Caring for Bangkok’s needy

“I’m not doing this because I want to save the world – but hopefully I can help at the humanitarian level,” says Yvonne Ziegler, who spends two mornings a week visiting the Pak Kred Babies Home in Bangkok with another five to 15 expatriate women. “I’m basically a people person,” she says. “I have three…

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Bangkok’s media man

Journalist Andrew Biggs was supposed to stopover in Bangkok for two days on his way from Australia to London for a working holiday. That was ten years ago. Today Andrew is the most recognisable and famous falang (Western) face in Thailand. He hosts three regular television programmes and a radio talkback programme, is a newsreader…

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Strummin’ around

“I thought Thailand would be this quiet, relaxing, unassuming place away from the tourist trail. Clearly I didn’t do my research very well!” says Australian John Garzoli of his first trip to Thailand in 1995. There are a number of falangs in Bangkok who have created employment niches for themselves, allowing them to pay their…

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Not pure, just determined

Losing My Virginity: The Autobiography By Richard Branson Are you ready to be humbled into admitting that you have, after all, been a pretty lazy git for most of your life? Are you ready to be energised into vowing that you will achieve what you want to, however many years ago it was that you…

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Mighty Mekong

We’re sitting on the second floor verandah of the guesthouse, a perfect point from which to watch the traffic on the Mekong pick up in a rush to beat the falling darkness. Speedboats, a vivid mix of banana yellow and blood red, skip along the river, reaching speeds of up to eighty kilometres an hour….

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Golden weekend escape

If you think about it, the perfect tropical island can’t really be reviewed in any lengthy way. There’ll be white sand, coconut palms, turquoise water – anything beyond that is really just ‘development’, right? And that can’t possibly good for our perfect island… Unless you’re talking about Golden Buddha Island in southern Phang Nga province….

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Anil’s Ghost

By Michael OndaatjeSri Lankan-born Anil, whose name she bought from her brother when she was a young, famous swimmer, and who has studied in the UK and the US, returns to her war-torn homeland as a forensic anthropologist investigating human rights crimes. Sri Lanka is a mess, and the lives of its people are messier,…

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Water works

If there’s one ‘national’ cuisine that you may not have thought of trying in Bangkok, it’s perhaps that of Taiwan. But there is a restaurant here serving up authentic Taiwanese food that’s definitely worth checking out. Samphan Assawakittiwanich, manager of Water 1999, says he believes the restaurant is the only one of its kind in…

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