Sleeping With the Dead
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"Today I raced through the streets of Bangkok in my rescue vehicle, extracted an injured man from a truck at the port, then took him to hospital. Shortly after, in another area, I donned a fire suit and breathing apparatus and walked into a flaming building looking for trapped people and ended up rescuing a firefighter who had fallen. Later in the day I went to a house to collect a dead body and took it to the local morgue. I will do the same all night, getting attacked by street dogs, arguing with arrogant and ignorant policemen and nurses, risking being struck by unconcerned and aggressive motorists at every accident I attend, or even shot by a rival group." This is a normal day for New Zealander Marko Cunningham, the only foreigner to work as a volunteer ambulance officer or 'bodysnatcher' in Bangkok, Thailand. This is the story of eight years of his crazy adventures in the happy chaos that is Thailand - involving snakes, gun-toting policemen, bombings, fires, traffic accidents etc - as well as his moving first-person account of working in cadaver recovery and other aid in the popular tourist resort of Phuket, following the 2004 tsunami.