The day I went to prison in Thailand

Did that make you look? Ha ha …Nope I wasn’t misbehaving… I was looking for something different and the title should read…

The day I went to prison in Thailand… for a massage!


foot massage

I picked up a highly recommended ‘Nancy Chandler’ map when I arrived in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Its excellent as it gives short explanations as to what everything is and has a section focussed on the old town and a section for all the markets. (Incidentally the Chiang Mai Sunday walking street is my favourite market in Asia!)
The best thing about the map is the way its laid out – like you could step into it and know which way to turn – just like Joey from Friends did in the ‘London Baby’ episode!

I was looking at the old town section when I spotted the ‘ Womens Prison.’ In the explanation section it said it was a correctional institution and that they have a restaurant and a massage center open to the public, in which the prisioners learn and practice hospitality, cooking and massage skills. All part of the rehabilitation for when the women leave prison. I was intrigued and was thinking of having a massage anyway soo….off I went.

It turned out that I was lucky to get in the prison that day ( now theres a saying you dont hear often) as they were almost fully booked. I managed to get a foot massage on the last slot of the day.

When you arrive a warden asks you what you want and takes your payment. There was no searching of my bag or frisking or anything as its a low risk prison. I was escorted into a room were there were a few folk having a thai massage and then big chairs for the foot massage people.

All the women/girls were all wearing the typical looking massage theripist uniforms and the big smiles to match. The girl doing my treatment was very nice, she seemed really shy and timid and didnt speak much English… I was thinking what an earth had she done to get in here? I couldnt stop wondering…

As my massage started, people were beginning to leave and no one else was coming in so eventually I was the last person there. The women then started to dissappear into a room and one by one came out wearing their prison uniforms.

It felt surreal.

I really wanted to ask her what crime she had comitted but as she was so shy, I didnt have the nerve.
In the end I did find out about her sentence. When I asked here how long she was in for another lady translated and then she looked up at me and just put 3 fingers up. “3 years” I said and she nodded looking very sheepish.

I wonder what she did…I wonder what she did???

This was no scene from a Bridget Jones movie, there was no singing of Madonnas songs…or waving of bras in the air! Just women paying for their crimes. Working hard and being told what to wear and what to do every minute of the day.
The massage was good…dare I say relaxing but I have no desire to step into a Thai prison for real…thats for sure!