Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pros & Cons

In college I took a judgement and decision making class, and in it the professor said that even a simple pro-con list can help a person clarify their thoughts on a matter. Seeing more things on one side than the other can make a decision seem more obvious, and if not weighting the individual items can add some additional clarity. The point being, lots of situations are complicated and you might think that the pros and cons balance each other out, but the only way to know is to just write them out and think them over.

What I love about living in Rayong:
- It's close to the beach, and my own personal tropical island. I may never in my life have such a sweet set up. It really is a dream come true.
- As a foreigner I'm a novelty. People tolerate my inability to speak Thai, and appreciate the efforts I make.
- It's relatively cheap. My rent is less than $100 / month, and most of my meals are in the 30-40 baht range (meals at a nice restaurant go up to 100-200 baht, still not too bad). I've been able to afford a trip to Cambodia and and a hand full of trips to Ko Samet and Bangkok.
- I can walk to work.
- Transportation is relatively easy to obtain, at least in the day time.
- Starbucks
- The flowers and fruit trees on my street.
- The sunshine and hot weather.
- The markets, the crazy food market with it's buckets o' live fish, trays of squid, nets full of crab and whole deep fried ducks - and the outdoor mall with the pirated videos, fake perfumes, boutiquey clothes and second hand Thai magazines.
- Motorbike taxi drivers
- Hearing "Hello, where you go?" from random people on the street.
- Fried chicken for breakfast.
- MK Restaurants
- Losing weight without really trying.
- I'm not in the US.

What I hate about living in Rayong:
- The dogs, the hairless, diseased, ever howling dogs of Rayong.
- Road kill ranging from frogs to mice to possums to dogs to snakes.... good god they look disgusting after a few hundred motorbikes have run over them.
- The giant cockroaches that chase me down the street and wander over the walls of my favorite restaurants.
- My 6-day a week schedule, classes which are added and canceled with no rhyme or reason. Not always being notified of cancellations in advance.
- The nightlife, or lack there of.
- My crappy little studio with no couch, no TV, no bookshelves no kitchen, no bathtub, no hot water, and a bathroom sink attached to the wall by nothing more than grout.
- The Thai girl / foreign man dynamic.... very bad for the ego.
- Walking past all the prostitutes on my way home.
- The limited ex-pat community.
- No museums.
- The worst karaoke music ever.
- The lack of parks.
- Difficulty in finding clothes in my size
- Uber-frou frou-cutsieness of adult women's clothing.
- Going to a restaurant and not knowing if the toilet will be squat or western.
- Gecko poop
- Crossing 8 lanes of traffic without a crosswalk
- Hearing "Hello, where you go?" from random people on the street.
- Never having a fucking clue what people are trying to say to me.
- Being illiterate and having to sign forms I can't read.
- Severely limited options for English language reading material.
- No good cheese, no good bread, wine is extremely expensive.
- Whiskey
- Having intestinal bugs on a monthly basis
- I'm not in Portland.

Hmmm... it's a start. Now for the cogitating.


Cate said...

Coming up to Chiang Mai would do away with a few of those cons (loads of books, parks, people speak English)! But, we also have no beach :(
What's the deal with MK restaurants? We have one here but I've only seen the sign, I know nothing about it.

gl. said...

well, those dogs & cockroaches would drive me crazy, too. :) can you remember the reasons you made this decision? and more importantly, what TAG is this?

Rebel said...

Cate - Chiang Mai is really lovely, but I don't think I'd want to live there long term. If it were closer to the beach.... but maybe that's what makes it so wonderful, it's a different type of tourist crowd.

gl - what TAG indeed? that is an excellent question. I felt a lot better after writing, and reading my list, because I was reminded that there really are things that I love about living here, let's give it a Code Watermelon

Sarah Nopp said...

OOO- I am writing a post (on work blog) about Cogitating. I have been saving it up to use in the title though. It is such a chewy word, I didn't want to waste it.
Oh yes, how do you weight the pros/cons? More checks for better/worser items & count the checks?