The beauty of travel is undoubtedly the thrill you get from exploring uncharted territory. That territory, however, is sometimes in places you didn’t read about in Lonely Planet, like your subconscious. In Thailand, where labor is cheap, I find myself wandering into the parts of my subconscious that suddenly is an expert city planner. I had no idea that existed. But can you blame me? I mean, we live in a neighborhood where a guy stands at an intersection all day and tells cars to either yield, stop or keep going. In America, we call that a stop sign. In Thailand, I guess it’s a full time job. But, being American, of course I am hard wired to judge everything based on its efficiency. So, instead of having this dude directing traffic all day, invest in one of those glorious stop signs. Then, train said traffic controller to become a landscaper, considering that you can drop a seed on the ground here and expect a jungle a week later, landscaping would surely be a solid 9-5 gig.
Of course. Just like anything bizarre, foreign and hard to swallow, there typically lies a truth beneath the surface that reveals itself when you least expect it. This sneaky truth often creeps up and smacks you on the back of the head like a sack of potatoes, making you recant your earlier preconceptions. Maybe this guy is actually a neighborhood fortune teller whom the locals confide in or a protector against evil spirits who keeps the muban safe. Until that truth reveals itself, I’ll try to just appreciate having another smiling face to pass by each day.