Thursday, 12 July 2012

All stand (still) for The Royal Anthem Thailand

The Royal Family is venerated in Amazing Thailand, and rightly so, the King and Queen are not only the longest reigning monarchs in the world, jing jing, but they have done untold great things for this country and its people. Just last month he celebrated 66 years on the throne, a world record.

In just about every office you will see pictures of the King and Queen in the lobby, even giant posters several stories tall outside office buildings in Bangkok.

Travellers should also be aware that the Royal Anthem is played often at 8am and 6pm daily. You will notice that Thais will stop dead in their tracks and listen quietly and attentively while it plays for a couple of minutes. You are expected to do the same (just yesterday, it was quite funny to watch those tourists who were not in the loop wandering about and wondering why suddenly everyone has frozen stiff in the spot where they were).

If you go to a movie in Thailand - and the cinemas in Bangkok, Samui, Phuket, Pattaya, etc are excellent and cheap and play new release* movies that are on the same time schedule as the rest of the world - they will also play the anthem before the movie starts.

You should stand and listen quietly. I have seen farangs not do this, and it is openly disrespectful to local customs and to the locals who have genuine adoration for the Royals.

So if you're sitting, get off your fat ass and stand up. If you're walking, just stop where you are. And enjoy the fact that at least one country has a stately figure head who is actually worth respecting.

* Spiderman, Abraham Lincoln and The Dictator are currently showing in Bangkok cinemas and around the country.

1 comment:

  1. Someone has a tin ear...
    The anthem they play at 8am and 6pm is the National Anthem.
    Different words, different tune.
    The Royal Anthem you have here (couldn't you find higher-quality audio BTW?) is the one they play at the cinema.


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