.

We have also set dates for our annual rice harvest festival……… 17th, 18th and 19th December. This is a proven three days of fun and festivities, so book your plane ticket now and come join us!

As TacomePai is becoming a home to more long term residents we are sorting out the paper work that will enable Sandot to provide work permits for anyone wanting to stay long time.


Before we go…

We love to hear from you, suggestions or comments good (bad, not so much). Your all  part of the family and we hope you can return to see us again, but  even if your stuck at home with no time off work there’s still so many ways to get involved and continue to support Sandot and the farm. So keep in touch!!

Hope your all well and happy


Love Sandot and everyone else