The Hmong Ethnic Night Market for Tourists
Laos (Republic of Lao)
Background of the famous temple, Wat Haw Kam at the back
Visited Feb 2007
The tribal market mainly sells ethnic clothes and tribal ware of the Hmong people. I bought a beautiful ethnic bed spread which weighed 3kg. Hard bargaining is needed as these Hmong people are used to European tourists who are not so skilled at bargaining. Usually take 70% off their asking price.
while in Singapore I would take my bike out and ride around the city area after midnight.
Scenes taken after the stroke of midnight.
Midnight Exploration : The Night Barber
The hardworking barber still opens after midnight.
When i asked why he opens till such late hours, he gestures and says because his customers request me to, lamenting; “What to do, we all have to make a living right, I have been working here since my hair was black, now its grey.”
Photos of Bangkok – political crisis Sept 2008.
The many stalls at the protest site gives the whole place a funfair feel. The stalls sells anti-government demonstration paraphernalia. Only in Thailand where the enterprising thai mixes politics and enterprise, creating merchandises from political protests.
Vendor selling towels for the protesters
Locals buying protest demonstration parapanelia
Photos of Bangkok – political crisis Sept 2008.
Thai University student protesters displaying their political street art.
Caricatures of Thailand’s Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej pasted on portable toilets. Samak being criticised of being in a televised cooking show. Samak, a self-proclaimed foodie, hosted a popular television cooking show _ “Tasting and Complaining” _ for seven years before becoming prime minister. But he also made several appearances after taking office, allegedly breaking a constitutional prohibition on private employment while in office.
Wanted poster of Khunying Potjaman Shinawatra, wife of former Prime Minister Thaksin. Potjaman played a key role in the development of Thaksin’s commercial enterprises. Potjaman fled the country with her husband to Britain.
One inventive protester set up his little site like a performance art.
Please send Thaksin back from Britian for some english tea and biscuits, he can sit on the blue chair.
Caricature of Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej
Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej’s government being the hand puppet of the Thakin government
Posing for the locals.
The barricades installed demarking the site , a portrait of revered Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej displayed
The main road leading to the Government House. The protest area has grown bigger with tents setting up along the pedestrian pathways.
The television tents where televised speeches are shown
The protest stage where the people would gather. Speeches were being blasted from the loudspeakers from televised programs of PAD members.
One of the roads being over taken by the PAD, People’s Alliance for Democracy they had taken over one of the Ministry’s garden compound
Makeshift areas of protesters, there were many Thai flag hanging all over the area.
This stretch of the road were selling t-shirts and other anti-government wares.
Photos of Thai Protesters
Standing up for the Thai King’s Anthem
A protester having breakfast. All meals and drinks are free and provided for by anti-government supporters.
University students visiting the area
Visited the Protest site on a sunday morning. The area was barricaded by the protesters, tentages were set up along the road leading to the Government House. The whole atmosphere was more like a funfair feel than a protest site.
The thai protesters standing up in respect of the king, as they played the Thai King’s Anthem.
This was the kitchen quarter set up surrounding one of the Bangkok Ministry building. A huge screen was projecting repeats of the protester’s speeches.
Protesters setting up home at one of the smaller streets
The tv area was set up with people watching speeches made by prominent PAD leaders
Came back from Bangkok. It was business as usual in the city, people still went to work, there were still massive traffic everywhere, life went on as usual despite the Prime Minister’s state of emergency declaration. Nothing much really happened.
Even visited the Protest Area of the PAD (People’s Alliance for Democracy), quite uniquely Thai, it was rather peaceful. There were a dismarkation of the area with barriers. People brought their whole families including their kids. There were many food stalls giving out apparently free drinks and meals. Stalls selling T-shirts with the protest logos. It felt somewhat like a funfair with people living on big tents.
On the serious side of things, had conversations with some Thais and longtime residents about the whole issue. The general feeling coming from the middle class and those living in Bangkok was firstly the shock and anger generated from Former Prime Minister Thaksin’s sale of his communications corporation to a Singaporean corporation with tax free profits of a few billion dollars, to the unjust way the thai political system is strudded towards massive voting buying and the perpetual domination of large corporance of old political parties such as the People’s Power Party in all levels of governance. The middle class and the more educated locals from the cities demanded a massive shake down and change of their own democratic political system. As to the direction of where they want it to be, remains to be seen.
Will upload photos and write more commentaries of my whole trip soon.
Here’s my photos
Samut on Toilet Portables
Inviting Thaksin for Tea
Street Scene of Protest site
Portraits of Protesters
Protesters Sites and Camps