Bangkok Podcast: Transportation

2017-10-18T21:48:02+07:00June 28th, 2010|Bangkok Podcast Season 1, Expat Experiences|5 Comments

Bangkok Podcast 7: Transportation

When people hear ‘Bangkok’ they usually think of either red light districts or traffic jams. Well, because they are such good boys, Tony and Greg don’t have much experience with the former, but plenty of experience with the latter, and that’s what they’ll be talking about today. From haggling with tuk-tuk drivers, paying traffic fines for motorcycle taxis or trying to avoid eye infections on the Klong Saen Saeb canal boat, we’ll discuss all the modes of transport in this sprawling city, how they fit together, and how to get the most of out of using them.

In addition, Greg tells us about a Thai funeral he attended recently with some decidedly non-Canadian traditions observed, and Bangkok Podcast announces their 2-month anniversary party – and you’re invited!

And a quick note – sorry for the little pops and cracks during the podcast – we seem to have some gremlins in our gear, but are working on sorting it out.

Show Links:

Bangkok Podcast Launch Party

Photo: Motoyen


  1. Lance June 29, 2010 at 4:58 am - Reply

    Thanks for the interesting description of the Bangkok funeral. The one I attended in northern Thailand was quite different from the one you went to. Equally interesting, but very different.

    Greg, is it the tradition in Bangkok for the spouse to “divorce” the deceased just before the cremation?

    • Greg June 29, 2010 at 12:29 pm - Reply

      Hey Lance, I asked around but none of my Thai friends has experience with a ceremonial divorce. Although a few said it might be a Chinese tradition, where the remaining spouse does it just in case the husband/wife returns to take their partner to the afterlife with them. Can you imagine? “C’mon darling, join me in eternity!” “Beat it, we’re divorced!” (calls Ghostbusters)

      • Lance June 29, 2010 at 11:00 pm - Reply

        Thanks for the response Greg. By the way, you guys are doing great work.

        My experience was in northern Thailand, in Chiang Kham, where there a re many Tai Lue people. It is my understanding that the Tai Lue did migrate from China, so perhaps the tradition came with them. I would be interested to learn if it is practiced only by Tie Lue peiople or if it extens into other areas of Thailand.

        The way I saw it play out was that the spuse travelled with the deceased to the cremation, along with the rest of the funeral party. Everyone, including the spouse, travelled the road holding strings that were attached from the monks leading the priocession to the casket. The entire ceremony was quite long, and I will not recount all of it here, but at one point the spouse, still holding the string was approached by a monk, who chanted a bit and then severed the string. The newly widowed and now divorced spouse was not permitted to look back as she walked away.

        I was told that the purpose was to release the spitrit to be on its way, but you make a pretty good point with your interpretation. I am sure that has something to do with it too.

        • Tony July 4, 2010 at 12:42 am - Reply

          I saw them doing the string thing at the funeral for the protesters killed on April 10 at Democracy Monument. They walked around the monument 3 times and all the monks were holding the string.

  2. Vic Rollins July 7, 2010 at 7:30 pm - Reply

    Great accounting of the funeral. You said it was weird to see the coffin in the crematorium and burning – one time I was in Delhi and visited a Hindu cremation site on the Ganges. No coffin, the body wrapped in a shroud, surrounded by flowers, wood piled around it and set on fire, open air, smoke billowing up – that was weird too. Seeing the body in the flames.

    Good stuff guys.

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