My flight to Chiang Mai is in a few hours and it will be my first time in Thailand. I've lived in the US all my life and have traveled back and forth to Australia a few times. This will be the first country that I visit that doesn't speak English as their first language.
There seems to be many posts regarding scams and unfriendliness towards "farangs". I don't know anyone in Thailand, I'll be traveling alone (male), and I do not speak Thai. I originally wanted to come to Thailand because my initial impression was that the people were so friendly and it would be a peaceful place. Am I going to arrive and realize that there will be constant attempts to take advantage of me, rip me off, overcharge me, lie to me, etc? Maybe I'm just getting anxious because the flight is so soon and I'm getting cold feet. The whole purpose of coming to Thailand for me was to find beauty in humanity again. Land of Smiles. I worked in finance (equities) for ten years. I don't wanna see that side of human anymore. I want to see and be around kindness and compassion. It's almost a spiritual thing for me. Someone please tell me that opportunistic behavior here is no worse than anywhere else and that in general, the Thai people and culture are good to farangs. I'll be overwhelmed with sadness, not anger, if I arrive and the first taxi I get into turns around with a smile and says "that'll be 800 baht to Nimman".