Week 4 already? Hard to believe it’s almost been a month since I landed here, also during all this time we had only 4 days on set. Crazy. Never happened to me before, but I suppose film industry is very unpredictable and that’s one of those things I love about it. So. Let’s get on with it. 

Week 4 was by far the quietest time for me here as we did not have a single shooting day, so really most of the stuff I’ve got up to was non work related.

Sunday I was still a bit unwell after all the heat and over-watching Netflix for the past 3 days. I am not that great with moderation as I keep realising time and time again. So, I head to the office to catch up with my prep as we already had final two episodes released and being surrounded by people helps to get me out of my misery. Day was short and sweet, however all of my office (more like the reason I go to prep at the office) was set to leave on tech recces and scouts from Monday, which meant, I was free to prep at my own time while they were way. Great.

On Monday I finally went to check out my local Pilates Reformer studio (“Absolute you”) I have been eying for a while. I decided to join the 7.30am class as all the other times that day were fully booked already. The first impression of the studio was ok, pink balloons and a relatively large room with around 20 beds and mirrors all around. Had a bit of a commercial feel rather that the small boutique. I kinda expected that so I didn’t mind. The instructor spoke good English and I think the only reason she did, was because I was there (the only European person in the room, also the largest). I appreciated that for sure. It was nice to be back on the reformer and moving in familiar ways, however the bed itself was pretty different from what I have been on in the past. Luckily reformers are designed to be used in the similar way, so it was just a bit of the learning curve to familiarise myself with this one and the many “toys” it has going with it. Overall I had a good class and purchased another 20 hours which I will have to use in the next 2 months. 

On Tuesday I went for 7.30am class again and did 20+ laps in the pool in the evening. Pretty productive day in terms of self development, but not so much progress have been achieved on prepping the scripts though.

Wednesday there were no available classes at the studio so I took a day off from Reformer and had a swim in the evening instead. For the first time while I’ve been here, there were people hanging out by the pool in the dark while I was swimming. I still did my 40 laps, but it wasn’t as relaxing. Somehow people in the dark started giving me a bit of a creepy feel. Perhaps the scripts I am working on now had something to do with it, or maybe I am just getting older and wiser?

Thursday started with 7.30am class. After I went to the office, where I had a productive day working on the last minute script amendments. The rest of the team also came back from their recces so it was nice to have a little catch up. Also, crazy, ho much more productive I can be while working next to somebody, rather than doing it alone!

OK. SO. The highlight of this week was my weekend (Friday/Saturday) away with some colleagues. We literally booked one of those touristy package deals with a pick up from the hotel and let me tell you, wow, it was definitely far from being one of those typical excursions where on every corner someone tries to sell you something. It actually felt more like they were trying to make us feel that we are getting a lot for the money we paid. 

The trip itself is predominantly based around the history of Burma-Thailand rail road. I didn’t know anything about it, so it was extremely interesting. In short, it was build by various POWs to aid Japan in a WWII. I can’t remember the exact number, but thousands of people died constructing it, as they had to work in shifts for more that 16 hours a day in terrible living and working conditions. Hence the name – “Death rail”.

On Friday we visited Thailand – Burma railway centre museum, had a speedboat ride towards the river Kwai bridge, then another boat trip towards River Kwai Jungle Rafts accommodation for the night. Had dinner there, visited local Mon village and watched their traditional dance in the evening. Itinerary for the day really was packed, but at the same time it didn’t feel like we were rushed. After dark we sat outside on our floating terrace drinking wine and looking at the starts. Bangkok and work was so far away.

Saturday we started with a visit to Hellfire Pass Memorial, which was amazing. I mean the story behind it is shocking, but in my opinion the museum really does give it some justice. It is really modern, built by Australian POW, who survived building this railway for the Japanese and has a lot of easy to understand and read information. Also there is a 2.5 km trail along the train tracks which unfortunately we didn’t have time to take, but I am sure it would be very interesting. After we had lunch and took a train on the very “Death rail” all the way back to Bangkok. 

Stuff I found interesting:

  • Being the biggest person in the room in my reformer class. Never experienced that before, also could feel that instructors were also not sure how to handle my size. 
  • When we planned the trip it was supposed to be just the two of us. We ended up being a party of 6. Two of which were a husband and a son of one of the colleagues. We all got on very well, like some kinda big random family, with one man, a boy and 4 women of various ages.
  • Had a bit of an unintentional discussion with one of the guides from Mon village about women and he gave me one of the best, yet pretty disturbing quotes I’ve heard in a while. “Women destroy all the magic, because they have pussies”
  • Floating Raft accommodation did not have any electricity, yet it was still very cool at night, the beautiful white mosquito net covered all the corners of the comfy bed and I finally managed to have a good night sleep after my boyfriend left.
  • “Death rail” – out of original 400km stretched out in Thailand, only 180km are still being used. While on it we passed a lot of resorts and many happy, rich looking people. Somehow it felt incredibly wrong for all that privilege to be in such a close proximity to the symbol of pain, suffering and death. 
  • I bought a book/ diary of POW who survived construction in Hellfire pass. Cannot wait to read it.
  • Film Railway man is based on the story of the Thailand-Burma rail construction. Have not seen it, now want to watch it.

Cheers with a glass full of elephant for all those who are no longer with us.