Thailand, A Different View
I chanced upon your site about a month ago and slowly but surely started reading all the submissions. I have been to Thailand 3 times and am going on my 4th visit in Jan.
The reason why I write this peace is to share my changing views of Thailand with time and my take on the long staying farangs.
I am 44 years old, A qualified doctor, married to a doctor (happy I think) – The joke between us is that in all "Happy Marriages" – the man is married and the woman is happy. Born in London of Indian parents and living in India for the last 30 years, apart from a few work related stints in UK and USA. My background makes my views very different from your other contributors.
First My views on Thailand (Has Thailand changed in 15 years or have I).
I first was there in 1992 with my wife for 2 weeks – young – recently married – looking for a relaxing holiday – we had both heard and read about the nightlife but were not too worried.
We saw the old farangs with young girls but were never confronted with anything we found too objectionable. We would sit in the bars on Bangla Road, Walking Street, Karon and the bargirls would chat up my wife and me. We never thought of these girls as prostitutes (How wrong). We had the perfect beach holiday in one of the most beautiful countries in the world with the best humans on the planet (this is what I thought then.)
Cut to 1998 – I return for a medical conference with my wife and spend a week in Bangkok and Phuket and see the greed in the LOS. The tuktuk problems, the mall rip offs, the gem scams, the plastic smiles of the bargirls in Pattaya. Why does a bargirl want to know where you come from? How long you stay? What you do? It slowly sinks in that the average Thai who is exposed to the tourist is only interested in your money. The moment you tell a bargirl which hotel you’re staying stay at – her smile with increase or decrease depending on the star rating of the hotel. Still we enjoyed our days – the beach, gogo shows etc. They need the money and that's it.
2004 – This time I was alone for 2 weeks and travelled through Phuket & Pattaya. This is when the real filth sinks in. There is no need for details as we all aware of them. But what still shocks me is the volume and extend of shit that goes on in the name of tourism.
There is poverty in 70% of the world – even in China and India. Is prostitution is only way out? Is this about poverty? I think not. It is about a cheap mindset. More about making a quick buck. The smiles in LOS (especially of those making a living from tourists) are all false. Is this heaven but inhabited by devils?
Now coming to the typical long staying farangs & some of your contributors :
1) Are they all people with an IQ of 30 or less. — SOME SURE ARE.
2) Are they misfits at home? — MOST LIKELY
3) Will they ever fit in here – NEVER
4) I want companionship, not sex. What's wrong with that? – NOTHING – ONLY THE PLACE IS WRONG – GO BACK TO YOUR COUNTRY FOR LOVE – COME HERE FOR SEX.
4) Can they change a bargirl’s life – NO (SHE IS HAPPY WITH HER LIFE?)
5) What does she want? MONEY
6) What about my emotions? WHY DO YOU FORGET SHE IS A PROSTITUTE NOT YOUR WIFE OF GIRLFRIEND.
7) This one is different. NO
8) I am rich and can afford this. YOU WILL NOT REMAIN RICH FOR LONG IF YOU STAY HERE.
Why am I going back again. Only for the beach at Karon & Kata – NOTHING ELSE.
PS : I bought the famous T shirt " No thank you – No beer, No buy, No tuk tuk, No boom boom"
Maybe one day I will see a Thai with a T shirt saying – " OK – BUT STILL GIVE ME MONEY"
Some fairly tough views there. Long-termers may tend to agree and those new may tend to disagree…