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My Thoughts On Thailand After A 15-Year Absence

  • Written by Hedge Hog
  • March 1st, 2010
  • 5 min read

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Hi Mr. Stickman,

Clearly over the years I have enjoyed your articles and articles other people have posted on your illuminating website. I decided to share my thoughts with the punters reading your site.

I just came back after 2 months in Myanmar, Thailand – Phuket- & Bangkok & KK-Kl Malaysia. The first thing I would like to touch on is the improvement in public transport in Thailand, which was non existent 20 years ago. I am impressed.
One could only wish Sydney had such a good public system. Whatever the King of Thailand represents in this modern world he has certainly improved Thailand's infrastructure, along with good taste in technocrats who have implemented his rule.

To get to the crux of the matter in terms of people,. I can only say that being in Myanmar 2009 – (200K tourist to about 12 Million in Thailand) I was greatly impressed by the true gentility, honesty, sincerity and smiles that were indeed
sincere in Myanmar as opposed to the false smiles of, (in general) the people of Thailand in particular Phuket & other wholly touristic places.

Yangon, yes I do like women, had friends in Myanmar who knew the local monger scene and I have to say it was very pleasant, sometimes even comical but at the least not commercial. I add sweet girls unlike Thais in general in that bar scene.
Myanmar girls I met are at least as good in terms of beauty as any pretty Thai girl I have seen in any street in Phuket or Bangkok, actually better, cleaner minds probably, I dare say cleaner bodies. I must admit I did not do the bar scene in
Thailand, (There is not really a bar scene in Yangon) but only a secret club scene, in comparison to the Thai club scene is, in a simple word; competitive. Prostitutes, amateurs, on the make girls from Russia, Sweden – all over including Turkey,
all available-paid and unpaid, but in my view this scene is of a higher than bars girls & surely more expensive. Since I speak Russian as well as Spanish among others it was pretty easy to hook up with Russian speaking women in those clubs.
The issue is not whether I paid or did not pay, somehow it always works out men pay one way or another in any case, Champagne at $100 per bottle is not cheap nor are dinners, probably cheaper to pay? It was however a wonderful experience in my
situation to see so many beautiful women of all nationality on the game or not in such an exciting city as Bangkok. Sydney has such pretentious sluts it would cost you ten times more to get some decent action.

Anyway to get to more esoteric comments. In my opinion, (this is a generality) Thais are basically dishonest, & corrupted, whatever it means to be a Thai is of no interest to any thinking man. They, I feel, do not like tourists – farangs
other than what they can steal rob from them in the tourist season, they are so good at it that even Chinese friends say they are not a match for the swindlers in Thailand and that's saying a lot. It's not easy to swindle a Chinese.
Having said that, it was much more enjoyable to be in Bangkok instead of Phuket in terms of real Thai people. In Bangkok I meet ordinary good Thai people who like everyone else was living day to day as any other person on this planet. But in Phuket
I met not one single person, who in my view was honest, excluding the staff at Robinsons, for example. I attended a Thai boxing match in Phuket with a so called former champion. He told me 7 of the 10 matches are rigged. I beg to differ 9 of the
10 are rigged, unless it’s a knockout that's how corrupt even the game of Thai boxing was played in Phuket. I need not mention the obvious greed and corruption evident in the shabby construction works all over Phuket. The writing is
on the wall for that place, earthquake, floods, another tsunami, landslides. It's going to happen the revenge of nature cannot be more evident that is the repercussions of development in Phuket. Thai greed, to give you a perfect example:
I took a tour of James Bond Island etc, the tour was expensive & disappointing; it was really dirty, polluted sea, unlike Myanmar. But what really took the cake was the staff on the speed boat wanted donations from all of us on the conclusion
of the trip. For what?? Charging an arm and a leg to go on the tour? This did not happen in Malaysia or Myanmar! Greed leads to self destruction – see the USA today. The aftermath is perdition. I am not sure who is to blame for the culture that
has evolved in Thailand. 20 years or so ago it was not evident? A friend I met in Myanmar, working there as the head chief of the resort I stayed in, put it succinctly. He said, "I was raised in Pattaya and I am a true Thai but I am ashamed
of my own people, our women are dirty, our people want to rob as quickly as possible before the rainy season, yet care nothing about the tourists. I would even say that the government of Myanmar takes more care of tourists than our government."

But I suspect it’s us that has made the Thais this way!! I guess the test case will be in Myanmar as it develops’, will it become another Thailand in the near future? I will be monitoring yearly to see if tourism brings greed
or improvement. I don't hope for the best. At least I left Myanmar with good feelings and will return while it is still the true gem of the Orient.

PS I will also return to Bangkok for the club scene, but never Phuket or Pattaya.

Stickman's thoughts:

I think one of the big problems with the impressions foreigners have in Thailand comes from the tourism industry which seems to attract some people, or change some people – and which may give a less positive impression of the country.