Stickman Readers' Submissions May 15th, 2006

Hopelessly Hopeless Part 4

The messages in both of them were written in English. The first folder, named Louis, contained around seven messages. Not so many compared to the dozens I had found from me and her boyfriend, but still. I read them all, and at first I thought my worst suspicions had come true. Louis is Dutch, and obviously they met on MSN. He had been sending her kisses, tickles, and hugs in his messages and had sent lines like “I have a girlfriend now again so I guess I cannot come to see you anymore ;-)” Note that twinkling smiley at the end of that line! He had sent messages saying “I want to see you so badly and talk to you face to face!”

What the XXXX did this mean? Even though reading those lines hurt me even more and confused me to such a great extent, I kept on reading and opened the folder named “Francois”. There were only two messages in there, which were not as explicit, yet more mysterious. The first one dated back only one week, and said “Sorry for leaving now, I know what it feels to be left behind, we meet again”. The second messages dated back one day later, saying “I have arrived to Shanghai now; I hope we will meet again soon, all the best”! I had no idea what to think of this. Making sure Nok was still in the shower with the water running, I went back to look at Louis’ folder again to check the dates of the messages. What I found out put me a little more at ease. The oldest messages dated back more than two years and the newest one some months ago. I didn’t remember seeing any more recent messages in her inbox, and from the information I gathered I concluded that they have probably never met. In one of the messages that guy stated that he wished he could come to visit her but didn’t have a chance to. I guess Nok chatted a bit with that guy and maybe flirted, as it is so easy to do anonymously with internet contacts. With that Francois guy the story was different, yet despite all my suspicions I didn’t believe anything was up with that guy either. I would vouch for her not being that kind of person, and yet I don’t believe she is. (Hands up who thinks that I am a moron…)

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Either way, at first I was enraged about what I had found out, and the only thing I thought of doing was texting Mike, telling him all about it. He got back to me immediately, outraged at the information, and cursing Nok using the strongest words he could find in his rather tame and generally polite vocabulary.

When Nok came out of the shower, her phone was already in the very same place where she had left it, and I was back on the bed watching TV as if nothing had ever happened. She smiled at me beautifully and sat down next to me, covered only by her towel, and petted my legs with one hand while combing her hair with the other. I smiled back, but it was difficult to keep my face straight while doing so. Inside I was torn apart, utterly confused, and uncertain what to think. Eventually I calmed down, and tried to reason. What could this mean? Did I interpret too much? Was I too suspicious? I tried to convince myself that that Louis was probably just an internet acquaintance and nothing more than that, and that Francois could have been a colleague from work, as she is working with plenty of foreigners in her company. Neither one of the messages indicated that there was more to it than that. Flirting a bit online is not a crime, and if it was most of us would be guilty as charged.

Am I trying to find excuses for her? Yes, maybe I am. Despite everything that has happened between her, me, and her boyfriend, and all the obvious insincerity involved, I do not believe her to be a girl of that sorts. Even today, I don’t think she is. So I guess many of you reading this are now thinking: “What a fool, blinded by love and completely without reason”. Well, yes, I am definitely in love with her, but I would like to think that I have not completely lost my mind either. I admit to my rationality having taken some severe blows during this whole affair. If it hadn’t, and I would have been following a pure rational approach in this issue, I would have had to end all of this a long time ago already. I never denied being under the strong influence of my emotions either. Still, as many suspicions that telephone search had risen additionally, there were more reasons for me to believe that there was not much else behind it either. Call me an idiot if you want, I can take it…

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Despite all this, things between Nok and I were going reasonably okay, and we went out for dinner together and just enjoyed being around each other. Still I couldn't help but noticing that there was some kind of a dark cloud hovering over us. None of us cared to address the situation we found ourselves in once more, yet it was just so obvious that those thoughts were haunting me as well as her subconsciously most of the time.

Saturday night I took Nok out to the Oriental Hotel for dinner, which we enjoyed tremendously. Sunday turned out to be a bit of a lazy day, which was fine with me though. We went to see a movie and ended up spending some time in a park, sitting on the lawn, snacking, and relaxing. The dark cloud that had been there for the past days seemed to have grown exponentially throughout the day, and I could tell from Nok's behavior that she was feeling very troubled. So did I, as I felt that a confrontation about the situation was imminent.

Nok talked less and generally seemed to distance herself from me, which I found disturbing after having been so close again throughout the previous days. As much as I hated the idea of bringing up the subject, I knew that I would probably not be able to get around addressing it sooner or later. Before I could make up my mind what the right time for doing so would be, Nok took the initiative and finally brought it up, much to my initial surprise but finally to my big relief.

We were sitting on the outside terrace of a restaurant not far from the park we had been to, when she asked me the question out of the blue: "Have you managed to stop feeling so strongly about me in the past months?"

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At first, I was very surprised about her straightforwardness and the nature of her question, as I had expected her to be able to tell already that this obviously had not been the case. After all, we had been very close for three days now, so I guess she already knew the answer to her question, but was looking for a way to bring about a talk on this matter. I told her how I had felt in the weeks and months before I came to see her, how I had tried to distance myself, meet other women, and not look at her in the same way anymore. I told her how I hated the thought of her boyfriend coming to see her, how every time when I called I feared deep within that she would not be available to talk because he was around.

Basically, I told her that no, nothing much had changed about the way I felt about her, even though I tried. She listened to me carefully while I was telling her all this and I could spot a tear or two running down her cheeks. Once again, she told me how she had to draw a line, and find a way how to deal with me differently. She blamed herself for not being clear enough towards me, and for not helping me to get over her and move on with my life without her being such an important factor.

This was also the time when I learned that there were no plans for her boyfriend to return to living with her in Thailand, nor were there any plans for her going to live with him. As a matter of fact, she told me that the way things were going between them, she didn’t think him and her could actually live together. She called him immature, and mentioned how they would have probably broken up a long time ago if he had stayed longer in Thailand, as their lifestyle and values just never matched. When I listened to her telling me this, I started shaking inside. Am I the only one who doesn’t see how this makes any sense at all? To me this sounded as if she was indirectly saying basically the only reason why they were still together was because he was not with her. What?!

Honestly, I admired her loyalty, as she never failed to point out to me how she doesn’t give up on anything unless it was absolutely hopeless and things just plainly didn’t work out anymore at all. Personally, I understood what she was trying to say, but failed to understand the logic behind it.

I paid the check and we headed home to her place, neither one of us talking much in the car, yet feeling relieved we had finally addressed the issue, even if we hadn’t really resolved anything. At least I had a feeling as if that heavy weight I had felt sitting on my shoulder had lifted a bit, and the dark clouded had dissolved at least a little. On our way back to her place her phone suddenly rang, and guess what, it was her boyfriend calling. He had actually called another time while I was around before on Saturday, but back then she just took the phone and walked out to the balcony to talk with him. Now that hadn't exactly lifted my spirits, but at least I could avoid listening to their conversation actively. Now, sitting in the car next to each other, there was not really anything I could do to get away from listening to it. Nok talked to him for a few minutes, but finally told him to call her back a little later as she was busy driving in the dense Bangkok evening traffic. Back at her place, we both took a shower, and made ourselves comfortable. I thought that he might have called her while I was taking a shower, but wasn't sure he had. Anyway, I tried to ignore the thought, and was anxious to find out what the rest of our evening would be like now after having had that meaningful conversation at the restaurant before.

It turned out to be completely unexpected. Now, without intending to go into too much detail, I will just say this much…

In the previous days we had repeatedly been very close to each other, actually damn close to having sex, yet never went the full distance because she told me how she had "pain down there" and just couldn't, even though she really wanted to. I didn't think she was giving me an excuse, or lying about it either. She had told me to be patient and wait a little, as it would be alright soon. I believed her, but despite me being so attracted to her, in any case sex was not my top priority at that time. Sure, I would have loved to sleep with her, but just because we wouldn't it didn't mean I was put off her. In any case, I loved to make out with her and be close to her, even without going all the way.

So there we were, laying in bed next to each other, listening to music, me taking her into my arms as I always did when I had a chance, and kissing her. I am not sure what exactly triggered what happened next, as it all went so damn quickly. All I know is that we were just totally over each other almost instantly, hugging and kissing hard, in a hurry to get our clothes off. So we did have sex finally, even though I could tell by her body language that she was actually feeling some pain in the process. In any case, she was as unstoppable as a rolling freight train on full steam. Needless to say, it was perfect. But then, one thing happened that I can only describe as absolutely bizarre…

Just while we were wildly going at it her mobile phone, which was sitting next to the bed, started to sound again. Well, yes, you guessed right, it was her boyfriend calling again from France. Even worse, she had a personalized ring tone which clearly indicated that it was him calling. I didn't understand the words, as they were Thai and I just don't speak any really, but it was definitely him saying some short phrase, which the telephone speaker kept on blaring at us over and over, constantly increasing in volume. My head was spinning. In that moment, I was quite worried what would happen next. Would she disengage and push me away, would she stay with me and go on, or do something else completely unexpected…?!

Well, fortunately she stayed with me, and ignored the phone call until we were done. She stayed close to me for another ten minutes thereafter, before she left for the bathroom to clean up and take a shower. I followed the same routine once she was done, and when I finally stepped out of the shower I saw her standing out on the balcony, the glass door slid closed, her talking on the phone. Well, obviously it didn't require a lot of brainwork to figure out who she was talking to. I sat down on the bed and relaxed, and waited for her to finish up that phone call.

When she returned into the room she put down her phone, looked at me with a serious face and said: "You know, this must have been the only time. I cannot handle this anymore, neither emotionally nor mentally". I didn't reply to that and just watched as she was putting some body lotion onto her arms and finally came back to bed with me. Without much more talking, we fell asleep soon thereafter.

Call me a hypocrite if you will, but it is not as if I have not been feeling guilty about all this either. I truly never believed that I would ever find myself in a situation like this, but life has just taught me a different lesson. I know that I have been having a part in this, and that I cannot talk myself out of my responsibility for actually sleeping with a girl who is in a relationship. At times, I do feel like shit about it, especially when I consider that it could be me who was in his shoes. I try to excuse myself by saying that she started the whole thing and I fell for her back in July last year. Yet I realize this is only one way to look at it. I don’t know what to think. All I know is that I wished it was different, for so many reasons, and that I just couldn’t help but feeling so much for her and acting like I did, too.

Monday Nok was back at work, and I had another day for myself in Bangkok. Once more I met Mike, who shared with me the latest developments in his relationship with the bible freak, and we went out for lunch together. Obviously I also talked to him for a long time about the latest developments between Nok and me, and tried to make sense of everything, in particular the episode of last night with her boyfriend calling while we were having sex for the first time during my stay. Mike found it just as bizarre as me and jokingly suggested I should seriously consider writing a script for a Sunday night TV drama based on my affair to Nok, as I could earn a lot of money from it. I smiled at that but couldn’t really shake off the guilt I felt and the confusion within me. We talked about the text messages I had found on her phone, and even though Mike is usually the hotter tempered and more suspicious one of us, he suggested that there was probably not much behind it, and I should not be overly paranoid about it. I guess he was right, but I couldn’t shake of my doubts completely. I suppose reading more than 1000 submissions on Stick’s website had an impact on me. If any of you out there think about going through your girl’s phone or diary, just make sure to be prepared to find the unexpected, and if you find something to deal with not being able to discuss it without breaking her trust. The worst thing was, I couldn’t even confront her about those messages and ask her to clarify…

After leaving Mike to his dreaded law studies, I treated myself to a fantastic three hour herbal oil massage at a spa down Sukumvit Soi 53. Finally I picked up Nok at work and we went out for dinner. Arriving back to her place, I was wondering how she would deal with me after the previous night's bizarre episode. Would she put her large pillow in between the two of us on the bed as she had threatened jokingly a couple of times before when she was trying to tease me? Would she ask me to keep my hands off her and keep her distance? Well, you might have guessed right, none of this actually happened. During the previous night we had crossed the threshold once more to having an intimate relationship with each other, and also in the following night we decided to stay on that particular side of the line…

The next morning I woke up with her and we packed my carry-on backpack with the few things I would need for my 4 day trip to Macau and Hong Kong. She had asked me to stay and not leave for my trip to Hong Kong the day before, but I stuck with my decision for a couple of reasons.

First of all, I really wanted to go check out Hong Kong. It had been on my "to do" list for so many years already, and now as I had the opportunity to go, I didn't want to miss out on it. Also, Nok was scheduled to fly out of Bangkok on Wednesday at 6am to attend a conference for her company up at Chiang Mai, and would return late the following day. That meant that she would have to sleep early on Tuesday, get up in the middle of the night on Wednesday to catch the early morning flight, return late and dead tired the following day, and working again on Friday until 7pm. In any case, I thought I would not see much of her if I decided to stay. Last but not least, I thought that after what had happened between the two of us during the previous two days and especially nights, it would be good for me to get away from her for a while. Mainly because I believed that maybe would make her think about the situation and realize that I was actually more important to her than she might have been aware of.

We left her apartment together and I took a taxi to the airport. The flight went smooth, and a few hours later I arrived to Macau. I had read a few controversial reports on Air Asia before flying with them, so I was already curious what it would be like. I have to say, for a low-cost carrier it was quite alright, and definitely value for money. Only the low seat pitch was a bit of a pain, as I had to sit completely upright in my seat for the whole duration of the flight because there was just no other way to fit my knees. But I guess low-cost airlines and tall people just don't go very well together in any case, and in particular not in Asia.

I will not say all too much about my stay in Hong Kong and Macau. As I had only less than four full days there, I was basically running around the place from morning till night every day, trying to take in as much as possible. Generally speaking, I was very impressed with Hong Kong. I had expected it to be different, and was amazed how the Chinese influence has swallowed up most of what has remained from the former British colony. Anyway, I was surprised how much there was to see and to do. I could have easily spent another few days in the region without getting bored at all. After arriving from Thailand, the obvious downside of Hong Kong seemed to be the lack of beautiful women in the streets, and anywhere else for that matter. As a matter of fact I don't remember having seen one cute package during my whole stay there. I know I am unfairly generalizing, but really, spotting a pretty face in the crowd there much felt like looking for a needle in a haystack. Or should I rather say, looking for a small peanut in a huge bowl of Chop Suey? Well, I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder…

Not being much of a party animal usually, I still decided to head to Hong Kong’s bar and entertainment district Wan Chai on my second night. I went with a fellow traveller from the UK who I had run into and had a nice chat with while checking in at my guesthouse in Kowloon’s Cameron Road. We only spent a couple of hours at Wan Chai, and had a drink in a regular bar called “From Dusk Till Dawn” that featured a great live band and walked around the area a bit. That bar we found ourselves in was actually nice for hanging out, in particular because the show that was going on off stage was actually more interesting than the performance of the band. The bar was basically packed with a mix of mostly middle aged expats in business attire, some younger guys in rugby shirts, and lots of girls who at least to our eyes looked unmistakably like hookers. And yes, you might have guessed this one correctly too, they were almost exclusively Thais. We ran into plenty of them on the street too, and not few of them tried to lure us into their red lighted establishments. After a while we had seen enough and left, but it was definitely a nice evening out in Hong Kong.

What I did find quite entertaining about the Chinese in Hong Kong though was with how much perseverance some of them so very openly followed their seemingly favorite pastime of publicly picking their noses. One time when I found myself sitting in an almost empty subway carriage, opposite of five Chinese of differing age and attire, it was interesting to observe how the persevering nose picking ambitions of one of them suddenly triggered her fellow compatriots desire to follow suit and also explore the depths of their nostrils too. And boy, they were going at it hard and merciless for the next 20 minutes of the ride until every single one of them must have pushed up that last tiny bit of bogey up their frontal lobes. And then of course there is that spitting routine. Awesome! I really had to laugh! But anyway, I was familiar with that from my trips to Beijing and Shanghai some years back already. I also really liked having that fruit punch with the curious designation "Pussy Juice" together with my lunch in some Chinese noodle house out in Hong Kong's New Territories. Quite tasty, actually!

After three days in Hong Kong I moved on to Macau, and spent a night there. I was lucky to get a really good "last-minute" deal on a discounted room at the Ritz in Macau for only 30 Euros. Upon arrival I was told that there had been some mistake and they were no rooms available anymore, and was asked if I would accept a room in another building for the night. I was suspicious and wondered if I was being scammed, but it turned out that my lucky streak had not run out yet. The "other building" was actually the much better option, with only suites available. So I was upgraded for free to a 60 sqm suite with Jacuzzi and plenty of other comforts. Not too bad at a rate of 30 Euros I would think.

As I had never been to casino before, despite having been to Las Vegas some years ago but back than having been too young to play, I decided I would check out one of the established Chinese casinos in town. The Americans have invaded Macau during the recent years, setting up those gigantic Las Vegas style casinos all over the place in their attempt to gain a large share of the financial pie that is delivered by the some 16 million+ visitors the peninsula of Macau receives every year. So I walked into the area where most casinos were located, and picked the first one that came into sight, the Casino Lisboa. I turned out to be the only foreigner in that place, with lots of Chinese people everywhere trying their luck in that somewhat run down establishment.

Anyway, it was great fun to watch the scene and I tried to figure out how some of those particular Chinese casino games worked that were so popular there, but are basically unknown in the West. Not being much interested in gambling generally, I said to myself: “What the hell, I will just give it a try”. I set my limit at 50 Euros that I was prepared to put at stake, traded in my money for a handful of chips, and tried my luck with a Chinese dice game at one of the tables. The rules of the game were rather simple, so I felt more at ease with playing it than sitting down at a Black Jack table where I would probably have burnt my money within a minute due to my lack of gambling experience. Funnily so, things didn't go so badly at that dice game table. Even though I lost my first 20 Euro within a minute, I hit a lucky streak soon and actually won a total of 120 Euros on top of the 50 I had started with. It was actually fun how I started out gambling as the only player on the table, and how soon after some people around me who had noticed how well I was doing gathered around me, cheered and gave me thumbs up, and even followed my bets on the table. After 15 minutes of playing my lucky streak ended promptly, and even though I was tempted to go on for the fun of it, I decided to call it quits and leave with the bonus of having just earned my accommodation expenses for the three nights of my stay in the region.

So what happened with regard to Nok during my absence from Bangkok? Well, as it turned out her conference in Chiang Mai was cancelled a few hours after I had left for Hong Kong. She sent me a text, letting me know that she would stay in Bangkok and how much she wished I had stayed. Sweet words, not much else…? Whatever! The text messages kept on coming regularly during the following days, most of them expressing how much she missed me being around and being with her, how she missed my touch and me sleeping next to her at night. On the second night in Hong Kong, after me telling her that I was hanging out having late dinner with that UK traveller I had met in my guesthouse there, she wrote me a rather jealous text pointing out that she really hoped it was a guy and not a girl. I did find that surprisingly odd and actually somewhat funny, as I thought she was the last person who had a right to be jealous here. After all, it had been me all along who had been lining up in second place after her French boyfriend. Okay, that was my fault, but still…Hellooo?! Anyway, she genuinely seemed to miss me, so my subconscious "strategy" of making it clear to her that I was not to be taken for granted did work.

So what about me…? Well, I replied to her texts, and truthfully wrote that yes, I was missing her too. Still, I was glad to have gone to Hong Kong, as it was just important to me and I would have bitten my ass if I had let that chance slip. Doing things like this is just such an important part of my personal freedom, I wouldn't want to miss it. Either way, even if I had stayed with her, she would have been around at night only, and while I do enjoy spending my days in Bangkok, I have had enough of that in the recent past…

So I took the delayed Friday afternoon flight back to Bangkok, where Nok picked me up at the airport. She was dressed in jeans and a black blouse, rather simply actually, but she looked absolutely stunning to me when I walked up to greet her. I could notice immediately how she was glad to see me again, and we headed back to the parking lot, me sharing my impressions and stories of the previous days. We went out for dinner, and then arrived back to her place. Being with her at dinner and not being able to touch her in public was like torture, and I guess it was similar for her, as she started caressing my legs with her feet while we were sitting at the dinner table in the restaurant. It was rather obvious to me what would happen once we got back home. After taking a shower we jumped into the sack in no time, and I took enormous pleasure rubbing her smooth body with massage oil for a while. I just love that girl's skin, her smell, her silk smooth touch and firm curves. Some might argue it would have been better if she had given me a massage, but actually I enjoyed every second of running my fingers up and down her body, while she was giggling and shouting out "ticklish ticklish!!!" every once in a while and tried to cover up her breasts shyly. Oh my god, thinking of this makes me want to go back there right now…

And off course, this was just the warm up. What followed to this I will leave up to your vivid imagination. Oh yes, it was absolutely delightful to be back, and falling asleep holding with her head and soft hair resting on my chest just felt perfect to me. I didn't want to be anywhere else. Flickering thoughts of the fact that I was to leave in only two days I pushed away instantly, just as everything else that would doubt the perfectness of this moment…

To be continued soon…

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