Saturday, November 29, 2008

Neither Love nor Money

There is no way out of Alcatraz. Or Bangkok. With the airports closed, now the trains and buses are filled with people trying to get to Kuala Lumpur, Vientianne, Phnom Penh--anywhere with a functioning airport that will get them safely home. Bangkok effectively belongs to the PAD at this point. The Prime Minister has decided to stay in Chiang Mai, for safety reasons. I'm sure that the travelers stuck at Suvannaphum Airport, sleeping on the floor and eating whatever food the PAD chooses to give them, are fully sympathetic with his decision.

My friend Don Gilliland made it out of Myanmar and back to Bangkok by traveling to the coast and taking a boat to Thailand, then a bus back to Bangkok from Ranong. Check out his blog http:bangkokdazed.com for a story of his odyssey, which I hope he has the energy to post soon!

My friend Lee, who has traveled to Bangkok every six months for the past decade or so, is on his third day of involuntary vacation extension and is still upbeat. His hotel brings him gifts of food to cheer him and he has taken on enough of the spirit of mai bpen rai and jai yen to keep him going without living in a state of frustration. He also is lucky to have a place that is essentially his vacation home, since he has stayed in the same hotel ever since he first arrived in Bangkok.

And yet, and yet...there is no mail service in or out of the country and nobody knows when this state of idiocy is going to end. The opposing forces are becoming impatient and I examine the contents of my closet, thinking that my red shirts are looking pretty attractive right now.

4 comments:

Kim said...

Oh, who knew, a real adventure!! Enjoy the idiocy ... and stay safe.

cat said...

Quoting Bangkok Dazed...

'The government was forced to step down, but because of a court order, not because these nitwits camped out in the terminal for a full week and waved their silly hand clappers every time they saw a camera.'

I'm surprised when people (both expats and Thais) haven't looked into PAD's reasoning.

From Thaivisa...

'What sparked this whole protest was the current government was trying to convene and amend the Constitution and delete those sections that made this type of corruption illegal, and also mandated a 5 year suspension from politics for anybody found guilty.

Furthermore they wanted to do away with the Privy council, which would emasculate the Monarchy and the power it has to grant Amnesties...They wanted the Government to have that power....hence the Thaskin clan and getting a clean slate.

For these reasons the protesters have refused to stand down, and wait.'

So basically, the former government were attempting to pave the way for Thaskin to legally come back and take over.

If you are for Thaskin, then of course, no problem.

But how much bloodshed do you think possible if the Thai people woke up to the realities of the former government taking power away from their King? I hate to imagine...

Janet Brown said...

Good to hear from you, Cat. Of course this whole issue is a complicated one and I think that there are many ways of interpreting those excursions into PAD's reasoning.
And of course being against PAD tactics is not necessarily a thumbs-up for Thaksin.

Janet Brown said...

Oh, and just out of idle curiosity, is that where all of you old Bangkok hands derive your insight into PAD reasoning, from a post on thaivisa.com that refers to Thaskin (sic)? Interesting source...