Sunday, December 27, 2009
This is a 100 baht note. The exchange rate is about 32 baht per dollar. The King is pictured on this note as well as on all other denominations and coins.
He is 82 years old now and very much revered--to the extent that it is considered disrespectful to scrunch up your money or even fold it, because the King's picture is on it. Portraits of him are everywhere. He has four children, the oldest of whom is a daughter who married an American and lived in America but has since returned to Thailand to live.
Considered a genius, he is an inventor, musician and composer. Mention the King to any Thai with even a rudimentary understanding of English, and he/she will recite a long list of things the King has done for his people.
Disrespect for the King and his family is all but unknown here. Thais do not understand how Americans can be so critical and disrespectful of their President. "Cutting down" our leaders whenever we disagree with them appears to be a distinctly American (Western?) phenomenon.
Posted by KK at 12:27 AM