Heart to Heart
January 12, 2019 - January 18, 2019
note: Hillary has been feeling a bit flush this week, no doubt from the
holiday cheer, so we’ve reached back into our wayback machine and pulled up
an oldie but goodie for you to enjoy.
Greetings! Ever since I laid my foot to
Pattaya 5 or 6 years ago, I have been an avid reader of your column. I’m an
Asian foreigner contract worker in Pattaya then, but when my contract ended and
moved to another country I kept the paper’s website and kept myself updated from
your column. Over the years of reading your columns, it still humored and amazes
me of the different stories and revelations. But above all, as most of the
stories I read are the few men who were able to find their partners and knowing
Thai women, well the relationship was a happy ending after all! The thought
crossed my mind of going back to Pattaya, this time not for work but for a
partner... It sounds ridiculous, but I’m not getting any younger and the fact
that I’m a woman! Well Ms. Hillary, I bet this is the most unusual letter you’ll
ever read, cause this time it’s a woman’s search for a partner... wish me luck
Dear Lost Angel,
I’m sorry to disappoint you Ms. Lost
Angel, yours is not the most unusual letter I’ve ever read, but back to your
situation. You need a partner, and I can assure you that you will never be
lonely in Pattaya, no matter what your needs in a partner entails - and you
haven’t really told me much about that, have you? However, the simple fact
remains for all people who come to Thailand looking for partners, if you choose
from the commercial end of available partners, you will get what you pay for. A
‘mia chow’ or ‘rented wife’. “Love”, devotion, commitment are qualities you
generally won’t find there. As in any relationship (m-f, m-m, f-f) go slowly,
Petal. Go slowly! It is a dangerous battleground you are traversing.
I had no idea my letter would post so soon
or even at all. Just to follow up we made it to Bangkok, spent a few days with
my wife’s family and within 3 days we moved into a condo here in Pattaya. All is
well. While advice is your job, I’d like to say to your readers who have
suffered in every imaginable way, a farang can never know everything Thai. Those
who for whatever reason refuse to use common sense, and allow a certain body
part to dictate their lives assures you will always have material.
Les and Lawan
Dear Les and Lawan,
Thank you again, and I do take care!
That is certainly timely (and timeless) advice for those who read this column.
Unfortunately “common sense” is an oxymoron, as it isn’t too “common”, is it?
I’ll leave it to the gents loaded with Vitamin V to work out just to which
“certain body part” you are referring! Enjoy your new condo.
I was drinking with my mates the other
morning and a Thai friend suggested that I needed a tattoo to look more manly.
Well, at 4 in the a.m. you’re not at your best so I went with him for the tat. I
told him I wanted a heart with “I love MOM”. I got the tattoo finished and woke
up and went home. When I awoke I admired my new tat in the mirror and was
shocked to find “I love WOW” on my arm. I showed it to my ‘friend’ Nok at the
bar and she is very mad at me and wants to know who “Wow” is. She is looking for
her. I think the answer is to change the name of Pattaya, which no one can
pronounce, to WOW City. It is more descriptive and would get me out of trouble.
Dear Singha Jerry,
“Get you out of trouble”? Impossible, my
sweet potato. Trouble is your middle name, and always has been. I will get one
of the girls to tell your friend Nok that there is a Wow who has a bar in
Jomtien. She should take along a video camera, the meeting could be interesting.
You were certainly very lucky to find a friendly tattoo artist at 4 a.m., and
ones that administer general anesthetics are even more rare. Or did you use
several gallons of Singha beer as the anesthetic? Or was that as the alcohol
swab to clean the skin before the ink was applied?
Just a quickie. I want to send a girl I met
last time I was up on holidays some money for her birthday just before Xmas
later this year, but I’ve been told that it’s not too safe sending money by
post. As I won’t be back in Thailand till around March/April next year, it is a
bit late to bring it over myself. What’s your suggestion? The safer the better.
That is nice of you, but your little
lady friend will soon tell you the best way, if you haven’t worked it out before
Santa comes down the chimney. You don’t post it, you transfer it to her bank
account, and she will have one, believe me! Posting is a no-no!
December 15, 2018 - December 21, 2018
I read in a Thai website that all that Thai women are
interested in is money, money, money. Is this really the case? I am in a
long time relationship with a Thai woman, but she is a lot younger than me.
Is she interested in me, or money? If it’s money she hides it pretty well.
Who should I believe?
No, my Petal, Thai women are not just interested in
money. For example, I am also interested in Belgian chocolates and French
champagne. Women, and not just Thai women, are interested in finding a mate
who can support them and their children (and the family in Thailand), and
that includes financial as well as physical support. Why should any woman be
interested in marrying a pauper? Would you? There are not too many couples
you could call Romeo and Juliette in the world, but there are thousands of
successful marriages, which exist for the mutual benefit of both parties. I
am not saying that ‘romance’ is dead, but likewise a union based on an
unreal expectation is also headed for the scrap heap. If you and your lady
are happy as you are, with the money you have or haven’t got, then just
enjoy life and don’t spend time worrying about what other people write into
I don’t have a relationship problem, I have a wardrobe
problem. I’m a very happy single man, I’m well off, get my pick of the
ladies any time I want, so why am I writing to you? My only problem is that
after a couple of nights, the ladies all want to move in with me. Some of
them bring over not just a change of clothes, but a whole wardrobe full. I
have no intention of settling down - and why should I? Like I say, I get my
pick, so why spoil it. You must have heard the saying ‘why buy a book when
you can join a library?’
Larry the Librarian
You certainly have got tickets on yourself, haven’t
you Petal. But I suppose you’ve got good reason to be as you are. I mean,
just how lucky are you? You get to wake up with the most adorable man in the
world, in your opinion - yourself. Time to change your name to Narcissus,
though I would suggest you take all the mirrors down in your bathroom, or
you might find yourself falling in love just like the long departed
Narcissus. Poor Narcissus saw his reflection and fell in love with it, and
could not be away from it, and pined to death looking into the pool.
Meanwhile the nymph Echo who fell in love with Narcissus also pined away,
just like your ‘lucky’ ladies who try and leave their clothes in your
wardrobe. However, I am certainly glad I haven’t been picked as this week’s
After saving hard for the last three years, I have been
on an extended holiday here in Thailand for the past six weeks. I have
enjoyed your beautiful country very much, but I will be going back to my own
country in two weeks time. What made it even better was I had a beautiful
guide and non-complaining companion up-country girl who I found in a bar in
Pattaya who has been with me for all that time. I know all the stuff about
bar girls, but she has been constantly with me for the six weeks, and she
has been great. I have looked after her well in return including a weekly
allowance of 15,000 baht for her to spend on anything she wants. I don’t
ask. It’s hers for services rendered, if you know what I mean. I would like
to give her something when I leave for her to remember me by, and can you
suggest something that she will like. Please keep the suggestions within a
reasonable budget. I am not a Cheap Charlie but it is the end of my
What do you really expect me to say, my Petal? Are
you mad? Or have you been drinking too much local brew? You want her to
remember you, so why not buy her a house, a car, a motorcycle and a year’s
free veterinary treatment for the family buffalo? You’ll be able to get all
that for under five million. And since you don’t want to appear as a Cheap
Charlie, throw in a house for Mamma and Papa as well. That’s another 800,000
baht as houses are cheap up-country. Chris, come down from the clouds, you
have had the services of what we call a ‘mia chow’ (rented wife) for the
past six weeks, for which you have already paid 90,000 baht for the six
weeks which is well above the going market price. She will remember you by
whatever you have bought her until it has been converted into folding
currency (“He was the nice farang man who bought me this gold chain which I
am now taking to the pawn shop”). Enjoy what is left of your holiday and
spend your money on yourself.
December 1, 2018 - December 7, 2018
Hillary ate too many chocolates this week and is feeling under the weather,
so until she recovers we will repeat some of her old classics. We hope you
enjoy this trip down memory lane.
My Dear champagne addicted petal;
You are evidently not in the ‘in crowd’ of
beer drinkers. Lotus, Big C, etc., charge more for cold beer and why spend
perfectly good beer money getting there? As far as my spelling goes, I didn’t
use my spell checker like you (you are not that intelligent dear) but was
actually referring to my loves (sic) TWO BUFFALOES but did not indicate
that. Check your spell checker and you will see that the plural for buffalo is
not BUFFALOS; which probably means something weird in Spanish. See you at the AA
when WE get sober. You first.
Dear Singha Jerry,
You take me to task for something you
“did not indicate”. So I am a mind reader now as well as being the ear for the
lamented and demented. Where did I mention two animals? I didn’t. Where did you
mention two animals? You didn’t. You wrote about a singular buffalo, which has
no “e” on the end. And if you wish to be totally correct, then it should be “my
love’s” and not “my loves”, my pedantic Petal (the apostrophe indicating
possession). And before you rush back into the 7-11 to grab another cheap tinny
thinking you have something to celebrate, the plural of buffalo is also
“buffalo” (Concise Oxford). And since you are obviously a Cheap Charlie, I won’t
be getting drunk on your champagne, will I Jerry?
A friend who has been to Thailand who put
me on to your website. I have been reading your column on dating and have
enjoyed it very much. As I am going to be there in September for the first time
I am writing. It seems that everyone I ask (single men like myself) talk about
being at the bars as the way to meet the working women of Thailand. While I
realize this is not the only way I do have a question. If one is not a big
drinker will I offend if I do not drink a lot or wish to leave to go see music,
movies or see the country.
I can assure you that the ladies from
the bars have not the slightest interest in how much ‘you’ drink, only in how
much ‘they’ drink, while you are paying of course! This is because they receive
a percentage of the cost of the ‘lady drinks’, while they get nothing from the
price of your drinks. This is how they make money, as they are ‘working’ women,
getting their monthly salaries in many ways. It works like this, since you have
not been here before, Petal. They generally receive a small wage (or retainer),
and then their lady drinks percentage plus a percentage of the so-called ‘bar
fine’ which is what the punters (like you) pay for the honor and glory of taking
one of the blushing young ladies away from the bar to see music, movies or the
country. Anything else is a private arrangement between the lady and the
customer, as you have to realize that there is no prostitution in Thailand,
because the government said so. And the statute books have said so since about
1966. While you are paying for things, you will not offend, James.
I met a Thai girl last year, since then I
have been coming to Thailand every 3-4 months, to see her. We have exchanged the
phone numbers and the e-mails and we have been in contact with each other all
the time. However, I cannot seem to be able to explain to her the meaning of
“about” or “around”. You see, she is always eager to know when I will be
arriving to Thailand next time and when I reply to her “in about three months”,
she takes it literally to be 90 days, because when I call her the next time -
for instance in two weeks - she starts asking for my arrival date and when I
reply to her in about three months, she gets upset as in her mind I have changed
the date and should be arriving in two and a half months and not three. Hillary,
please help me in finding correct words to convey her what I mean when I say
“about”. I even tried “approximate” but that confused her even more.
I take it from your letter that English
isn’t your mother tongue either, so you already know some of the problems your
girlfriend is having in trying to communicate in another language. You have also
found the answer yourself when you say in your letter that it could be 1-2 weeks
postponed - in other words, you are saying that it will be in “about” one to two
weeks. When you want to say you will be coming back in “about three months” then
what you have to say is “coming back in 3-4 months” and your Thai girlfriend
will know that this means “about”. Remember too, that one reason why she will
want to tie down the dates is that she has to organize and arrange her life too,
please don’t forget that.