Did you know...?
…that squatting toilets are the most common found toilet in Thailand? While we have definitely gotten use to squatting on a more regular basis, we are quite happy to have Western toilets in our apartments. We mainly use squatters at school, hostels, public restrooms and I guess pretty much everywhere else in Thailand. Also, don’t forget your own toilet paper! You won’t find that in any restrooms that we’ve found. Just a bucket and a hose for flushing your “stuff” down. =)
…that stray dogs & cats are running around all over the place? When the doctor at the travel clinic told us to stay away from dogs to avoid Rabies, we said “Sure! Of course! No problem!” I guess we didn’t fully understand how many dogs and cats there would actually be (and that some of them would be so cute!) On a normal morning run, I would say I see upwards of 20+ dogs roaming the streets, parks and sidewalks. At first we thought every dog would want to eat us up for lunch, but quickly found that they are pretty chill and don’t really bother people for the most part. If we respect them, we usually get respect in return. =)
…that people in Thailand LOVE hotdogs and donuts? Seriously, hot dogs are everywhere and in everything. A few weeks ago Ryan picked up a loaf of raisin bread and to our surprise the following morning we found dried pork and a hotdog inside. Hmmm…not your typical breakfast in America. Donuts are also everywhere and come in every color imaginable. “Mister Donuts” is the popular chain here, but “Dunkin Donuts” also has a pretty strong presence, as well as many local bakery shops.
…that it is normal to see a family of four and their dog on a motorbike? Yep, that’s right - a family of four. And hey, if you don’t have your own motorbike you can take a motorbike taxi. Just look for the people in yellow vests and hop on the back.
…that drinks in a plastic bag are pretty typical? Most pop in Thailand comes in a glass bottle, which can then be recycled for a little money in return. That means if you are hoping to pick up a soda and hit the road, you aren’t taking the seller’s glass bottle away. So, in a plastic bag it goes with a large scoop of ice. Also, since motorbikes are a main means of transportation, slipping a plastic bag over your handlebars is much more convenient then holding a bottle while driving. Same goes for iced coffees, which come with plastic handles that slip around the plastic cup. Did I mention they use a lot of plastic?
…that the fruit in Thailand is out of this world? Every bite brings a smile to our faces and we buy different kinds pretty much everyday in the market. A few of our favorites include: mangosteens, rambutans, rose apples, jackfruit, dragon fruit, mangos, pinnapple, bananas, watermelon, papaya and of course, the famous durian.
…that you can’t drink the tap water in Thailand? Everyone showers and brushes their teeth with it, but that’s about it. No worries though. There are plenty of spots to load up with water for uber cheap. All you have to do is grab a jug and find the nearest water filter machine. There are water machines in most neighborhoods - and lucky for us it is right outside of our apartment.
…another main form of transportation in Phrapradaeng is bike taxis? We greatly admire these people, as they pull huge steel baskets behind their bike with up to two adults or three kids. Their calf muscles are ginormous, as you can probably imagine, and they bike rain or shine. Our favorite driver always has a huge smile and wears an Arizona Wildcats baseball cap.
…that garbage cans are hard to come by in Thailand? It is pretty normal to walk around looking for a garbage can, even in public places, and never find one. We are always on the lookout for a 7 Eleven, which seems to be the only place we ever do find a garbage can outside. Speaking of 7 Eleven, there are over 4,000 of them in Thailand. Just an FYI. If you ever need a quick break from the heat, 7 Elevens are a good spot to hit up, as the air conditioning is always set to full power.
…that the only time you get chop sticks is when you order soup? When eating soup you use chopsticks and a small soupspoon - and when eating anything else you use a fork and spoon. Note: You never actually put a fork in your mouth. Everything is pushed onto the spoon, which you then use to eat. Knifes are only used for preparing and cutting food, so it is pretty much unheard of to find a knife at the dining table.
Lots of love, Ryan & Becky