People that read my blog really seem to enjoy all my posts about Thailand. It really is a lovely country, and a dream destination for many. And what can I say to argue against that – I really can’t! I am living the dream. I’m surrounded by gorgeous women, an urban jungle with tons to do and see, I eat some of the most delicious food in the world, and its all just outside my front door! I really have affiliate marketing to thank for that. But living here for a long time – I’ve been here 5+ years already – some things start to rub off on you, and some of it is already showing. This post is an exploration into a process I’ll call “Thailandification”.
I get this one a lot. My accent sounds authentically Thai through the phone. Ask Sohan Tanna – he called me out of the blue one day and I answered in my Thai voice which just confused us all. Haha. I behave Thai, I like the same kind of women that Thai guys find attractive, and in general, I’m pretty relaxed about problems that would stress me out before – something many Thais do with a “Mai Pen Rai” attitude (translates to roughly “everything is okay!”).
Thank god I still can’t stand these things, but they are everywhere. I see people wear them out at the major shopping complexes, too. I think its an awful trend, but I’m counting down the days until I start wearing them. It’s an all to common occurrence to avoid, even for a small walk down to your local convenience store.
7-11′s run rampant here, and if you wanted to own one, you could probably open one right next door to another 7-11. Here you will see two 7-11s across a 2 lane road from each other. If there is a busy 4 way intersection, you can bet you’ll find a 7-11 at 3 out of 4 corners (true story!). And it will become a second home for you. Screw taking a $3 taxi to the grocery store when you can walk 2 minutes to your nearest 7-11 and have access to all the drinks, cookies and frozen microwavable foods. This is my favorite place to go to at 3 AM on an all-nighter, and if you ever live in Thailand, you’ll find yourself relying on it way too much just like me!
These two foods are two of Thailand’s most famous. Why shouldn’t they be? They are both healthy and extremely delicious. When you learn to pronounce these food names correctly and order it on a regular basis (for me, 2-3 times a week), you know you’ve been in Thailand too long.
Thailand is the land of a bargain. I’m constantly buying new clothes. In many t-shirt shops, they might sell a printed shirt for 200 baht (about $6.50). Oh no way am I paying that much – let’s haggle them lower! A good haggler could get 10 – 25% off the sticker price, and I am always doing this. Even though its only $0.50 – $1 off, its Thai culture and its not inappropriate to ever ask for a discount. In fact, if you don’t ask, you are probably getting ripped off!
Skin plays a huge part in your social role in Thailand. Unfortunately, you can actually be classed by the appearance and color of your skin. Darker skin is less appreciated compared to white skin. Skin treatment centers can be found on every road and in every shopping mall, and eventually you might find yourself going to take $50 skin cleaning treatments every week (I did for my acne, at least – and it worked!). You might find yourself covering up your skin more often too, for the fairer, more “suay” skin color. I can say I’m the whitest guy I know, by far.
Bangkok is a party city. Every night there is someone to meet and somewhere to be. Thank god I’ve phased out of this for the most part, but I find myself invited out every night. Sometimes at 6PM, sometimes at 5 AM the next day for an after party! I used to party 5 times a week! If you’re a young guy, have a little money to spend, then Thailand will be epic for you!
All in all, I love this country and I really don’t want to leave. Immigration restrictions are getting tougher however, so we’ll see how long I can stay. For the moment I don’t plan on leaving so I’m just going to continue this awesome dream life of mine and soak in all the beautiful scenery, food and not to mention, women, that I can!