I have to laugh at all your letter writers, wondering if they have found THE ONE, when they should start looking at themselves to see if they would be THE ONE for any of the women around here. I’m not talking about the girls from the bars, who are only there for one thing - money, while the blokes are also there for one thing - sex. They’ll never find the right one there. I’m talking about the ones you call “good girls”, and these blokes aren’t even looking in the right place, and I reckon no self respecting girl would want to be seen with some fat old bloke with a skinful of booze every night. You try telling ‘em, Hillary, I’ve given up. They’ve got no (expletive removed) idea.
Al the Advisor
I understand where you’re coming from Petal, but if you want to be an advisor you’ve got to do more than throwing a bucket of manure over the people wanting advice. Once the average chap understands what the bars are for, and what the girls who work in the bars are there for, then you’re about half way there to finding someone who might be THE ONE and obviously not from the bar scene. The bars are for fun, not for evers. You are correct when you say that the chaps looking for a partner have to present themselves in a good way as well. No Thai lady is looking for the kind of farang you describe. Finding THE ONE is difficult in any society, in any country, and is no different here. Just keep on showing those who ask of you where they shouldn’t look, and you’ve done your bit, Al.
Don’t you think it is time you stopped asking for champagne and chocolates? I am sure nobody actually sends any to you, or you would be telling us readers all about it! Come clean, old Petal. When was the last time you dined on champagne?
Dear Doubting Thomas,
First off, you should have better manners and respect your elders. No more of this “old Petal” if you don’t mind. Second, I do not reveal my private life to just anyone who sends me an email, particularly fairly insulting ones at that too. Third, you don’t “dine” on champagne, you “drink” champagne. And if you are a regular reader you would know that there are several people who look after Hillary, such as Big D from the USA, who never fails to send me over some goodies. As far as you, Thomas, you will remain in my bad books until suitable peace offerings are delivered to the Pattaya Mail office, clearly marked “For Hillary”. Thank you.
What is the real deal on getting married in the village? I came over last year and met a nice girl who looked after me for the two weeks. I did send her some money afterwards, but nothing regular. I let her know I am coming over again in December and she wants to know the dates as she wants to take me to her village where she says we can get married and that way I will know that she will always wait for me. She will stay in the village with her mother when I am not in Thailand. I reckon it’s all a bit rushed, but she really is a stunner and I like the idea of having her waiting for me, and I’d come over more often than just Xmas time. Looks great, but I’m just not 100 percent sure. What do you think?
I don’t know how old you are, but I get the feeling you are fairly young. You also did not say where you met your future “bride”, but I will guess in some bar or other. Sorry Petal, but you will be running for a huge disappointment if you go up country and marry your sweetheart that you have known all of two weeks. She won’t stay in the village, but will be luring some other young chap with the promise of marriage as well. These girls are very good at selling the dream. If it helps you to make up your mind, village weddings are not even recognized as legal weddings, even by the Thai government, let alone your own one. No Robert, don’t do it!
I found the ideal girl. I learned to speak Thai, as you suggested. I met the parents. I met the grandparents. I met the girlfriends. I gave her 5,000 baht a month for her to spend on anything she wanted. Everything looked good until I suggested it was time to get hitched and then it all came out. She was married already to an American and was waiting for a visa to go there. Not a breath about anything before. No wonder this place gets a bad rep.
You thought you were doing everything by the book, didn’t you Petal. But you forgot to meet the family buffalo, which is higher up the social ladder than someone who is just another ATM, and not a very well filled ATM either. At the wonderful sum of B. 5,000 a month, you won’t even get a maid for that. You were played as a sucker (which you were). You are much better off without her, well at least B. 5,000 better off each month without her! Your ability in speaking Thai will always help you understand what is going on, but you will have to be wary in the future. Don’t rush in where buffalos fear to tread!
My wife (Thai) and me are looking at buying a little house in the country, for us to use when we go to visit her parents. Their house is wooden and very primitive, and I just can’t live there. My wife has been told she can’t own a house in her own name because she is married to a farang, and her last name is now also farang. I’m not allowed to buy it in my name, so what do we do? All sounds damn stupid to me.
The situation you describe with your wife’s ability to own house/land was once the case, but that was changed many years ago. She can own real estate in her own name. You are a different pail of potatoes, Petal. You can buy the house (under certain circumstances, investment companies, leases, etc.), but you cannot own the land it stands on. This is quite understandable, as otherwise China will have bought up all the land in Thailand, just like they are trying to do in New Zealand. Talk to a reliable real estate agent and/or a good lawyer. I know, I know, just keep looking!
I am new here to Thailand and the “wai” thing has me confused. I know it’s a mark of respect, but when do I give it? Only as a response, or do I start it? It seems to happen everywhere, even in shops. Do I reply with a wai there too? Please help.
Who initiates the wai and who responds to a wai is actually quite complex, and depends upon the social standing in most cases. A Thai will generally wai to a foreigner first. A younger person will wai first to an older person. A person with a more menial or lower position will wai first to someone in a higher position, like a school teacher for example. So, in your case, you should respond to a wai, but this is not really necessary in supermarkets and restaurants. As you are a foreigner, it will not be expected that you wai first. The height of the wai also has significance, but beyond the scope of this column, but for you, bring the finger tips to touch the nose (your own nose) and that is fine.
My GF often has her friends over for a meal and they will all be sitting in a circle on the floor eating dreadful smelling stuff and washing it down with cheap whisky and soda until they are all tipsy and screaming with laughter at anything. At other times she is a sensible woman, but put her with half a dozen Esarn women and they all revert to being cave dwellers.
You have to understand the Esarn culture where discussions and gossiping complete with food and drink is how they were raised. You will never take their culture away from the NE people. So maybe it’s best for you to go to your favorite pub and have a meal there when your GF has her cronies over for the next session.
Can you tell me why all the Thai girls are in love with themselves? Anywhere you go, you see them holding up their camera phones and taking photos of themselves. Then posing with their friends with obviously rehearsed poses. I think it was Narcissus who was in love with his own reflection, but a Thai girl with a smart phone goes one better!
You are correct. Not only did Narcissus fall in love with his own reflection, but he couldn’t leave it and died there. I don’t think your Thai girls will die holding a camera phone, but they will use one to make sure they look OK in the coffin!
Do you hold these letters for a long time before you publish them? I ask because it’s hotter than (you know what) in Kazakhstan in August.
Yes, you have uncovered my dark secrets. I often do hold on to some shorter letters to be used to fill spaces in the column at a later date.
I have met a really nice little Thai girl and she’s moved in but she doesn’t have much English, so we are having some communication problems, which is a bit of a worry for me, and how long do these girls take to learn our language, Hillary, should I keep trying to get her to go to a language school or something and can you recommend one.
I think you are the one having communication problems, Petal. That’s one very long sentence, try popping in a few full stops every so often and your written communication will improve no end. Now I want you to repeat after me “I am living in Thailand. The people here are Thai. The people here speak Thai. I should learn Thai if I want to communicate with the people here.” Say that every morning before breakfast and take yourself to a language school - not your GF. You are the one with a problem - not her. OK?