While my previous post was about how Thailand has changed me quite a bit since I arrived in January 2011, I also noticed how some things never change, no matter where I am.
Being a vegetarian for over two years means I have been living as a vegetarian in the UK, Kenya, Spain, the Netherlands, and Thailand. Although some countries are particularly tough (Spain and Thailand), I know that not having given up so far (even with all the meat and sea food, including fish and oyster sauce in Asia) means, or hopefully means, I will stay animal-friendly for the rest of my life!
Being a clean/neat freak within my area of control means I have a very organised and systematic order to everything in a specific space. In most places, this would be my apartment or room. In Kenya, this was my backpack I was living out of for over three months! No matter where I am, I can always adapt and I don’t mind letting go of cleanliness requirements, but there is always some place that is and must be in order… OCPD much?
No matter how long I’ve been here, I never get desensitised thoughts/feelings when I see:
– suffering animals. I have seen people eat almost any kind of animal and I have seen so many stray dogs and cats, but I can never get used to this… I would like to adopt a stray, but not knowing how long I will stay in Thailand means I cannot commit and make the poor thing dependent on me, not to mention I am not allowed to have pets in my apartment.
– unequal couples. By this, I mean relationships with strong inequalities regarding age, power, intelligence, etc. While matches between young gorgeous women with old nasty men are more common, especially in Thailand, in Kenya, I saw many young Kenyan men with much much older nasty Western women. I also often come across ‘intelligent’, or let’s say educated, men who patronise their local girlfriends who are often not as privileged as they are. I know it’s none of my business, but when I see any kind of injustice or inequality – apparently also when it regards private relationships – I feel the need to step in or raise awareness, but I don’t/won’t – unless the inequality is in age and there is a minor involved of course!