Thailand is a hot country, and Bangkok is a hot city, one of the hottest in the world, as far as yearly average temperature is concerned. And Thai people have a culture that gives utmost importance to Buddhism, their family, and their country. In summary, they don’t seem to be prepared to go abroad, to cope with cold weather, and to adapt to other cultures. So how do they cope actually, when they go abroad, and live abroad?
I can not speak for all Thai people, or all Thai girls, but I know quite a few living abroad, going abroad, or wanting to go abroad, so here is my take on something I consider a myth: “Thai people can not adapt abroad and always want (need) to come back to Thailand”.
Let’s start with the easy part of the question, the weather. Thai people, in their vast majority, will always try to avoid the sun and the hot weather. And in Thailand, this is sure not that easy to do. So one of the attraction of being in Thailand, for westerners, the sun and hot weather, is actually something Thai people do not care about. And even do not like that much. For Thai girls, white skin (no sun) is in, dark skin (sun) is out, so give them snow any time. And no sun.
What about living abroad? And more specifically living in the western world, can Thais do it?
Well, living in Thailand is pretty tough for most Thai people in the first place, salaries are low, good healthcare is expensive and prospects are limited. Most of my colleagues dream of leaving Thailand and working abroad. Why would you think they would prefer to stay in Thailand actually? The western world is where the money is (a big incentive) and where education for your children is usually better (a big headache in Thailand as mentioned in a previous post International schools )
Of course, Thai people abroad are not immune to getting homesick sometimes, but it is much less of a problem these days, thanks to the many communication tools available through the internet. You can easily stay in touch with your loved ones; via hotmail, gmail, skype, facebook… And watching Thai TV, Thai music or whatever Thai is just a click away.
And if you have children staying with you , it sure further helps fighting the occasional homesickness.
So what is the toughest part of living in the West for Thai people, and for foreigners, having been living for too long in Thailand? Missing the Thai food. Give us a Som Tam any day. 😀
In conclusion, I’m convinced Thai people can adapt abroad as well as anybody else, if not better
Because their life will usually be easier abroad.
Because their children will usually be better educated abroad.
And because the weather is of no concern to them, they do not crave the sunlight as much as quite a few westerners do, on the contrary.
The photos were taken with the Canon 7D and the Canon lens 24-105mm.