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Thread: Cheap Living

  1. #126
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torbek
    Manila with sunglasses on a cloudy day. Bangkok sure looks worse to me than any of those cities...
    Bloody hell Torbek, Manila is a much worse than Bangkok.

  2. #127
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    Not the part I saw...but granted, I was only there for a couple days and spent the daylight hours at the Manila Polo Club.

    That seemed nice and clean, though.




    Although it was cloudy. And I was wearing sunglasses.

  3. #128
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    Hong Kong? Are you kidding? Fancy a swim in Victoria Harbor? Last time I was there the air pollution was so bad I couldn't get a clear photo of Central from Kowloon. This went on for days.

    Athens? One of the worst polluted cities in Europe?

    Manila? At least Bangkok has several sewage treatment plants.

    It's just been my experience with all the cities I've been to that, based on population, Bangkok isn't any worse than many others.

    Maybe the heat just makes it seem worse

    (Although, one time, I swear, walking across San Saeb in March this year near the World Trade Center I saw a black bubble come up that was blacker than the rest of the water and boy did it smell....though, in contrast, the salt marshes of the US East Coast can smell pretty bad too at low tide).
    Last edited by man with no head; 14-07-2006 at 09:25 PM.

  4. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torbek
    Manila Polo Club.
    Thats like basing your perception of London on a Buckingham Palace garden party.

    Believe me Manila is pretty grim and bloody dangerous.

  5. #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dougal
    Thats like basing your perception of London on a Buckingham Palace garden party.
    That would be pretty nice, too, wouldn't it?





    (Actually Makati was good fun as well.)

  6. #131
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    You know, it's funny. In 1995 I went to Hong Kong and while the harbor was filthy and full of trash the air was relatively clean. Last time I went the air was filthy and the harbor was cleaner. Go figure.

  7. #132
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    I think that considering the stupid location of Bangkok, it's not doing too bad a job of dealing with over 10 million people. Infrastructure is improving, there are less power-cuts and they are building more water treatment plants.

    The air is dirty for sure, but I never have black bogeys like I do when I go to London.

  8. #133
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    Depends, really, I heard all kinds of horror stories about the air quality there but my experience never has been that bad. I have yet to go there and have my lungs burn like they do when going to LA or even here in the summer when the crap gets trapped by the mountains and nowhere to go.

  9. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by mad_dog
    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Quote Originally Posted by benbaaa
    I thought we'd nailed this one the last time, Smeg. You seem to have forgotten, so here's a quick reminder:

    Mercer’s survey covers 144 cities across six continents and measures the comparative cost of over 200 items in each location, including housing, transport, food, clothing, household goods and entertainment. It is the world’s most comprehensive cost of living survey and is used to help multinational companies and governments determine compensation allowances for their expatriate employees.


    2006 results (1 = most expensive, 144 = least expensive)

    1 Moscow (score 123.9)
    5 London (score 110.6)
    10 New York City (score 100)
    60 Glasgow (score 80.7)
    69 Birmingham (score 79.7)
    74 Melbourne (score 78.8)
    93 Perth (score 74.3)
    100 Auckland (score 72.9)
    127 Bangkok (score 64.9)

    http://www.finfacts.com/costofliving.htm


    Yes, I'm very aware of that data. According to it, Bangkok costs 58.6% the amount to live in as London. Now, are Bangkok salaries 58.6% of those in London? For expats on packages maybe (probably 100%), but nobody else.

    I earn about 50% of the rate my job pays in London, and the amount is more than the average TEFLer etc, and much more than the average Thai.
    Bangkok costs 58.6% the price of London to live in.... I am no Siamophile but I find that hard to believe.
    It is based on a like for like basis, an identical lifestyle in each city, including car, international holidays, luxury goods etc.

    It is not to be used for TEFLers lwho lower their standard of living to be able to live surrounded by hookers.
    Last edited by Smeg; 15-07-2006 at 10:59 PM.

  10. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    many of us are happy here and having a pretty good time of it, but Shitforbrains just cannot seem to grasp that pretty major fact.
    The fact that you feel the need to constantly insult me and delete my threads tells me everything I need to know about your level of happiness. If you had a life I'm sure that you'd have better things to do than that.

  11. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    The fact that you feel the need to constantly insult me and delete my threads tells me everything I need to know about your level of happiness.
    Yep, you've made it perfectly clear that only you understand how happy we are, and not us ourselves.

    Can you show me where I constantly insult you please, or will you go back and edit your post like you usually do?

  12. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by benbaaa
    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Shitforbrains just cannot seem to grasp that pretty major fact.
    That's why I enjoy many of his contributions so much. It obviously drives him crazy that we like the place.
    It doesnt drive me crazy at all.

    Try to get your IQ around how I rate England and Thailand:

    As an interesting place to live at the moment:
    Thailand 8 out of 10
    England 7 out of 10

    As a comfortable and pleasant place to live longterm:
    Thailand 5 out of 10
    England 9 out of 10

    Now, Thailand started out as being a 10 out of 10 for me as an interesting place to live. However, this figure seems to drop by 1 every year I spend here. Judging by that, it will be no more interesting that England by 2007, as both will be 7 out of 10 for interesting. and I'll have absolutely no reason to stay any longer, because I'll either then use the longterm scores to choose, or go somewhere completely new (and interesting)


    Now, WHY do YOU prefer the place? If it is because either you can earn an ok living here but you can't in your birth country, or that you enjoy being a permanent freak in society, AKA an ethnic minority, then I feel sorry for you rather than get crazy about anything....
    Last edited by Smeg; 15-07-2006 at 11:56 PM.

  13. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Can you show me where I constantly insult you please, or will you go back and edit your post like you usually do?
    Are you seriously pleading ignorance and are asking me to go back and quote every single one line insult you have fired off at me over the past 6 months? That is extremely funny.

  14. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Can you show me where I constantly insult you please, or will you go back and edit your post like you usually do?
    Are you seriously pleading ignorance and are asking me to go back and quote every single one line insult you have fired off at me over the past 6 months? That is extremely funny.
    All mouth and no trousers as usual.

    There are a fair few posters on here who return your bile, but I think you'll struggle to find many from me as I tend not to lower myself to post exchanges with you too often.

    Anyway, I'm off to bed now, I shall be in in the morning to clear up your droppings. Goodnight.

  15. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog
    Can you show me where I constantly insult you please, or will you go back and edit your post like you usually do?
    Are you seriously pleading ignorance and are asking me to go back and quote every single one line insult you have fired off at me over the past 6 months? That is extremely funny.
    All mouth and no trousers as usual.

    There are a fair few posters on here who return your bile, but I think you'll struggle to find many from me as I tend not to lower myself to post exchanges with you too often.

    Anyway, I'm off to bed now, I shall be in in the morning to clear up your droppings. Goodnight.
    Is that a fact, Mr cyber-janitor? It appears that you have posted in a hell of a lot more of my threads than I ever do in yours (which i rarely even open, because they are dull as dishwater thaiophile/tourist with a camera stuff)

  16. #141
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torbek

    So if you claim you can live the same standard of life here on 20% of what you required 'back home', you must be making some compromising - in addition to those generic ones I listed above - and those compromises will occur in some or all aspects of your quality of food and shelter (as that represents the lion's share of anyone's monthly spending).

    You are kidding yourself if you think otherwise.
    Torbek, its not only those things you would have to compromise on. Don't forget Maslow



    In my opinion, Thailand caters very well for the bottom level needs, and is cheap for food, accommodation, transport, and sex.

    But you'd have to be either a simpleton or burned out with life to want to stop there, and it is higher up the needs pyramid that Thailand fails miserably, due to being far from family, relatives and friends, forming close meaningful relationships with people here is not an easy thing to do, general racism of being an ethnic minority, and more particularly having limited rights and restrictions especially when it comes to being able to satisfy career ambitions, and visa requirements etc. Career wise your hands are tied by the law here, preventing people from being able to use most of their skills.

    I don't believe that Westerners are respected in Thailand, and that includes teachers. Sure, they gain superficial respect for what they can do for the students education and future, but genuine respect as people?? Nah

  17. #142

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    So whats the top 2 on the pyramid for? I mean who gives a shite about that lot? it's about having enough dosh in your pocket to have a nice meal, a nice 3 some and getting pissed, I mean self esteem comes form doing a good job, you cant employ Thais to do a good job, it just don't happen, they are unskilled and working with shite materials, you have to remember this is a third world country.

  18. #143
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    You start at the bottom, and once that has been satisfied the theory goes that you then start looking for the next level. The height in the pyramid you achieve is supposed to reflect how far removed from pondlife you are

    I remember Torbek saying that one of the reasons he came to Thailand was to satisfy the top level, but he was struggling with that, due to the limiting factors I previously mentioned, not only on his ability to achieve the top one here, but maybe also messing up his prior achievements (in Australia I presume) lower down the pyramid.
    Last edited by Smeg; 16-07-2006 at 11:09 PM.

  19. #144
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    Top two achievable anywhere, it's internal man not where you are or how much you make. The top being #1 then #s 3&4 are really relative to 'feelings' of personal security again completley internal and have nothing to do with location. That leaves us with #5. Here? Easy to do.
    Those that move about looking for the top four will never find it until they stop lookin' on some map.
    When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty -- T. Jefferson


  20. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by friscofrankie
    Top two achievable anywhere, it's internal man not where you are or how much you make. The top being #1 then #s 3&4 are really relative to 'feelings' of personal security again completley internal and have nothing to do with location
    How so, when most westerners in Thailand are faced with career limitations, political limitations, social limitations, language limitatations, racial limitations, asset ownership limitations, and residency limitations?

  21. #146
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Torbek, its not only those things you would have to compromise on. Don't forget Maslow


    I certainly agree with that. I have long believed Maslow's model to be pretty convincing. (Remembering it is based on the principle that you cannot elevate to the next level until the needs of the level below are satified.)

    I have given it some thought of late and think what you suggest is quite relevant to my own circumstances.

    When I left Australia to come here to teach, I think I was entering the top level...say, fulfuiillment. Doing something for the hell of it because I could, as I felt pretty covered in the first four levels.

    Once here, I didn't realise that I had changed the equation somewhat. Level 4 was greatly reduced - I was no some shitty TEFLer in a country town - a white monkey. Level 3 was distant and genuine new friendships take time to build. Level 2 was even a little suspect, with WPs, visas and all that. Level 1 was fine.

    And I started feeling some disquiet as a consequence that took me while to put my finger on.

    Now I have done a little work (some practical, some simply changing mindsets) to shore things up and I am a lot happier again.

  22. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torbek
    Now I have done a little work (some practical, some simply changing mindsets) to shore things up and I am a lot happier again.
    You should write a book on how you did that. I'll buy a copy of it for sure

  23. #148
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Quote Originally Posted by friscofrankie
    Top two achievable anywhere, it's internal man not where you are or how much you make. The top being #1 then #s 3&4 are really relative to 'feelings' of personal security again completley internal and have nothing to do with location
    How so, when most westerners in Thailand are faced with career limitations, political limitations, social limitations, language limitatations, racial limitations, asset ownership limitations, and residency limitations?
    You know, the same is true anywhere, yet, that doesn't seem to stop the masses of people immigrating everyhere.

    Try this on for size:

    How so, when most (name of group) in (name of country) are faced with career limitations, political limitations, social limitations, language limitatations, racial limitations, asset ownership limitations, and residency limitations?
    If people were so satified with their lot in life then nobody on this earth would have ever sought out different people, different culture, different weather, etc. There would be no USA, no Australia, no Spanish speaking countries in Central and South America, no masses of Mexicans walking across the desert for a better life here in the States, etc.

  24. #149
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    Might be a bit of a tangent but not sure it is clear what Maslow means. When I used to teach aspects of it back home in corporate training, I used the analogy of some guy in the Sudan.

    If he hasn't got any food or water in his belly, that is his 100% focused concern...he's not thinking about retirement plans! He is firmly at level 1.

    Once he's a had a feed, a drink, a good nights sleep, he wakes next morning thinking..."I feel good. What can I do to make sure I stay this way?". He is now in level 2. Socialisation starts here.

    Once he has achieved a measure of security, stability, etc. he starts developing relationships, thinking having fun with friends, perhaps starting a family...now in level 3.

    Then he starts to look around and thinks "I'm doing OK. I want other people to acknowledge that." Self respect grows and perhaps even a bit of ego starts to creep in. He wants to be known as the best father, or best warrior, or to be the village head man, whatever...all level 4.

    Having conquered all chalenges to the level he wanted, he looks around...perhaps a bit bored...and says "I'm going to learn to play the drums. I've got time on my hands and I can do whatever I bloody well want. Well, I've always wanted to play the drums..." Level 5.

  25. #150
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smeg
    Quote Originally Posted by friscofrankie
    Top two achievable anywhere, it's internal man not where you are or how much you make. The top being #1 then #s 3&4 are really relative to 'feelings' of personal security again completley internal and have nothing to do with location
    How so, when most westerners in Thailand are faced with career limitations, political limitations, social limitations, language limitatations, racial limitations, asset ownership limitations, and residency limitations?
    What's career, social, language, etc 'limitations got to do with security/feeling of safety?
    Or friends, family etc. for that matter?
    While I thnk the tiered model represented is a crock and would say that the top four shoulr all be vertical off of the base, we can still argue that the top four are obtainable only when you are comfortable with yourself. Dunno man jsut appears that all of the top four deal with emotional well being and no career, or being accepted by those around you, is gonna give you that. metting challenges in daly life, always learning, stretching my boudaries give me a certain sense of accomplishment though, I have to admit, just don't comparison shop for fullfillment.
    i have the respect and admiration of those I respect and admire, the love of my kids. I'm a happy motherfucker, the only thing missing from my life is fast car.
    (Well Ok, motorcycle, a room fulla tools and machines, an income of 6 figures (US) and a wife with tits wouldn't hurt.)

    Those top four just don't hinge on job or geography.
    Or any of the other things you mentioned. If you think they do, your limiting yourself.

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