Land of Smiles- Thailand

As I wrap up another wonderful visit to Thailand I wax lyrically about the explosion tonight up town. According to early reports a blast went off outside a shopping complex killing a couple and injuring 22 people.

It seems such a stark contrast to the relaxed, calm people I have encountered over the last week.

Thailand is a wonderful country with 95% of it’s people following buddism. Thais are polite, quiet and go out of their way to make people happy.

Things are slower, definitely slower as they truly live in the now. Not the tomorrow, not the future and with this comes a sense of relaxation (unless you are running late for a bus, or meeting)!

I have had a massive week here.

I came over to attend a conference hosted by Andrew and Daryl Grant and they are truly amazing. They have hosted the entire week and I am indebted to them and their generosity. Both of them have such a great business acumen and lots to share.

I haven’t been here a week yet and so much has happened. This is exactly what one human can get up to in one week…

Monday Day 1

Gym early in the morning to read Harry Dent and get updates on the demographics of spending (I am his newest fan)!

Seminar Monday morning – about change, why we need to, how to make money and why some don’t. Yummy lunch then off to Grand Palace to visit the Jade Emperor’s Temple and a few other treats. Back to catch up with the others for a wonderful night at Asiatique.

Today’s lesson: Value is something we put on an item. When two people agree on a value, an exchange of money/currency/barter can occur. Value changes according to our needs at that point in time.

Tuesday Day 2

Off to the Floating markets west of Bangkok. Lots of business lessons on each day about value, perception of value and trade. I learned so much!!

Wonderful time hustling with the market owners, watching river life, some meditation in a wot, and lots of local wild life.

Lunch at a local restaurant and back to Bangkok to do some laps and kick back by the pool with a few long island iced teas!

Talked a few into riding on bikes (the only way to travel around Bangkok in my opinion) to the Seafood Market. A pretty cool place where you can pick your own live seafood and vegetables and have it cooked to your liking – I mean any way! Curries, grilled, exotic or simple. It was a cool eating concept.

Off to a local bar (yes it turned out to be a gay bar with lots of lady boys – it only took me an hour to realise)!

Today’s lesson was : Customer service.  Give your customers more than they expect and they will always shop for more.

Wednesday Day 3

Gym and yummy breaky. I was actually starting to dig getting back into the gym and have been inspired to join one again. Good grief!

Conference in the morning about lessons of trade and value. And what we need to do in order to change.

Lunch Japanese Style and very nice. Meeting with film crew and then off to have some veneers done on my teeth. WOW I didn’t realise how harrowing that would be. A few hours later, a few newish new teeth and off to the German Thai Beer House. A massively FUN night.

A live show with what turns out to be all lady boys (REALLY?? They looked like sexy women to me)! And loads of laughs (and beers).

I wasn’t the last person home this night.

Today’s lesson: Once people you are sitting infront of someone with their fingers stuck down your mouth, I reckon you will say yes to anything. Some how we can use that to our advantage too I am sure. If we remove the pain we have loyal customers for ever. Which is cool because it’s a win win.

Thursday Day 4

A big day on the road and sight seeing. Off to River Kwai to pay respects to the many hundreds of soldiers who died helping the Japanese to build the bridge over River Kwai. I read up a little. The track was 415km long and built by the Japanese during WW2 to connect Maymar, Rangoon and Thailand. The Japanese shipped POW from Singapore to complete the line. It was closed in 1947 and a short section of 10 km reopened in 1957.

100000 died in the making. Reports say the Japanese were horrendous and tortured people. Aside from them having to deal with dysentry, colorer, 40 degree heat and mosquitos. Oh, did I mention they were barely fed and poorly housed. Apparently 2800 Australian’s died, which is same as the death count of the World Trade Centre Tragedy. (And 6900 British Soldiers, 2500 dutch and 90,000 Asians). History always gets me in.

After a sombre walk along the tracks and a cool (but food dubious) visit to the floating restaurant, we headed to the Tiger Temple. This was cool. Understated. Run by volunteers who go there for 3 months at a time, the temple (which houses 100+ tigers) is a great way to get up and personal with tigers. Which we did.

to be continued…