The Silver Village

Only 10 years ago this place was cut off during the monsoon season, as the road was washed away during the heavy rains.

It took half a day's drive to reach even under the best of conditions. Now the new highway has connected this remote village to the rest of Thailand.

The White Karens are relatively wealthy. They are building new houses of brick and several of the old bamboo huts have a separate privy of cement in the back of the yard.

Compared to other rural areas this is real development. Also, most of the huts have electricity and a motorcycle proudly parked outside.

The last time I was visiting the Karens, a Wall's ice cream vendor on a motorcycle was ringing his familiar tunes, right there in the middle of the village, staying cool under a huge mango tree. That was quite an unexpected sight! As a few years back nobody would even have known what ice cream was, much less have spend their rarely seen cash on a chocolate Cornetto.

My first thought was, that now this picturesque village is spoilt, multinationals should stay out, and isn't it a pity to destroy yet another lifestyle.

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