AES’EA – Sunk Costs

The best thing about vacationing at my age and in a very small group is the flexibility it allows. After two days at the Panviman resort, Ethan and I decided we’d rather just book another hotel down in the city itself. We managed to find somewhere quite cheap ($35/night) and, being smart and rational people, weren’t bothered by the sunk cost of leaving our existing reservation. For those of you who haven’t taken or don’t remember introductory micro economics, it’s quite worthwhile to do a bit of research on what sunk costs are and how to think about them. Having correct mental accounting will prevent you from making many bad decisions that resulted from wanting “to get your money’s worth”.

But now, back to the trip! On our second to last day we followed through on our hotel transfer. Thus, we spent the morning packing up and checking out. For the early afternoon we decided to check one big Thai box – we had to see some elephants!

We paid ~$1 for the privilege of feeding them bananas and sugar cane logs. It was pretty clear that the elephants knew exactly what was up, as they all started vying for attention as soon as we walked close enough to feed them.
Yes the elephant is being guided by a trainer, but the whole painting thing is still really impressive. I’d also love to show one of these to an art critic and have them tell me what the artist must have been thinking while painting.

I’ve always felt a little uneasy at zoos, and this experience was no exception. For most zoo animals, elephants included, you can very easily tell that they aren’t really suited to the zoo life and are heavily influenced by their surroundings. We tried our best to pick an ethically upstanding elephant viewing location, but honestly every location claims to be perfect and there didn’t seem to be any official seal or other telling mark that we could use to break the tie. If the ethical treatment of animals is extra important to you, and you plan on seeing any in Thailand, I would recommend that you do your research ahead of time and have locations already picked out; once there, it’s impossible to tell.

We were satisfied after seeing the show, and so returned to our resort, grabbed our luggage, and headed down into town. After fighting with the desk attendants about the type of room we had, we decided to walk around town for the rest of the afternoon and evening. For dinner, I was (and have been for a while) really craving wings. As luck would have it, we passed an American-style BBQ place called Big Daddy’s relatively quickly after leaving the hotel.

Any place that randomly adds a few onion rings to your order is A-OK with me

All of the travel was finally catching up with us, so we returned home to our new, non-resort but much more conveniently located hotel.


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