Category Archive: Bangkok

When you’re here, you’re family.

Sorry, I’m in advertising. I couldn’t resist! From the moment I arrived at the airport, virtually every Thai I have met has treated me like family! Immediately my host’s mom insisted that I… Continue reading

Thais and English

Thais and English

In Thailand, everybody gets a basic education in English, so they all theoretically understand atleast a little bit. In my experience, Thais are excited about learning the English language, and love practicing on you, assuming they can work up the courage. This is especially the case with the younger generations.

For example, while shopping at a Floating Market, we were stopped several times by students wanting to ask us questions in English (probably for a class assignment).

Just as they are excited about learning English, they also LOVE when a “farang” tries to learn/speak Thai. You’ll catch more flies with honey than vinegar, and you’ll get much farther in all situations with terrible Thai rather than impeccable English.

“Mai ben rai.”…

“Mai ben rai.”

Thai for “fuhgettaboudit!” Just means “no worries, it’s all good, etc.” Pretty much an all-purpose phrase used pretty often.

“Farang”

A good word to know, though it has to meanings. The word “farang” (the “r” is pronounced kind of like the “r” in the Spanish word “cara) can mean either guava – a delicious fruit you can find at many street carts. The fruit merchants sell all kinds of Thai fruit, cut up into bite-sized pieces and served with a stick so you can eat while walking! (Usually you’ll find watermelon, cantaloupe, mango (young and ripe), and guava (young, or ripe and soaked in plum juice!). One fruit will cost you no more than 20 baht (less than a dollar).

On the other hand, “farang” also means “foreigner!” As my Thai friends tell me, it used to be more of a derogatory term (think “stinky old man”) but now is just a general term used to refer to foreigners, especially white people like me! Knowing this word suprises Thais, and you can especially distinguish it when they’re talking, thus knowing when they’re talking about you! haha

My approach? Embrace it. My Thai friends thought it was hilarious when I pointed to the guava and said “farang, like me!” They love to laugh.

The gist of this trist…

I’m not one to journal really. Blame it on a deep-seated fear of diaries due to the all-too-common cliche of privacy violation. This blog is more of a guide…ok, I’m not quite that… Continue reading