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MarcelV

Any farangs in the red zone?

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Posted (edited)
13 hours ago, rott said:

There used to be quite a few drinking in the Swan, but it is five years since i have been there.

There still are, mainly teachers and a handful of retirees from the oil industry, but on the whole the Swan's customers are Thai, Malaysian or Singaporean, especially if there's a big football match on; Arsenal, Chelsea, Man U, or Liverpool. Hat Yai doesn't attract western tourists, those we do get are just passing through heading north or south or en-route to Koh Lipe.

 

Hat Yai's a new city, here because of the railway, prior to 1920 it didn't exist. So there's no ancient history to attract western tourists and there's no ago-go bar scene to draw the sexpats. But it does attract a lot of visitors from Malaysia & Singapore looking to let their hair down for the weekend, Thailand is cheaper (though less so for Malaysians these days) and a little more liberal than their home countries. We have a good selection of music bars and restaurants with a huge choice of foods. Plus there are the karaoke lounges and massage parlors. The in your face sex scene takes place just on the border at Sadao/Danok, those looking for a quick leg-over usually don't get as far as Hat Yai.

 

Malaysians also like to shop here, mainly at the Kim Yong market, Plaza and Central Festival but it's also common to see them pushing trolleys around Big C full of toothpaste and shampoo, don't ask me why.

 

.

Edited by Stocky
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17 hours ago, ballzafire said:

Islam = The Cult of the Black Cube = Satan worship (if you don't believe me, look it up, Stocky).

Pray five times a day facing the Black Cube in Mecca, or you are an 'infidel' and should be killed?

It's just madness.

And, no, I haven't "shown my hand", Stocky. Just stating the facts...

I doubt you've actually been to Thailand let alone Narathawat and the deep south, you're just  fantasizing from your preppers bunker whilst fondling your AR-15.

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No, thankfully Hat Yai has stayed largely separate from the troubles to our south, indeed, the city is a refuge for many families who have left the southernmost provinces, both Buddhist and Muslim.

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I haven't been to one of my favourites, songhkla in years, whats it like now , safe,? can still enjoy around samila beach , seafood restaurants ?

would like to know, as considering taking G/F for a couple of days 

regards songhklasid 

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Songkhla doesn't change much, still a sleepy little town. Samila Beach and the seafood restaurants same as always. As for safety, Songkhla town is fine, there has only ever been one incident in Songkhla town back in 2005 with a motorcycle bomb outside the Green World Hotel that caused no injuries or damage except to the motorbike.

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Actually, there has been a great deal of "development" in Songkhla Town in recent years, including alone Samila. One of these was the recent removal of my favorite drinking spot, in front of the bathhouse/public restroom/minimart across from the beach volleyball/stage area...

 

The beach has been the sight of a lot of municipal development in recent years...

 

About 20 years ago there was a pretty active expat scene located mostly in one small area in the town, including the 'dark side'. There are a few places left, but there are far fewer expats around due to the offshore oil industry moving north to Satthahip (or at least I have been told).

 

I think if you go back you will just find there is just a lot more of everything, including traffic, buildings and slums...

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On 4/17/2017 at 6:44 AM, songhklasid said:

I haven't been to one of my favourites, songhkla in years, whats it like now , safe,? can still enjoy around samila beach , seafood restaurants ?

would like to know, as considering taking G/F for a couple of days 

regards songhklasid 

I think with a name like that you are pretty much obliged to re-visit...

 

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4 hours ago, phuketsub said:

The beach has been the sight of a lot of municipal development in recent years...

 

Well on the times I've visited over the years all they seem to be doing is digging it up and putting it back down again, though with the addition I think of a sandbag seawall buried underneath it, that and adding a pile of rocks down at the south end near the fishing village. Though they haven't fixed that horrible sewage 'leak' opposite the Rajamangala Hotel last time I looked/inhaled.

 

I do like the art installations that have appeared bit by bit, Songkhla is a little unusual for Thailand in that it has municipal art, in particular I like the Naga that pops up here and there.

 

But compared with the building boom in and around Hat Yai, it's not really changed that much! 

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Posted (edited)

Lived in Hat Yai 2+ years. Elsewhere in LoS, 4+ years. Can read and speak Thai. Yes, I know enough about the southern border areas to avoid them, except for immigration purposes.

And, yes, been to Naratiwat, Stocky. Not making things up. Really, truly, thoroughly, detested it. Like I said, 'never again'...

Edited by ballzafire

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On Saturday, April 22, 2017 at 9:44 AM, ballzafire said:

Lived in Hat Yai 2+ years. Elsewhere in LoS, 4+ years. Can read and speak Thai. Yes, I know enough about the southern border areas to avoid them, except for immigration purposes.

And, yes, been to Naratiwat, Stocky. Not making things up. Really, truly, thoroughly, detested it. Like I said, 'never again'...

Please elaborate

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On 28/4/2560 at 7:48 PM, MarcelV said:

Please elaborate

Yeah.

 

On 28/4/2560 at 7:48 PM, MarcelV said:

Please elaborate

I also would like to hear more. I have spent more time in Yala and Pattani,  but never had any problems whatsoever in Narathiwat.

 

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I stayed in Yala a couple of years ago for a long weekend - at the government official housing near the hospital. Mrs worked there for 18 months. Beautiful place. Mrs friends (mostly Muslims) showed me around. One of her friends was the daughter of a head of some Islamic centre so got shown around the mosque, and their houses/land - very warm and welcoming people. Mrs thinks it is the best place she has ever worked in Thai (has worked all around the country) - purely just because of the people. Keeping in mind she worked in the regional office so had to cover all of Yala, Pattani, Narathiwas, Songkhla, Trang, Satun and Pattalung for 18 months (her driver was armed), so there must be something about the south.

 

They drove to pick me up from the airport and drove me back, rather than letting me on the public van. One restaurant not in the 'red zone' refused to serve me, so friends took me into the heart of the 'red zone' in Yala. Restaurant staff were more than welcoming and let me try all the local food, but we left abruptly mid meal due to a group of men on another table who didn't have the most positive things to say about me apparently. Didn't do wonders for the masculinity walking around with a group of tiny girls protecting me lol. 

Get invited back every year, and would love to go again - but have the little one and another on the way to think about now.

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On 13/04/2017 at 9:44 AM, Stocky said:

There really is some rubbish posted on the call to prayer. 

 

We have call to prayer six times a day, the earliest is about an hour before sunrise, the second at sunrise, the third at midday, the fourth is mid-afternoon, fifth at sunset and the sixth an hour after sunset. So given sunrise and sunset times in these latitudes change little, from around 6:15am and 6:20pm, you will hear nothing from the mosque from about 7:30pm until 5:10am. Even then I usually sleep soundly through both the dawn and sunrise calls. 

 

To me I find the call to prayer a reassuring constant that marks the progress of the day, and the call at sunset tells me it's time to find a beer.
 

After many years in the MENA regions I loathe it and fear its significance equally. Its dreadful, raucous imposition. Especially when amplified using modern technology. It's just taking the p*ss. The Saudis and Kuwaitis admitted they hated it because it devalued their property prices. And yes it is in the middle of the night if you want to sleep to late morning...ie 8 or 9. In Libya the coughing, throat clearing Inman was an awful way to be woken up in the middle of the night. An awful way to start the day. In Saudi the massed cacophony of multiple mosques at 4am or 5am was dreadful.

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In the recent years the refugee from borders are returning back to their home. Even businesses from Hatyai are expanding down South to the red-zone. What does that tells you?

I'm an Asian expat. I have many friends from the down South. While some are uncomfortable with me being an expat, most are welcoming.

 

The tourism at the border area are increasing. The economics are developing. New generation of Muslims speaks Thai and less Malaysian/Islamic. In due time the community will improve.

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