What is Living in Thailand REALLY Like?

Thailand’s Finest… “Farang Teachers!”

Pot Smoking Thai Teachers

I’ve not been in jail in my life. Not even to walk inside one.

I’ve been on the front porch of a jail and it seemed that any moment myself and 2 friends could be joining the 30 naked guys that we could see plainly through the curtainless window just 4 meters in front of our faces, crammed into their small holding cell…

But, we paid our 1000 baht fine and they took 4 of our “illegal” Beer Laos’ – 2 light and 2 dark, and sent us on our way with the rest of our 2 cases and some wine and whiskey.

Now – that small brush with Thailand’s Finest was no easy sweat off the bollocks. There was a lot of stuff going on right there which I’ll have to write about in a future post.

This post is about Thailand’s “other” finest… the teachers.

Specifically the teachers at the school where I teach now. More specifically, the farang teachers at the school where I teach now. There are 12 of us I think someone said… Some from USA, UK, Holland, and the Philippines.

I’ve been living here for over 2 years. Years they’ve each lived here: 7, 4, 3, 3, 3, 2, 6 months, 6 months, 9 months, 7 months, 5 months, and the Filipina girl we’ll leave out of this since she and I are the only ones that don’t partake…

Partake of pot smoking.

Now, I’ve never been addicted to anything in my life. But, I’ve worked in the mental health system in the USA and counseled those that have been. I understand addiction. I guess you could say I’ve been addicted to exercise in the past when I did triathlons.

I’ve tried pot. Exactly 3 times. It was a horrible psychedelic experience the first time and so the next time wasn’t until 12 years later. That time I felt what I was “supposed” to feel, but still – I wondered why people liked that feeling. I hated it.

The last time it did nothing for me. Personally, I could care less if people do it. I had many friends in the states that did it. No worries. Get caught in the states – get a year probation first time – or something lame… even if I’m caught WITH them I’m likely to get a blow-off sentence plus I’d pass any test.

Anyway… so here we are… living in a foreign country where they take drug use of any kind (except alcohol!) very seriously. In fact, there is an often-quoted number of 2000+ people that were killed in some manner (all kinds of manners really) during the last drug user and dealer “witch hunt” that occurred just before I got here.

Apparently, Thaksin wanted to appear tough on drug use – and so he authorized the police to take care of business – shooting to kill when necessary. Many were shot in the back… which shouldn’t surprise those of us who live here – they fight the same way – bottle to the BACK of the head without warning.

I hadn’t SEEN drug use here in Thailand among any of the locals in Ubon and I knew many. However, I was told that it was popular among a certain group of young people – even 15 – 18 yr olds AT school.

I went to play some ping-pong at a co-workers house just a day or so after coming to this school as a new teacher 9 months ago. I brought my girlfriend, who had never seen anyone use drugs, or even knew the name of the drugs… These clowns sit down and start packing a bowl into a rose apple. I was shocked that these guys, seemingly bright guys, were going to smoke POT in Thailand inside a house that was surrounded by other houses at 7 pm on a weeknight – in front of my innocent Thai girlfriend!

I was pissed – and yet, it’s gotta be expected I guess. People do what they want when they want without regard to others in the USA and it was business as usual I guess.

My girlfriend and I went upstairs and pretended to use the computer while the 4 teachers smoked pot bowl after bowl. My girlfriend asked me a LOT of questions. She was scared as hell. She had known victims of the drug manhunt and probably was imagining that we were next.


So – we bailed out after that. Not returning… I’ve been a social recluse since. I was told that the Filipina girl and myself were the ONLY ones that didn’t smoke pot in the office! Not including the Thai teachers.

So, I didn’t want to hang out with anyone since my girlfriend and I do everything together and I sure didn’t want to put either of us at risk for some ambitious cop or neighbor with a plan to get 50,000-200,000 baht from a group of farang pot smokers.

I didn’t need the stigma attached to hanging out with them either, as all long-term residents of TH know, the locals talk about EVERYTHING we do. EVERYSINGLEFARKINGTHING. If you’re going out with 2 girls, everyone knows. If you’re banging your maid, everyone knows. If you’re smoking pot on the ferry to Koh Samui – the entire town knows and will tell everyone that doesn’t know.

Yes, this happened too. One of our teachers from the states was smoking bowls ON THE FERRY to Koh Samui. A Thai teacher ON the ferry saw it and told the entire school that farang teachers from our school were doing it.

That happened about 5 months ago. Did they smarten up? No, they got worse.

I heard this first hand from 2 of them that were there and this is how it was relayed to me… The two of them were at “ferry pot smoker’s” house. I’ll call him, “Rick”. An Aussie guy acquaintance had lent Rick a weed eater to cut the grass for a party that was to happen that next day at the house. The guy’s Thai wife came, and with them came a 16-year-old German kid that was here in Thailand on an exchange program.

As the wife and kid walked into the house, Rick and another teacher were, of course, smoking pot… it’s a very regular part of their lives.

Rick asks the wife and kid if they want some Tuna Melts. They say, sure!

Rick goes and makes some tuna melts. In the meantime, the guy that was cutting the grass came in and so there was Rick, the Aussie, the other teacher, the wife, and the kid. The guys start smoking pot again. The Aussie starts acting like a monkey – and blowing smoke right into the kid’s face – and the kid is kinda freaked out. He’s trying to avoid it, but apparently, the Aussie guy is pretty belligerent about it and blowing it repeatedly in the kid’s face.

Anyway, so they eat their tuna melts. And the kid starts flipping out. He is having some kind of drug-induced or mind-induced experience where he thinks that Rick has laced the tuna melts with some LSD or another drug!

Now, who is to say? I don’t know this guy THAT well to vouch for him that he WOULD’NT do something like that. I’d like to THINK he wouldn’t -but the whole story is very strange.

So, the kid went to the hospital and was there for 2 days. He told EVERYONE he possibly could that Rick drugged him with the sandwiches.

He wrote internet stories about it. He told people at home. He told doctors, nurses, and teachers from our school!

I’m sure I haven’t heard even a PORTION of the stories that have gone on here in 9 months. I hear little since I ask little. If someone volunteers it – I hear it.

It’s like a dream! Well, it’s a writer’s paradise anyway… so I’ll just try to lay low until I can get the hell out of here and closer to some sanity – maybe back to ISAAN!

Anybody have similar experiences here? Or, if you want to write in support of drug use here in Thailand because you’re on top of the game write that too… tell me that I’m being paranoid…


I created this site to focus on expats living in Thailand, and tourists visiting Thailand. Don't miss the blog - Thaipulse.com/blog/. I hope you come away with something positive as a result of visiting Thaipulse.com. Feel free to leave questions or comments at the contact form under Home | Contact above. All written content on this site by Vern Lovic. Contact me at Google+. Cheers!

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