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March is Phoneography Month: A day in the life

While these aren’t from today, or yesterday, or even one day in general, I thought it only right to compile photos from my (now outdated, but still awesome) Samsung Galaxy 2 Android that best describe a day in the life of an English teacher in Thailand.

Hugs make this job worth it

Hugs make this job worth it

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The joy of motorcycles and scooters in Thailand

In Toronto, I never even considered riding or driving a motorcycle. They scare the crap out of me, and the people that drive them are generally the craziest drivers there are. Here in town, there are still crazy drivers, but it’s the easiest and most common way to get around.

There is the Songthaew, that I’ve ridden to work for 10 Baht, but there are an abundance of taxi motorcycles. Here there are also motorcycle sidecars, which are pretty common, but mostly rented by foreigners or used for deliveries (or to set up a random food stall on the side of the road).

While I haven’t yet driven one because I’m a little scared to try, I have been the passenger many times, since every other teacher here has their own scooter or motorbike. There is just something about not having to worry about the traffic, or other bikes, cars or people, and just enjoying the wind in my hair and tears stinging my eyes.

I was pretty excited to learn how to ride side saddle so that I didn’t have to hike my skirt up to God knows where to climb onto the back of a motor-taxi, but have to remember not to move around too much or risk messing with the centre of balance.

Almost more than riding itself, I love watching Thai people pile their entire families onto a scooter: baby sitting in the baby seat attached to the front behind the handlebars, or squished between mom while dad drives and junior holds onto mom’s back. Or the 6 school kids I’ve seen squished together on one bike.

While it’s nothing like it was in Vietnam, with crazy amounts of everything strapped to the back of the bike, you will often see people strapping down boxes, or more likely stacking them between their legs on a scooter.

It makes me anxious to get out there and learn how to drive one. Just the freedom to drive wherever I want at any time would be beautiful. I wouldn’t have to worry about the street dogs attacking me when I want to head home after dark, and I wouldn’t reconsider going somewhere because it’s such a long, hot walk.

Hmmm… Maybe it’s time to get over my fear?