A honey from Soi Honey

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Dear Hillary,

I started reading your e-letter reply to the many readers who are Farang Khon (sic). I was at Soi Honey in August and met a girl while having a drink. Incidentally, that day was her birthday and she showed me her ID to prove it though I did not asked for it. I am open to hearing anything. As it was unexpected, I did not have present at hand to give her. However, I took out some “Ngern” and put it in her hand and wish her Happy Birthday. I am touched by her sincerity. When I was at Suvarnabhumi Airport going back to India where I am presently station, I message her but somehow it didn’t get through due to connection problem. Two days later I tried texting again and she received my message. We are now good friend and I told her that one’s background is not an important criteria in friendship, but having a good heart matters more than anything else. In short, one must have a positive mind when visiting a foreign country and extend a helping hand to those who work honestly for a living to support their families in the provinces, be it Sa Keow, Issan or Rayong.

Jaffery

Dear Jaffery,

I think you should be very careful, Petal. What was your young lady doing in Soi Honey? She sounds very much like a professional chicken plucker to me, and you are ready to be plucked. What makes you so sure that the lady has a “good heart”? Do you usually accost someone in the street and say, “This is my birthday, and here’s my ID card to prove it.” And ready to accept a cash deposit in her hot little hand. Proceed carefully, Jaffery, and it is Khon farang, not the other way around.

  • J West Hardin

    I originated the long distance love letter scheme in Bangkok for girls who worked in Patpong and the others who worked as ‘Floor Girls’ in the only two Farang hotels in Bangkok at the time….the early 1970’s. Floor Girls btw were a common feature of travelers rooming houses at the time. Tourist hotels weren’t invented yet. Guide books hadn’t been written. Mass tourism with backpackers and sex pats wouldn’t appear until the late 80’s with the publication of the Lonely Planet. Pattaya was still a dirt road naval base with a few grass shacks.

    Instead of bar girls, which was a rare thing at the time, floor girls would work a particular floor in your hotel. They’d watch for you to return, listen at the door for you to finish showering…and then knock at the door. These were the lucky ones….they slept in the vacant rooms every night or on the hallway floor. Everybody on the floor got the same girl of the day and the rotated like clean sheets.

    The Patpong girls who hadn’t scored a bed for the night were less lucky, they had no place to stay, they slept in the shadowy soi’s around Sri Hualumpong railway station. There is a very ancient rooming house in the area, I won’t ruin it for those who still use it, with an antique foyer where liquor is served for passing travelers waiting for the train. The rooms are tiny…meant only for a quick kip and release. The girls would buy a bottle of Mekong and a tub of Nam Khang and they’d pull out any addresses they’d managed to get…..and I’d start writing.

    I’d learned the trick from a brothel keeper in Sri Lanka how they would continue to collect gifts and cash long after a punter had left….through written correspondence from addresses gleaned from the registered hotel guest books. I decided to try the same tactic here and help the girls earn more money from the punters who’d sworn love and promised return. I would write love letters in English to Farang all over the world and began to gain some success after a few months. ” Oh Heinrich…I’m having your baby…send me money….I don’t want to go back to work now…I love only you”. Etc etc etc.

    Why I’m saying this is because these ‘friendship scams’ are as old as the hills. The girls are sophisticated nowadays…often offer ‘a free one’….because ‘we’re friends’…but then the requests for money begin to trickle in. Don’t be naive…..T.I.T Baby…..remember that.