When ever you go to a new country, there is undoubtably going to be a culture shock. Thai culture is no exception to that rule. I loved learning and living in Thai culture when I was there. The one thing about Thai culture, that I always found interesting was how Thais could be so polite and respectful one moment( This is called เกรงใจ kreng jai in Thai) and then they will turn around and tell you that you are fat the next moment. In fact I was called fat, or some variation of fat, by almost everyone I was introduced to in Thailand.
I soon realized that physical characteristics are fair game in Thailand. I also quickly learned that words like fat don’t always have the negative implication that automatically goes with the same word in English. To a Thai, saying “you are looking kinda round today” is no more offensive than saying “you are looking very lovely today.” Both are just observations. In fact, bothare usually said with a sense of endearment. Me being called fat all the time, helped me get one of my favorite nicknames that I ever received, while in Thailand.
Nicknames in Thailand
Let me step back for a moment and talk about another bit of Thai culture. Continue reading