Heart to Heart – Friday November 9, 2018 – November 15, 2018

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Dear Hillary,

Here is one letter you will relate to immediately. Chocolate! Have I got your attention? I would dearly love to find a purveyor of decent chocolate, especially dark chocolate. Apart from the usual supermarkets which have a very limited selection unless you want milk chocolate, I have not found anywhere to assuage my desire to pamper myself of an evening, you know, feet up, comfy chair, good book and a large bar/box of dark bitter chocolate. As you must have experience of the more elite confectioners in Pattaya, I would be most grateful if you would share your knowledge. I am not really worried about cost because when you think about it, for the price of a couple of lukewarm Singha’s in some drinking dens one can have a much more gratifying tasting experience without losing the use of one’s hearing.

An unashamed chocoholic

 

Dear Unashamed,

You really don’t understand Ms. Hillary, do you Petal. I do not buy chocolates, I eat the chocolates that my devoted readers send me. You will have to continue looking, and when you have found chocolate Nirvana you can send me a box. Oh, by the way, no hard centers please.

 

Dear Hillary,

My wife’s eldest son is 14 years of age and is making lots of noises that he wants a small motorcycle to ride to school. I have gone to vacant areas and he can handle a small (80 cc) bike quite well and I make him wear a helmet. Road craft is another thing again, and I am not sure how his is. I am not saying yes to his requests (and his mother is just sitting on the fence and saying things are different in Thailand compared to the UK). My objection is due to the fact that he is too young to hold a license. My question is, firstly what is the youngest age that a teenager can legally obtain a license and secondly can low powered motorcycles be ridden without a license and if so below what engine size?

Mike the bike

 

Dear Mike the bike,

Like so many aspects of life in Thailand, it is difficult to get a “straight” answer, as you have already found, haven’t you? My sources say that a motorcycle license can be obtained legally at 18 for a car or bike, but there are very obviously some underage riders out there. The very small scooter style bikes are illegal to be used in Pattaya and you cannot get any insurance for them, making them very dangerous to ride in all respects. The dividing line is on wheel size rather than engine capacity. With the shocking head injury statistics associated with motorcycles, Hillary believes you are doing the right thing by teaching your son to ride in a safe way and to wear a proper helmet – and correctly fastened, too. A small scooter is not good for young teenagers on the road. With all the police road checks these days, that would be another good reason to make sure he is not breaking some law. It might start to be expensive, and I’m sure your wife would not be happy with this.

 

Dear Hillary,

I have always had a problem with my weight, but having come to Thailand seven months ago, the problem is even worse. I have made plenty of new friends here, but drinking beer seems to be their big pastime. Everywhere we go, it is drink, drink, drink. I can cope with the bad head and the expense of this lifestyle but recently I have noticed that I have gained a lot of weight. And I mean a LOT of weight. I have joined a gym to combat this problem and I go every day to do circuits. Unfortunately my gym friends also want to go drinking after every session, which in effect has doubled my alcohol consumption. I know you might think, “Then don’t drink” but I’m sure you know how difficult it is Hillary. I might think I will have just one, but then I don’t care and get rat assed and by the time there’s about six or eight persons in the school, that’s me done for the day. I used to be such a nice girl. Please help before I have to buy a new wardrobe!

XS Kg.

 

Dear XS Kg,

What is a nice girl like you playing rugby and going to the gym? Yes Hillary does appreciate how difficult it is to give up drinking, having been found lying under a champagne bottle or two at the odd time (French of course). My girl you must face the music that you are an alcoholic. Hey, your friends do not hold you down to pour the fire water down your throat. As a friend of Hillary’s once said, “I gave up drinking when they invented guzzling.” Have you ever heard of the 2-letter word NO? Join AA, seek out a sympathetic friend or counselor, doctor or monk. If you continually get rat assed and then have to apologize to yourself and others you definitely need help. If you are serious, then stick bulging photos of yourself in bikinis on the telephone, the fridge and the liquor cabinet. Good luck. And that’s not a “clink and Chok Dee!”