Small Talk

Thai Society and culture, Living in Thailand.
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Small Talk

Post by parrot » January 18, 2016, 6:45 pm

So I'm at my favorite Vietnamese noodle shop (for 19 years) this morning......eating and observing. And before long, I can't help but notice that the subject of conversation between the husband/wife owners and most all the customers was the lottery draw. 'Did you pick 71?' "Nope, I had 70 and 73" 'Nope, my so and so told me to buy 71 but I didn't', and on and on. I didn't hear anyone talk about the weather, the drought, politics (nobody talks politics in public, shades of 1970's), or the 20,000+ that turned out for the dance at statue square today. It's not like we're talking about $1,500,000,000 power ball or anything......just a simple pick 2, underground (it's illegal but everyone does it) lottery draws.
Maybe the day after the lottery draw isn't a good day to make small talk observations, but in the land of smiles, the lottery is everything, no matter the day of the week.

Off topic, but I've been asked why I keep going to the same soup vendor. They make soup the way their departed Vietnamese mother did (I had it for my first 5 years here).....up at 4AM to shop the market, soup on the stove shortly after, and first servings at 9ish. By noon, the broth is perfect......a few beef bones and handfuls of knotted herbs for flavoring. And served with generous amounts of freshly grilled chili peppers and mint, basil, cabbage, bean sprouts, lime, thorny coriander, Vietnamese coriander, and peanuts. My all-time favorite lunch!

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Small Talk

Post by redwolf » January 18, 2016, 9:39 pm

When I lived in Phuket, some contractors building a housing estate ripped out all the phone wires during road construction, and after I tracked down what's referred to as the TOT "Contract" division (same repair guys just a different / nicer work jacket) they accept a "payoff", arrive quick as lightning, re-string 600m (6 poles?) & right up to every house, and our whole back soi had working phones again after 3 weeks with nothing.

No sooner than we were all "up", my landlord comes over from his place down the road with a fax machine and asks if he can plug it in. After he splits, I start to wonder why he isn't using it from his place. I ask the cook at the local food spot and he laughs, "he's the big boss of the lottery, he runs it with that machine but never from his house".

I have no idea how that would be done, but maybe that's why he was always smiling and laughing, and funding all those row houses he kept building.

Same dedication to lottery in my wife's village, only thing that breaks their attention from that is a marriage, funeral, or when the customs guys who live in that soi come back with their stash of "confiscated" cigarettes nabbed from unwitting farangs caught out coming off Friendship Bridge.


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