Buying second hand in Australia or New Zealand is as common as a pie at the footy and fish and chips but in Thailand it is a different story.
It is very hard to find second hand goods here. I put it down to the fact that Thais rarely move house (especially not overseas) and once they buy something they use it until it can be used no longer. There is also the other aspect particularly amongst more wealthier Thai people that buying second hand goods is downright desperate and embarrassing.
I remember when my wife first moved to Australia and she accompanied my Mum to numerous garage sales she would come home shaking her head in disbelief and tell me all about the things that were for sale. Some were great but most of it was junk she would say, and people were buying it all! As she got to know some of the locals she was always surprised if she saw someone she knew who was wealthy sniffing around for a bargain.
Where am I going with this? Well it isn’t often that I buy new things, especially furniture as we always seem to be on the move. However due to the fact that is is hard to find second hand goods here but mainly because this is our house and we intend to keep it for the rest of our lives we decided that new would be the go.
Well tomorrow when we go to Ubon to pick up the new (second hand haha) car we will also be taking with us:
* 2 month old fridge (seal is broken.)
* 6 month old washing machine (kaput)
* 6 month old Hot water system for the shower (spits out the occasional spurt of warmish water when it feels like it)
* 2 ceiling fans (falling to bits)
There was also one other thing that I can’t remember at this point.
It is so frustrating when new things break down or simply don’t work from the start, at least with second hand goods you never get disappointed! When things break down in the city usually a technician will come out so it isn’t such a big deal, not here in rural Thailand. Take the fridge for instance, we have to take that back (2.5 hour drive) and the person Seerung spoke to on the phone said if they can fix it immediately they will, if not they will have to order parts from bangkok which will take a few days. In other words we will come back without the fridge and drive all the way back to pick it up a few days later. Same with the washing machine.
The money finally came through this afternoon so tomorrow we leave at 6am. Well our car and driver (for the last time!) will be here but it will take a while to load everything. There will be four different stops to take back broken goods before meeting with the car at 1pm. Fingers crossed we can then organise the money, transfer car insurance and transfer ownership before the close of businesses. The next day is more furniture shopping, food shopping (if we have a fridge to take home) a visit to a sat tv company and an attempt to try and get myself a Thai drivers license. I just know that experience will be worth an entire blog post on it’s own!