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Thaiing up my life

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About this blog

How it is to be an expat in a very individual country

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Parties

I went tonight to the Grand Opening of my friend's bar. It was great. Lots of people, good live music, great food -including a roast suckling pig. I reckon it cost her at least 10,000 baht - about $350. Doesn't sound a lot, but here it is. I live on about 30,000 baht a month. There were LOTS of people there. Some were fellow bar owners, there to wish her luck - they won't be back, they have their own bars to run. Some were friends and family, who don't usually go to bars - but came to

sawasdee

sawasdee

New businesses in the Low season

The high season for tourism in Thailand is Nov - Apr. We get little spurts around European summer holidays, but only minimal And tourism is down - badly, Having an authoritarian military government has upset many nations, the spate of bombs last year - two in my town - the perceived lack of integrity into criminal investigation of murdered foreigners - well, it ain't good for business. At the moment, our town centre is devoid of tourists. Yet this is when two of my closest friends have

sawasdee

sawasdee

Driving in Thailand

I never learnt to drive in the UK. I lived in London - brilliant public transport - and travelled for a living . It wasn't necessary. But when I moved here, and had a business, I needed to drive. And I was over 50! So  I bought a vehicle. On the advice of friends, who said it would be safer, I have a rather - muscular - truck. It's big. Most smaller vehicles give me a wide berth. And the bull bar on the front scares the motor bikes a bit, so they also steer clear. Thank g-d they do.

sawasdee

sawasdee

Thailand and Prostitution

The question I was most asked by my Brit friends when I first announced I was moving here, was " But how, as a feminist, can you go to live in a country that is a byword for prostitution and the exploitation of women?" I'll try and answer. First, the prostitution that is most famous - ie that involving foreign customers - is actually quite small, and confined to fairly defined areas. Bangkok, in certain districts only, and the major tourist towns, especially Pattaya. I live in a small touri

sawasdee

sawasdee

The Land Of Smiles

Thailand is known as the Land of Smiles. And yes, everyone smiles - a lot. As you walk along the street, strangers smile at you  - it's a lovely day - why not smile? But the Thai smile has many different meanings; I've lived here for over 15 years and still have things to learn. It can be: 1.I really like you, and we are going to be friends. 2.Not sure about you, but it's rude to be unfriendly. 3. I don't understand any thing you are saying, but I will smile and nod to b

sawasdee

sawasdee

Songkran in the village

My friends' village is in the North East - Eesan in Thai - of the country, which is by far the poorest area. Most people there are subsistence rice farmers, and their situation has worsened with climate change: most years they get only one, not two harvests, as rainfall has decreased. Usually, one child in a family will work the family paddies. Others may marry locally, someone else who owns land, but often the other children go to work in Bangkok or in a tourist area. This is my friends' s

sawasdee

sawasdee

Being Thaied up

I've dropped a few comments in Specularium about how it is living as an expat here - maybe instead of interrupting, this blog is the way to share. I've lived here in Thailand for almost 14 years - and was a frequent visitor for at least 14 years before that. My first business was a a joint owner of a beachside, 20 bedroom resort - idyllic, except for my business partner, whose wife has since been charged with attempted murder...that was my lucky escape!( He was a Brit, by the way). Sol

sawasdee

sawasdee



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