Thailand is a country of extremes. Yesterday I walked through squalid allies and by a canal that was an open sewer, where I saw a monitor lizard swimming between the debris. Cats and kittens made a dash for safety, as I walked past. There are just so many of them. The smell of urine was everywhere.
Then there is the other side of Bangkok. The excellent and efficient Skytrain and Metro. The hair salons that could be in any other big city in the world. The elegant women, balancing on their high heels; the general cleanliness of the people around you. The glimmering gold malls, such as the Emporium and Siam Paragon where you can buy designer anything and everything (though not art paper).
Another aspect of Thai society is the third sex. The lady-boys. Men dressed as women, but as Thai men, in general, are slender and especially when young, can be quite effeminate, one is inclined to think that there are more gay people here than elsewhere. The lady-boys consider themselves women however, and dress accordingly. Their shoulders might be broader than those of a girl, their hands and feet bigger and certainly their voice let's you know that they have made the step from male to female. On the other hand there are many women who work as construction workers. A land of extremes, compared to our world.