Low Life Farangs - Blight On Thailand?
It’s just after eleven o’ clock and my buddy and I are outside an ATM getting cash when along comes what could be only described as a classic example of a low-life Farang hurling abuse at all and sundry. In this case a few choice words from the wise were all that was needed to ‘cool his heels’ somewhat.
Like the perpetual cycle of day and night there's no escaping the fact that even in the seeming remoteness of Thailand's most northerly city they are a common sight and can blight the typical ‘thai’ experience that many more sensible visitors are searching for.
We’ve all seen them, beer in hand and staggering the streets, often in broad daylight oblivious to their surroundings and offending many in their typically loutish and arrogant behaviour. Perhaps in their tiny brains they see themselves as superior and ‘better’ often weighing-in at more than 100 kilos and towering over the indigenous people.
The low-life mentioned in the first paragraph actually exclaimed ‘Well I’m English!’ almost to try and justify his mindless behaviour. Sorry mate but the English no longer hold sway over all that the sun shines upon, I and many others read our history books and know the days of the British Empire are long gone! I’m part English and I can see that (violins are playing – Ed)!
Many Thai people see this kind of behaviour is the reason their can ‘confirm’ in their minds that the foreign westerner is an uncultured animal.
Do these people not realize that typically as foreigners here in Thailand they ought to be acting more responsible and setting a good example for others to follow.
‘Back in the day’ during the 1970s, 80s and 90s the traveling folk who came to Thailand were a different breed by any stretch of the imagination, hippies, neo-hippies and backpackers tended to be a majority of the ‘tourist’ visitors to Thailand.
All this began to change with the rise of low-cost flights and easy to obtain visas. The 4,000+ miles distance to the Land of Smiles (LOS) is a barrier of sorts from Europe along with diversions such as Ibiza, Costa del sol, Majorca, falraki etc to appease the package tourists.
By 2001 onwards the trend had shifted heavily from the ‘original’ backpacking crowd. Introducing the new wave of Farang tourists:
Among them has arrived the ‘Low-life Farang!’
Join us on a journey into what is the typical ‘Low-life Farang’:
Usually male and here in Thailand on a two week holiday.
Typical primary destinations include : Pattaya, Bangkok, Phuket ( Patong Beach) and Koh Samui.
Typical Secondary destinations include: All the other tourist islands, Chang Mai and Hua Hin.
Group size can vary but typically from 2 to 4.
Nationality varies but they are usually English speaking and hail from the following areas: The UK (Majority from England I’m afraid), Europe and the USA.
Activities include the following: Drinking, causing trouble, sex, drinking, more sex, sleeping through most of the daylight hours before hitting the streets and repeating activities ad nauseam.
An distant relative of the low-life Farang is the low-life expat. (covered in another column.)
Not usually dangerous although the potential for violence rises when mixed with alcohol!
So what can be done? Short of rounding them all up and pushing into the nearest canal for good little I'm afraid. However whenever I hear of tales like the one about the low-life Farang I always whistle to myself knowing that the thai words "Tum dee jai dee, tham chua dai shua" can often ring true! (Rough Translation: "What goes around comes around!")
This section is hosted by our resident columnist Johnny B. who has been living in Thailand for seven years now and currently is based out of Bangkok.