Heart to Heart – Friday August 16, 2019 – August 22, 2019


15 years and still loving it

Dear Hillary,

I love your column.  I have been coming to Asia from the US for 15 years. I bought a condominium here, got a drivers license, bought a car, and have a retirement visa.  I am continually amazed how stupid western men are when they come here.  They do not act the way they would back home and take women for granted.  I frankly think they deserve to get taken for all they are stupidly worth or claim to be.  I hear too many of them bragging (mostly lying) about how great they are, how much money they have etc., I hope they get robbed.  I live here and have many Thai friends.  I respect them for their lifestyle and do not care that I may have more money that they, they have HUGE hearts and that is what I care about.  Those idiots who come here to use them deserve to get ripped off.  So, to those who do not learn or respect the culture, spend your money and get the hell out.


Dear Peter,

Anyone who starts their message with “I love your column” goes straight to the top.  Flattery will get you everywhere, and some chockies and bubbles gets you even further up!  Unfortunately you are correct that many westerners do write their CV on the plane coming over, thinking that nobody in a third world country will ever know the truth – but the social networks soon show up the frauds.  After that it is downhill from there.  I am glad to hear you have some Thai friends and you respect their lifestyle, which can be quite different from the westerner’s, but you are here in Thailand and have really made the grade.  Well done.


The Up-Country con

Dear Hillary,

My Thai GF likes to go back to the village every couple of months to see her mother.  I’m cool with this but she never gets back when she says she will be.  It goes from a couple of days extra to 10 days on one trip.  There’s always lots of reasons why this happens like her dog gets run over, a local boy was rude to her and she went to the police to complain, so had to be there for the meeting with the police and the guy.  The phone never seems to work either.  Then there’s a funeral about once a month it seems, and I’m starting to get suspicious.  What should I do about this?  Or do you think I’m worrying too much?


Dear Jack,

I think you know the answer to this, my Petal.  You’re being played for a fool.  I’m sure she gets money for the bus or plane from you, so you are subsidizing her behavior.  What can you do?  Well, insist on her coming back when she says and accept no excuses.  The phone coverage in Thailand, even to Isaan is good.  So tell her she either starts playing the game or it’s all over.  Don’t continue to be a sucker.



Dear Hillary,

What is the situation with Thai law when you split from a live-in girlfriend?  Does she have any legal rights to your property, cars, houses and such.  I’ve been with this girl for about a year, but it’s time to change, but she’s already got the hand out and wants the house and the car.  Hand them over, or tough it out?  What is your advice?


Dear Jeff,

You are asking the wrong person, Petal.  This is Hillary, with heart balm for those injured in love, not a lawyer specializing in marital problems, even though some days it seems like it.  However, I would imagine that the crux of the matter hinges on whose name is on the ownership documents.  Foreigners cannot own houses in Thailand in their own names, so many just put the house in the girlfriend’s name, which is not such a smart move if there is a break-up  as it ends up as ‘martial’ problems.  See a lawyer.


Eating as a SE Asian games event

Dear Hillary,

My Thai GF no sooner finishes eating than she’s ready to go again.  She’s as thin as a rake, but eats all the time.  Her mates are all just the same, finish one round and they’re ready for the next.  It gets me, I go out after the third course.  What’s the secret, Hillary?


Dear Wondering,

Is that “wondering” or “wandering” I wonder?  What do you do between courses four and five?  No, Petal, eating is more than just a meal for your Thai GF, it is a very social time when friends can get together and share the food.  That can occur at any time of day or night, but the food they eat, such as the favorite som tam is not high in sugar and calories, so that’s why your GF remains thin.  The chilli also hurries the food through the system.  As the TV program warns “Don’t try this at home!”  The real som tum can be far too spicy for foreigners.