In Thailand, the Rain Gods take a holiday from November and leave us all in sunny peace. Come April, when we’re all being melted to the pavement, they start having one or two occasional days in the office and by June, they’re pretty much clocking-in full time.
The downpours are foreshadowed with an ominous gathering of clouds, a thickening in the air, a quickening of the wind and then, before you know it: KABLAM, you’re stuck at a BTS station, hopelessly looking down at a street that is fast becoming a river.
Often, the best course of action is to buy an iced coffee, hang out, enjoy the lightning show and wait until it all blows over. But sometimes, you have places to go and, in our case, more often than not, things to eat. Some days, you have to do battle with rainy season and here we lay out our strategy and all the armour you will need:
Leg-wear: first and most importantly: jeans are never, never rainy season friendly. Opt for shorts or a skirt if you can but if you must wear trousers, choose ones you can roll up – don’t underestimate the depth of those puddles.
Footwear: always pack a pair of flip flops, preferably plastic or rubbery ones. Sometimes, whipping on some waterproof footwear and wading on down the road is the only way to get ahead.
An umbrella – of course. We know, they can be cumbersome but opt for a small, compact one and keep it in your bag at all times. Not only will you be able to navigate dripping awnings, you’ll be a hero among your companions of whom you can choose the best looking to huddle up and share your shelter.
The rain mac: in high winds or when your hands are too full for an umbrella, if you’re packin’ a mac, you’ll be laughing (though admittedly not terribly stylish).
Wet wipes: an oft forgotten pitfall of rainy season is the muddy-puddle-splashback. On arrival at your destination, you may need to neaten up the backs of your legs which will almost certainly be spackled with all sorts of soggy gunge courtesy of your flip flops.
Never leave the house without them and you’ll be free to roam, whatever the weather.
And the best part? 7/Eleven sells all of these items:
If you can avoid it at all, do NOT take a taxi. Traffic is – if you can imagine it – even worse when it’s raining. What’s more, drivers are less keen to stop but seem to have no qualms about roaring past you through the curb-side puddle, spraying you with flood-water. BTS is best but if you’re destination is out of the way, throw on your handy rain coat, hail a motorcycle taxi and weave through the traffic, your feet propped high above the rising waters.
Alternatively, ignore all this advice and just go out and have a jolly good dance in it – you’ll soon dry off. Let us know if you have any coping mechanisms to share!