Thailand is different in good and interesting ways. If you’ve visited Mexico, you’ll have an understanding of the sanitation and some other things. The water system here isn’t that great, but it’s better than in Mexico. The key is to rely on bottled water here.
I got in to Thailand last Saturday and have now been here about five days. My arrival was already hard since I was sick with what I think was a sinus infection. It took me until about yesterday to get over it, but now I’m slowly getting it again.
That being said, the transition has been a bit hard to say the least. This hasn’t been like any of my trips to Europe where I can go about on my own. I’m always being taken somewhere different, everyone is in the know about my business, I seem to unintentionally offend people, and I have no clue whatsoever in regards to the language department.
The price you pay is what you get. There are hotels which are phenomenal and clean, but there are some where it’s very grungy. What we think is cheap for a hotel is expensive for Thai people.
My first hotel upon arriving was decent. I entered the room and it was humid, stuffy, and hot. There was no air-conditioning and it was hard to breathe.
In order to turn the electricity on you have to insert your key into the slot near the door and turn the switch on for the room. Next, you need to take the remote and turn the air-conditioning on. If you remove the card all electricity is turned off.
The bathroom had no separation between the shower and toilet area. Everything will get wet in there when you take a shower and the floor will flood. Since it’s already humid in Thailand and it’s the shower area, black mold was everywhere. For most other people this is perfectly fine, but for me it’s not. Part of it is because I’m a clean freak and the other part is that I’m severely allergic to it.
It was only going to be for a few days, so I knew I’d have to put up with it. I could easily shut the door and keep it in there as much as possible.
Another thing I didn’t realize was they have no toilet paper, but they do have a shower nozzle which you can use to clean down there. Yeah… I wasn’t about to use that with their water system.
Fortunately, they had some tissue there so I used that and some flushable wipes I brought. There was no soap to wash my hands so I used my body soap and sanitizer. I was already sick and I didn’t want to catch anything more than I had to.
Granddad warned me of the humidity here. I believed him, but it’s one thing to hear it and another to experience it. The humidity is like a thick wall of water particles that you sift through when you go outside or walk through main parts of the building. Thank God they have air-conditioning in the rooms is all I have to say!
I was happy the sheets were clean. I was waiting for them to be dirty, stained, and stinky.
My agents took me out for dinner each night I was in Suphanburi. They would order for me since I had no clue where to even start. I’m so grateful for them.
The first night they took me to a local place. It was nice with an open patio and large fans to circulate air. They knew I hadn’t tried Thai food before so they ordered a bunch of different things and we all shared plates. It seems this is what they normally do anyways in Thailand.
Even though my stomach wasn’t up to eating that night, I do have to say the food was amazing and felt good on my stomach. Some things were a bit hot and others were perfect. It wasn’t too heavy either, and the vegetables tasted great.
My boss brought some liquor with her. It was something her mother got from Japan. It had a pinkish-red hue with gold flakes. The flavor was sweet and it went down smoothly. Usually, I don’t drink liquor straight, but this one was so good it didn’t need to be paired with anything else.
One thing to note in Thai culture is that it’s the woman’s job to pay for things while the man handles the finances. In the United States it’s reversed.
Over the next few days, my agents took me out to a few more places. Each one had a different style. One place called MK was really good.
On the table there is a black square where a large pot of water is placed. You can turn on this little stove to heat up the water.
When you order here, you order an assortment of things which they bring out to you on small plates and you place them in the water to boil. Then everyone just grabs and eats as it all gets cooked. It was different, but a neat idea.
I also got to try some dessert. It was a chocolate pastry with some nuts on top. The chocolate was bitter compared to the stuff in the US, but I actually preferred it since I tend to lean toward dark chocolate anyways.
That’s another thing. When you read all of these articles saying that Thai people don’t use chopsticks they’re lying! They use them more than a fork and spoon. To be honest, I looked like a retard trying to use them and finally gave up and they brought me a fork and spoon.
Ah, another thing to keep in mind is that Thai’s generally eat with a spoon and use the fork to push the food on to it. Another thing that I had to get used to was using my left hand to do this.
This Monday was a government holiday so everything was closed. Since there wasn’t a whole lot to do, my agents took me to their place, cooked breakfast, and then I sat and watched TV for the most part.
It was hard to stay awake with the time change and not being able to sleep in a whole lot. There wasn’t much on, so I watched the news for the most part. One of my agents is Canadian so we got talking about current politics. I learned to keep my mouth shut quickly. I will admit there were some interesting viewpoints.
Lunch was really good, and the first time I was able to finish a dish in a few weeks. A lady from my agent’s school brought some lunch for me. She was extremely sweet.
To the Thai, Suphanburi is a fairly big city. Private schools are something everyone wants to be in and public schools are slightly frowned upon. I always thought public schools were fine. Growing up that’s what I went to.
Overall, Thailand is a very different country. It takes some getting used to and there’s definitely some culture shock.