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'wasted on this bunch'???!!! VF certainly has a way with words! So far it's had 238 views and 12 replies but I'm sure it wasn't 'wasted' on the other 226 members who read it but didn't reply. Kandahar, I enjoy reading your posts and glad you don't write for a response.

Clearly this post has not been read by 247 different members. That is only a count of page views and refreshes. If you enjoy reading someone's post, then you should make that clear, as you have done here.

Just because ones motivation to write may be personal, doesn't mean it doesn't deserve a thoughtful response. This is after all a public forum for exchanging information and ideas. If we do not participate, then it ceases to function. We need more interaction not less.

We need to motivate and reward those who make an effort. How else will they know their efforts are appreciated. Reinforcement. :)

VF...Thanks for defining what "is needed" on this blog. It may be worth your reflection to broaden your narrow-mindedness and allow others to interact and participate as individuals...according to each individuals personal preferences, which may not be the same as yours. Shocking, I know. Motivate and reward your dog, allow others their individuality. Thanks for "motivating" me to reply to your "expectations". Peace.

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VF...Thanks for defining what "is needed" on this blog (forum). It may be worth your reflection to broaden your narrow-mindedness and allow others to interact and participate as individuals...according to each individuals personal preferences, which may not be the same as yours. Shocking, I know. Motivate and reward your dog, allow others their individuality. Thanks for "motivating" me to reply to your "expectations". Peace.

So you are allowed to be an individual and express your somewhat crude opinions while I am supposed to do what? I wasn't aware that I was blocking of disallowing anything. I thought I was being encouraging and far from narrow-minded.

Glad to be of help with your post count. Perhaps next year you will contribute once again. :)

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So let me get this straight Jubby. You think I would be better off to disengage my brain a little more often? I certainly can't agree with you on that, as agreement is not allowed. :D

No Not at all, although you could try it once maybe. :)

As a simpleton with limited literacy skills I do have problems expressing myself but I suppose what I'm trying to say is just try not to belittle us mere mortals once in a while. I was going to say maybe a little Humility but I doubt you regard humility as a Virtue.

Anyway, Its all good, I'd better get back to my party its sure to kick off anytime now . Laters :D

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So let me get this straight Jubby. You think I would be better off to disengage my brain a little more often? I certainly can't agree with you on that, as agreement is not allowed. :D

No Not at all, although you could try it once maybe. :)

As a simpleton with limited literacy skills I do have problems expressing myself but I suppose what I'm trying to say is just try not to belittle us mere mortals once in a while. I was going to say maybe a little Humility but I doubt you regard humility as a Virtue.

Anyway, Its all good, I'd better get back to my party its sure to kick off anytime now . Laters :D

I don't know Jub, if I ever disengaged it even once, perhaps it wouldn't ever go back into gear again. :D Come on, like it or not, how far would this thread have gone without me stirring the pot? This way it stays on the front page and more people get to read Kandahar's words. :D

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But VF, Its just so predictable now. your going to have to try changing tactics. Anyway, I must get back to the party. A farang was busy tellying me how wonderful and loyal is darling thai wife is, while her thai boyfriend serves us with drink & snacks. Why don't you drop by I'm sure its just up your street :)

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But VF, Its just so predictable now. your going to have to try changing tactics. Anyway, I must get back to the party. A farang was busy telling me how wonderful and loyal is darling thai wife is, while her thai boyfriend serves us with drink & snacks. Why don't you drop by I'm sure its just up your street :)

I'm quite enjoying the dry, cool, quiet comfort of my home. I'll venture out again after the festivities. Thanks for the invite, I'm sure you are very sincere. :D

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'waisted on this bunch'???!!! VF certainly has a way with words!

No, we also have to contribute to the well being of our in-laws, an obligation

we also would have had in the old days in our home countries.

Also that is part of the picture, which I have the feeling the one and the other

tries to escape once in a while.

I'm sure some do skip out on that responsibility. I take good care of the wife's folks. They live in the same house with us. The FIL is pretty far gone. I interact with the MIL every day. We have a lot of fun with each other; I more with her than she with me because I am more more of a cut-up and more playful. But she has her moments.

Today, I got her good. It turned out to be my job to pick a fruit that they call kanung. That's how it sounds, even if the spelling is off. I used my tall aluminum ladder to get myself directly under the first huge clump of them. I took a basket with me up the ladder. Mother was watching and supervising but I made sure the wife distracted her for a few seconds. As she was distracted, I lifted a huge cluster of bananas from the basket and placed them next to the fruit that I was to cut, hiding the bananas on the opposite side of the fruit cluster. She couldn't see them. I made a show of cutting the first big fruit and and allowed the banana clump to fall into my hand at the right moment. You should have seen her eyes. Priceless. How did that crazy Farang cut bananas out of the kanung tree? The laughter afterwards, including hers, was worth the trouble.

Quote: PS: Let me describe him as a former Dutch equestrian champion and horseman of the Royal Stables.

After almost four months in the Overbrook Hospital he finally passed away three days ago.

Because of the formalities we don't know yet when the cremation will be.

Sorry for the loss that this man's family and friends have suffered. I had heard of his troubles and I heard that he had passed.

Grief and sorrow- Two to be reckoned with by those who remain.

Thanks for letting all of us know of his passing.

I was never an equestrian champion. I did spend a lot of my childhood and teen years astride a horse that was more of a friend to me than most friends. Any man that spends a lot of time astride horses knows some things that I know and there is some common ground worth acknowledging. I have never known a good horseman that didn't earn my respect.

kandahar

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Thanks to Kandahar for the OP and to everyone else for their input. A very good read.

I think I should mention that I find VF's posts, threads and blog, well written and very stimulating. To call him narrow minded is, I believe, narrow minded :)

With regard to the 'time machine' concept, I agree, there are many things from the past that could do with a little resurrection.

I suppose it depends where you spent that time.

For me, in London, it's true there was more respect for people, everyone knew each other a little more and I remember going to the shop for my Auntie and getting things 'on bail' ie eat now pay when you can, and neighbours all chipping in with keeping the kids in line.

I also remember crushing poverty, class discrimination, domestic violence, very poor housing, a police force that, whilst it had a veneer of 'community' about it, was corrupt, vindictive and violent.

Nothing is permanent, things continually change, some things that we perceive to be good disappear but some that are bad are also happily consigned to the past.

Where I grew up is unrecognisable, London has always been like that, if you go away for a couple of years, when you come back it's all changed, roads don't go where they used to, large buildings you used to see every day aren't there any more, the faces on the street are different.

'Twas ever thus.

I have only visited CR (city) very briefly, spent a little longer further north in the same province and have to say I found it very appealing.

I'm not convinced that the values expressed in the OP are from the past, I hope they continue to flourish and I am confident that while the 'march of time' can be seen as a bad thing, in many ways it allows people to broaden their knowledge and desire to enquire as to the value of everything, which, in my not so humble opinion, is what makes life worth living.

I've always questioned everything, now that I'm a little older that doesn't necessarily mean that I don't accept it, but I still want to know 'why'

Thanks again for the thread.

Biff

P.S. the other thing I find attractive about CR is the people in this forum, I'm not sure if a 'real life' meeting would be on the cards or not but I find them, generally speaking, a very intelligent and thoughtful bunch :D

Edited by bifftastic
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Thanks to Kandahar for the OP and to everyone else for their input. A very good read.

I think I should mention that I find VF's posts, threads and blog, well written and very stimulating. To call him narrow minded is, I believe, narrow minded :)

With regard to the 'time machine' concept, I agree, there are many things from the past that could do with a little resurrection.

I suppose it depends where you spent that time.

For me, in London, it's true there was more respect for people, everyone knew each other a little more and I remember going to the shop for my Auntie and getting things 'on bail' ie eat now pay when you can, and neighbours all chipping in with keeping the kids in line.

I also remember crushing poverty, class discrimination, domestic violence, very poor housing, a police force that, whilst it had a veneer of 'community' about it, was corrupt, vindictive and violent.

Nothing is permanent, things continually change, some things that we perceive to be good disappear but some that are bad are also happily consigned to the past.

Where I grew up is unrecognisable, London has always been like that, if you go away for a couple of years, when you come back it's all changed, roads don't go where they used to, large buildings you used to see every day aren't there any more, the faces on the street are different.

'Twas ever thus.

I have only visited CR (city) very briefly, spent a little longer further north in the same province and have to say I found it very appealing.

I'm not convinced that the values expressed in the OP are from the past, I hope they continue to flourish and I am confident that while the 'march of time' can be seen as a bad thing, in many ways it allows people to broaden their knowledge and desire to enquire as to the value of everything, which, in my not so humble opinion, is what makes life worth living.

I've always questioned everything, now that I'm a little older that doesn't necessarily mean that I don't accept it, but I still want to know 'why'

Thanks again for the thread.

Biff

P.S. the other thing I find attractive about CR is the people in this forum, I'm not sure if a 'real life' meeting would be on the cards or not but I find them, generally speaking, a very intelligent and thoughtful bunch :D

Nice post, good man. Always good to see a contribution as opposed to retribution.

I am sorry to say, I don't know London. I passed through an airport there once and found it a hel_l of a lot better than the previous stopover in an airport in France and that is about the end of it.

I agree, some of the past is better left in the past. I don't miss the bad stuff. I remember driving through a burnt-out section of a major city in the strife-torn 60's. Bad stuff happened there and lives were lost, families torn.

In my old homeland, metal detectors greet you at school doors now. Armed policemen roam the halls. And on and on and on.........

This place hasn't met that fate yet. Again, the family values are what keeps a smile on this face.

Yes, change is inevitable. But for some folks, the battle to keep it at bay is a worthy one, even if it is a losing one. In CR, I don't think it is a battle. At the moment, the good stuff is still the "present". I appreciate that. I don't take it for granted, nor do I think that this is just the way the world is. No, I see it as VERY valuable at this time in my life and I didn't see that value when I was younger. I didn't really know what I had.

Thanks for you input on the postings of VF.

And yes, jubby and his balls...... What kind of day would we have without a report like that? AND he makes us all a little more proud of our own in-laws while he is at it. I have an alcoholic BIL but he keeps his hands to himself.

Edited by kandahar
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Yes, my little reports .............. people watching is so much more interesting here than in my home country. They've been entertaining me now for 15 years or so, Its funny in a slightly disturbing way, and was expensive entertainment in the early years. Its a shame most of the real characters get wisked away early by Bhudda.

Your all invited next year.

As for a meet up if someone was to actually organise it I'm sure it could be equally entertaining :)

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"I especially agree with: "If the world in our old countries still would be the same as it was

when we were young or as we wish to remember it, we probably wouldn't be here .....!"

It hurts me to have left my country. There was a time when it was unthinkable.

But now, a lot of what was there to love is gone and therefore, easier to leave, less to miss".

... Kandahar entrusted us.

Of course we have to be carefull that we don't draw our conclusions too fast.

Most of us are between fifty and seventy years old and have possibly recently

survived a mid-life crisis or 'peno-pause' (others might still be in the middle of it)

and have thus reached an age at which people generally start looking back, often

in 'mode nostalgia'.

Young people hardly look back, they are future orientated and not hindered by

malfunctioning memories.

One thing though I think I remember very well, is that my father, when he was at our age

always told me that life was better in 'the old days'.

History repeats itself, because knowledge of history is still like a big light at the rear of a

ship sailing into darkness. The only thing history learns us, we might say, is that we don't

learn anything of it.

Kandahar puts it exactly the way it is: the country we thought to love doesn't exist anymore.

Even if we would go back we wouldn't find it anymore. We would recognize buildings, bridges,

churches and all the other material testimonies of our past, but we would feel estranged from

them. People seem to move faster, seem to be unnecessary rude; It makes us feel like strangers

in our own country.Yes Kandahar, it hurts!

Many of us would also feel that the people are not 'our' people anymore. We see representatives

from other nations, races, cultures and hear them speak our language. Sometimes it seems as if

they partly have replaced the indigenous population of which we were part.

But now my friends, we are immigrants ourselves! Immigrants in Thailand!

Our 'burkha's and bournousses' look different from those that are worn in Europe by immigrants

from northern African or Eastern countries.

Many of us prefer to walk on flipflops that Thai people only use in their toilets. Many of us like to

show the hair on their legs and in their armpits, while excessive body fat seems hardly to be

contained by the underwear in which the town is hit.

It is fascinating to see that Thai people look at us with the same feigned indifference as we look

at those immigrants in our home countries that prefer to move around like walking tents.

But aside from the physical appearance with which many of us ostentatively turn their backs to our

host country, how is it with our mental willingness to see this beautiful country as more than just a

background of a stage on which we think to play such important parts?

The number of western immigrants has got so high in Chiang Rai that a sub culture emerges.

Exactly the same picture we know from western immigration countries: when there are too many

immigrants they become self-satisfied.

When I started this forum five years ago I meant it to be an instrument to support participation of

foreigners in the social life of Chiang Rai (call it integration) and a source of information.

Especially in the field of sports, mainly bicycling and football, and culture, concerts and visual arts,

we see a great participation of foreigners, not only passively but also actively engaged.

Participating in mountainbike challenges it felt great not to be a foreigner but a cyclist among cyclists.

The opening of the very succesfull photography exhibition 'Chiang Rai through Foreign Eyes' made by

16 local foreigners, attracted more than sixty foreigners and was in Chiang Saen and Chiang Rai

further visited by more than 12.000 Thai people. This forum was at the base of this project.

Thai people like to see us enjoy the same things they enjoy. The football 'group' counted about 25

members and cultural manifestations (openings of exhibitions and classical concerts) are mostly

visited by ten to thirty fellow expats.

The Society of Friends of Rai Mae Fah Luang and the Hash House Harriers are both mixed clubs.

The forum has many other functions. For expats living in villages the chatbox threads are very important

and for those who are mentally masturbative oriented the forum is like tissue paper.

Limbo :)

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I don't always completely understand what your trying to say Limbo.

But this was a very thought provoking post; Humorous which is important to me and also very true.

Brilliant. Thanks for posting Limbo, Honestly.

................ Now pass the Tissue Paper :)

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Nice post, good man. Always good to see a contribution as opposed to retribution.

I am sorry to say, I don't know London. I passed through an airport there once and found it a hel_l of a lot better than the previous stopover in an airport in France and that is about the end of it.

I agree, some of the past is better left in the past. I don't miss the bad stuff. I remember driving through a burnt-out section of a major city in the strife-torn 60's. Bad stuff happened there and lives were lost, families torn.

In my old homeland, metal detectors greet you at school doors now. Armed policemen roam the halls. And on and on and on.........

This place hasn't met that fate yet. Again, the family values are what keeps a smile on this face.

Yes, change is inevitable. But for some folks, the battle to keep it at bay is a worthy one, even if it is a losing one. In CR, I don't think it is a battle. At the moment, the good stuff is still the "present". I appreciate that. I don't take it for granted, nor do I think that this is just the way the world is. No, I see it as VERY valuable at this time in my life and I didn't see that value when I was younger. I didn't really know what I had.

Thanks for you input on the postings of VF.

And yes, jubby and his balls...... What kind of day would we have without a report like that? AND he makes us all a little more proud of our own in-laws while he is at it. I have an alcoholic BIL but he keeps his hands to himself.

Thanks, don't get me wrong, there's plenty about the past in my city, and the present come to think of it, which i wouldn't ever want to change. I think my main point was that time marches on and we often see that as a bad thing and can get caught up with what is wrong with how things are now by way of comparison.

People often comment about how bad violent crime is in London now, it's true there are many knife attacks and some of our young people have a very hard time just walking to scholl in safety. But it was always like that to a degree, maybe it wasn't reported as much at the time, I don't know.

As far as family values are concerned that is a very good point, nowadays so many people are living far away from their families. In my country in the late 70's early 80's there was a lot of what is called 'social mobility' this is often seen as a good thing, people getting better housing and better paid jobs further away from where they grew up. I think there is a side effect of that in that it can tend to unravel the fabric of the local community. For example, London has a static population of around 8 million, this swells every day to around 11 million, then sg=hrinks back to 8. This means that 3 million people travel for well over an hour, into London every day for work then go back home again, what kind of community does that develop? I hear people in my area talk of when they could leave their doors unlocked and pop round their neighbours house to borrow something etc. etc. whilst that is true one reason why they could leave their door unlocked is because they didn't have anything worth stealing!

I know material possesions can't replace community values but many people couldn't wait to move away from those communities as they wanted better housing better schools and some fresh air to breath.

London is, and always has been, a mixture of rich, poor and everything in between. I suspect that is true of many other cities in the world.

I don't think you need worry too much about Thai society, from my limited exposure, the values of family transcend any material gain. There are young people who appear, on the surface, to be wrapped up in the latest cell-phone or whatever but I think, deep down, they still have enough of the values of their society to continue having something that is worth so much more than any technological advance.

If you look at the youth of any generation you may well think you have cause to worry, I remember seeing a TV program about some of the young men in the US military serving in Iraq (whatever your views on that conflict are irrelevant for this example) and one of their commanders made a comparison with the same generation from the 1940's he said 'they would match up to any of them, I have no doubt whatsoever about that'

Praise indeed.

Thanks again for the OP

Biff

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Nice post, good man. Always good to see a contribution as opposed to retribution.

I am sorry to say, I don't know London. I passed through an airport there once and found it a hel_l of a lot better than the previous stopover in an airport in France and that is about the end of it.

I agree, some of the past is better left in the past. I don't miss the bad stuff. I remember driving through a burnt-out section of a major city in the strife-torn 60's. Bad stuff happened there and lives were lost, families torn.

In my old homeland, metal detectors greet you at school doors now. Armed policemen roam the halls. And on and on and on.........

This place hasn't met that fate yet. Again, the family values are what keeps a smile on this face.

Yes, change is inevitable. But for some folks, the battle to keep it at bay is a worthy one, even if it is a losing one. In CR, I don't think it is a battle. At the moment, the good stuff is still the "present". I appreciate that. I don't take it for granted, nor do I think that this is just the way the world is. No, I see it as VERY valuable at this time in my life and I didn't see that value when I was younger. I didn't really know what I had.

Thanks for you input on the postings of VF.

And yes, jubby and his balls...... What kind of day would we have without a report like that? AND he makes us all a little more proud of our own in-laws while he is at it. I have an alcoholic BIL but he keeps his hands to himself.

Thanks, don't get me wrong, there's plenty about the past in my city, and the present come to think of it, which i wouldn't ever want to change. I think my main point was that time marches on and we often see that as a bad thing and can get caught up with what is wrong with how things are now by way of comparison.

People often comment about how bad violent crime is in London now, it's true there are many knife attacks and some of our young people have a very hard time just walking to scholl in safety. But it was always like that to a degree, maybe it wasn't reported as much at the time, I don't know.

As far as family values are concerned that is a very good point, nowadays so many people are living far away from their families. In my country in the late 70's early 80's there was a lot of what is called 'social mobility' this is often seen as a good thing, people getting better housing and better paid jobs further away from where they grew up. I think there is a side effect of that in that it can tend to unravel the fabric of the local community. For example, London has a static population of around 8 million, this swells every day to around 11 million, then sg=hrinks back to 8. This means that 3 million people travel for well over an hour, into London every day for work then go back home again, what kind of community does that develop? I hear people in my area talk of when they could leave their doors unlocked and pop round their neighbours house to borrow something etc. etc. whilst that is true one reason why they could leave their door unlocked is because they didn't have anything worth stealing!

I know material possesions can't replace community values but many people couldn't wait to move away from those communities as they wanted better housing better schools and some fresh air to breath.

London is, and always has been, a mixture of rich, poor and everything in between. I suspect that is true of many other cities in the world.

I don't think you need worry too much about Thai society, from my limited exposure, the values of family transcend any material gain. There are young people who appear, on the surface, to be wrapped up in the latest cell-phone or whatever but I think, deep down, they still have enough of the values of their society to continue having something that is worth so much more than any technological advance.

If you look at the youth of any generation you may well think you have cause to worry, I remember seeing a TV program about some of the young men in the US military serving in Iraq (whatever your views on that conflict are irrelevant for this example) and one of their commanders made a comparison with the same generation from the 1940's he said 'they would match up to any of them, I have no doubt whatsoever about that'

Praise indeed.

Thanks again for the OP

Biff

You are welcome for the post. Thanks for your observations.

I write stuff like this often enough. I just usually send it out to a mailing list of relatives and close friends. This particular one seemed more appropriate for this crowd.

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  • 1 year later...

Just reading through this again and seeing if I can find places where my thoughts have changed since it was written. In little ways, I can say "yes, slightly" but overall, it still reflects the way I view the place.

I have trouble reconciling some thoughts, though. I am often reminded that business people here are nonchalant, to say the least, about following up on customer inquiries. My Thai wife replies to every email inquiry she gets about her business. She returns every call, even missed calls and makes follow-up calls as new info comes to light. To me, that is the correct way of doing business and it is the way I have seen it done in other places almost my entire life prior to coming here.

Things are changing in the old country where I come from in that respect and maybe one day, it will be more like it is here, where you can inquire about a service or product and likely be ignored. As I saw that beginning to happen in the old country, I attributed it to younger generation lazy employees initially, but later, I started to run into business owners who did the same thing, especially self-employed contractors. Some of them I knew personally and I knew what they did every day and where they were during the day, namely the coffee shops or bars. Myself and others learned quickly not to call those guys because it would be a waste of our time and efforts. Better to call an unknown and see what if we could get lucky in finding a dependable business man. But inquiries being ignored is what I have found from my first day here and the attitude puzzles me and intrigues me, to the point that I spend a lot of time trying to understand it.

Here, the people aren't in bars or coffee shops, they are sitting in their businesses, apparently awaiting new customers or old. But they don't answer e-mails or return calls. Many times, if you reach said business person on the first call attempt, they put you off and say they will look into your request and get back to you but they don't get back to you. It isn't that the requests are for something unusual; it can be a request to a roofing supplier for roofing materials that he has in stock and delivers. It can be to an electrical contractor for a wiring job. It can be a request to any company about any product or service that they are in business to provide. It isn't that they avoid the English speaker or writers. They do the same thing to my Thai speaking/writing wife and to most of the friends she has. The friends all report and complain about the same behavior. Most people I know report the same behavior, whether they are locals or Farang. And yet, the wife has insurance sales friends, stock-broker friends, who work days, nights,weekends trying to drum up new business, So, I see that some who's success is dependent on self motivation only, are very hard workers and return a response of one kind or another to every inquiry. But the people who work from block and mortar buildings don't seem to care at all. Why is this? Will time alter this, for better or worse?

I recently advised a person on this forum to seek home schooling for a young child that is in need of education and this very thing is why I suggested it. It is an opportunity to take an impressionable young person and to instill in him/her a desire to succeed and to provide the guidance on behaviors that will help that person to succeed. Those things aren't taught successfully in schools here and I suspect they aren't taught at home at all. And I wonder why?

I do know a lot of places lose business with my family because the businesses don't seem to care about a sale. My advice is always, "Okay, forget them and go to another". And we do. And then maybe to another and another. And yet, if you walk into any of those businesses, order your product and present your money, you get the service or product. Why do you have to have a face to face meeting to get anything done? Why do the people list a telephone number, e-mail address or web address if they aren't going to bother doing business through any of them? It is almost as if it is still forty years in the past and they don't have those tools available to increase their sales. They DO have them but yet, they work as if they do not. I wonder what goes through their minds as they decide against utilizing these things. I wonder about it a lot. I wonder about it too much, because I can see NOTHING that makes any sense of it nor can any Thai person add anything that makes sense. The ones I ask are just as stumped as I am. So, are they that stuck in the past or is it something else?

Edited by kandahar
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Just reading through this again and seeing if I can find places where my thoughts have changed since it was written. In little ways, I can say "yes, slightly" but overall, it still reflects the way I view the place.

I have trouble reconciling some thoughts, though. I am often reminded that business people here are nonchalant, to say the least, about following up on customer inquiries. My Thai wife replies to every email inquiry she gets about her business. She returns every call, even missed calls and makes follow-up calls as new info comes to light. To me, that is the correct way of doing business and it is the way I have seen it done in other places almost my entire life prior to coming here.

Things are changing in the old country where I come from in that respect and maybe one day, it will be more like it is here, where you can inquire about a service or product and likely be ignored. As I saw that beginning to happen in the old country, I attributed it to younger generation lazy employees initially, but later, I started to run into business owners who did the same thing, especially self-employed contractors. Some of them I knew personally and I knew what they did every day and where they were during the day, namely the coffee shops or bars. Myself and others learned quickly not to call those guys because it would be a waste of our time and efforts. Better to call an unknown and see what if we could get lucky in finding a dependable business man. But inquiries being ignored is what I have found from my first day here and the attitude puzzles me and intrigues me, to the point that I spend a lot of time trying to understand it.

Here, the people aren't in bars or coffee shops, they are sitting in their businesses, apparently awaiting new customers or old. But they don't answer e-mails or return calls. Many times, if you reach said business person on the first call attempt, they put you off and say they will look into your request and get back to you but they don't get back to you. It isn't that the requests are for something unusual; it can be a request to a roofing supplier for roofing materials that he has in stock and delivers. It can be to an electrical contractor for a wiring job. It can be a request to any company about any product or service that they are in business to provide. It isn't that they avoid the English speaker or writers. They do the same thing to my Thai speaking/writing wife and to most of the friends she has. The friends all report and complain about the same behavior. Most people I know report the same behavior, whether they are locals or Farang. And yet, the wife has insurance sales friends, stock-broker friends, who work days, nights,weekends trying to drum up new business, So, I see that some who's success is dependent on self motivation only, are very hard workers and return a response of one kind or another to every inquiry. But the people who work from block and mortar buildings don't seem to care at all. Why is this? Will time alter this, for better or worse?

I recently advised a person on this forum to seek home schooling for a young child that is in need of education and this very thing is why I suggested it. It is an opportunity to take an impressionable young person and to instill in him/her a desire to succeed and to provide the guidance on behaviors that will help that person to succeed. Those things aren't taught successfully in schools here and I suspect they aren't taught at home at all. And I wonder why?

I do know a lot of places lose business with my family because the businesses don't seem to care about a sale. My advice is always, "Okay, forget them and go to another". And we do. And then maybe to another and another. And yet, if you walk into any of those businesses, order your product and present your money, you get the service or product. Why do you have to have a face to face meeting to get anything done? Why do the people list a telephone number, e-mail address or web address if they aren't going to bother doing business through any of them? It is almost as if it is still forty years in the past and they don't have those tools available to increase their sales. They DO have them but yet, they work as if they do not. I wonder what goes through their minds as they decide against utilizing these things. I wonder about it a lot. I wonder about it too much, because I can see NOTHING that makes any sense of it nor can any Thai person add anything that makes sense. The ones I ask are just as stumped as I am. So, are they that stuck in the past or is it something else?

I have often wondered if this reluctance,( when you work in a corporation/government dept. in many societies) - to respond to the electronic or impersonal request is simply because the person can. If you are working for money only, in a job in which you have no vested interest or owe no allegience to, it is very easy to become so disenchanted that the ability to ignore requests from potential customers or enquirers can become a hit back against the job that you have to endure.

Instead of looking at what you do and thinking 'I don't really want to be here, but I need to eat, so I might as well do a good job, because that way I feel good about myself and can take pride in what I do, boring/tedious though it is', I have seen many people take pride in being rude, spending their time at work looking for ways to avoid it, taking pleasure at scoring points against the business that enables them to pay their bills.

The only way to ensure appropriate responses to electronic or phone enquiries in a lot of big corporations is to monitor them.

It doesn't explain why there is so little response here though from the small business which is often family owned. The only thing I can think of is that it is not a personal enquiry. You aren't meeting face to face, you cannot judge whether you want to do business with this person. For a modern business that wants to make a profit, this is not a sustainable attitude.

But how many small businesses really seem to want more than a 'tick -over' profit, to be in business but not want to do anything other than open up in the morning, sit around all day, sell to a few customers, have a chat , then go home. There seem to be a large number like this. Perhaps not the owners of the businesses - but certainly many staff seem to have this attitude.The exceptions are the ones we have to seek out and use, in any country.

We may also have to consider that some businesses may feel that it is very easy to deny or alter a verbal agreement, but promising something on paper - even electronically - may just be a step too far. Society expects you to provide a remote means of getting in touch with your business - but you don't have to like it or use it. Short-sighted, infuriating when you're waiting for a response, but - in the long run- bad for them.

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