10 Signs You’ve Been Living in Thailand Too Long
For those who have been to Thailand, I think it’s safe to say that it would be almost impossible to spend too much time in the Land of Smiles. For Westerners, Thailand is so attractive that many people decide to move here permanently after taking a short holiday. While it is important to acclimatise and fit into a certain extent, some people take things to a whole different level and find themselves shedding their western identity altogether. If you find yourself doing some of the things on this list, it might be time to take that long put off trip home.
1. Speaking Tinglish comes naturally
Even when speaking with Western friends, phrases such as ‘where you go’ and ‘what you do’, completely ignoring the auxiliary verb ‘do’, have become so familiar to you that they seem natural.
2. You can’t spend a day without visiting 7-11
Even in Thailand, 7-11 has everything you need to get through the day, from cheap meals and snacks to toothpaste, shampoo and shower gel. Why would you shop anywhere else?
3. You take your shoes off automatically when visiting a friend’s home
Even if your Western friend insists that you keep your shoes on, this makes you feel uncomfortable and you have to take your shoes off when they are not looking.
4. Your favourite pastime is eating
As Thai people know well, eating is not just a way of getting nourishment. Thai people like to gather to eat meals and snacks at virtually any time of the day and night and even have a term for this known as ‘gin len’ or eating for fun.
5. Motorbike taxis are the best way to get around
When you first visited Thailand, the idea of hopping onto a stranger’s motorbike and putting your life in their hands seemed ridiculous, especially after seeing the crazy way they weave their way through traffic. However, after spending several hours stuck in traffic jams, riding these ‘Bangkok helicopters’ doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. Now you’re addicted to the rush and can’t imagine getting around any other way.
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6. You get embarrassed when you see people showing affection in public
Holding hands and kissing in public in Thailand just are not really socially acceptable. You might even find yourself shying away when a close friend moves in for a friendly hug.
7. You stop questioning things
Every Thai person knows that some things just are the way they are. No matter what happens, you can’t change it, so just go with flow.
8. No meal is complete without fish sauce
This salty condiment might be a bit smelly, but it adds a delicious depth of flavour to virtually any dish.
9. Eating on the street is the only way to go
Western-style restaurants are just waaay too expensive. If your dinner costs more than 50 Baht, you feel like you’ve been cheated.
10. You never show your true feelings
Becoming angry or frustrated is considered to be very rude in the Land of Smiles and will lose you respect. Simply slap that fake smile firmly in place and you are ready to face any situation.
One of the great things about Thailand is that it is relatively easy for expats to find their feet and establish a home away from home there. The friendly people, rich culture and easy access to convenience stores help to attract people from all around the world and the nation boats a large expat community.