From How Much Money To Spend On Dowry In Thailand To 5 Signs It’s Time To Leave Pattaya

Sunday again, Bangkok!

Another raucous week in the Land of Smiles — we’ve seen a bizarre video of a woman selling whitening cream by showing her bare bottom, heard the macabre story of a Soi Cowboy worker strangled to death just steps away from the neon alley, and gotten excited for Southeast Asia’s largest IKEA to land in Bang Yai this March.

Let’s see what else has been entertaining and enraging Bangkok this week…


Nude New Yorker throwing poop at Phuket airport under influence of sleeping pills

The internets have been alight this week with the story of Steve Cho, a 27-year old American, who was found roaming Phuket International Airport naked, before defecating in the Departure Hall and attempting to throw said poo at staff and other passengers.

After being taken into custody, Cho apparently confessed to being under the influence of ‘sex drugs’, although it was later confirmed that he had simply taken sleeping medication and had some sort of averse reaction. He was allowed to fly out of Phuket without charge.

PM tells reporters to address questions to lifesize cardboard cut-out

In another bizarre story this week, prime minister Prayuth Chan-ocha took a new approach to briefing the media. During promotion for a Children’s Day event last Monday, he produced a lifesize cardboard cut-out of himself and told the assembled journalists to address all questions to said cut-out, before turning on his heel and leaving the event.

Yakuza boss arrested after 10 years hiding in Thailand

74-year old Shigeharu Shirai was arrested this week in Lopburi after his alleged associations with the Japanese ‘mafia’, the Yakuza, were discovered. Shirai apparently fled Japan for Thailand in 2005, wanted on murder charges following a leadership battle within the infamous Yamaguchi-gumi organisation. He was found after a local teenager shared photos of his distinctive tattoos online.


5 signs it’s time to leave Pattaya

Despite the image of Pattaya in certain Western circles as a place of dreams, sometimes one can find oneself in slightly over one’s head in that city of sin — and, at this point, it’s time to move home. If not before.

The writer of this blog — without, presumably, any proofreading — has outlined 5 signs of when you should wake up and smell the coffee, and realise that you’re probably not cut out for Pattaya. These range from having an almost complete lack of funds and living in a proverbial shit hole t0 regularly drinking before 5pm and deteriorating relations with your teerak.

Asia’s best train journeys in 2018

Slightly further afield than Thailand, but this Telegraph article is a great read for the intrepid explorers out there who can’t deny the joy of slow travel in the tropics. There are some great journeys outlined here, including the Jungle Train in Malaysia, the Dhaka to Sreemangal line in Bangladesh, the 350-mile mountain route from Kunming to Hanoi and many more.

Forum Threads

How much money should I spend on a dowry?

The topic of sin sot is a popular one within Thailand expat circles, precisely because the tradition — of the man paying a large sum of money to his fiancee’s family, is considered so archaic in the West. This Reddit thread is an American guy wondering how much dowry he should pay to his Thai girlfriend’s mother as he is about to propose.

The large number of comments show the wide spectrum of opinions about sin sot — for both Thais and foreigners. Some believe that it’s a cultural tradition that must be respected — regardless of the man’s own cultural traditions — while others are more dogmatic about refusing to bow down to a custom that merely perpetuates the obnoxious and damaging culture of ‘face’ in Thailand. Others take a more middle road, sharing their experiences of showing off a large dowry during the wedding party, but ensuring beforehand that it would be returned to the couple following the party.




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And that’s been The Week On Sukhumvit — see you next time!


Featured photo by Hanny Naibaho on Unsplash



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