Adjusting Lifestyles

Authored by:
Kelly P.

Kelly P.


I’ve officially called Thailand home for little over a month now. There have been a few adjustments to my everyday lifestyle but overall, I think I have adapted well to some of Thailand’s differences.. Here’s a few differences I have found in my everyday life that are different than America.   

1. Firm Beds

In orientation, they warned us about the firm beds in Thailand. I typically prefer a firm bed, so I wasn’t too worried but I quickly learned, when they mean firm, they mean firm. I don’t think I’ve ever felt such a firm bed before. Thankfully, it hasn’t been too uncomfortable, and a mattress topper is easy to find!

2. Ants

Again, this is something they warned us about in orientation. I didn’t think too much of it until I awoke one morning only to realize I had left a little splash of jelly on my kitchen table and I had a swarm of ants. It took a few days to clear them out but slowly I have learned a few tricks to keep the ants away. The biggest adjustment to avoid having ants, is putting all my food in the refrigerator and in plastic baggies to keep the ants out.

3. No toilet paper in the toilet

This was the biggest adjustment to me. We all know that going to the bathroom and throwing the toilet paper in the toilet is a no-brainer. In Thailand, the plumbing system is not good enough to hold toilet paper which results in throwing away your toilet paper after each use. At first, it was weird. Really weird. But after a week or two, it becomes normal because everyone does it here. Taking your trash out becomes part of your daily routine and you do not think twice about putting your toilet paper in the trashcan.

4. Hanging laundry

Washing machines are common in Thailand but dryers are not. Instead of drying my clothes in the dryer, I hang them up to dry. It took a few tries to make sure I hung them the correct way to get them fully dry and so the wind wouldn’t blow them over but overall, this has been such an easy adjustment. Washing clothes has become a weekend activity because I must make sure I have enough time to allow my clothes to dry outside.

5. Toilet/Shower combination

In Thailand, it is quite common for the toilet and shower to be in the same room. This means that when you shower, there is a big possibility that your toilet will get wet as well. This hasn’t been too big of an adjustment, but it is annoying when you need to use the bathroom after you shower, and the floor is all wet. It is just a minor inconvenience and I have learned to deal with it.

Even after a month, these differences have been so easy to adapt to and I do not think twice about many of them. I’m quite proud that these lifestyle changes have been easily incorporated into my every day life so quickly.

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