Getting to know someone takes time, especially in a big city, but bumping into the same person everyday whilst guiding visitors through the maze of the Bangkok streets then it’s inevitable that we eventually become friends and look forward to greeting each other.
“I’m Peter, a tour guide at Follow Me Bangkok Bicycle Tours, we have known Khun Jamnien for many years now and we always see her on our Siam Boran and Siam Chiva Bangkok city tours. As part of our Bangkok Street Life video series we asked if we could make a short video to find out more about her life”
Khun Jamnien has lived in Bangkok for almost 30 years after moving from Phichit which is located in the lower North of Thailand. Phichit, which is known as the land of crocodiles for obvious reasons, has two rivers running parallel to each other from north to south so most of the land in the province consist of low alluvial river plains that are agriculturally very fertile. Rice and lotus are among the main crops grown in the province and these are probably what Khun Jamnien used to farm before moving to Bangkok.
When Khun Jamnien first arrived to Bangkok she worked as a waitress but for the past 10 years she has been running her own business selling drinks and snacks from a mobile shop. Khun Jamnien’s small stall and van are located under the Memorial Bridge in the Saphan Phut area. This is a great location for her business as it’s very close to the famous Pak Khlong Talat wholesale and retail fresh flower market so there are many people passing by throughout the day.
The Saphan Phut area is also known for its night market that is open every day except Monday and Wednesday from 7:00pm to midnight. Although this market is very popular for local Thai people it is well worth the visit, not just for the cheap prices but it is one of the cool places just to watch the local nightlife.
Khun Jamnien told us that her income is between 1,000 to 2,000 baht per day, taking off her daily expenses this is a reasonable salary that allows her to take care of her family and therefore she is very happy with her small business.
In the video you will see Khun Jamnien serving a customer a soft drink that she pours into a plastic bag, she adds ice and a straw and serves it. You may wonder why she serves her drinks in a plastic bag but there is a very good reason, simply she can keep the empty bottle that she will sell to one of the recycling factories to supplement her income.
You can read more about recycling in Bangkok on this Bangkok Street Life link: Khun Sompong the local recycling man