Snack Time in Mukdahan

dsc05301 800x600 Snack Time in Mukdahan

Thai children enjoying some fruit on a hot Mukdahan afternoon. Of course their favorite pastime is watching the falung take their picture. Well, it amused them for a while anyway.

This area of Thailand that borders Laos is mostly rural farm land with small towns here and there. The people don’t have a lot but they seem to get by well enough and the children are well taken care of.

It seems odd visiting Mukdahan and then coming home to America and hearing about how bad the poor have it here. In a lot of ways the poor do seem to be much worse off in America. Thailand isn’t perfect by any means but for the most part the Thais look after one another and community plays a big part in their lives. Community is the one thing America seems to have lost over the years. People can’t seem to be bothered any more…they look the other way…it’s not their problem.

More and more Americans have withdrawn from their communities and have closed themselves off. Everything is centered around the home and the television or internet. All the new gadgets seem to aid in this retreat from society. Why go talk to your neighbor when you can send a text message or an email?

Some people may go to Thailand or see the pictures in the gallery here and think ” wow, these people are poor”. Yes, they are poor by most standards but much richer in community.

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16 Responses to Snack Time in Mukdahan
  1. iWalk
    October 29, 2008 | 12:45 am

    I am totally agree with you.

    This picture remind me my childhood, we always had so many neighbors and friends to play together. But we almost don’t know the names of neighbors now!

    We attend this and that communities online, But we are alone in real life.

    iWalks last blog post..The Secrets Of JinMa BiJi Archways

  2. nicole
    October 29, 2008 | 10:54 pm

    Mmmm….sense of community in this country is not what it used to be. I think it has to do with stress and the pace of our lives. It’s sad.
    Cute kids! :)

  3. christina
    October 30, 2008 | 4:13 am

    I was in rural Thailand earlier this year and didn’t see anything compared to the poverty I’ve seen in other places. I actually found it to be a surprisingly consumer driven society! Lots of cluttered “stuff” around people’s homes. That said, you are right about the sense of community. So many Thai’s “live” outside. That’s the way it is in Uganda too. I’ve often wondered if air conditioning weren’t responsible for some of the antisocial behavior Americans indulge in.

    christinas last blog post..crY when the cutting edge bleeds

    • Talen
      October 30, 2008 | 6:21 pm

      In the rural areas there are some really poor people. Even so I wouldn’t equate them to the same standard as the poor in Africa or other places similar.

  4. Busta
    October 30, 2008 | 7:01 am

    Wow that was quite an eye opening post, I really did think the west had it better in terms of poverty, but your right they do lack something important…A sense of community.

  5. Nomadic Matt
    October 30, 2008 | 12:24 pm

    what you said is true for more than just america!!

    Nomadic Matts last blog post..The Weekly Photo: Vienna

    • Talen
      October 30, 2008 | 6:16 pm

      So true…just relying on what I know for fact.

  6. Ken Armstrong
    October 30, 2008 | 6:14 pm

    Interested in ‘Falung’. I thought it was ‘Farang’.

    Silly me.

    • Talen
      October 30, 2008 | 6:19 pm

      Depending on where you are and who you are talking to it could be falung, farang, or falang. No matter which you use everyone will understand you mean foreigner.

      Most Thai’s I’ve been around pronounce it falung…but have heard the other pronunciations from Thai’s as well.

  7. Hoo Don
    October 31, 2008 | 8:38 pm

    Your photograph clearly captures the closely knit community that these children live in. What the photo shows most of all to me is that although these children are from a poor area, they are bright eyed, healthy looking and their clothes as clean as any child’s from the western world. It proves to me that you cannot buy pride, it is something that is instilled inside you from a very young age.

    Hoo Dons last blog post..The Rising Price Of Honey

  8. HaPPi Like a HiPPo
    November 2, 2008 | 11:59 am

    “Yes, they are poor by most standards but much richer in community.” – Well said. I couldn’t agree more.

    I think you forgot to mention their No.1 favorite pastime… bathing.

    Hope your next post isn’t going to be about FalunGong!

    HaPPi Like a HiPPos last blog post..Video clip of Somchai?

    • Talen
      November 8, 2008 | 2:49 am

      I thought the #1 favorite pastime was sleeping followed by eating and Thai soap opera’s…

      • ChuckWow
        January 28, 2010 | 7:00 pm

        I always thought the national pastime was nose picking ! ;D

        • Talen
          January 28, 2010 | 8:06 pm

          Chuck, I think that falls under national sport…I could be wrong though.

  9. Mathias
    November 30, 2008 | 2:53 pm

    I have spent a couple of months in the north of Thailand, it’s a real eye opener. And has made me appreciate the little things in life a lot more.

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