Living in Phuket for 3 years and having visited and inhabited regions temporarement less or much less, tourist! I'll try to describe objectively few points of Thai culture. Obviously this is not in a few lines that can explain everything, I'll just fly over the subject
When you come as a tourist, you go meet people smiling, friendly, and efficient workers, unless you come to invest heavily or if you are dating people of high society, you will meet Thai street (this is absolutely not pejorative)
For them a tourist has money and he is welcome for that reason alone. When you live here, it becomes a little different, you become a "competitor", not always easy to be accepted and even harder to integrate. The Thai are very proud of their country is the world's most beautiful, they are very difficult to locate on a map the other nations. The difference of cultures still surprises me a bit, despite my efforts to adapt. The notion of time is very far from ours, if you give an appointment, the person will, maybe, maybe not, if it does not come or if it comes very late, it's normal, especially not blame him, it does not really understand (there was just something much more important to do, for example to buy sticks of incense to honor the spirit of the house). What seems important is not for them, and vice versa. Golden rule: never get upset, it is useless and worse. If you talk on the phone or with a Thai, a topic both ends he or she will hang up on you, no goodbye, no see you, no, the conversation is over, we hang up, this is normal. Just a reminder, a stranger (here we say a farang or falang) will always remain a falang, even after 30 years living in Thailand in speaking perfect Thai. The Thai gives great importance to the appearance and cleanliness, if you have to open a bank account (currently the bank is the most favorable Kasikorn Bank, the others are a little coaxing) n 'certainly not go in shorts and flip flops, it will not take you seriously, on the contrary, long-sleeved shirt, long pants, shoes, wears well, clean shaven, manicured nails, you'll have better luck! allow at least 1000 euros in cash for a first deposit.
The company is based on a pyramid scheme, there is no retirement here, young people who are of working age to send money to their families. It is a good system that works perfectly. That's money is used to raise children and care for people of advanced age. The Thai people's not looking to get rich, though this is their dream, the priority is family. Girls are more faithful than boys about it, resulting in time a matriarchal society, women often own land, management of daily life. The Thai marry and have children early, between 18 and 22 years most of the time, 2 or 3 max, children are raised by grandparents, the couple will work and send money for the reasons mentioned above when these children grow up they will work in turn and do the same. Everything is perfect except ... when things go wrong in a relationship, and it happens more often (thank you the consumer society) when they separate, the husband goes away or is expelled, children are then kept by the family of the mother. The mother, still young, between 25 and 30 years finds himself obliged to meet only the needs of the family, a simple wage workers no longer sufficient, they are often found in bars or massage parlor, the aim being solely to to support his family (but absolutely honorable). Some call them prostitutes, bar girls, etc. ... (thank you media and TV) when I meet such people, after explaining the situation, and if they continue to disrespect, I abandon them to their fate, the one who has understood nothing.
The first thing that matters: family, the second to help the family, then Buddha and the King, that's how
Next Chapter: Pitfalls to avoid
ThéCâlin, thés parfumés, natures, bio ou standards.