Poor joke, too soon. It was a tragedy that not even a referee could foresee. Thailand is great for a holiday and they'd be very happy to see you coming. I would say,if you can afford it, holiday in a different destination at least 20 times untill you find a place that tops your list of places to return to. Go to the same place at least 5 times before you consider it a place to move to. Once you move there, give it 5 years before you decide it's not for you. Then, get the hell out !!!!!
A referee should be able to decipher the difference between a dive and somebody dying... I sat with the red shirts for a day 24 hours before 3 people die and 50 were injured by government sponsored attacks. It's an amazing country... beauty like I've never seen in Europe, calm friendly people, good service levels. Their new year celebration was brilliant. a Water fight for 50million people, anywhere in Europe that would have led to fighting.
As for living in... mostly places are great to live, sadly some are not!
I lived in Thailand for a year (exchange student, 18 years ago - wow time flies :-)) I was in the countryside, small town (now big with a 4-lane road in the middle, big garages and other buildings where I could see rice paddies from my window...) Tough country to adapt to - apparently they had the most "early returns" from Thailand and Japan :-)) Went back 6 or 7 times to visit host family and friends, and see other parts of the country too. Very, very attaching place, but very very hot weather not for me! Bangkok is interesting for a few days, shopping, movies, lots of cultural stuff, but never, ever to live there (a Thai friend from Belgium who owns a Thai restaurant in Brussels considered opening a Belgian restaurant in BKK and asked if I would run it/cook there/train them... Glad it didn't work out in the end, somehow, as I would have found it tough to live in BKK all the time... :-)))
People are really friendly in most places, sadly tourism has also spoiled some good parts of it. It's interesting to hear what people say when you are waiting to catch a bus in BKK or big tourist places. They don't expect "farang" (foreigners) to speak/understand Thai. Too bad I do :-)) But elsewhere, it is very safe and people will invite you to eat with them whenever they can and will give you everything they have, because a guest is a guest, and it's an honour to have a "westerner" at home - on their scale, white is the best, then it's "them" but they should be fair-skinned otherwise it means you're poor and working in the fields, then far far away are "darker" people, wherever they may be from, but it mostly stems from the fact they never see any except on TV :-)