From Thai Schools vs International Schools To Driving The Mae Hong Son Loop

Happy Sunday, Bangkok!

Just another  batsh*t week in the Land Of Smiles, thanks to an new pet registration law that’s demanding a 450 baht fee per pet, a guest house on fire near Khao San Road, and a viral video showing two good samaritan monks giving CPR to a motorcyclist injured in an accident:

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

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British man kills Phuket scavenger with his Mercedes

A tragedy in Phuket this week after it was revealed that a British man driving a Mercedes-Benz C250 apparently hit and instantly killed a Thai man early on Wednesday morning, who was known to scavenge scrap metals in the area. The unidentified victim was pushing his garbage cart at the time as he crossed the street, and was apparently dragged for around 40 metres by the car.

The Brit, named as 33-year old Paul Mercer, also sustained injuries in the crash and was taken to hospital before being interrogated by police. No charges have been filed against him.

Moldovan tourist found dead on Koh Tao

Another European tourist has been found dead on Koh Tao. The body of 33-year old Alexandr Bucspun, from Moldova, was found in the sea off Had Sai Ree, before being taken for preliminary autopsy in Koh Phangan. It has now been transferred to Police General Hospital in Bangkok, where authorities will interview witnesses and determine a cause of death. Bucspan had apparently checked into a boxing gym on the island towards the end of September.

500 foreigners arrested in illegal immigrant raids

Over 500 foreigners were arrested this week in Thailand in yet another illegal immigrant crackdown. The raids were carried out over 307 country-wide locations, including in Nana and Sampeng in Bangkok.

The majority of those arrested were apparently from India and Pakistan, with 114 charged with visa overstay and 172 for illegal entry into Thailand.


Travelling the Mae Hong Son loop

Phil, owner of the Ajarn website, takes us behind the scenes of his latest trip — the Mae Hong Son Northern Loop, which famously boasts 1,864 curves on its winding road. Hope you don’t get car sick.

It’s a great, detailed trip report of the route itself, as well as where they stopped, over four days of driving and should be a must-read for anyone else considering visiting this much-loved part of Thailand. Anyone familiar with Phil’s writing will recognise and respect the blistering honesty and occasional negative grumbles — Pai, in particular, is subject to some serious disapproval — and there are some great travel tips to be found here. Opluang National Park, for instance, will probably have a few more English-speaking visitors this year thanks to this blog.

Is Pai really as bad as Phil, and others of his kin, say? We don’t think so. Sure, the hordes of backpackers give Khao San Road a run for its money and we’d never choose to stay in the hubbub of Walking Street, but the town has an undeniable charm away from the noise and the incredible natural scenery is some of the most breathtaking in Northern Thailand.

Blame the Bangkok fraudsters, not the bureaucrats

Anyone moaning about the British Embassy in Bangkok’s recent announcement that they will no longer be issuing certification of income letters for British expats would do well to read this short Stickboy opinion on the matter.

We wholeheartedly agree with Stickboy here — what’s the point of blaming the embassy bureaucrats for being ‘lazy’ when all they’re doing is withdrawing the service because they have no way of verifying the income of individuals. And, surely, we wouldn’t want that anyway — giving government officials intimate access to your financial comings and goings sounds like a recipe for privacy chaos.

After all, the people to blame here are, as Stickboy argues, the people using fraudulent means and dodgy visa agents to pretend that they have a certain amount in the bank.

Thailand’s battle to save its kids from online gaming addiction

A really interesting article here on the Culture Trip on a growing problem among Thailand’s youth: online gaming addiction — particularly in the realm of e-sports. The country’s e-sport industry is apparently worth a whopping 10 billion baht with an annual growth rate of 12 percent.  That equals a lot of Thai kids stuck at home in front of a screen.

Forum Threads

What has been Thailand’s impact on your health and fitness?

An interesting discussion here on Reddit surveying the impact of living in Thailand on expats’ health and fitness levels. A huge variety of answers here — some people have lost significant amounts of weight since landing on Thai soil, whereas others lament the amount of cheap, fried food available, air pollution and lack of walking opportunities — especially in Bangkok.

Of course, your lifestyle is the most important determiner of your overall health, wherever you are in the world.

Thai schools vs international schools for your kids

A good discussion here on the different types of education available in Thailand and what is the best choice for luk-kreung and the children of expats.

Some posters seem to have their head in the clouds a little on this issue, with a few replies stating that they send their children to local government schools because they have already instilled them with an impressive work ethic at home. But, of course, children aren’t only formed at home — school is an incredibly important component of their formative years. Is a Thai government school really equipped to do the leg work into forming your child into the adult you’d like to see them become?





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Magical evenings 🥂✨

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Spot the golden temple 👀

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Bon Appétit👌😀 Video by @kobi_refaeli Content chosen by @peeramaytha

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Sunset heaven with @louisnicolasdarbon 😍 #sunset #kohsamui

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


Featured photo is by Alexis Gravel (CC BY-ND 2.0 licence)



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