Some random Thailand observations I’ve jotted down over the last few weeks…oh, and my two little toes are DEFINITELY broken. Buddy tape for the (slow) win.
Mall Culture – this one is for Southeast Asia as a whole, really. Many of the locals shop/have always shopped at the plentiful street markets. This is slowly morphing into the indoor street market of the modern shopping mall. It’s the next logical step, really. Which explains why there are SO MANY malls, why there is so much money put into them, and why everyone shops there.
Doppelgangers – Every few days I see someone who, for a split second, looks just like a friend or family member. Usually it’s just a trick of the brain, but some people REALLY look similar to someone I know. It’s strange how someone on the other side of the planet just so happens to share so much physical appearance to someone I’ve known for years. Makes me a little homesick sometimes.
Power Grid – I’ve taken a few pictures of this. It seems the entire country runs on extension cords and overloaded circuits. On Phi Phi, for example, power just goes out sometimes. Even in the big cities, walking by power poles you can hear a loud and forboding buzz. I’ve seen people shimmy up the power poles to plug cords in and then across the spanned wires. It’s a wonder more folks don’t get hurt.
Speaker Trucks – Ingenious idea. Since most folks ride scooters around, they don’t hear radio. Many companies have pickups that wander the streets with HUGE speakers in the back telling of the latest Muy Thai matches or other advertisements. It’s quite effective, too; I followed one for a few minutes on the scooter I rented on Ko Samui. You can’t turn it off!
No Freeways – There are some highways around, but very few. Dirt road detours, odd two-lane junctions in the middle of nowhere, and lanes that don’t support the size of the vehicles. I’ve really grown to appreciate the developed road infrastructure we have at home.