Reflections from the future in Thailand
1- What a beautiful country! The best beaches I’ve ever seen, including the one from the movie “The Beach”, Maya Bay. We haven’t found the marijuana plantations nor Leonardo. It will continue.
2- I can’t understand a single thing of what the signs say or anything of the Thai language because they use other characters, like “คุณมีมันอยู่ภายใน”, which means “you got it inside of you”. That fact made it more difficult for me to speak to the locals in their own language, compared to Indonesia or Malaysia, so I just learned how to say “expensive” and “thanks”.
3- Snorkelling there was quite impressing, and diving was awesome. We did the 3 days diving course in Ko Tao, which allow us to dive anywhere in the world up to 18 meters deep. Great experience, highly recommended.
4- We’re still in countries in which you drive on the left side of the road, full of monkeys, beaches, tourists and prostitutes (10% of the money spent by tourists go to that business). We’re still surrounded by hypocritical religious people, but here they’re Buddhists that would embarrass Buddha itself if he’d come back to life. We’re still in countries with pointless monarchies, and an obsessive cult of personality around the king, with his pictures and signs eeeeverywhere (nobody dare to question this; “here you can’t talk about politics”, says a Pakistani guy that hosted us in Bangkok). And if you say something bad about the king, you go to jail, and it’s worse if you’re involved in a drugs-related crime… Asia isn’t a continent for junkies or drug dealers, but tourists can always get some stuff, “for the money even a monkey dances” -here that saying is literal, because some monkeys are exploited and forced to entertain tourists for profit, it’s terrible-. Oh, also, we’re under a military dictatorship, but here’s is “softer” than we have seen in America, it’s almost unnoticeable (at least as a tourist).
5- The local economy is quite OK, at the same level than Uruguay in terms of GDP per capita, a lot of high-tech exportations, including cars, trucks and pick-ups (Thailand is the biggest pick-up trucks’ consumer in the world, after the U.S.).
6- Go Ko Phi Phi and the eternal parties!
7- Bangkok is not as chaotic and party-oriented as I thought, is quite modern and more quiet than other cities in South East Asia.
8- Thailand was never invaded by any foreign force, and, like Uruguay, was created as a “buffer state” in order to put a stop to the fights between the areas invaded by France, in the northeast, and the ones invaded by England, in the south. Is almost like being at home. Thailand collaborated with Japan in the Second World War, but mainly to keep other countries from invading their nation. Nowadays they suck U.S.A.’s dick, for a change.
Amazing country! Beautiful, good food, a millenary culture, nice people (it’s called the “land of the thousand smiles”) and stunning sceneries. Now I’m in Cambodia, a country buried in poverty and corruption, trying to move forward after a very sad history of death and violence. A lot of instability and hunger… but despite everything, they are beautiful people, some of the nicest ones I’ve ever met, smiling and joking all the time. Another chapter, let’s see what it brings!
Originally written on August 4th, 2015, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia