Column no. 40 - 31
You will see columns in the past; what I noticed about/in Thailand, about
differences between Thailand and Japan and so on.
I'm wondering how long I can continue writing a column... :D
no.40 - Hay fever and Mask
| Now, it's spring now and I'm afraid that the hay-fever season has
come in Japan. Are you ready ? You'll see a lot of people wearing a mask
like they caught a cold, right ? My wife thought they were like a doctor
at first. :D
She also often sneezes but it looks like hay fever caught her after she started to live in Japan. (We bought an electronic air cleaner.)
By the way, I heard that you won't have a hay fever if you try to have vegetables for the season; it makes your body strong against each season's troubles. I don't know if this is true or not but I'd suggest trying it. :)
no.39 - Songkran Festival
| In Thailand, they have three New Year Days. One of them is the world-wide
famous "Songkran Festival". It's coming soon this year. :D The rest are the first day of the
year and Chinese New Year.
Songkran Festival is held from 13th to 15 in April, the hottest season in Thailand. It's well-known as " Water Festival " as well.
During Songkran Festival, people splash water to each other with hoses, buckets or water guns. It's a huge excited festival, water all over. I'm afraid I've never joined it, though.
Especially the festival in Chiang Mai is very famous and various events are taken place. I really want to join it once. :)
no.38 - Ring around ankle of baby
| One of what I noticed in Thailand is, babies wear rings around their ankles.
When a baby is born, the parents or family put a ring around the ankle
of the baby. I guess this is their traditional culture.
This ring is made of gold or silver with a small bell. (Like a cat ring. :D ) They say that it's convenient to know when their baby wakes up and starts to move because the bell rings.
It's very cute as baby's accessory. :)
no.37 - Tom Yam Kung
| Talking about famous Thai food, you must think of the delicious Thai soup,
"Tom Yam Kung" first. In Japanese, some call it "Tom Yan Kung". "Tom"
means "boil", "Yan" is "mix", "Kun"
Instead of shrimp/prawns, if you put fish (pla), it will be "Tom Yam Pla". Not only fish but if you put various seafood, it's called "Tom Yam Talae". If you put chicken (gai), it's called "Tom Yam Gai".
By the way, "Tom Yam Kung" is one of the world's three major soups. Although it looks like there are various views, the rest are two of "Shark's fin soup" in China ,"Bouillabaisse" in France and "Borscht" in Russia. Hmmm, do you know that ?
no.36 - 555
| In Thai language, the pronunciation of the number 5 is "Haa".
When you want to express "laugh" in emails or chattings on computers, you will write "hahaha", won't you ? In Thai, they sometimes use "5" (haa) and write like "555".
It's easy to type and very convenient, right ? :D
By the way, you can put "5" as many as you want. When you want to express a big laugh, put a lot of 5s. 55555 :D
no.35 - The Tsunami Disaster in Thailand
| It's already passed two months since the Tsunami disaster from the Indian Ocean earthquake (the earthquake off Sumatra) on December
26, 2004. It looks like a tsunami museum is going to be built in the south
area that was devastated by the tsunami to memorize the lessons of the
By the way, a research says that the highest wave was 48.9 meters above sea level around the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. It's about 50 meters and that means it was as tall as a 12 to 17 story building.
Nature is incredible....
- Related Links:
- Effect of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake on Thailand
(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
no.34 - Origami
| Origami is one of traditional Japanese cultural things and a Japanese art
of paper folding (fold (oru) paper (kami)). When people really pray for something especially
for someone's health, they make thousands of paper cranes. This looks the
same in Thailand. I wonder if it is originated from Japan or not.
About one year ago, a famous singer in Thailand was hospitalized and a lot of paper cranes were sent for the singer. Around the end of last year also, since the security went worse and more than 550 people passed away in the south area where a lot of Muslims live, the government suggested that people fold paper cranes for restoration of security as one of events to celebrate the birthday of the King (5th, December).
Speaking of peace, birds (dove or crane ?) come, right ? :)
no.33 - Standing-up-eating restaurant
| In Japan, you can see small noodle (soba/udon) restaurants where you eat while standing (no seat) around/in railway stations. (I drop by once in a while.) You
can have curry as well as noodles. Those restaurants are specially for
busy persons (mainly men) who have no time and have to go somewhere in
By the way, there is no such restaurant in Thailand. I wonder if that's because relaxing is their national background. I guess when they want to have a quick bite, they will stop by McDonald's or KFC(Kentucky Fried Chicken).
When my wife started to live in Japan, she was interested in that kind of noodle restaurants and asked me so often to take her there but we have never tried so far. She still wants to try it ??? :D
no.32 - Taxi
| When you take a taxi on a street in Japan, you will raise and wave
your hand to it. On the other hand, in Thailand, you will extend your arm in front of you and beckon a taxi. This is the same when you want to catch the Thailand famous convenient
vehicle with three wheels, Tuk-tuk. And the door of taxis automatically
open and close for you in Japan but you have to do it by yourself in Thailand.
Taxis in Thailand have "TAXI-METER" on the roof. Hmmm.. I was wondering what it meant. It seems that it was only "TAXI" long time ago but they didn't have a fare meter in those days. After that, taxies got to have a fare meter and they put "TAXI-METER" to distinguish between taxis with a fare meter and with no meter. (I didn't know that. :D )
no.31 - Price of cars
| Traffic Jam is very famous in Bangkok. And it looks like price of cars
are very high.
Compared to prices in Japan, it's about 1.5 to 2.0 times and when my wife's family came to Japan, they were surprised. If you think of cost of living in Thailand, cars are very expensive.
I heard a curious story in Thailand;
A woman really loved and wanted a car and finally she bought a new one of it. Great ! However, the new car, unfortunately, didn't work well and what's worse, the support of the shop where she bought it was poor. In the end, she lost her temper. She gathered reporters and protested against the company while breaking her lovely car with a shovel or a hammer ! (This made me astounded. :D )