Everrr ahahah. That’s really saying something since we have lived in New York, Florida, The DMV and Kuwait. Bangkok is a confusing place full of contradictions that don’t make sense to the foreign eye. If you have ever been to Thailand you know exactly what I’m talking about. If not you will really enjoy this list.
I really wish that I had started writing down the “weird” things I would see around town when I first got here because after being here for a while you start to see these things as normal and altogether forget about them. That is until my friends come to visit and ask why are they doing that. A common saying here is This Is Thailand, TIT for short. It basically means, it just is this way, don’t bother asking why.
1. Stray Dogs are everywhere:
Bangkok might as well be the stray dog capital of the world. Lol. The dogs are also treated like kings so they are some of the fattest and laziest dogs you have ever seen. If you happen to run into some don’t be scared they will be way too lazy to chase after you.
2. Every day at 8 am and 6 pm everyone stands completely still:
At these times the national anthem plays over loudspeakers and everyone stands completely still. It is like a nationwide Mannequin Challenge. The first time it happens to you in an extremely crowded public place it will catch you off guard. Be careful not to bump into anyone.
3. Traffic is the worst:
Seriously traffic is not a game here. According to Tom Toms Travel Index, Bangkok has the 2nd worst traffic in the world. If you leave your house just one minute late you could spend an additional two hours twiddling your thumbs in standstill traffic. The only people able to get through the traffic are those who ride on motorbikes.
4. Motorbikes rule the road:
And sidewalks for that matter. Since traffic is so dense the only way to get somewhere is to hop on one of the motorbike taxis. Have you really been to Bangkok if you haven’t seen a family of 5 and their dog on the back of a motorcycle? I think not lol It’s even more common to see these same bikes carrying so much cargo it looks like the bike might flip over at any second.
5. There is a person whose job it is to just sweep. And they sweep everything:
The Street, The grass, the roof, it literally doesn’t matter. Which is actually pretty weird since it’s one of the dirtiest cities I’ve ever been to. I can’t even imagine what it would be like without them.
6. People flat-iron the grass:
Apparently cutting the grass isn’t enough. You need to make sure every blade is even. The only way to accomplish that is to flat-iron/steamroll the grass after you finish cutting it.
7. People eat bugs:
I can’t say that people are going to everyday restaurants asking for bugs but in the touristy areas, you can find all types of bugs for sale. It’s pretty gross to me but if you’re adventurous enough and think your stomach’s made of steel, I say go for it.
8. The weather is the devil:
At least that’s how it seems the people feel. They hide from the sun and the rain. No one wants to get dark. And the ones who are already dark are constantly trying to get lighter. Whitening and brightening products are found in just about anything that is skin related. As far as the rain goes it seems as if people think if it touches them they will melt. During one rainy night, Mr. Ward and I went to dinner. When we left home it was barely a drizzle. Everyone was hiding underneath this awning. When we made it to the restaurant a serious downpour started. We sat in this restaurant for about an hour or so. When we returned home EVERYONE was exactly where we left them and looking pissed off that they were somehow stuck in a game of freeze tag. Since we have lived in Florida walking in the rain is normal and we don’t really understand the reason behind not getting wet. Even when there are big events going on the town is pretty much dead as soon as there is a whiff of rain. The only time Thai’s enjoy getting wet is during Songkran.
9. The LadyBoys are really pretty:
If you are a single man visiting this city and plan to partake in the nightlife a word of warning. A lot of LadyBoys are really pretty and could easily fool any unsuspecting eyes. There are sure-fire ways to tell if this person is a man or a woman but usually, if they are way too pretty I would go ahead and assume that is/used to be a man. If that’s what you are into more power to you. If you want to see what I’m talking about check out this hashtag below.
10. Public Transportation Is no Joke:
Taking the bus, train, or songtaew in BKK will be an adventure in itself. Trust me when I say you won’t ever forget it. It Is alwayssss packed. Even during non-peak hours, you will find that for the most part every breathable inch of space is taken. After reading this list I’m sure you can agree that Bangkok is a strange place. What are some weird things you’ve seen while you were abroad?