I stumbled upon this website by accident when I was doing research for an upcoming trip to Chiangmai. And boy, was I pleasantly surprised to find an outlet in which I may document my growing fascination with Thailand with kindred spirits!
I am Le, a 25-year-old Singaporean male. I’m quite embarrassed to admit this but my first impressions of Thailand were restricted to shopping cheaply, praying at the Four-faced Buddha and catching a Thai Girl show in Bangkok. I love Bangkok for its frenetic energy and vitality but at the same time, I couldn’t (subconsciously) resist not putting myself on a pedestal and snobbing it as a city with no soul.
All this changed when I volunteered to be the co-leader for a community service project in Surin. Along with 20 other Singaporeans, I was to help the villagers of Ban Selangpan construct a library in their primary school.
I remembered reading Touch The Dragon (by Karen Connelly ) in preparation for my trip and thinking to myself how absurd it was that mai pen rai [never mind] came up so frequently as I couldn’t imagine anyone needing to use on a day-to-day basis.
Mai pen rai turned out to be arguably the phrase I used most often throughout my 2-week stay in Ban Selangpan. Coming from a nation where mistakes are never exorcised as they may return to haunt you, it was refreshing to see the Thais shrug off minor irritations with genuine nonchalance and cheerfulness and focus on a more important business of pursuing fun.
I realised that there’s more to Thailand that I have given her credit for. And if i may flatter myself so (hee), since I consider myself as a go-with-the-flow kinda person, I took to the Thais’ obliging mai pen rai nature like a duck to water.
I guess that’s when my love for Thailand was born.
As someone who has been trying to learn about Thai culture ever since he returned to Singapore, I hope that this blog would help me to explore my feelings and conceptualize them into words. To expedite my growth process into a well-informed Thai fanatic. This seems like a brutally honest, introspective, yet non-dysfunctional and safe environment to exchange ideas with fellow-minded bloggers. I can’t wait for the fun to start. *grin*
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