Every day Amnarj Sonimsart wakes up at 3am. "That's normal for an 80-year-old," he chuckles. The first thing he does is flick on the TV to catch BBC and CNN; then he checks the stock and oil prices, noting down important fluctuations for later use. At 4.20am _ he states the time with the casual precision of someone who's been following the same schedule without fail for a long time _ his driver takes him from his house in Pattanakarn to the radio station in Lumpini Park ("my daughter forbids me from driving"). At 5.10, Amnarj begins sipping a cup of Ovaltine while scouring the Thai-language newspapers laid out for him, lighting on items of interest and quickly digesting their contents. On the dot of 5.50am, he prepares for a task he's performed for 46 years straight: leaning slightly forward, he gets ready to switch on his mic and go on air.
"Do people still listen to the radio?" he teases. "I think so. With television, you have to sit down and watch it; you need the visuals otherwise it doesn't make any sense. With radio, you're free to walk around, to let the sound waft around you. You can even enjoy it while sitting on the toilet."
Photos by Pawat Laopaisarntaksin
This article is older than 60 days, which we reserve for our premium members only.You can subscribe to our premium member subscription, here.