Christmas doesn’t have a lot to do with Christ in Thailand
I see on one of my favourite charity’s Facebook page some ultra PC person
has taken offense to a Christmas party the charity held for its students.
Apparently they feel this is some kind of missionary, Christian attempt at
brainwashing children. This person really needs to learn to get a life and
understand that it is possible to learn about other cultural traditions,
especially one so widespread and public as Christmas without it being some
sort of brain washing activity.
To make such a fuss over something that involves fun, fellowship and food
and to condemn it because it does not fall into that person’s preconceived
notions of how kids should celebrate is beyond ridiculous.
Dear PC person, it is SANTA hats for heaven’s sake. Get over yourself, you
are not the arbiter of all that is charitable and educational. You make the
Grinch look mild
Used to be a Grinch
Bridge at Chiang Khong for motorbikes
There’s, justifiably, some excitement about the opening of the new bridge from
Thailand to Laos (and back!) at Chiang Khong, Chiang Rai.
However, as we motorcyclists have discovered, it is not open to us if we want to
cross into Laos! Yet it is from the Lao side into Thailand.
Apparently we bikers have to take the ancient barge and pay a fee that has
increased 100% to 1,000 baht if we want to cross! And the barge won’t leave
until it’s full!
We can not think of any logical reason why the Thai authorities are doing this,
so I’m wondering if you have resources available to enable CMM to check on the
situation or if anyone in authority can explain.
I’m aware that this current situation may change by the time this letter is
For example, I now hear that the Thai authorities have asked the Lao side to
disallow bikes from crossing into Thailand!
Let’s hope that common sense prevails and motorcyclists are soon allowed to use
Motorcycles can cross too!
It is high season and the weather is cold and it has brought a plethora of
Bangkok vehicles who seem to drive even more foolhardily and dangerously than
the locals! Today I nearly got sideswiped by a Bangkok visitor who suddenly
realized he needed to be turning right around the moat and so decided to cross
over three lanes of traffic at the last minute to make the turn. Perhaps not
realizing that all he had to do was continue on and get the next U-turn without
nearly wiping out me and the motorbike that was in the center lane!
One other aggressive Bangkok driver decided that his lane switching at a speed
of around 80 km an hour around the moat cutting off cars and nearly knocking one
lady off her bicycle. I realize you are used to Bangkok traffic but I would
suggest you tone it down a bit here. The speed limit is 60 km an hour around the
moat and most people find that conditions make 50 the safest.
I realize that the Bangkok people are here to enjoy the cold temperatures and
that Chiang Mai roads are a bit confusing for those who are unused to them. So
perhaps our esteemed visitors would find it safer for themselves and everyone
else (and reduce traffic considerably) if they left their cars at their hotels
and took a songthaew! At 20 baht a trip it is certainly affordable and will save
themselves and everyone else endless trouble. It would help the local economy
and reduce the incredible traffic jams that they cause when they all drive up
from Bangkok and then get lost around the city.
Thank you for listening and let us hope that someday our Bangkok visitors can
see the logic of my suggestion, although I doubt it.
Take a songthaew
The rickety barge that is the only means for bikes to cross the river to the Lao side
As you said, things may change yet again, when something is as new as this it is
often the case that policy is written, re-written and re-written yet again. We
can certainly ask around and if any of our readers has more information please
feel free to write in.