Characterize life in Bangkok by using just one word: Street food. Now there is a talk about a ban on street food in Bangkok. An eviction of street vendors in some parts of the city has been carried out for the sake of hygiene and orderliness.
Is it really true? Doesn’t this do more harm than good? Many people will suffer as a result. Street food is part of the Thai way of life. An important question: Are utensils cleaned properly on the street? Can the lower hygiene on the street cause food poisoning?
Is this part of a bigger plan to turn Bangkok into Singapore? Isn’t the madness and chaos part of what makes Thailand an interesting destination?
They talk a lot about the tourists, but is there anybody that care about vendors and stall owners losing their livelihoods? In the name of progress they have to go. Only one problem, Bangkok Street food is the soul of the city.
Let’s compare Bangkok to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.
– There is no street food available in either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur.
– There are no soi dogs or stray dogs in either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur.
– There are no stray cats in either Singapore or Kuala Lumpur.
– Cockfighting seems to be perfectly legal in Thailand.
Let’s say you want to get around in Bangkok.
– There are motorcycle taxis in Bangkok and most other cities
– Tuk-Tuks are available in Bangkok
– There are plenty of cheap buses in Bangkok
– Various railway options are available in Bangkok, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.
Let’s say you want to get around in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur.
– There are NO motorcycle taxis in Singapore or Kl
– There are NO Tuk-Tuks in Singapore or KL
If the mass transit systems can’t bring you to where you need to go you will need to take a taxi. If you are not able to find a taxi you will need to walk. However, on many roads in Kuala Lumpur there are no walkways for pedestrians. Getting from point A to point B can be a hassle in Kuala Lumpur as the city is definitely not pedestrian friendly. Motorcycle taxis would come in handy in a city like KL.
Soi dogs or stray dogs are a problem. At night they attack people riding a motorcycle. When they run into each other they start a fight. It happens all the time and it can prevent a good night’s sleep. Stray cats often make even more noise at night. They make a sound similar to a baby crying. Stray cats and dogs are attracted to neighbourhoods where the residents feed them on a regular basis. Personally I can do without stray cats and soi dogs but the Thais seem not to mind.
There are very few motorcycles on the streets in Singapore. Very few indeed. There are a lot more motorcycles in Kuala Lumpur but few compared to the number in Bangkok.
In Bangkok you can not only buy food on the streets, they also sell all kinds of cheap shit made in China. Annoying perhaps, but it brings life to the streets.
So what is life in Bangkok like? Take a look at the pictures below. The pictures tell a story about life in Bangkok.
Published 24 April 2017
Photos by Sebastian Stephan Thiel on Flickr