Happy Sunday, Bangkok!
What a week it’s been – what with half of Leicester City touring through rush hour, the controversial live video streaming of an suicide stand-off, and the closure of Koh Tachai to tourists, Thailand has been in her fair share of international news stories this week.
Of course, much of that has been overshadowed by other news from around the globe – the scheduled execution in Singapore that was stopped at the eleventh hour, and the tragic disappearance and crash of EgyptAir flight MS804, which was carrying 66 people.
At the time of writing, some debris from the plane had been recovered and there was rife speculation regarding the cause.
As always, however, the world keeps on spinning and day-to-day life keeps on going. At least from where we can see it, in Bangkok.
Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have. – Eckhart Tolle
Here are some of the week’s best new stories, blogs, videos, tweets and photos.
One for the climate change deniers – many varieties of coral have suffered severe bleaching in the waters around Koh Phi Phi thanks to high sea temperatures of over 30° Celsius. Experts are calling on officials to close off certain marine areas in Phi Phi national park in order to stop any further human damage to the fragile marine life.
An Egyptian man carrying 5kg of cocaine was intercepted at Suvarnabhumi airport as he flew into Bangkok from Dubai. The drugs had a reported street value of ฿15 million, and the mule was paid ฿35,000 for his courier services.
A chicken rice vendor beat and stabbed a soi dog to death in the Ramkhamhaeng neighbourhood last month after the dog bit the vendor’s son under provocation. He was sentenced to 4 months imprisonment, which was later commuted to just two months on temporary release – meaning that he can either serve his sentence in detention or in his own home. Soi Dog Foundation were disappointed with the sentencing, expecting 2 years inside and a fine.
A self aware and well written, if a tad cynical, view of teaching English in Thailand. It examines the reality of a teacher’s impact on the lives of their students, the arguably poor conditions and pay, and how being a good employee doesn’t necessarily equal being a good teacher.
This post has certainly riled a few teachers in the Thailand system (check out the comments section for an entertaining bonus!) but has also struck a chord with many.
A good look at a trip to a ladyboy ping pong show in Phuket’s Patong by A Nihilist Abroad. While it’s an interesting and funny piece, our favourite part is the accompanying photos – a fascinating insight into daily life in this tourism hotspot.
The author has come to the conclusion that, after 15 years in Thailand no less, this country is no longer ‘for men only’ and that foreign women “are now nearly as commonplace as foreign men.” Holy smokes!
Happily, he concludes that foreign women have just as much reason to visit Thailand as foreign men, and that he doesn’t begrudge anyone the happiness that Thailand provides. Goody.
We stumbled across this small website a few days ago – it’s essentially a run down of all the practical things to consider before moving to Bangkok and what to focus on when you first arrive. It covers everything from visas, buying property, relocating kids to the best neighbourhoods for expats and popular jobs.
A handy resource for anyone considering a move to Bangkok.
This Reddit thread asks just how important is the occupation of your Thai significant other is: would you date a noodle seller? A farmer? An office worker?
Responses vary here from “she must work cashier”, to wider discussions on how you should be connecting on a level that transcends work, to the merits of dating within your social class, to how this question could be asked anywhere in the world.
Aside from a few Macho Man responses, it transpires that many commenters on this Thaivisa thread are in fact a little scared of their significant others from time to time. There’s lots of Thai wife caricatures here: knives, jealousy and the fear of coming home to an empty house and empty bank account are mentioned a few times.
Tips for dealing with the fear include:
Hilarious. It all kicks off from 2:20
Thank God I don’t eat cheese anymore. Certainly can’t afford it in Thailand.
— Phil / Ajarn.com (@Ajarncom) May 15, 2016
After one week back in the US, the thing I miss most about #Thailand?
The bum guns.
— Bob James (@NotThatBobJames) May 15, 2016
Bangkok’s Em Quartier supermarket: a place that will sell you oysters flown in that day from France. But not light bulbs
— Jerome Taylor (@JeromeTaylor) May 15, 2016
That’s been The Week On Sukhumvit – see you next time!
Featured image is from ‘Little Britain’ via bbc.co.uk