From The Hard Truths About Being An Expat In Thailand To The Best Bars On Lower Sukhumvit

Happy Sunday, Bangkok!

This week has seen the damning news that Thailand is the most unequal country out of 40 countries in 2018, overtaking both Russia and India. Yikes.

In lighter news, someone videoed a fight between a giant monitor lizard and a python at Mahidol university:

Good to know that the world keeps turning regardless of Thailand’s standing in the international news cycle.

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

News

Thai disguised as ‘handsome foreigner’ caught in gold heist

This is the story of Wongsakorn Petchsanan, a Thai man who paid a make-up artist 10,000 baht to disguise him as a handsome foreigner so he could allegedly steal four gold necklaces from a store in Bangkok, worth 471,600 baht.

Kanokporn Kemasing, the make-up artist in question, apparently had no idea of Wongsakorn’s intentions with his newly disguised face and was actually told by him that he was attempting to win back an ex-girlfriend with his new look. The look included a painted-on beard and a fake nose.

She published his before and after shots after learning of his alleged role in the robbery in a bid to warn other make-up artists.

Brit and Canadian arrested in Chonburi after discovery of cannabis oil export business

64-year old Joseph Toole from the UK and 67-year old David Kulik from Canada were arrested in Chonburi this week following the discovery of a warehouse in Bang Phli that was allegedly the headquarters of a cannabis oil exportation business.

Kulik was allegedly financing the business and Toole the chemist. Apparently, they would import large quantities of cannabis from Laotian drug gangs, which they would then cook down into oil in the warehouse before exporting the spoils to the European drug markets.

The Narcotics Suppression Division seized 70 kg of cannabis oil, along with some resin, during the raid.

Thai pop star files police report over obscene photoshopped image

Cherprang Areekul, the lead singer of pop group BNK48, has filed a police report this week over an image of her that had been photoshopped to incorporate a sex toy.

The 22-year old filed the report with the Technology Crime Suppression Division along with a representative from her label on Tuesday. She publicly thanked the fans that had alerted her to the obscene image and spoke out against the people creating such images of her and her bandmates — some of whom are as young as 14.

Disseminating photoshopped images like this is illegal under the Computer Crime Act and police have warned that the owner of the Facebook page where the images were posted could be liable with up to three years jail time and a fine of up to 200,000 baht. Col. Siriwat Deepor also warned those commenting on the images in a ‘damaging’ way could also face prosecution.

Blogs

10 hard truths about being an expat in Thailand

For those of us that have been in Thailand a few years there’s no real need to read a list like this, which details the various ‘hard truths’ that come with expat life in the Land Of Smiles — because, let’s face it, we’re living them. But if you’re considering a move to Thailand, or missing life back in Bangkok after moving back home, articles like these are a good reality check on the rose-tinted glasses you might have for life in the Kingdom.

With the first four ‘truths’ dedicated to the red tape and visa issues you’ll likely face at some point, it’s clear that forging an expat life in Thailand can be a bureaucratic nightmare. They also include some Thailand-tastic points about the awful road death rate and, of course, the fact that ‘bar girls don’t love you.’  😂

The best bars in lower Sukhumvit

A great list from BK Magazine on the best bars to hit around Nana, Asoke and Phrom Phong, because god knows you really don’t want to spend much time in the holes of Soi 4 and Cowboy. They’ve got the low-down on the best rooftops, wine bars, beer bars, cocktail bars, pubs and more from Soi 2 to 49.

TEFL Teachers: Gate Duty… Gate

The Ajarn blog this week is focusing on the controversial issue of foreign teachers being asked to do gate duty at their schools without any additional pay or prestige. For those not in the know, gate duty involves getting to school a little early to greet parents and children as they arrive at school in the morning.

Richard’s opinion is that the TEFL teachers complaining about this extra responsibility essentially need to get over it — a little extra face time with students outside of the classroom can only be a good thing for the kids. Plus, as he correctly points out, little sacrifices like this in the early years of your career will not go unnoticed by the higher-ups when it comes to promotion time.

Of course, when you start getting asked to open car doors and generally acting like a valet, it’s probably time to put your foot down…

Forum Threads

How is life for expats in Bangkok?

Something of an extension to the blog post about expat ‘hard truths’, this is a mostly positive and realistic Reddit thread on what life is really like, day to day, for expats in Bangkok.

Covered are issues like the rising cost of living, bad traffic, busy public transport, swelteringly hot weather, a lack of convenience options like Amazon, and the perceived low quality of the ‘farangs’ who make this city their home.

But despite all these apparent negative aspects to life in Bangkok, the people who live here generally love it here — there’s that inescapable exciting streak that comes with living in a city like this, as well as the fact that it’s seemingly much easier to create a ‘nice’ life here than it is back home in the West.

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

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