Allan: Live Less Ordinary
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Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you come from, when you moved to Bangkok, etc.
I’m Allan from Northern Ireland (UK) and I made a permanent move to Bangkok back in 2011 following many years travelling here. I live in the central Sukhumvit area of Bangkok with my wife Fanfan and cat Moo Ping.
When and why did you decide to start blogging about your experiences?
I started blogging back in 2012 at Singapore Changi airport when I was on a Thai VISA run. I began scribbling about experiences, strangely enjoyed it and have continued since.
Do you have any favorite blog entries of yours?
My favourite entries would likely be my more personal posts; a recent favourite is where I consider a Thai simple life living in Isaan (Northeast Thailand).
Tell us about the ways your new life in Bangkok differs from that back home. Did you have trouble getting used to the new circumstances? Did you experience culture shock?
I was better suited to Bangkok than back home, while I love living in both Thailand and the UK the weather here would be the obvious benefit. The reason why I’d find it hard to leave is the food; Bangkok is a hard city to beat when it comes to eating.
Do you think you were fully prepared for what awaited you in Bangkok? If you could, would you change some decisions/preparations you made?
It was a decision I made long ago, but to prepare myself for the move I worked hard back in the UK and bought property in Bangkok (2008) to make the transition comfortable. These are some of the experiences I share on my blog and get great feedback from others considering the same.
Every expat knows that expat life comes with some hilarious anecdotes and funny experiences. Care to share one with us?
In Thailand, I sometimes find it hard convincing people I am British, more so with older generations. I’ve had people mistaken me for Indian, Arab and allsorts but when I say British it’s normally “Really? You don’t look British”. I have dark hair and tan, not so different to James Bond (Mister Bean probably the better example) yet people think I should look like Prince Harry or dress in suit and bowler hat.
Which three tips would you like to give future expats before they embark on their new life in Bangkok?
- Locate near a skytrain or metro
- Bangkok isn’t as cheap as it is used to be
- Eat Isaan food it’s delicious
How is the expat community in Bangkok? Did you have a hard time finding like-minded people or fellow expats?
In truth I’ve always kept to myself and most of my friends are Thai but I do recognize there to be easy access to expat communities more so these days through websites, online social networks and blogging. I live in the Sukhumvit area which is the centre of many expat communities.
How would you summarize your expat life in Bangkok in a single, catchy sentence?
Living a Thai simple life in central Bangkok.