A year ago, he was angry with me for “looking down” on his friends. Actually, I was totally innocent. I was just trying to tell him that things may not be as good as they seemed and he really ought to take it easy with his new found friendship in Thailand. Of course, advice of this nature not only fell on deaf ears but also put tremendous strain on our friendship. The Thais have their own way of saying 忠言逆耳, but any form of criticism on a Thai is usually taken very personally. Sometimes with violent outcomes.
Tonight, I saw his Facebook status update and I sense that he may be ready to learn a Thai proverb. Surprisingly, though the Thais go all out to say what you want to hear, they do have a very special and interesting way of expressing 忠言逆耳.
Phonetics: Gaeng jeut jeung roo khun glear. Translation: When the soup is finally tasteless, you’ll remember your friend Mr Salt. I like this proverb very much as it illustrates a concept so vividly and beautifully. Of course, it was anything but vivid when my dear friend thought that he was living in paradise.
Dewdrop Books presents Spellbound In Chiangmai
© Chan Joon Yee