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Pattaya ’s unique shopping scene

Aladdin’s Cave - Silpaban has everything

by Lesley Warner

I was scouring the town the other day looking for a new cartridge for my printer; I know we have plenty of computer suppliers so it should have been easy to find a cartridge for a standard HP DeskJet. But believe me, it was not. I was feeling decidedly edgy as I hung around Foodland thinking of the printing that was not going to get done. I asked someone in the car park if they had any ideas and I was pointed towards Sukhumvit Road on the same side as Foodland about 25 yards away. Following the directions, I came across a shop that looked as if it had possibilities, and decided to go in and take look.

“Where should I start?” Silpaban has just about everything and anything one could need.

As I entered the shop I was amazed at the sight that greeted me. There were plastic rain Macs, embroidery sets, knitting wool, rubber gloves, toothbrushes, portable movie screens, curtain wire, a sewing service, photocopying and fax service, computers, typewriters, faxes, art, stationery and computer supplies - the list is endless. Among the other services they offer are ring binding and laminating, computer repairs, and a delivery service.

Finding what you require may take a little investigation but it’s interesting. Since there were plenty of cartridges to suit me, my problem was immediately solved, so I asked how long the shop had been there and the owner, Khun Yoothasak, came to speak to me. Yoothasak speaks English very well and told me the shop has been in the Pattaya area for 25 years, although it was first in Naklua and called Silpawitthayabun. When they moved to the new premises the name changed to Silpaban.

I then spoke to Yoothasak’s daughter, who is back home on break from studying in San Francisco. She said she hopes to return again when she has completed her education to modernize the shop. I said, “Oh no, I love it the way it is, sort of chaotic.” Unfortunately, as she says, things have to move with the times.

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