The roads of Thailand are paved with money

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Nikorn drives and walks along the Huay Yai Road looking for and picking up as much ‘treasure’ as he possibly can.
Nikorn drives and walks along the Huay Yai Road looking for and picking up as much ‘treasure’ as he possibly can.

In these times of the COVID-19 pandemic which is not only killing people but is also causing deaths, destroying the economy, and extreme hardship for millions of people, there is one man who will not bow to the pressures of defeat. Nikorn Kwandee, 59, continues to do what he has done for years, picking up ‘money’ that people have so recklessly discarded on the roads of Thailand.




Nikorn lives in the Huay Yai district area just a short distance from Pattaya City. He rides his motorbike with side-car from morning until dusk picking up other’s waste, such as plastic and glass bottles that irresponsible people have thrown onto the roads with no regards for cleanliness, orderliness and neglecting their moral responsibilities to protect the environment.

Nikorn keeps busy all day, walking along both sides of the roads picking up as much as he possibly can to fill his sidecar to the brim. He then transports his findings to a junk shop to sell his ‘treasure’.

The shop pays him 8 baht per kg for the plastic bottles and 1-2 baht per kg for the glass bottles. On a good day Nikorn can earn over 200 baht for what he considers to be a treasure which others consider garbage.

Money may not grow on trees, but the roads in Thailand are indeed paved with money.