Krabi, Thailand – UK Man and Woman Tourists Viciously Attacked with Knife

Two UK tourists, walking along the beach in Ao Nang, Krabi, Thailand were accosted by a group of youths. The man received multiple stab wounds from a long knife, the worst being a heavy bleeding head wound.

Krabi, Thailand Tourists attacked with knife in Ao Nang (click for story)

If you’re like me, you probably discount some of the Thai on foreigner violence that occurs in the country in areas like Pattaya, Patong Beach, and Bangkok. I am guilty of it. It happens the world over, I just figure if you’re out after midnight in one of those places, the probability for something to happen – violence included, is higher. Much higher than strolling around during the day or early evening hours.

Over eight years in Thailand I’ve started to think more about it. Since having a child, I started to think a hell of a lot more about it.

Krabi has been a real sleeper. I mean, literally. Shops close in downtown Krabi town by 6pm, 7pm, definitely by 9pm nearly everything is closed up except some bars on Chao Fa, and the Thai girly bars.

There have been a number of incidents in Krabi recently – a girl from Denmark raped allegedly by a Thai tour guide. A woman tourist had her thumb cut off by Thais on Chao Fa Road who wanted her purse. These two tourists from the UK are surrounded by multiple Thai guys who assault them, stabbing the guy with a knife over and over before he was able to fight them off. This is all recent news – not over a year. Things like girls being followed in the park by the river during broad daylight hours – by a Thai with his sexual organ out of his pants – happen much more often than the public knows. Shootings, knifings, drugged drinks… how much of it really goes on and isn’t being shouted about in the media? Thailand’s media doesn’t have a reason to shout it.

Your safety in Thailand is NOT guaranteed. Thai style is to push incidents out of the news as soon as possible, so it doesn’t affect incoming tourist numbers. Someone was saying the other day that Thailand will receive 20 million visitors in 2013. I wonder what the true rate of violent attacks on foreigners is in the country. Most incidents are either not reported or not followed up – that’s my guess.

What do you think? Is the entire country of Thailand unsafe? A foreigner had his arm nearly severed by a guy with a machete on a motorbike that followed him and his Thai girlfriend a short while back…

In Surin – of all places.

Is the gulf between what tourists are seen to have, and the abject poverty of a good portion of the Thai population – to blame?

If so, it sure won’t be getting better anytime soon.

I think some Thais in search of easy money are looking at tourists as easy-pickings more than ever. The UK tourists attacked above in Ao Nang will likely file a police report and leave the country. What will happen to the 5 or so guys that brutally attacked them?

Good question.

Unfortunately if they have any ‘connections’ at all – they’ll be free to fuck off some more in the near future. Maybe they’ll be cutting YOUR head the next time they’re fucking off. Maybe your neck?

I think – and I fully believe this, after hours… say 10 PM – being out in Thailand as a foreigner is not safe. You shouldn’t feel safe because it can leave you vulnerable. You shouldn’t do anything that might attract attention to yourself to increase your likelihood of becoming a target, a victim.

I notice that as time goes on, Thailand feels less safe to me. I know partly it is a function of having a new family and having been here long enough to stop overlooking the negatives. I do think that violence against foreigners is becoming more common, and is actually tolerated too well for my liking.

I wish there was some large expat group that could survey members and see what the masses thought. I wish I could find out – have tens of thousands of expats moved away from Thailand for greener grass somewhere else? Cambodia?

When Is It Time to Leave Thailand? Yesterday…

I’ve been here 8 years now. Little things are starting to drive me postal.

You know how they say when you marry someone that it’s the little shit that will get you in the end? Yeah, it’s just exactly that… but I’m not talking about my lovely wife – I can deal with all our differences, and still love her to death. I cannot give other Thais the break though. I cannot accept after 8 years that people are being so continuously disrespectful to me and to others. I see it daily. It’s wrecking my mood every time I get in a car to go out. It’s wrecking my mood every time I go to the post office and some assmonkey jumps in front of me. It is wrecking my mood to think that my daughter is going to grow up in one of the most ugly places – socially – on the planet.

I’m uploading a 10 minute video that I’m sure I’ll not make public, but I just needed to get off my chest today. Thais can’t drive for fuck, and I’m probably living in the worst area of the country for this… in Bangkok – people drive better than here. More respectful. Less dangerously.

I saw a motorbike get squeezed between a parked car and some ass in a car that just wasn’t paying attention. Saw the woman get thrown WAY over her handlebars and into the street where she was promptly run over by the same fucking car. I saw this in my side mirror. I passed the woman myself first – she wasn’t driving crazily on the motorbike, slow and carefully. I thought – fuck me – that could have been my wife, who is VERY careful when driving. It’s the idiot drivers that have never had a car in their lives, their parents never had one, and they think they’re driving a tractor around the pineapple plantation or something. I don’t know what excuse there could possibly be for the atrocious level of driving here in this city. It’s beyond all conjecture. I can’t even come up with any reason that would make sense. Maybe one of you know?

When I first arrived in Thailand’s northeast, I had the misfortune to meet a 60 year old American expat that I am 99% sure was molesting kids. Before I’d come to that conclusion we had a lunch together and he told me that within 7 years, I’d be nearly or as jaded as he was about living in Thailand. I said, nah, I can see it for all that it is. I have a masters in psychology – that counts for something, I thought. So did he though, a fact I repressed at the time.

So, it has taken me 8 years. I wish he wasn’t right, but it has definitely happened for me. It’s time for a change. A big change. It is time to get the fuck out of Dodge, or, change the entire country. Which might be easier? I ask myself daily.

I don’t want to be one of those expats that hangs on for a couple years, bitching about life in Thailand – and continuing to live here. When I first arrived I avoided those expats like they had the HIV. I could definitely see me getting very outspoken about the way Thailand functions in the next couple of months, or even up to a year if we stay that long. I could definitely see me putting out heaps of videos about the negative things going on in the country that will eventually turn your stomach too if you live here for long.

I could definitely see me writing a joke book about the country, oh wait, I already did. I could see me finally publishing it after sitting on it for 6 years.

I could see me being turned away at the border for having thoroughly torqued off everyone who is anyone in the country.

I could see all that happening, or nothing at all as I just try to stay under the wire and get the hell out cleanly without burning any bridges.

Not sure which it will be…

Anybody loving Thailand with all your heart? Maybe we need some point-counterpoint type response?

Nobody – huh?

OK, then chime in and lets beat this to death… either way, I’m OK with it…

 

What Thailand Doesn’t Have, That I Wish For…

This is what Thailand doesn't have - waves.Over nearly 8 years I’ve had a helluva time in The Land of Smiles. Great, amazing times… The contrast with living life in the USA is remarkable, and favorable in most ways. Though Thailand has a LOT – there are still some things I wish we had here…

1. Waves. I haven’t gone this long without riding big waves – or any waves – ever.

2. Good Pizza. Though there are numerous Italian-owned pizza places in big cities across Thailand, they seem to all be working with Thai cheese, or maybe cheese from Belgium or somewhere. It doesn’t taste like New York Pizza made by Italians… New Yorkians like to say it’s the water – who knows? I just know that I haven’t had an amazing pizza for a very long time.

3. Shore Fishing. Redfish, trout, flounder, snook, cobia, jack crevalle, ulua, sheepshead… there isn’t anything like this in Thailand’s shallow water. I’ve replaced fishing with snake hunting, but it isn’t quite the same.

4. Live Music. Whether jazz in the park in St. Petersburg, a good Irish Band in Ybor City, Tampa, or Hawaiian music at a Waikiki beach bar – I miss it. I haven’t even heard anything marginally acceptable in Thailand. Have you?

5. Decent Healthcare Nationwide. If you need emergency services and you are in a place like Sisaket, Thailand – good luck to you. You have to go with what is there. There is a city hospital and a private hospital – a lot of private clinics. Guess what? You’re probably not going to be satisfied with them. It would be great to have a decent hospital within 100km of wherever we are.

6. 3G Mobile Internet. Come on now… Laos is going to get 3G and 4G before Thailand. It’s to the point of being scandalous.

7. Size 11+ Shoes. It is always difficult to find shoes that fit in this country outside of Bangkok or Pattaya.

8. A Better Justice System. When our home was broken into and things stolen there were fingerprints all over the house – there were prints all over the glass slats on the outside of our window he broke through. There must have been prints everywhere… in the USA someone would process the crime scene… here? You might as well just “mai pen rai” it, and get on with your life. We had to insist they pull fingerprints off the windows. We had to insist the police talk to neighbors that might have seen something. It’s like Laurel and Hardy over here. No wait, I’d prefer them to what we have in Thailand.

9. Jobs. Though I wouldn’t get one, it would be great for expats that are having trouble surviving on a teacher’s salary – to be able to easily work and stay in the country. There are so few jobs open to foreigners.

10. Shopping Variety. If you don’t live in Pattaya, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, or on Phuket,  – your shopping experience is limited to: Big C, Tesco, Makro, Robinson, and Carre 4. Besides that, everyone carries the same stuff. There is a real lack of variety in most areas of Thailand. The mail system is so expensive to have items sent internationally – and with things like electronics there is a huge tax – it just doesn’t make sense to use mail-order as a substitute.

11. Better Post Service. Family has sent me some packages from the USA – some get here, some don’t. I’ve sent packages from Thailand… some arrive, some don’t. If you are sending within Thailand – send EMS or you have a chance of losing whatever it is. I can’t remember EVER losing a package sent through the mail in America – no matter how it was sent. It just doesn’t happen.

That’s what I came up with in a few minutes – anybody else have something to add?

Australian Travel Agent – a 60 Year Old Woman Stabbed in Heart in Bag Snatch – Phuket

A very unfortunate incident just happened in Phuket… a 60 year old travel agent from Australia was with a group of 9 others, on a tour… and had thugs try to snatch her bag. One stabbed her in the heart and she died.

Full story:

Australian travel agent stabbed to death in Thailand

2 Canadian Sisters Die in Phi Phi Palms Residence, Krabi, Thailand Hotel

I rarely post any more here, but just wanted to get this up so more people will be aware of it.

Two sisters, Noemi Belanger, 26 and Audrey Belanger, 20, just died in their hotel room at Phi Phi Palms Residence on the island of Phi Phi in Krabi province, Thailand this week. An autopsy for both girls is planned – of course, hopefully done in Canada.

Bangkok Post Article ->

There have been a number of people dying in hotel rooms on Phi Phi island in Krabi over the past couple years. Whether it is bed-bug pesticide, or someone spiking their drinks with GHB or something else – is unknown. The last 3 people to die there before these sisters – cause of death – inconclusive.

Here are some of the possibilities – this isn’t an exhaustive list, but a start…

1. Someone is spiking tourists’ drinks at nightlife venues. They use too much drug / poison. Some die, some just are knocked unconscious and figure it was a bad night of drinking. Maybe some are raped. Maybe some are robbed.
2. Too much pesticide being used to control bed-bugs or other pests. Many believe this to be the case with deaths in a Chiang Mai hotel not long ago.
3. Cleaning agents or some other toxic chemicals being used in close proximity to the rooms – or in the rooms of tourists.
4. Carbon Monoxide poisoning.
5. A bug in the air conditioning system. Remember Legionairres Disease?
6. Unintentional drug overdose.
7. Blowfish – Pufferfish poisoning. The symptoms cause paralysis of muscles, throwing up… and can kill you within 24 hours. Eventually death is caused by the diaphragm muscle refusing to move, causing asphyxiation.
8. Suicide.
9. A serial killer is targeting women on Phi Phi.

There are so many possibilities – but most of them would be found during an autopsy. Hantavirus and a hundred other killer viruses could be culprit. Those work fast and are devastating on the body. These two Canadian girls were found to have bled from the gums. Viper snakes have bites that cause bleeding of the gums, eye sockets, ears, any orifice… but don’t cause throwing up or rash that I know of. Both of the victims in this case had rash and there was evidence of vomiting having taken place in the room.

I can’t think of another animal in Thailand that might cause those symptoms. The pufferfish is a good possibility, though with slightly different symptoms, and I don’t think gums bleed.

Any other possibilities you can come up with that might make sense?

Thailand’s Tourists CLUELESS About Thai Culture

Here’s what I routinely see in Thailand… regarding tourists acting ignorantly about Thai culture

Watch the video above. This guy is stripped down to his sweaty underwear at a Buddhist temple – in front of Thai kids. If I was a Thai person, I’d have pushed this putz over the railing. Buddhists are generally non-violent, and, while it’s not my place to police the temples either – I had to shoot this video and get it out there.

Frequently tourist women climb the steps up this hill in their bikinis with just a t-shirt over them. Sometimes they wear their bikini tops! Many guys remove their shirts for the climb.

I have yet to see someone give a donation at the temple I’ve been going to for more than 5 years. There are donation boxes everywhere. There are some really amazing things to see at the temple – and thousands of photos are taken each day by tourists – and yet, nobody gives a damn to give 10 THB. Really, it’s quite unbelievable. The tourists that arrive at the Buddhist temples are there to take – and only to take. They give nothing.

I have seen dozens of people over the years walking with shoes on at the top of the mountain shrine. Can they not read the simple English and Thai sign that says – remove shoes? They’re just too lazy to do it. They see piles of shoes there on the steps, must be for someone else they think.

Thailand’s Buddhist temple visitors from outside the country don’t understand much – if anything, about Thai culture. Even in our town you routinely can see tourist guys riding their motorbikes around town with their shirts off. It never dawns on them that not one Thai person they’ll see that day – does the same. It’s not a wakeup call because they’re just not looking for the right thing to do. They just don’t care. They’re takers, and not givers.

Thai people, by nature are givers. If you haven’t experienced the amazing hospitality of Thais welcoming a visitor – complete strangers even – then I suggest you travel to Isaan and see it first-hand.

Don’t come to Thailand with your hand out. Don’t come with your brain shut-off. Research the culture and what not to do before you arrive. There’s a reason so many expats get their head kicked in… they raise their voices and get verbally aggressive with Thais. Other Thais standing around – won’t go for that, and put you in your place. Don’t get put in intensive care because you’re adamant about getting your 99 THB back for a CDROM that doesn’t work, that some streetside vendor sold to you. Post it online… tell other expats about it… and forget your 99 THB. It’s not worth a good ass-kicking. Is it?

German Girl in Krabi has Thumb Cut Off by Thai on Chao Fa Road

Holy hell… this just rolled in.

Sunday night around 2 am. a German tourist had her thumb hacked off by a Thai 16 year old with a knife that stole her bag!

Chao Fa Road is the main tourist road in Krabi town, and usually quite safe – but at 2 am. there are few people around, and a couple Thai guys thought it would be ideal to cut someone to get a bag.

The full story is in PhuketGazette here. Some of it reposted below…

PHUKET: — Krabi Police arrested three teenagers and one 20-year-old yesterday after a gang cut off a German woman’s thumb during an early-morning bag snatch in Krabi Town, across Phang-nga Bay from Phuket.

Muang District Police Deputy Superintendent Chatchawan Ninchan said Hanna Zerlaut and Sina Maureen Beckert, both 21, were attacked while walking along Chaofa Road in Tambon Paknam, Krabi Town, at about 2 am on Sunday.

“The two women were walking along the street when ‘Dot’ and ‘Ae’ pulled up on a motorcycle to snatch the ladies’ bags, but the victims tried to fight them off.

“In the struggle Ms Zerlaut’s right thumb was cut off and Ms Beckert suffered cuts to her right arm and left index finger by a knife brandished by ‘Ae’,” said Lt Col Chatchawan.

*******

On another note… My wife works with a volunteer organization in Krabi. An 18 year old volunteer from the United Kingdom was walking past Thara Park in Krabi Town, when she was approached by a Thai man that pulled out his penis and jerked off for her as she tried to get the hell away from him. This was in the middle of the day about 1pm.

Is Krabi safe for tourists?

In general, yeah, pretty safe. At least I thought so before this year.

Motorcycle Accidents in Thailand – Gruesome Video

Thailand’s holiday season is here – and just a little reality check for those of you driving around the country during the next few weeks. This holiday, like every other, is sure to be filled with many of these tragic motorbike accidents. I’ve seen so many, they blur in my mind by now.

A couple that stand out…

  • The bus I was on in Udonthani hit a cow – knocking it flat – first, and then later – a girl on a motorbike on the same trip.
  • 4 bodies laying sprawled all over the road in a 2 motorbike crash in Ubon – nobody moving, a lot of blood.
  • By far the worst thing I’ve seen is bodies covered up on the street by blue plastic after a motorbike accident, and yet one thing – in the middle of the street – was left bare. Someone’s brain was left there on the street. Literally – just sitting there on the road. There was a crowd of people looking at it, trying to come to grips with how it happened. Me too. (Click here for brain story)

Motorcycle accidents result in a lot of blood, and it isn’t just motorbike riders without helmets, but it’s the attitude of drivers in cars, trucks, and dump-trucks that they drive however the hell they want, and everyone behind or merging with traffic – adjust.