Come back to Bangkok
King of Thailand was just passed away about a month ago. Everybody warring black cloth to mourning. Bangkok is really hot compare with snowing Romania. Specially with this black cloth.
I stayed in my old friend English guy and Thai wife’s house for a week. He is very successful DJ in Bangkok, he make money with DJ, then spend all energy to his passion of painting.
They live quite nice life in artist area of China town. Because of them and other artists, attract more artist and artistic things in this area. It’s become new trendy art area in Bangkok. Lots of new restaurants, bars, galleries, guesthouses are opening recently.
He started DJ because of when I met him in India on 2004, I gave him DJ software I had on my computer. It was beginning of his DJ carrier. Now they offer me to stay every time I’m in Bangkok, treat me very well.
Because of I gave him software, it changed his life, because of that, he stayed in Bangkok, because of that, that area is developing a lot. And probably this developing will affect a lot to many people’s life. It is very interesting butterfly effect of life.
Driving license in Thailand
One of main reason I came to Thailand is extend driving license and change to international license.
2 years ago,I was traveling Thailand and I found some travel agency organizing driving license for traveler. They said, I can make Thai national driving license with normal tourist visa, after one year, I can change it to international driving license. It cost around $250 USD include all fees.
It sounds really sweet to me. I wanted to make real driving license for many years. I can easily make fake license in Bangkok but I don’t want that, I want real one. If I do it in Japan, it cost 10 times more, and I can not do it in other country without special visa.
Now, I came back to Thailand specially for this driving license. I asked to agency about it by email, then he said “I’m sorry for that old information, your driving license is temporally license, now you need special long stay visa for make it proper driving license, after that you can change it to international license.”
Maybe it is true, law of Thailand is changed within these one and half year, but I felt cheated from them. Anyway doesn’t matter what is truth, I can not make it proper license. But I can still use it as temporally license and I can extend as temporally for another 2 year. I can still drive car in many country.
It seems like all my effort of direction to material success is doesn’t work well. Fail TV audition, kick out from house, visa problem, no driving license. Seems like universe or my higher self wants to take other direction. Will see how it flows.
When I left Romania, I saved about 1500 euro, which is not enough to stay in hostel and eat in restaurants for half-year. I could save much more but I was lazy and spend a lot, also pay back debt. I need to stay less spend money or make money on the way.
I got lots of euro coins in busking (play music in street) in Romania, which is only can exchange in euro country. I had chance to change it to Thai Bahts in airport in Germany, it was around 30 euro. I’m wishing to not use saving in bank, keep making money on the road all the time.
Busking in Bangkok
Some of my friend told me there is good spot to do busking in Bangkok. It’s called Asiatique market. I was expected to very difficult to get permission because of I’m foreigner and king was passed away just a month ago, maybe they don’t want music in market. I expect of I can get permission, I can make money very easy.
I went there to ask permission, surprisingly very very easily they give me permission. Just give them passport, there is no interview or paper sign up or anything.
I was excited this market could be my stable income place in Asia. I found good spot and start to play music. Somehow people doesn’t really listen me.
I usually play with mallet in street, because more loud and easy to play long time. Also less damage to instrument compare with make same loudness by hand. Buy this time I was play by hand, because more fun to play by hand and if is to loud shop people doesn’t like it.
I made 300 Barts (8 euro) in 2 hours. It is not so bad if I think about living cost in Thailand. But doesn’t give me motivation to play with this money. My rate is minimum 10 euro per hour.
I decide to come back again with mallet. Maybe it wasn’t loud enough. I can prepare more to looks nice and organized.
Next day I came back with well prepared, set up in front of main gate. Must be perfect spot to play. But result was exactly same. I made 300 Barts in 2 hours.
I was surprised, when I was busking 2 years ago in another big market called chatuchak market, I made 10 times more in there. I can not go there again because shop people jealous about foreigner make good money, they don’t give me permission anymore.
I understood this Asiatique market is much more commercial style market, people who come to this market they don’t really care about art or music. I decide to give up this market.
I wait for next market on Friday called Artbox. It is market for young artist, it must be good for my busking. That day I bought portable solar panel, spent most of my Thai Barts. When I arrived to market, I had only 20 Barts (50 cents) in my pocket. My wish of sustain myself by make money on the road is almost the end.
I was playing in Artbox market, people had good reaction to my music but not much people came to this market. I was playing in middle of restaurants, one of restaurants they didn’t have any customer that day. I made 800 Barts (20 euro) it is good, compare with amount of people.
I keep hope for next days market. There is huge market called Chatuchak market on Saturday and Sunday. They don’t give me permission anymore but maybe something change. Stay hoping.
Next day I went to Chatuchak market, straight to office and ask them for permission. They said they don’t give permission to foreigner anymore. It’s get even worse than before.
Ok, I go to park next to market and play there. As well as park, there is more security and no chance to play music there.
Ok, now I go to play in street next to highway. Very loud and bad air, definitely not nice place to play. But still I could make money even way better than other market.
I was continue playing until sunset, then after sunset I move into Chatuchak market. After 6 pm, people can do whatever they want in this market. No body complain about anything.
I found nice spot, start to play. Wow, very good reaction. People can listen my music, there is space to stop. My CDs are flying selling.
This day I made 5000 Barts (130 euro). This is still less than half of what I made in 2 years ago in this market, but definitely this is good money in Thailand. I can stay relax about money for some while.
I come back for next day Sunday as well. Some how it wasn’t so good as Saturday but still good money. Friday evening I had only 20 Bahts and now I have around 10000 Bahts. I made it 500 times more in 2 and half day. It make me really good feeling.
If I don’t waste this money for stupid things (I usually do) , I can have vacation in south island at least one month, could be more longer time. What was really nice is I made money without any permission or any commitment. I just went there and made good money. Feel more free and independent.
Going to Meditation course
Next day Monday, I took night train to south. I came to 10 days meditation course in Buddhist temple “Suan mokk”. They teach anapana (observe breathing) meditation and Yoga and tai chi. My favorite things in here is they have hot spring in meditation center. This is second time for me.
They teach meditation by Thai accent English, very difficult to understand. I shouldn’t complain about their accent because I speak Japanese accent English, often people doesn’t understand me.
Probably I do Vipassana (observe sensation in all body) meditation in this course, which is next step of anapana meditation. I learned in goenka Vipassana center. Here is very good environment for focus to meditation.
It will start from tomorrow. I’m very excited to go deep into myself!
To be continued…