Welcome to Sunday, Bangkok — and happy Mother’s Day!
Another busy week in Thailand, what with the imminent closure of Dusit Zoo in central Bangkok (and a sad farewell to Bin Laden the giraffe…), the 114-year sentence handed down to a jet-setting former Thai monk for money laundering and fraud, and the happy news that four of the Wild Boars soccer team are being granted Thai citizenship after their recent successful rescue from Tham Luang cave.
Last chance to see Bin Laden the giraffe at Dusit Zoo, Bangkok before it closes in 3 weeks. pic.twitter.com/nPGQ888ni3
— Ian (@iamKohChang) August 8, 2018
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
Following the successful rescue of the Wild Boars soccer team from the Tham Luang cave in Chiang Rai last month, it was revealed that a number of the boys and their coach were actually stateless without Thai citizenship.
This week, three of the boys and coach Ekapol Chanthawong were granted Thai citizenship and given national ID cards at the district office in Mae Sai, Chiang Rai.
The four had apparently all applied for citizenship prior to their cave escapades and had already supplied the correct documentation for the procedure.
Citizenship will bestow new basic benefits upon the four, as well as give them the right to travel outside of Chiang Rai.
The tragic story here of American James Currie who was this week denied entry into Thailand after he fled from the USA to Bangkok, after allegedly throwing his dead 7-month old baby into the East River in New York.
37-year old Currie apparently carried the body of his dead son around Manhattan in a backpack before he attempted to dispose of him in the river.
The body was spotted by a woman and her husband, who pulled the baby from the river and attempted to revive him, to no avail. Following news reports of the unsuccessful rescue, the baby’s mother became suspicious, especially after it was revealed that Currie — with whom she had a custody agreement — had failed to drop baby Mason off at his daycare facility.
Currie boarded a flight to Bangkok on Monday afternoon but was denied entry when he landed, and is thought to be returned to New York within days to face charges of concealment of a corpse.
Unsettling news from Udon Thani this week after the dead body of a 58-year old Russian man was discovered in the jungle.
Vladimir Firsov’s body was found bound and beaten, with all his teeth smashed, by some homeless people living nearby. He was still smartly dressed with a number of identifiable items on his person, including his phone, cigarettes and a Koh Samui tour ticket.
A really interesting blog post here on the curious attitudes many Thailand expats have towards spending money. One particular phenomenon is the race to the bottom — where people boast and appear to compete about how little they spend on certain products or services.
You’ll see this in people who can’t comprehend why you would spend 50,000 baht a month on a large, apartment in Phrom Phong, for instance — why not rent a studio in the darkest recesses of On Nut for a mere 8,000 baht a month?! Not to mention the expats who scoff unimaginably when they hear you spend money on maids, food delivery services or a quality gym membership.
There appears to be little consideration in those racing to the bottom that some people are happy to spend more of their hard-earned coin on the things that really matter to them.
After all, we all have different priorities — some people are prepared to spend more for convenience or luxury at home, while others would rather splurge on hedonism or expensive experiences. Some people prefer to live frugally most of the year and go on long, extended travelling vacations that they can afford because they’ve spent so little the rest of the year.
Before you criticise another’s spending habits, perhaps consider that their priorities are different to your own.
Check out this guide to lesser known foodie spots in Bangkok that are recommended by chefs around the world.
Certainly not your average restaurant blog that details the same 10 restaurants as everyone else, they’ve got a number of street stalls and cafes away from the main drag that are worth your time and palate.
A wealth of helpful and probably unhelpful dating advice on this Reddit thread here about the dos and do-nots of dating Thai women in Bangkok as a foreign guy.
Redditors weigh in with their opinions on your chances of landing a quality Thai woman (i.e. do they actually prefer similar quality Thai men instead?), how to navigate approaching Thais in public, dealing with their innate conservatism, whether ‘friends with benefits’ really exists over here, the ‘friendzone’, and managing the inevitable different expectations that a Thai woman and a Western man bring to a relationship.
Another dating-related thread here, this time on Thaivisa, about ‘ghosting’ by Thai women.
In case you’re out of the loop, ghosting is the word for the phenomenon where the person you’re dating ends the relationship by simply withdrawing from all communication, without explanation.
In this poster’s case, he had been in a long distance relationship with a Thai girl for the past 8 months, serious to the point that they planned to marry in the future, only for her to suddenly cease all contact and block him on her social media channels.
He gets little in the way of good advice here (it is Thaivisa…) but the general consensus of ‘what did you expect from a long distance relationship with a Thai woman?’ seems to hold true.
It’s easy to overestimate the strength of emotion on the other side of a relationship if you barely ever see them in person. That, combined with the Thai obsession with saving face, means that ‘ghosting’ is probably a common phenomena in this part of the world.
The look on the face of the average Thai bank cashier when you tell them you need to transfer money from Thailand to another country. pic.twitter.com/mGT939nUbA
— Phil / Ajarn.com (@Ajarncom) August 9, 2018
Golden hour (Phra Khanong ) pic.twitter.com/wT3nB4OpZi
— sweet3mango (@sweet3mango) August 8, 2018
If I had a $ for every time I’ve heard a grizzled barfly expat knowingly say, “Life’s cheap out here” (as in, implying that in Southeast Asia deaths somehow matter less, not “cheap” as in his ability to live like a whoring king on a pension), I’d have quite a lot more money.
— Kayleigh E. Long (@ayleighk) August 8, 2018
Wow! We had our credit card details stolen about 2 hours ago at a petrol station and the attendant spent about 4k online. The police have already arrested him and he’s confessed! I’m impressed with the efficiency!
— BKKEnemy (@BKKEnemy) August 8, 2018
— ΛnDrΞs (@cyrbkk) August 8, 2018
Efforts to restore coral at Maya Bay have been hampered by a strong monsoon and rough sea conditions, resulting in the survival of only 10 per cent of replanted coral https://t.co/uxm9GUOz55 #Thailand pic.twitter.com/bkv3TFoPLK
— Richard Barrow in Thailand 🇹🇭 🇬🇧 (@RichardBarrow) August 7, 2018
• The Travel Diary • Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away. 🇹🇭 Tag your travel buddy that you would want to be with in Maya Bay . . . . #luxwt #luxuryworldtraveler #luxwtprime#wanderlust #travel #explore #beautiful#adventure #vacation #holiday #thelife#dream #dreambig #travelon #getoutthere#seetheworld #paradise #getouthere#bucketlist #view #goals #phuket #outdoors #nature #thailand #paradise #kohphiphi #phiphiisland #phiphi
And that’s been The Week On Sukhumvit — see you next time!