Hungry pigeons await for food at the home of Weerasak Sunthonjamorn, or Uncle Pui. They sit on neighbouring homes as well. (Photos by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)
Neighbours of a man who has been feeding more than 200 pigeons at his Bangkok home for more than three decades. have turned to social media to vent their frustration.
Weerasak Sunthonjamorn, also known as Uncle Pui, has been feeding more than 200 pigeons at his home in a busy Bangkok district for more than three decades.
Although the 61-year-old man views this as a form of merit-making, his neighbours think otherwise.
Uncle Pui, here with a cockroach on his tongue, was tolerantly viewed as an eccentric, but his neighbours are getting more serious about his transgressions.
What bothers his neighbours is not the fact he has been feeding the birds, but rather the smell of bird droppings which they say can be intolerable when they are mixed with unsanitary water, dead pigeons, and spoiled food he had left for the birds.
The Bangkok Post visited Mr Weerasak and found a rundown house squeezed in between the homes of his neighbours.
A flock of pigeons fly out of Uncle Pui's home where has been feeding the birds for years. Neighbours complain about the lack of sanitation and the smell of the bird droppings.
"Don't ask me how I feel. You can see for yourself. I've had to put up with this smell from bird droppings for more than a decade. I've confronted him about this but he told me to sue him or go to the police. Every time I try to sort things out with him, he curses me and tells me to go away. I have no good words to say about this man," said one next door neighbour, who did not wish to be named.
It all started in 1995 when Mr Weerasak went to Sanam Luang each day to feed thousands of pigeons. His merit-making became a daily routine until he could not go there every day because he was getting too old to travel regularly.
So he started transforming his house into a big canteen for the birds 10 years ago.
He spends at least 3,000-5,000 baht a month on bird food. He earns money from collectinggarbage and selling it. Many unsold items are placed here and there in the house.
Mr Weerasak lives alone. His wife and children left him partly because they could no longer live with the birds. They never return for financialassistance.
All the money he makes, he spends on animal food. Besides the hundreds of pigeons, he has also adopted 12 cats and one dog.
After his story went viral on social media, the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) sent officials to take care of the sanitary problem.
They came to inspect the house and cleaned the front yard that was filled with items he had hoarded, as well as rottengarbage, cockroaches and flies.