A Quick Return 2
While I had had every intention of playing butterfly in Pattaya, I’d found I was quite happy in the enviable position of having a very nice girlfriend along for the duration, finding the more time I spent with C the more we seemed to enjoy each others company. It really helped to be able to converse easily and, while I tried and did learn a lot more Thai this trip than last time, C’s English skills were making my life a lot more pleasant. I found out that she’d had 2 previous falang boyfriends, both older, totalling about 3 years. Like a lot of girls I asked last trip, C said she found that local Thai guys did not treat their girlfriends and wives very nicely, and she preferred being with farangs, though she had never travelled outside Thailand, so only met tourists and ex-pats. C was from an area between Isaan and Bangkok, and had an alcoholic father, who apparently had made her mother lose so much face that she committed suicide. I felt sorry for her situation, but her sisters worked and her brother in law drove the mini van service we had used, and they seemed hard working to support their child. R told me he had met most of C’s family and said they were ok, and had never made demands for money, though he tried to put business their way whenever possible. The Thai way of trying to put even small amounts of money to associates is a well entrenched and vital part of their daily life, and seems to be a natural way of doing business to them, as they all seem to do it one way or another. The extreme forms of it are the taxi and tuk-tuk drivers who take you somewhere, like a tailor, for the commission or fuel.
Part of the male ego must be to look after the females of the species, because I really wondered how I could make a difference in C’s life, for the long term. While short term gains were easy for someone who had a good holiday planned, and simply adding one other person's food etc didn’t really alter the expenses much, I wanted to find out how to really help C for longer than one week. I wondered what I could do for her that would make her life easier or nicer after I left. During the week she never wanted me to see her room as she said it was just a place to sleep and keep clothes, and I didn’t push to see it and then maybe buy her a TV etc to make it nicer. She said she never spent much time home, as she was always busy at the van service office trying to get fares, working, eating or sleeping. She didn’t have a real career in mind, or I would have offered some sort of training or course leading to a good job. I wondered what I could do now that she would remember for a while, and help her in some way.
I had read many submissions here about hospital care and dentists being cheap and good, so I quizzed my ex-pat mate R about the best place to go and he said that Bangkok Pattaya Hospital was where he went. So we all set off down the busy main road towards Bangkok, with C navigating, dodging the huge busses and overloaded pick-ups that make up the bulk of traffic on this road. Ten minutes later we rolled into the scooter park and were in the impressively clean, quiet, entry of the hospital. As we approached the main doors we were asked if we needed to be pushed inside by a wheelchair wielding orderly, and I assured him we had not fallen off our bikes (yet) and just wanted to chat to the dentist.
We were shown to the dental reception area where we asked about check-up and laser teeth whitening prices and availability. We were asked if we had an appointment and upon finding we didn’t were informed it was a long wait – 3 pm that afternoon, some 2 hours away! Prices were quoted as 1,000 baht for a clean and check-up and 11,500 baht for the laser whitening. I knew prices back home were approximately 3 times as much, so I was duly impressed! As soon as the prices were quoted my new tilac C squeezed my hand and when I looked at her she shook her head, so I said we would get back to them later, if we wanted to make an appointment. P made an appointment to have a chipped tooth fixed for 1000 baht, and he reported that the service was great, painless, and spotlessly clean, with no waiting at all at 3pm.
C informed me that her local dentist also did laser whitening, and while sceptical about it I agreed to at least talk to him before committing to the process at the hospital. We rode to a dentist located on third road and I quizzed him on what he had to offer, equipment used, his training and costs. I found him to be a well educated (funnily enough by Kiwi dentists), thoroughly professional dentist who explained everything well, and showed me his new laser whitening equipment and explained the procedure and expected results. Without quibbling on the price he said he would clean and laser whiten my teeth, and clean C’s near perfect white teeth for a total of 4,000 baht, as long as we could wait till later that afternoon! I will admit to hating dentist visits, but found the service, cleanliness and results nothing short of amazing. The dentist or an assistant seemed to like to have physical contact with you during the whole time I was in the chair, either talking to me or resting a hand on my arm, as my face was draped with a cloth for most of the time I was there. I said if it hurt could I suck on some NOS, but never really needed any pain relief. I hadn’t had a full tune up, oil change and service of the fangs since the 80’s, only electing to get a couple of fillings as required a year ago (which now I think of it cost almost the same as my full clean and whitening). Luckily I have pretty good teeth, and brush regularly, but he did scrape a load of tartar out of there, and I am sure my breath and dental health are much improved, as is the look of my teeth. I am sure the hospital offers a great service, and it is excellent value, but check around the neighbourhood and you may be surprised what you can find, for even more of a bargain price.
I wasn’t allowed to eat for one to two hours after laser whitening, and no coffee or tea for a week, so C made sure we ate just before the trip to the dentist, as we wouldn’t want to fade away from starvation completely in the intervening hours. As her place was not far away we went to her local restaurant where I convinced them to make me some delicious seafood fried rice, not wanting to eat anything garlicky before a dental appointment. C managed to order a bland looking noodle dish which she then heaped with chilli flakes etc and scarfed down. I wondered aloud if all the hot spices she ate had been so hot in her mouth they contributed to her sparkling white smile, as I am sure no germs or stains can live in there for long! Those pointy shoes hurt your shins! After the dental procedures C only half jokingly moaned over and over about not being able to eat for a few hours, probably due to being forced, as it were, into abstinence from the Thai national pastime. I am sure they all have worms, as she is only 38 kg and eats more or less the same as me at twice her weight! Mind you – if I had that much chilli, oils, peppers and spices on my food I am sure rather than buying it I should just rent it by the hour, as it would sure exit my system in no time! We managed to survive the intervening hours and made up for it with a buffet dinner at Lek Hotel, which has a good mix of Thai and western food to satisfy everyone’s tastes, for a low 150 baht. Once again, I never feel they quite get desserts, but I don’t come half way around the world to eat home cooking, so I always enjoy the change of diet. The only thing I do miss is breakfast cereals and I really must remember to bring a few of those individual serve muesli type ones along next time. At various times some of our group had upset tummies and rushed off to toilets, but our salesman friend who came alone a month ago tells us he had it really bad for a few days. Apparently he thought he was only farting to find out there was a bit more liquid than air in his boxers. We were all in hysterics when he told us it hit him one time when all he had access to was a squat hole toilet. He came home minus his boxers after that bout, using them to clean up himself and the toilet, the whole time with his girlfriend waiting outside for him lol.
Waking up late morning and finding you are lying next to a smooth skinned, slim, firm Thai beauty is one of the nicest experiences you can have, and after a few days with C we had settled into each other's company pretty smoothly. C was a totally different animal to the bar girls I had previously played around with, and she was slowly being more relaxed in my presence and not covering up shyly, giving me great views of some of the firmest boobs I had ever seen. I am not a cuddly sleeper and loved the wide beds, though they were a bit hard. I found the process of slowly opening up more to each other physically made it more fun than slam bam thank you ma’m, and I was happy with my choice of companionship for the week. C had a great sense of humour and while I was showering one afternoon and T called she said ‘’We can’t come for a swim – we make love’’. Another time she said ‘’He can’t talk to you. He tied up now – I bring many ropes’’ much to the amusement of the guys. She also managed to dress just as hot as any gogo dancer I had seen, somehow managing to make a mini skirt as wide as a belt seem like a uniform. I even got her to swim one day (cloudy) and she looked amazing in a nice leopard print bikini. The other guys all tried and failed to bring home as nice an all round lady friend as C, but they had fun trying. (Apparently one of the boys came very close to bringing home a ladyboy who was a totally hot looking babe haha.- the whole time we were there he would point them out and say one or another of them looks hot etc, and we would all laugh and tell him it was a ladyboy.)
Any time we went to buy anything at the markets I would show C what I wanted and she would get down to the real price pretty quickly, which I was always pretty happy to pay. A lot of the time I would go to buy something and she would shake her head and say she had a place to get these items. Most of the time this worked out well, but when offered some porn DVDs one time she squeezed my hand and shook her head, so I did not buy them. We later rode to ‘her’ video outlet and asked about the same items. She was told to come back in 2 days as the next shipment arrived then, so we duly came back in 2 days. Amid much shaking of heads, furtive glances around and being taken to the back of the store, a bag was opened and a grand total of 4 xxx DVDs were available for 100 baht each. They were actually not what I was looking for, but after all the build up I bought them anyway and have since found them to be ok, but not great quality or content. I never found another place selling them, so came back with only those four DVDs and some normal movie titles of mixed quality. I have found the newer movies to be a bit disappointing in quality, as they are taken in the theatre, complete with people moving in the foreground, though it is fun to turn up back home with movies only just being released. For around the 100 baht mark I always consider it a bonus if it works at all, and great value if good quality video and audio. The big C has a music store where some of the slightly older movies were available on VCD for around 200 baht, and latest release CDs were only 390 baht, which is about half the price of the same item in NZ. I bought 4 or 5 CDs I had been meaning to buy, and a couple of Thai compilations – one for me and one for C, so we could both listen to some of the same music when separated. Some of this music must be an acquired taste which I don’t have yet, while some of it is ok, but it all makes me smile, thinking of warm fun filled Thailand.
Next time – Traffic cops and discos.
When do you buy a ring for her?