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Me and Pu (pronounced Bhoo)

Pu is a lady who hails from Laos to the east of Thailand. We met on Koh Tao in April 2005 and have been very close ever since. I moved to Thailand in September 2005 to do an English teaching course and Pu and I have been happily living together ever since.

In March 2006 we went to Laos and applied for a holiday visa for Pu to come to Australia. Whilst there we went to a photo studio and below is one of the many pictures we had taken. The visa was granted and we spent a great 2 months in Adelaide, Cairns and Sydney returning to Laos on the 9th of May.

Geez I cut a handsome figure don't I?

As I post this to the web we are in Laos (June 06) putting in an application for a prospective spouse visa. We have spent 4 weeks running around getting a stack of papers together for DIMIA (Australian immigration). We had an interview on the 9th of June and we will shortly return to Chiangmai Thailand to await the outcome. (The prospective spouse visa was finally granted on September 11th 2006)

Whilst living in Lampang in early 2006 we loved to relax at the end of the day with a beer on the front porch of the "shophouse". Although the shophouse was a great place to live we decided to move back to Chiangmai so that I could access a lot more facilities for english speakers who aren't fluent in Thai.


Finally....a Visa!!

Well here it is October the 22nd 2006 and these pages are a little behind. 
I left Thailand on the 31st of August after months of waiting around in Chiangmai waiting for word on Pu's visa. On my way home I had a brief stopover in Singapore and checked my email to find an email from DIMA's Bangkok office informing us that we needed one more piece of paper signed by Pu and that the visa would then be granted... GREAT !!! We could've done this weeks before and I'd been telling them for weeks that I had to leave as my ticket was expiring. To cut a long story short, I typed out the required statement and emailed it to a friend,Lee, in Chiangmai who printed it up, got Pu to sign it and posted it off to BKK. On the 11th September we received an email from the BKK embassy informing us that the visa was granted. (from date of application to visa being granted took exactly 4 months so compared to most we have been lucky).
In a mad flurry we organised a flight for Pu 2 days later. Pu then had the task of packing up our room, getting to BKK and finding her way to the embassy to get her visa stamp inserted in her passport before dashing back to the airport to get the plane to Cairns via Hong Kong. A daunting task as most airport signs were in Thai/English and Chinese English respectively. 
Pu arrived in Australia on the 14th of September without any major mishaps except perhaps that her suitcase looked like an elephant had sat on it and the wheels were broken.

In the meantime I was confirming employment details for Mutitjulu (near Uluru/Ayers Rock) in Central Australia and it was originally planned for the 18th of September but I needed to have an excision of a skin cancer from my forehead and skin grafting to the area and so my start date was changed to the 25th of September so that I could recover from that. 

Now Pu and I had been planning to marry for ages and we were going to do it in Laos but this proved to be a helluva lot harder than it should be so we put it off till we were both back in Australia. So we had previously lodged a notice of intention to marry so we had well and truly complied with the waiting period and there was nothing to stop us doing it now.

Pu and I were married on the foreshore at Machans beach just north of Cairns on Wednesday the 20th of September.  It probably seemed a quick thing for many people but as I say we had been wanting to for a while and part of the rush was that until we were married Pu was unable to have a medicare card, open a bank account or access free English lessons until after we were married and the next stage of the visa process was applied for. 

The wedding went off well and in front of a small gathering of good friends we did the deed.
Just in case you don't believe it here's the pictures.

The maid of honour had to be tied up in the back of the ute ...


Beforehand Nick was looking charming with a dressing on his head so brother John kindly donated a hat....


Looking a little pensive...














Brother John held the rings...




Uh Oh, what's going on  to our left...?


It's Ok it's just Stella with the confetti....




The signing...there's no going back now....

Now its official...



With Family...


And Friends....


Now Mr and Mrs McBride can relax....