Vol. XI No. 23
Friday 6 June - 12 June 2003

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Updated every Friday
by Parisa Santithi

 


LETTERS
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

God Bless Thailand

A very Big Thank You

Nothing but fond memories

Put the face of Thailand back onto the faces of Pattaya

Donít people have the right to have an opinion?

Itís OK to return to Hong Kong

Beaches closed today

God Bless Thailand

Dear Sir,

I have been a resident in Banglamung for 6 years, coming to Thailand for 18 years, married to a Thai lady for 6 years - still very happy (thereís a novelty). I have had the pleasure & rewarding task of seeing two of my wifeís family installed in universities, Chonburi & Sriracha, to see hundreds & hundreds of Thai boys & girls in their white tops & black trousers & skirts. The facilities are second to none, i.e., swimming pools and dormitories of the highest standards.

Why donít the foreign press & T.V show the real Thailand & their real people? What would British people say if England was shown as Soho, or Wales as back streets of Cardif, Scotland as the gorballs? Thailand is not Patpong or Pattaya. The problem being falangs go back home only seeing the bars of Pattaya with sordid stories about Thailand.

We live in a wonderful country with wonderful people. There is an old saying: you only get out what you put in. I hope to live in this wonderful country with these wonderful people to the end of my days.

God Bless Thailand.

Ed T.


A very Big Thank You

Editor;

I would just like to say a very BIG THANK YOU to the doctor and the staff at the eye clinic at the Bangkok/Pattaya Hospital.

In November last year I went to Liverpool in England to have laser treatment on my eyes. They had to cut the top layer of the eye and peel it over to one side, then when they finished they put it back. All went well and for a few days my right eye was perfect, but I started having trouble with my left eye. Every now and then when I would wake in the early hours of the morning, the part of the eye which they put back would stick to my eyelid and pull it over to one side. It was very painful. The clinic in Liverpool gave me antibiotics for the eye, which worked for a while, but then it kept happening every 2 weeks.

So on the day I was leaving to go to Pattaya I went to Manchester and they glued the eye with a needle.

It was very painful until I got to Pattaya, when for a week it was okay, then you guessed it, it started again. So I went to the Bangkok / Pattaya Hospital where they have a laser treatment clinic, and they looked at my eye and saw an abrasion on my bad eye which they removed and then stuck a pressure pad on it for 2 days and touch wood the left eye has been just as good as the right eye.

I was in pain from November, I went to Pattaya in Feb 2003 and since then I have been pain free (I think that our eye clinics should take a trip to Pattaya and learn from their clinics).

Once again a very big thank you.

Loz

UK

PS: Just a quick word to say how very clean the hospital is, puts our hospitals in England to shame.


Nothing but fond memories

Editor;

Iím just reading your latest news via the internet. Having been stationed in Thailand over a period of years and spending time in Sattahip and Pattaya it is refreshing to look into your community again. I was stationed at U-Tapao in the mid 60ís and just loved the southern part of your country. I have saved your paper and will continue to look in on your activities. If you ever had a cheerleader for your country it is me. I have had nothing but fond memories of your hospitality and friendship.

Ted Welsh,

West Palm Beach Florida, USA


Put the face of Thailand back onto the faces of Pattaya

Editor,

Having read a letter sent in by Gwyn Parfitt "Fed up with whingeing" where she told those falangs who arenít happy having to pay more than Thais do at certain venues should find a new country to live in, I feel rather sad for the "very" small minority of people who might feel the same way.

I certainly donít intend to find another country to live in, as this is the country of my childís birth that his birth certificate and passport proudly states. This is not intended as a personal insult but I suggest you and those others who share the same opinion go home yourselves because itís because of people like you that have come and gone over the years that people like Billy Sheal "Pay up or your window gets it" gets his house windows smashed by a Thai taxi driver who demands more than the fare he originally agreed after seeing the Falangís house.

I sympathise and feel very sad for everyone, but especially those like K.W. Crow "Who are the losers" who have children who may one day have to lay their life down for their country, but are treated unequally because they have a different nationality than their children, which results in them getting ripped off or charged extra at certain venues.

I donít sympathise with myself, because I pay the same as a Thai does wherever I go unless Iím not aware. I suggest every other person who reads this does the same because you will slowly bring back "their heritage" as Gwyn Parfitt put it, and put the face of Thailand back onto the faces of Pattaya.

M. Deslandes


Donít people have the right to have an opinion?

Editor;

I read the letters from Gwyn Parfitt, Billy Sheal and K.W. Crow in mailbag 23 of May and would like to say something on those matters. Gwyn Parfitt is "fed up with whinging about the two-tiered prices" and dismisses those letters as coming from "Cheap Charlies" etc., and opines that by paying extra "we are supporting the Thais to enjoy their heritage at a price they can afford". I think he is only partly right but it looks like his knowledge of these matters is quite narrow.

Certainly there are venues designed to attract foreign tourists as to investments, running expenses and consequently also the price to enter. Then tourists are paying the normal price and Thais including foreign residents get a natural discount. One of the problems connected to this is that venues have "learned" that foreigners simply "should" pay 2-10 times more for reasons of pure greed (notice the letter from K.W. Crow, mailbox 2 3/5).

Donít people have the right to have an opinion about that? Then Gwyn Parfitt ends with suggesting that those who complain about these matters could simply go somewhere else, etc. Since this would mean a lot of unfair and unnecessary traveling I have a much easier solution - that Gwyn Parfitt simply stops reading the letters he is fed up with and stops sending letters himself that after all are whinging over whinging. If he knows more important issues to concentrate on he is welcome - but I doubt that.

The letter from Billy Sheal shows clearly what an arbitrary and criminal interpretation of two-tiered pricing often leads to. The letters from foreigners who meet with cheating, extortion, threat and violence from baht-bus drivers will never end until responsible people do something responsible about it. When will that happen? To those who have problems with baht bus traveling I recommend you to always report incidents to this number: 038-72 75 00 or report it to the tourist police in Pattaya. Good Luck!

"Longtime resident"


Itís OK to return to Hong Kong

Dear Editor:

The lifting of the travel advisory against non-essential travel to Hong Kong and Guangdong by the World Health Organization (WHO) on May 23 is a clear indication that both Hong Kong and Guangdong have succeeded in putting the SARS disease under control. In both places, the number of new SARS cases has been either zero or in low single digit for many days now, and the number of recovered patients is growing steadily. The Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce does understand that many may have doubts about traveling to Hong Kong, but with this endorsement from the WHO that Hong Kong has contained the outbreak of SARS, we want to use this letter to ask business visitors and tourists alike to consider coming back to Hong Kong.

The Chamber wants our future visitors to Hong Kong to know that despite this victory, Hong Kong intends to keep up our infection-control alert and to maintain measures to ensure the good health of all who live and visit here. For example, at all border checkpoints and at the airport, temperature is taken of every incoming or outgoing person. Hong Kong has a transparent system with top-notch medical care, and your readers will find that citizens of Hong Kong are well informed on preventative measures to curb the spread of SARS. We will be vigilant to ensure that you will find Hong Kong even safer and cleaner.

Furthermore, the Chamber hopes that some discriminatory practices against travelers and goods from Hong Kong will be dismantled, since there is no reason - and WHO endorses this view - either to quarantine perfectly healthy travelers who come from Hong Kong or to be suspicious about goods shipped from Hong Kong which scientists say cannot possibly contain any virus.

Meanwhile, Hong Kongís strengths as a regional business hub, and its hard-earned reputation for resilience and flexibility, make Hong Kong as important to international business today as it was before the emergence of SARS. It is an excellent location to be a springboard into China. China -and it is beginning to contain its own SARS problem - will continue to be the fastest growing economy in Asia which cannot be ignored by any far-sighted company. And Hong Kong provides business people a comforting and efficient location to do business with China.

Finally, with the WHO travel advisory lifted, the Chamber hopes to see many of you here in Hong Kong soon. Hong Kong business people are all geared up in re-engaging with customers and potential clients. In the next few months, in addition to company travel and dealings, a series of city-wide high profile activities, ranging from trade fairs, mega sales, discount travel packages, large scale international conferences, cultural events, etc., will be organized. You can discover for yourself that Hong Kong, the World City of Asia, remains a magnificent place for you to do business and explore.

Yours sincerely,

Eden Y Woon

CEO

Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce


Beaches closed today

Sir,

I was astounded to find the beaches closed today as itís the third Wednesday of the month. I thought that the city fathers had given up on this foolishness.

As a tourist resort struggling against serious falls in numbers of visitors, to close your major asset for no good reason seems suicidal.

At 3.30 p.m. today there was no sign or evidence of any extra cleaning taking place. I have every sympathy with efforts to keep Pattayaís beaches clean but this rule is not achieving anything and needs to be repealed immediately.

Tours sincerely,

Wowpow



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