Twelve Days of Thailand – Day 1: January

DSC_0362C_1200_60_wmDSC_0258A_1200_60_wmDSC_0526C_1200_60_wmDSC_2119A_1200_60_wm The year in Thailand began as it meant to go on. 266 people were killed in 2,355 road accidents over the 5-day New Year holiday. There’s something wrong with a country characterising it’s major holidays with a death-toll, especially when that toll is not that much different from the rest of the year.The release of wrongly-accused charity worker Ian Charles Tracy came early in the year. On the subject of his being arrested with no evidence, Mr Tracy said:

“The police knew they had the wrong man. But insisted they go ahead with the prosecution. I told them they would have to make it all up – and they did.”

Chiang Mai police arrested a woman with 8 cans of cat food containing 3kg of crystal meth, which explains a lot about cats.

The ‘Democrat’ Party declared that they would refuse to take part in anything so crass and un-Democratic as an election. In spite of this – or perhaps because of it – the government decided to press on with a poll. Meanwhile, after their headquarters were sprayed with bullets, the ‘Democrats’ held a ceremony to expel evil spirits. It didn’t work and Abhisit Vejjajiva continued to lead the party.

On January 13th, Suthep Thaugsubahn attempted to solve Bangkok’s traffic problems by closing as much of the city as possible with his “Shutdown Bangkok” street party. The PDRC’s capacity to deploy weaponized katoeys saw the city paralysed with fear and Gloria Gaynor hits.

Threats to kidnap the Prime Minister and lethal bomb attacks on protest sites lead Thailand’s Navy to respond with a viral video of guards on parade. This terrifying display of synchronized standing around lead the government to immediately declare a state of emergency.

The police removed ‘spy-cameras’ from mobile public toilets near the Centre for Maintaining Peace and Order (CMPO) provided by the Bangkok Metropolitan Authority. Bangkok Governor, Mr. Sukhumbhand Paribatra, declared that he had “no insincere motive against the CMPO in any way” and got himself a subscription to HBO instead.

Thaksin Shinawatra and his then Prime Minister sister Yingluck managed to top an Internet poll of the World’s Worst Leaders (link not reachable from Thailand), pushing Adolf Hitler down into third place.

Suthep polished off the month with a series of fund-raising walks, accompanied by his ‘bag-lady’ to collect the cash.