Confused in the LOS


Dear Hillary,

There’s a girl at work that I’m a bit keen on, and every day she gives me a wai and a big smile, so I wai back.  She’s in another department from me, so I can’t just kinda bowl in and talk to her.  I do think she is giving me the come-on, but with everyone in Thailand smiling at everyone else, I am confused.  Is this just the Thai smile, or is it the ‘come and get me’ smile?  I really want to get my head around this before I make an ass of myself.  I’ve only been in Thailand for six months, so I’m pretty new here.


Dear Confused,

You make it a little difficult for me, Confused, so much so that I’m getting confused myself.  What you are trying to work out is whether she is making the Thai polite smile, or the ‘pleased to see you’ smile.  That shouldn’t be too difficult.  How long have you been in Thailand?  Six months!  You should have been able to work it out by now, but if she goes over the top and gives you a beaming smile as she wais, then I’d take it as the old fashioned come-on.  Really, I don’t know what’s wrong with you young bloods these days.  Surely you could find an excuse to visit her department, or is she working as a rocket scientist and you haven’t got the clearance to go there?  In that case, get someone from her department to ask her to go to lunch with you.  Even rocket scientists have to eat!  I get the feeling, Petal, that not only have you only been here for six months, but you’re probably a wet-behind-the-ears teenager as well.  But don’t fret.  Everyone grows up sooner or later.

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