Readers' Submissions

The Challenge

  • Written by Union Hill
  • December 24th, 2005
  • 6 min read


So you are in love with a Thai lady. You live in Farangland, she lives in Thailand. What are your chances of a happy future together? Somewhere between grim and bloody grim as the popular vote would have it. Unless that is, you are prepared to step up to the plate.

What are you prepared to do to win the woman of your dreams?

Try asking yourself these questions :-

Are you prepared to quit your job in Farangland?
Move to the other side of the planet and live in a climate that can best be described as hot and soggy?
Are you prepared to give up your nice comfy home and swap it for a shithole in Nakhon Nowhere?

Are you prepared to live in a country where lies and deception permeate every level of the social fabric?
Are you prepared to live in a country where your instincts scream at you every waking moment to get the hell away from here?
Are you prepared to learn a language that does not have a direct translation for ‘yes’ or ‘no’? A language where the words for a horse and a dog sound the same, a language where the words for ‘near’ and ‘far’ are practically indistinguishable? <They're totally distnguishable!Stick>
Are you prepared to live in a country that is floundering in a sea of corruption?
Are you prepared to abandon your Christian principles, your integrity, your self respect and your honour?
Are you prepared to fully embrace Thai culture with all its ramifications?
Can your body accept the food?
Are you crazy?

If your answer to any of the above is ‘no’, then a blissful future with your Siamese Princess is probably doomed to failure and pursuing the woman of your dreams will surely lead you into a world of pain and misery.

If you answer ‘yes’ to all of the above, the outcome could still be the same although the odds on you having a happy life together are slightly better.

One thing you can never do is join the ranks of the great unwashed in Thailand. You are still a Farang and as such you are obliged to maintain a certain level of status. Without status, you are nothing. If you lose your status, you are dead in the water. You must make a successful life in Thailand complete with career and prospects. Your degree in economics is going to do you little good here. You are going to need sharp wits and fancy footwork.

So you would rather take the easy option and have your little Thai trinket go to live with you in Farangland? You’d better ask her the same questions.

Is she prepared to quit her job in Thailand?
Move to the other side of the planet to live in a climate that can best be described as cold and miserable?
Is she prepared to give up her happy way of life and swap it for an anonymous apartment where the neighbours won’t speak to her?
Is she prepared to live in a country where lies and deception are frowned upon?
Is she prepared to live in a country where her instincts scream at her every waking moment to get the hell away from here?
Is she prepared to learn a language that is direct and unambiguous?
Is she prepared to live in a country where the people are more concerned about racism and human rights than they are about their own family?
Is she prepared to live with Christian principles, integrity, self respect and honesty?
Is she prepared to fully embrace Farang culture with all its ramifications?
Before you even get to talking about the food, she’s going to ask you, “Are you crazy”?

Don’t even think about it.

So that’s the challenge, folks. Is it really any wonder the pages of the Stickman website are littered with the debris of shattered dreams and broken relationships? Being right don’t win you any cigar in Thailand. Being a two-faced, lying, scumbag with a knack for social climbing……. now we’re talking. These are the kind of desirable qualities that will really get you places.

So how ready are you to face The Challenge. Have you done your homework? She’s got choices you know. You can’t keep her out of another man’s bed with your SMS messages and your soppy emails. You gotta be here, man. Not next March for a three week visit, but all the time. If you want her for life, you have got to make some changes in your own. Are you up for it?

What happens if you try and fail?

You poor lovesick pup, you. You decide that you cannot live without her and so you up sticks and move to Thailand. There’s no safety net here, you know. Your little Isaan Angel turns out not to be exactly delighted with your decision and has to juggle her social diary to accommodate you being around all the time. What the hell is she going to tell Hans and Jean-Pierre and you when dates start overlapping? Finding a job is impossible and you don’t have the financial wherewithal to start your own business. A couple of months later, you matey are up sewer creek with no means of forward propulsion. Decision time. Cut your loses and bugger off home broke and broken hearted?

Maybe things could turn out better. You up sticks and move to Thailand and your little ray of Asian sunshine is delighted. You have a few bob in the bank. You agree to get married. You agree to pay the Sin Sot. You build a little house and start a small business maybe exporting garments or something equally mind numbing. Money starts to get a bit tight though because you find there ain’t a big profit margin in fake Manchester United shirts with Alan Smith’s name spelt incorrectly. Things get bitter. She gets you thrown out of the house and you have no alternative but to retreat to Farangland licking your wounds.

What happens if you try and you succeed?

Maybe there’s another scenario, one where the Farang actually pulls it off. You cut your ties with your home country and you throw yourself into making a new life in Thailand. You are too young to retire and you don’t have a whole lot of capital to fall back on. Success and happiness with your Thai treasure lies ahead, not behind you. You get a job doing something you are competent at with a foreign company. You earn a Farang type salary and you learn about Thailand. You learn the language. You learn about the culture. You forget everything your mother taught you about being polite and considerate to others. You abandon your table manners. You concentrate on making money and looking after your wife and your home. It works and she worships the ground you walk on. Well that’s what you think she’s doing when she burns those smoky little stick things. It works out just as you had planned. You are secure and successful and you are living in Thailand with the woman of your dreams. Et voila, easy!!

Before you get here though, take a good look at those eleven questions. Your answers will tell you if you are a match for Thailand or not. If you score more than one ‘no’ Thailand will chew you up and spit out the crunchy bits. Now you know.

Union Hill


Stickman's thoughts:

Anyone who thinks Union Hill is bordering on cynical, let me tell you, that he is not. It's spot on!