An Experience of Being Out of My Comfort Zone During Our Vacation in Thailand

I am a city girl. I love skyscrapers and the way they light up a dark sky. I call delivery service at 3 in the morning if hunger strikes me. I choose form over function when it comes to buying shoes. I love big cities—the lights, the convenience, the diverse people, the sounds, and the non-stop activities. I have always been a city girl. Last winter, I decided that it was about time to push myself out of my comfort zone I agreed to my friends that I would join them for the Thailand trip a two-week trip where I did and experienced more that scared me than I have in my entire lifetime.

In all my research prior to our trip nothing actually prepared me for it, you can’t describe Thailand in words or pictures. As soon as we landed in Bangkok, I was forced to set my eyes on the traffic-a seething cauldron of organized chaos. Not in my wildest dreams would I imagine their traffic to be so chaotic.

No one breaks; instead, they just hoot and keep weaving.

There is no correct side of the road to drive on, and the pavements seem to have become the extensions of the road. As a pedestrian, you have to grow the nerves and just walk. Don’t bother looking left or right, or even the traffic lights. The “No Look, Just Walk” technique is the only way that works if you ever want to cross the roads. Bangkok is a city indeed, but it’s nothing like the city life I’m used to.

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Everything was just too much. I was overwhelmed.

My first impression of Thailand is “chaotic”, but not until we stepped on Kao San Road did I understand what chaotic really means. The famous (or infamous if you will) Kao San Road is home to a large concentration of hostels, guesthouses, bars, cheap open-air restaurants, street vendors, and massage parlors. On the surface, it seemed to be nothing more than a Thai version night market. However, underneath was a current of seediness that I soon caught in the corner of my eye. We were getting pretty fed up of the Thai hawkers, particularly for the suits and tattoos. They kept jumping out at my friends and I, to the point of grabbing my arm and trying to drag me with them.

The worst, however, were the Tuk Tuk drivers, who would rotate their hands over an imaginary motorbike and call out “Tuk Tuk”. Another line of seediness was the presence of Thai prostitutes hovering around. All my male friends were “attacked” by the ladyboys who would run after them shouting “Come on! Me give you good time!” Other than that, let’s not forget the men who made those popping sounds with their mouths at you, meaning, “Do you want to see a ping pong show?” With the culture shock that had not yet died away, the next few days we decided to do some historical sightseeing in Bangkok.

“Are you driving with the meter?” a friend of mine asked as he hailed a taxi. Surprisingly, the taxi driver just drove away without saying a word. One after another, we soon realized how hard it was to get a taxi charging by the meter, even though the use of meter is required in Thailand. Having no other options, we turned to the Tuk Tuk drivers waiting by the side who could not be happier to see us coming. With a bit of bargaining, we soon agreed on a fare that seemed to be quite reasonable.

We hopped in the Tuk Tuk and headed in what we didn’t realize was the completely wrong direction. He dropped us at a tourist agency and told us to go in and get a free map. First, the map was not free. Secondly, we were aware that the driver could earn some hefty commission if we book any tours in the agency. After realizing we did not book any tours, the Tuk Tuk driver acted annoyed but then said he could take us to a bunch of other sites around the city. My friends and I of course refused, and were left in the middle of nowhere on our own.

Bangkok has its own charm, but I was glad when it was time for us to head for our next destination-Koh Samui-where we would be spending all day on the beach. Unfortunately, we were told that all the flights were booked out! The other choice was that we could take a 12 hour overnight train. The word “overnight” terrified me but I did not want to be the bummer in the group. The train ride was the only thing I was dreading since we had heard rumors that the cabins were less than sanitary, that there were bed bugs and grimy toilets. The rumors were unfortunately true. The mattress was small (even for me as a petite girl), and cleanliness was questionable. My body started to itch just by sitting on it, as my skin is quite sensitive.

Once the train started moving, I was surprised by how bumpy it was. Since the trip was scheduled to be about 12 hours, and the train is notorious for delays, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get any sleep. The highlight of this train ride was my neighbor. Opposite to me was a Thai monk. Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against monks. The problem was that he slept with his eyes open. I was feared the entire train ride by thinking that he might be cursing me with his open eyes.

Last winter, I had a trip that put me out of my comfort zone. I hated it at that time, but now that I think back on it, it’s definitely worth it.

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An Experience of Being Out of My Comfort Zone During Our Vacation in Thailand. (2023, Jan 07). Retrieved from

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