Heart to Heart: Compliments for Hillary

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Compliments for Hillary
Dear Hillary,
You are so cleverly funny! I love reading your column. Thanks!
Taquewat

Dear Taquewat,
You are so cleverly funny mun gun. I love reading your compliments. Thanks!



Microwave battles
Dear Hillary,
Discussion re micro-waving: my Thai wife saw the word “Wave” but couldn’t figure out how to close the door with her head inside! She also cooks/dines on the floor but after a recent scare I told her NO animal sacrifices or wood fires on the floor.
Don
P.S. My wife, a certified masseuse, gives inexpensive 2 hour Thai (no oil, no specials) massages.

Dear Don,
You are such a dear, and your long suffering wife deserves a medal, putting up with you. Are you sure she wasn’t trying to work out how to wave her hand, while in the microwave oven.
You remind me of Dire Straits’ hit “Money for Nothing” where Knopfler sings
“We gotta install microwave ovens
Custom kitchens deliveries
We gotta move these refrigerators
We gotta move these color TV’s”
But I’m sure your wife can work the fridge and the “smart” TV. And I’m also sure she knows how to manage you! Hope her (dire) straits massage business is going OK and bringing in enough to cover your local 7-Eleven Chang bill.


Floor cookers
Dear Hillary.
(Further to complaints regarding the Isaan ladies floor cooking): I’ve been married to a Thai woman for 20 years. We have a house in California and built a farang style house in Isaan. She has a nice kitchen in both houses. When in Isaan, she and her family ignore the kitchen and sit on the floor on the front porch to do all their cooking and eating. It’s part of their culture. Get used to it.
John

Dear John,
Completely correct, my Petal. It is a cultural thing amongst the people from the N.E., just as it is a cultural thing for Westerners to sit up at a table and put their knives and forks together on the plate when they have finished eating. This is as much a cultural thing as the Tibetan funerals where the body is left on a rock for the ravens to dispose of, as opposed to Thai cremations and Western burials. The world is full of such interesting cultural differences.



Turning a bar girl into a Gopher
Dear Hillary,
I have a test I use on bar girls for honesty. I ask them to buy me something, like a T shirt or something and give them one thousand baht, and never ask for the change. If they give the change to me as well as the shirt, she’s honest. If the shirt has no change with it, then steer clear. Only lose a grand, much better than hundreds of thousands.
Ralf

Dear Ralf,
As a rough and ready test, I suppose it’s not bad, but do you build into the equation the time, effort and money and loss of daytime sleep that she has doing your errands? It’s probably easier to not ask them to do anything. After all, they work in a bar so that they don’t have to run messages.



Second time lucky?
Dear Hillary,
I’ve done it again, despite all the advice from friends. I’ve taken the girl back, even though she cheated me out of close to a million baht last time. I met her in a bar and it was an immediate attraction and she moved in tight away. I did the usual thing of buying her out of the bar and she was very thankful for that, as she said she didn’t like working as a bar girl. We carried on like any normal couple, and I did help her send money home. Then I paid for a house to be built up country (not expensive in Isaan) and gave her a little car to run around in. About two weeks after that she sold the car and went to live with her mother – in the new house I had paid for. Of course everything was in her name! Anyway I carried on by myself, but I kept on thinking about her and contacted her after three months to make sure she was OK. Turned out she was back in Pattaya, but at a different bar, and so I went round to see her. She started to cry and said she was sorry, and so I said she could come back. My friends all think I’m loco, but she’s the only one for me. Are my friends right, or am I?
Robert

Dear Robert,
There’s no such thing as right or wrong in these situations, my Petal. All it really is that some directions are more risky than others. You’ve gone into this again with your eyes open this time, just don’t get carried away with this second honeymoon. Remember the saying, “He who cheats me once – shame on him. He who cheats me twice – shame on me.” I hope you are going to be lucky this second time around, but lay some ground rules about spending! Sounds hard, but it is a way to try and safeguard yourself.