Bonus facts and observations!

March 18, 2007

Ko Samet
It seems as though there are many more cats in Thailand than in, for example, Bali, per square metre. The dogs seem roughly commensurate with Bali numbers and conditions, but Thailand has cats that seem to fit into the same ecological niche – not feral, but not really pets as I know them. Laid back, unafraid, usually hungry, and often fairly unkempt. Usually in a better state than the dogs, though.
At Wat Pho there were hundreds of tourists and worshippers milling around outside the wat in the yard, and one very relaxed cat just lying on the ground in the midst of the feet. Not sleeping, quite alert, but definitely relaxed around the crowd. Another pregnant ginger cat living at the resort at Ao Wong Deuan was very happy when we gave it attention, though most of the cats we saw were relaxed enough when you were close, but got very suspicious of anything resembling what we thought were affectionate gestures.
I think we saw one Siamese out of the lot of them. Plenty that looked Burmese, though. Burmese have always struck me as the more sensible stronger breed.

Despite Bangkok’s reputation as a major centre of sleazy activity, nowhere was I (James) offered the opportunity to purchase the services of a woman (or anyone else, for that matter) except for the purpose of general transportation. Not that we went to any remotely seedy areas except for a walk, on a couple of mornings, down Th. Khao San (which can’t be regarded as particularly sleazy. A bit seedy, yes, but not sleazy). But it was about 9am both times, and I guess I don’t look like your prototypical sleaze tourist. Yay!

Specialization. I saw a man rummaging through rubbish bins near Th. Khao San. He only had one thing on his wish list: rubber bands. I wonder if the competition is so fierce for the plastic bags that we’re seeing speciation of these people?



  1. I saw hardly any cats when I was in Vietnam. Lots of dogs, but cats just seemed absent.

    When I taught my English class, I showed them a picture of Gitchy and they thought it was unusual that he had a name. Apparently cats are just known as ‘Hey You – Cat!’ or something.

    Of course I have to concur that Burmese are more sensible and stronger…

  2. Such a shame the porn star name game doesn’t work in large parts of the world – what fun they’re missing out on!
    Love from Cindy Banks and Larry Wilson’s Creek.


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