First world syndrome

Have you heard of that Aussie woman who got caught in Phuket for stealing a barmat and then verbally abusing the local police when apprehended? Now her family is berating the Thai government (gasp!) and squealing at the Australian government for help.

Go read the report here. And remember to read the comments. It’s gold! Also, Andrew Bolt has writen a fantastic editorial on the issue. I don’t always agree with the man but this time he’s definitely on the money.

I’m sorry but I just can’t sympathise. And I’d be repeating what many people have already said but seriously, woman, I’m sure the Thais are sick of some (not all!) arrogant Western tourists who barge into their country, throwing money around, thinking they’re superior. The pathetic kind of so-called “travellers” who lounge around all day at the beach, go to a (Western style) bar at night, get hammered and treat the locals like shit; who have no respect for other cultures, and after leaving the country would know absolutely ZILCH about the place and its people, except for the fact that “Oh, it’s sooo cheap over there!”. I’ve seen a few of them with my own eyes, in Vietnam, in Thailand, and in China. I’m so bloody sick of them!

I remember when I was on a city tour around Bangkok, back in 1998. We were to check out a few temples and the tour guide did remind everyone before we left that you have to cover your arms and feet, even your heels, before entering the temples. When we got there, some stupid Aussie & American women, who completely ignored the guide’s warning and wore singlets, weren’t allowed inside. And guess what they did? They stood outside and sulked, whinged about Thailand’s “stupid rules” and made their travel companions (poor husbands!) wait outside with them too, as a “protest”. It was so ridiculous I couldn’t help but laugh!

So here are the things about this current story that really shit me:

  • The number of people who jumped right at it and start abusing Thailand and other Asian & 3rd world countries. Needless to say, these are the type who’ve never gotten up from watching “Getaway” on the couch. My first reaction was to yell at them, go and see the world for yourselves you idiots. But then I changed my mind right after, it’s actually a GREAT thing that these narrow-minded yobbos never  move their sorry ass out of their house.
  •  The fact that this woman is a mother of four does NOT automatically mean she’s an angel! It’s also not a “Get out of jail free” card. Back when I was living in North Melbourne , I once saw a couple getting completely high off their face in their parked car, while their two children crying in the back seat. I’d be more worried about what kind of manners she is teaching her kids.
  • The Australian embassy has a lot more to do than rushing right after this silly woman to sooth her childish tantrum. Grow up, princess! And just as a warning for Aussies going overseas, don’t be overly confident that our embassy will automatically jump to our defence. When you’re in another country, you ABIDE THEIR LAW! Seriously, how hard is it to understand? In some countries, you may get your hand chopped off for stealing, pranks or no pranks!

Anyway, latest update this morning said that she’s free to go home now, after paying  a $37 fine. Good for her kids. And what’s better? Wait til all the TV / gossip mag interviews flood in and this couple will be rolling in cash. And we’d be hit again with tyrades of trashy, B-grade stories. Not long to go now. Good thing I don’t watch commercial TV, or read gossip mags.

Goes to show that it pays, literally, to be a typical pretty, blonde, white Aussie, you get all the attention you want. And more. All very marketable.

What strange time we’re living in.



6 thoughts on “First world syndrome

  1. I find that most Aussies are pretty much ill educated on respecting other Cultures and Beliefs. Reminds me of when my sister makes snark comments about dumb rich laborer families and ordering “congee” on flights to Hong Kong because it makes them think they’re more “cultured”.

    Oh I remember this moment I was in Chinatown and in a food court and randomly some teenager blurts out quite loudly “this isn’t how you make rice, it’s not how mum makes it”.

    I was taught from an early age about racism and respecting others cultures, as well as being RESPONSIBLE FOR MY OWN ACTIONS.

    chi ay NGU QUA~!

    probably a good thing I don’t know how to cuss in Vietnamese

  2. When I go to a foreign country, I leave as little footprint as possible.

    I wonder if this woman or her family would appreciate it if a drunk American stood up on a table at a restaurant in Australia and bellowed about how stupid everyone’s accent is and then tried to run away from the police who were only trying to escort him away from the other angry patrons.

    This woman showed classic signs of entitlement and arrogance. Just one more Western tourist giving other Western tourists a bad name.

  3. I *had* to reply to the original story, or rather to one of the comments which stated that Aussies shouldn’t go to “these countries” as Australia had a richer culture.

    Had I been drinking, I’d have spat it out with laughter. How on earth could a less-than-300-year-old country have a richer, deeper culture than one with over 2000 years of documented history?

    Just checked – they posted my comment at 12:02 (and didn’t email me when it was posted as the page says they will)

  4. Jack, Mosh, & Minh, I know you are the exact opposite of that silly person. You restore my faith in “western travellers”.
    Well, that’s why I “hang out” with you guys! 😉

    ~ Jack, hahahaa, you’re getting really good. The ~ at the end of “ngu qua” made i laugh for a good 10 minutes!

    ~ Minh, yes, an extremely inflated sense of entitlement, all rights and no responsibilities.

    ~ Mosh, good point! Fortunately, for every traveller like that woman, there’s one like you. Heard you’re heading to Thailand soon, have fun & buy a bar mat for me!

    ~ Thetraveller, thank you.

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