Why do so many of those writing in need to criticize the ones who are enjoying themselves in this opportunity? Sure, it is that many of us come from broken relationships in our home countries and we want to enjoy ourselves while we are still able to on this planet.
The Thais seem to accept that about us with their worst description of us, and an accurate one as well, that we are here for cheap sex. As so many of us have discovered, expensive sex is horribly boring and ritualized, so why shouldn't we pay what a lady or a ladyboy could earn in the straight community in five days for ninety minutes of their time?
After ten years here, I think I can speak from experience regarding the nobility of trying to save some beautiful young person from a life of increased earning potential, travel, and fun and instruct her on how to be a travel guide for well past rude Russian tourists, or working in a real estate office while working side deals in the business she would have stayed in anyway given her own choice.
I've seen religious zealots thumping the bible on Beach Road and telling those girls to stop and lead a moral life. Besides living in a shame based culture, exactly what morality do the locals have? I'd like to know. One assumes the westerners dressed in hot black suits and preaching on Beach Road are unaware of the sex workers' other options. I think they are doing this for each other, not the Thais on the beach who they really care less about. Living long enough to have seen the hypocrisy of those claiming altruism inspires one to such generalizations.
If an old man is willing to try and buy the love, that which the Beatles told us in 1964 cannot be bought, or maybe he wants only companionship then it is sure his right to do so. We all are entitled to however much masochism we'd like on our plate. I have eaten at that restaurant and developed healthy indigestion, now I just snack and enjoy grazing the pasture when I am in my right mind. Again, I contend that as long as you estimate your risks and stay on top of your money, you can indulge yourself here to your libido's content.
As far as I can tell, the Thais do not mind me contributing a couple of million baht per year to their country. Maybe I am part owner in some home construction projects and I hope I never see the end results. As a fellow who also has a condo in the Philippines, I prefer life here in Thailand with no typhoons, fewer beggars, and much less threatening legal authorities. In the Philippines now, they have converted all the taxis to cleaner burning fuels and the truly good news in that by January of 2014 the Jeepneys will also be converted from that nasty diesel fuel which lingers in nasty clouds in all urban areas and that really changes the feeling in Baguio. The government will pay $2,000 for each jeepney's conversion and, obviously they will pay it upon completion.
I guess I left the original subject, but I think many travelers will be glad to know they will be able to breathe easier in Angeles and Manila. My theme here is why do people find it necessary to try and change older men here at this site? I think it is safe to say that the paint is dry on pretty much most of us by the time we get here and the only changing we're interested in is that of how we adapt to this culture and avoid problems. I for one am not interested in what western women or the men controlled by them think of what I am doing here. Like most of the readers, I am here to enjoy what life I have left and not be lonely as the American male lives these days. It is just my opinion but I know how I lived there and how I live here and my choice is to be here most of the time where I seem to be more accepted than I feel in my own homeland. The friends I know who still live there scrimp and save so that they may come here and they avoid the nightlife back home if over forty.
Last evening I was sitting on my balcony with that really good writer from this site known as Mega, and as we looked down to the city we both mentioned how some days we ask ourselves why we live here while perhaps in mind-numbing traffic or surrounded by a burst of offensive noise. But neither of us could imagine a country we would rather be in and would be happy to know if a better one exists. Shame on me, a 66-year old man who likes to walk into a gogo and pay a bar fine! I want to say to those who tell me I am a fool to be doing what I am to take a look at the other fingers on that hand which is pointing at me and realize three fingers are pointing back at the critic.
Maybe I am qualified to discuss the changing roles of women in society or the way men are treated as I noticed in 1967 how much more power and respect the Europeans received than we Americans within a few months after arriving in Germany. The women were slender and relationships were stable. Returning to the USA in 1970 to see women who already had much more power than the men, were burning their bras in protest and to gain equal rights. One can never blame anyone for wanting equal rights, but now it is not equal and I cannot live a life of fear over being sued over contrived grievances as many I have known have suffered. Men are not marrying now as it has gone from 50/50 no fault settlements to men paying 80% in something the imported Russian wives brought to the American scene – Equitable Distribution – which means a man should pay what will take him eight years to replace. Lawyers make good money setting up prenuptial agreements to satisfy a man's fear of economic loss and that is a nice thing. But the female's attorney's now simply advise her to call the police and claim the husband beat her so he is put in jail regardless of whether she has a mark on her. To not suffer a criminal record or the 1 – 2 years minimum sentence for spousal battery, he raises the cash award thereby losing some of the prenuptial advantage. Then her fake charges are dropped.
So why are we here? Cheap sex the older Thais say. Who honestly can argue with that reality? Since we cannot have sex all the time or even anywhere near most of the time, there must be other reasons. And there are many things to do. Read Mega's caving expeditions here at the site. Or our friend the Caveman is having quite a time in the lush green mountain scenery around Chiang Mai.
Or the Stickman himself who can happily spend hours daily wandering the streets of Bangkok taking pictures of all the great variety in that fantastic city.
Myself, I find it hard to get to the mall immediately next door without two or three conversations with the many friends I have in this big condo building or the city at large as just about everyone goes to the Central mall. For me, this is a village, friends are all around and some are Thais. Back home one is isolated and has to drive everywhere. My motorbike is four years old and has 6,000 kilometers on it. Were it not for the gym being three km away, it would have much less.
To those who want to judge what we are doing here, go ahead. We don't mind. Live and let live ought to be reasonable.
One last story… About five years ago I was in the Cambodian capital along the river and heard a couple of those European ladies discussing what they would like to do to the foreign men who were exploiting these Cambodian girls as we were all gazing down from the Foreign Correspondents' Club restaurant rooftop one evening. I decided that the next evening I would find the trashiest looking hooker I could to bring to a fine meal up there! It was rewarding to see them sneak looks at me and whisper to each other. Guess they didn't feel like giving me that discipline they had in mind.
It's a shame that the finger is so often pointed although the behaviour of some who flaunt it or make it out to be something it isn't really is just asking others to take the piss out of them.
It would seem however that Thailand appears not to have shrugged off its reputation for the naughty stuff. I asked a question in my weekly column recently as to what the perceptions were of Thailand in the West and responses are that they're not too crash hot. I really thought things would have changed, but I got that totally wrong!