Happy Sunday, Bangkok!
Another weird week in Thailand — there was a coup for environmentalists when it was announced that plastic would be banned from all of the country’s national parks, a panic when MRT fares threatened to rise by a baht until it was put off until October (time to start saving), and all the while Miss Universe contestants from New Zealand were found to be chilling out at the mysterious Phra Dhammakaya Temple just outside Bangkok.
So far, so normal.
Let’s see what else has been entertaining and enraging Bangkok this week…
- 1 News
- 2 Blogs
- 3 Forum Threads
- 4 YouTube
- 5 Twitter
- 6 Instagram
An apartment owner in Phuket took to social media this week to publish photos of a completely trashed room that he had apparently rented to a Chinese couple for two nights.
Strewn with rubbish, the room apparently stank something rotten too when the scene was discovered by the housekeeper following check-out.
Despite the couple apparently seeming polite and respectful when they checked into the room, the apartment owner claims to have seen (unverified) CCTV footage after the fact showing them bringing in garbage from outside into the room during the stay.
We’re chalking this up as a WTF Thailand Only incident…
A drunken brawl between a British man and his Thai wife in Lampang this week ended in a ‘bloodbath’ according to attending authorities, after the wife allegedly slashed a deep wound in a major artery on her husband’s left arm with a razor.
According to the wife, the 36-year old Brit, a Muay Thai student, came home drunk and she acted in self defence following a heated argument. The man was taken to a local hospital after the substantial blood loss.
After discovering ‘soft spots’ in the taxiways of Bangkok’s Swampy airport, the operator this week announced that up to 2.5 billion baht would be invested to repair the problem areas and replace the asphalt with sturdier concrete.
The soft spots are apparently due to ground subsistence, probably due to the fact that the airport was built on top of a swamp before it opened in 2006.
This major work will start in 2019 and is expected to last around 3 years in total.
Bangkok’s expat writing circles have been mourning this week at the death of Jerry Hopkins, a respected author and Rolling Stone veteran.
Hopkins, who penned No One Here Gets Out Alive — the 1980 Doors biography — died in Bangkok after a long illness. He lived here with his Thai wife, Lamyai, and is also survived by a son and a daughter.
As well as writing extensively about the music scene, Hopkins was known for his books on Bangkok’s dark side, including Thailand Confidential and Bangkok Babylon. Back in 2013, he said, “There’s a whiff of danger about Bangkok. I hate to romanticize dirt, but we’re talking whores and drugs and the fun things in life.”
If you’ve ever wondered how life differs for English teachers based in the provinces vs those in Bangkok, this blog post on Ajarn is for you. Phil Hall here tells the story of his adventures and obstacles to finally becoming an English teacher in Kalasin, Open University degree in hand.
What to expect: King Cobra snakes, the UK being mistaken for Ukraine, being referred to as both ‘Fat Person’ and ‘Baldy’ without contrition, and a laughable lack of professionalism from all levels in the school hierarchy. A great read.
A fascinating Reddit survey here on how much Redditors in Thailand earn, both locals and expats. As is to be expected, there is a huge range of salaries and jobs enjoyed — from a 10,000 baht a month night auditor to university teachers making closer to 200,000 baht a month.
Perhaps the surprise here is how many expats are working in marketing, PR and product manager roles for a reasonable monthly salary (at least for Thailand!). This should be encouraging reading for anyone wondering if they can get a non-teaching job in Bangkok as a foreigner.
Another interesting discussion here on Reddit regarding the stigmas attached to living in certain places as a foreigner in Thailand. Of course, this isn’t a behaviour restricted to expats in Thailand: neighbourhood snobbery is a well documented phenomena all over the world.
The first commenter sums up the most common tropes:
- Pattaya for perverts
- Isaan for those that marry bargirls
- Chiang Mai for those that can’t afford Bangkok
- Islands for the unemployed
Are these fair? Of course not. Just like not every foreigner that lives in On Nut is a TEFL teacher or in Thonglor a snob. And yet the stereotypes continue to persist…
— Laura Takenaka (@TakenakaLaura) June 6, 2018
— Bangkok.eye (@krungthepeye) June 6, 2018
Last meal on death row pic.twitter.com/xKm42Stdkf
— Stickboy Bangkok (@StickboyBangkok) June 4, 2018
— BANGKOK CANARY (@BangkokCanary) June 6, 2018
— Retro Siam (@RetroSiam) June 3, 2018
Never show your anger in public because it makes it much easier for the person you are dealing with to say either ‘mai mee’ or ‘mai daay’ and then just watch you walk away.#ThaiCultureTips
— Phil / Ajarn.com (@Ajarncom) June 6, 2018
I’m astonished at how quickly @GrabTH went down the drain after @Uber_TH left the market. Totally useless. I’ll be buying a car within the week. Sayonara, clowns.
— Derek van Pelt (@dvpme) June 6, 2018
To those who think it’s weird that I keep pigeons in my flat, may I present to you, “แตงกวา” and “แกง”, the prairie dogs of Ari. pic.twitter.com/F85TZDzjSv
— Lillian Suwanrumpha (@TheLilyfish) June 6, 2018
Many mammals roll in sand or dirt, presumably to keep parasites away or to help dry themselves after exercise or becoming wet. #thailand #chiangmai #hug #elephant #bath #sand #jungle #forest #woods #green #blue #sky #bluesky #beautiful #nikon #picoftheday #photooftheday #photography #photo #nice #wonderful #globetrotter #travel #travelphotography #traveling #throwback #tbt
And that’s been The Week On Sukhumvit — see you next time!