Heart to Heart – July 3 – July 16, 2020


Dear Hillary,

My normally sensible Thai wife and her girlfriends have taken to dressing up with hats and flowery dresses.  They began to do this at parties, but have now started dressing up in these outlandish get-ups during the day.  Girls overseas grow out of dressing up by the age of 10.  Isn’t it the same in Thailand, or have I got a bunch of loonies on my hands?

Harry the Hat Man

Dear Harry the Hat Man,

The behaviour your wife and her friends exhibits is purely having “sanook”, something Thai women keep all their lives.  That is why they are so much fun to be with – and is most likely one of the reasons that you came to live here, and get married here.  Look at it this way, my Petal, does their dressing up harm anyone?  Of course it doesn’t.  You think too much, Harry.  And finally please don’t become worried and then change into Harry the Hit Man.

Dear Hillary,

Is there any easy to read book to help us farangs understand Thai women?  I’ve been here for almost 10 years, lived with a couple of them, and I still don’t understand them.  Someone must have written the guide book.  What is its name, and where do I get it?


Dear Perplexed,

There are many books available in Thailand describing what goes on in a Thai-Farang relationship, such as Stephen Leather’s “Private Dancer”, or the Pattaya Mail’s Dr. Iain’s “Farang” and “Farang, The Sequel”, but there is no such thing as a ‘guide book’.  May I give you a little joke?  A man rescued a genie from a bottle, who said he could have one wish.  The man said that he was afraid of flying and could the genie build him a road bridge from Thailand to America.  The genie remonstrated with the man, saying that the amount of concrete needed for such a project was just far too great, and could he think of something a little easier?  The man then said, alright, can you make me understand Thai women’s minds, to which the genie replied, after thinking for a while, “OK.  Now how many lanes do you want in this bridge!”

Dear Hillary,

I have come over here with my husband from the UK and I am shocked by what I see here, going on night and day.  I can put up with the endless beer bars with young women trying to get people to sit down and drink.  I can put up with the fact there are go-go bars with women displaying their bodies as some sort of tourist attraction, but I cannot put up with the way old foreign men walk around with barely teenage Thai girls hanging on to their arm.  They all have such smug looks on their faces with a ‘Look at me, aren’t I clever’ expression.  Don’t they know, or doesn’t anybody tell them that they are just being taken for a ride?  They’re not clever.  It’s disgusting.

Mona from Manchester

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Dear Mona from Manchester,

When you say, “They all have such smug looks on their faces with a ‘Look at me, aren’t I clever’ expression” are you referring to the old foreign men, or the barely teenage girls, Petal?  Honestly Mona, this can be applied to both of them.  They are smiling because they have found themselves in a situation which is good for both of them.  The young girls have found a financial ‘sponsor’, whilst the old foreign men have found themselves a gorgeous young companion who will take care of their every need (until the money runs out).  They know what the name of the game is, Petal.  So what is so wrong with it?  It is a win-win situation, so no need to be shocked.  Can a ‘man from Manchester’ get a deal like that back home in the UK?  No, he’s more likely to get a moaner.

Dear Hillary,

Where can I get a good computer technician?  Every time my computer breaks down, the technician says he’s fixed it, but when I go to use it, something else has packed up.  When he works on it at my condo he is there for hours clacking away and not only does he not fix the first problem, but leaves more than when he started.  “You haven’t got enough RAM,” seems to be the catchword with these people, but even after buying more, the problems are still there!


Dear (Bill) Gates,

You’re lucky it’s only a RAM problem.  I’ve bought veritable sheep stations of RAMs and now they’re telling me my operating system is no good.  What’s wrong with Windows 1946?  It worked before, why not now?  Honestly Petal, I have no idea about this modern technology.  Bring back faxes.  I could understand those.  I have to communicate with the editor with notes written on the back of envelopes.  His office is just below mine, so it’s easy to slip one under the door (he works rather strange hours, and nobody ever sees him).  I do inhale deeply as I pass his door, just in case he’s died in there after last week’s paper was put to bed.  See just how thoughtful I am!