My Little Noi
As I process my last trip to LOS I have been thinking about my little Noi. She is a bargirl in one of the larger bars. I don’t go for the beauties, the airheads, or the aggressive ones. I usually find a quiet little mouse to keep me company. The one I found was pleasant and seemed fairly level-headed, for a bargirl. I do not subscribe to the slam bam thank you mam theory of bargirl interaction. The few times I took her back to my hotel she was OK, nothing special, but I’m no prize either, so no complaints. I always try and see what makes them tick and we talked a lot. It turns out that she was quite a little actress since she managed to fool me on a few points but that is not really important.
What I managed to do was get her email address but more important she let me be her friend on Facebook. She probably thought she was safe since most of it was in Thai. I guess she did not realize that there are a few websites that will translate written Thai fairly well and if it still doesn’t make sense then I have a Thai friend who owns the local Thai restaurant. She is quite a little Facebook poster so there is lots of information. I have translated quite a bit of it over the last 10 days so I now have an idea of her mental state.
She has been in the bars for 6 years and is 26 years old now. A veteran at 26 is not something to envy. I knew this before I had access to her Facebook page.
I try and gauge the girls when I meet them to see how far along they are in their spiral dive into the ground. This one, like I said, was quite a little actress and she had me fooled about her stability. I figured she was fairly high up in the spiral but after reading her Facebook I am thinking she can see the ground already. She has been on Facebook for the last 2+ years and in that time she had 2 farang she got attached to but as is usually the case, they used her for a while and then kicked her to the curb. After the second time she found a Thai boyfriend, simply out of self defence, I think. She needed somebody to love her and care for her after being rejected twice, even if he is probably an asshole. That could be why some of the girls have boyfriends, simply out of self preservation.
Over the last year she has also been a little sickly so I don’t know what is going on there, if it is the stress finally catching up with her, if she has managed to catch something, or if this is a problem with all of them.
I took her out for supper one night. I should have known not to take a maid from Isaan to anything but a Thai place. We went to Sunrise Tacos and had Mexican which she promptly posted as terrible.
She talked about me in a few posts. She didn’t really like me but I think more in a passive way than an active dislike. I think she looked at me as simply work to do so she could get paid. I didn’t appreciate a friend’s comment where she called me a package. I went to her page and pegged her as a bargirl too so nothing unusual there.
The last few weeks have been a bit chaotic for her. I think she has reached the breaking point and is trying to find a way out. She got enough money from me to allow her to take some time off. Her posts have become fewer, partially because she has figured out that I can read them and partially because she is too busy to post. She has been taking more days off I think in an effort to start something up but I am afraid that her 6 years might have rendered her a society outcast. If she cannot find a solution to her problem and has to return to the bar then I think the clock is ticking and there is not much time left until something happens. She will either join the drunks in alcoholic’s corner or she will throw caution to the wind and start doing really stupid things. Her only salvation might be family help but I’m not sure if Thai families will intervene to help a sibling in a jam or if they will just watch her float away. She has several siblings and other relatives in Bangkok so the people are there to help. It will be interesting to see if she is still there next year when I come back. I really hope not, but in a good way, not because she finally hit the wall.
6 years is a long time to stay in the industry. Given that she was relatively young when she got in, and in all likelihood relatively impressionable (as most rural Thais are at that age), odds are pretty decent that the industry has messed her up. She has spent pretty much all of her adult life in the industry and what she has learned in it will give her a perspective that I am not sure will do anything for her ever being able to stand on her own 2 feet.