Showing posts from October, 2017

Royal cremation ceremony of the late King Bhumibol Aduladej

An estimated 250,000 Thai citizens have lined the streets of the captial, Bangkok, to pay their final respects to their late King.

A symbolic funeral urn was taken by chariot to the site of the cremation, in an elaborate procession accompanied by traditional flute music, drums and an artillery salute, which marks the main part of a five-day ceremony.

Many buildings are adorned with yellow marigold flowers, whilst crowds of mourners hold images of their beloved monarch and are dressed in black as a sign of respect.

The funeral officially started on Wednesday 25th October, with a merit-making ceremony, an important Buddhist rite, in the Grand Palace.

Today, a series of Buddhist rites began in the royal palace ahead of the procession and the late king will be cremated later in a royal pyre to be lit by his son, King Maha Vajiralongkorn.

The chariot carrying the urn in the second part of the procession has been used since the 18th century. It was pulled by a team of more than 200 soldier…

Trash Talking

I first visited Thailand 15 years ago and was shocked at how dirty the streets were and the flippant attitude to littering and rubbish disposal among the general population. 
The average Thai cared little for their environment and was more likely to throw their rubbish on the floor than dispose of it in a dusbin.
Having lived here here for 7 years I can say that the situation has not improved and, in fact, has probably worsened.
The pathways, roads, public parks, temples and even the beaches are awash with litter and general detritus.
In case you think I'm biased or exaggerating, I'm not, it's fact. As evidence, I offer you the set of photos below. They were taken along the side street that joins my current residence to the main road, which stretches a distance of about 150 metres.

The problem starts at a young age, Thai kids grow-up watching the disgusting habits of their parents and grandparents and mimic the same behaviour. 
The older generation have not been educated p…

A little light humour.....

My friend and I observed this classic Thai company name, on the side of a pick-up truck parked in a local petrol station.....
The driver of the truck didn't look too amused as we were snapping the pictures though!!! But, we had a good old chuckle and I hope it causes my readers just as much mirth.

Pattaya Beach Smoking Ban

In their infinite wisdom, the Department of Marine & Coastal Resources has decided to enact a smoking ban on 20 of Thailand's beaches which include Pattaya and Jomtien.

The ban is due to come into effect on 1st November 2017.

As a non-smoker, it won't have any impact on me whatsoever. But, once again there appears to be no thought, logic or common-sense applied in the implementation of the ban.

My first point would be, why only 20 beaches? Why not every beach in Thailand? Why single out cetain locations and not others? It seems slightly unfair, don't you think?

The second point I would like to raise is the effect this will have on the already weakened tourist industry. The consumption of alcohol on the beach has already been banned and now with the cigarette ban, it is depriving local workers of much needed tourist income.

The third point is the government has cited discarded cigarette butts as causing an environmental hazard. But, in the past there was nowhere to ext…

Thai Street Food: Gorgeous or Gut rot? Culinary revelation or dysentry on a stick?

Those of you who have travelled in Asia will be aware of the vast array of "street food" that is on offer.

By "street food", I mean food that is served in a non-restaurant setting, normally from roadside stalls, people's homes, market-places, shacks and even from the back of motorcycles.

Street food usually appeals to locals because there is a huge range of food available and the prices are generally very reasonable.

Street dining is becoming increasingly popular, even amongst celebrity chefs, like Jamie Oliver and Gordon Ramsey, who have made TV programmes extolling the virtues of Asian street cuisine.

As a result, more and more foreign tourists are being seduced by the allure of eating exotic foreign fare for a fraction of the price that is charged in their home countries.
But be warned....... eating street food is a double-edged sword ...... you are playing Russian-roulette with your health....... as psychologists might say it's "risk and reward"…

Epic English Language Fails

If you have spent anytime travelling or working in Asian countries, you will have noticed that the standard of English is generally very poor.

There are one or two exceptions of course, like Malaysia and the Philippines. But overall, when going about your daily business, you will be faced with a barrage of unintelligible, indecipherable drivel.

"I no speaky speaky Engrish goodly"

"Sucky, fucky 5 dollar Mister"

Good old Thailand is probably number one in the verbal diarrhoea league..........

This gem was a photo that I took whilst travelling on a songteaw in the city of Pattaya in Chonburi province. What the hell is a "But Stop"? Somewhere I can rest my fat, sweaty posterior perhaps?

Songteaws are public buses which operate all over Thaland. They are simply converted pick-up trucks, with a covered bed or cargo bay and 2 rows of seats facing each other. The above sign was issued to all songteaws operating in Pattaya and it was a number of weeks before the g…

King Bhumibol Adulyadej

Unless you've been living on the moon or in a cave in Afghanistan then I'm sure you will be aware that today marks the 1 year anniversary of the death of Thailand's beloved monarch King Bhumibol Adulyadej
For nearly seven decades His Majesty was known for his wisdom, generosity, compassion and selflessness. To honour his legacy, all Thais citizens and expats must learn to follow in his footsteps and carry on his good deeds in the years to come

On behalf of everyone at Penfold's Southeast Asian Odyssey, I would like to extend my sympathies and best wishes to the Thai Royal Family and to the the Thai Nation

Long Live the King