3 Months In Thailand…
I had an opportunity to spend 3 months in Thailand last year, an opportunity that came about because of a bit of a conflict between myself and an immigration dept that shall rename nameless apart from a little hint: it was a New Zealand immigration department…
Anyhow, here I was outside Bangkok airport at 3:30 AM with a brand new Thai SIM card, and a few phone numbers that I had gathered from Thai dating sites collected over a month before I arrived in the place. I didn’t hang around Bangkok as I was there a few times before and had seen it all, plus I am not in to the bargirl scene and way prefer the chase than the “wham, bam, thank you mam” thing.
I sat outside the airport for a few hours drinking coffee or water, just taking in the sounds of the city. I had a few hours to kill before my flight to Khon Kaen.
I read about Khon Kaen in one of Stick’s columns before I left for Thailand. “I want to go there”, I thought to myself. It’s not so seedy, its’ weird and it could be an adventure…
I landed at the airport in Khon Kaen and walked outside. OMG, I thought to myself, if I was ever going to be bundled in to the back of a car while a gun was held to my head, this was going to be the place for it to happen (just my first impression of the place)! I had another coffee and sat down for a bit.
When I enter a new place, I like to sit at the airport and drink coffee to size the place up. Once I got my head buzz sorted, I went back into the airport and bought a ticket to Chiang Mai, departing in 3 days. I had some business to attend to in Khon Kaen before I left, mainly one of my hookups from a Thai dating site.
She was a pretty wee rice farmer’s daughter and her photos online were just unreal, a real angel you didn’t want to take your eyes off.
I made my way to my Airbnb, a nice condo about a 10-minute walk from the centre of the city, the city that still creeped me out. I was certain I was going to die a sudden and bloody death in this place. I don’t know what it was about the place. I still can’t put my finger on why I didn’t click with the joint but here I was so I had to make the most of it.
I made contact with my date and it was all on for 9 PM that night.
It was now about 2:00 in the afternoon and I went for a nap. I was a little jet-lagged and was coming down off a high from finally reaching my destination.
I slept for a few hours and woke again, did the usual wake up thing, coffee, shower, ra ra ra…and then it was off to town about 7:00 PM to get some food and find my bearings.
I can’t remember her name but my date rocked up at 9:00 PM with her older sister. Things got off to a really bad start. It turns out that she had used Google Translate in her previous communications with me online and her and her sister’s English was virtually non-existent. But we managed with the help of our phones. She was indeed an angel in real life too. She didn’t even try to look pretty – she rocked up with zero makeup, and her attire was a standard pair of white ‘no brand’ trainers and a pair of jeans that were obviously way too big for her plus a plain white t-shirt. She was such a cutie.
Neither of them drank and of course I was feeling the effects of a few beers already. I had a quick few beers in one of the places that Stick mentioned in his column, but like I said, bargirls are not my thing and I was happy to leave them annoying hookers to get lucky elsewhere.
So here I was with the two strange girls who were sat having a Coke with this strange man who had realised that organising meetups in Khon Kaen is probably up at the top of the list of ’stupid things to do in Thailand’. They lived a considerable distance outside of the city and had driven in to meet me and I felt a bit bad about dragging them away from their rice knowing upon meeting them that it was a wasted trip for them. Nevertheless, I would hang with them for a few days if they wanted to remain in my company. And they did. We decided to go to my place. It was still quite early but they didn’t drink and I was tired and communication was soooo difficult.
We walked back to their car which happened to be the biggest Hilux I had ever seen. The sister that was driving had to sit on a cushion to see over the steering wheel. I put my address into the sat nav and then they drove me back to my place. They came in and made themselves at home. We all slept on the same bed that night, fully clothed of course. It reminded me of the time about 10 years ago prior when I was in Ireland and ended up going back to this girl’s house. Her sister was home and had a few wines on board. After a few more wines and getting to know these two Irish sisters they started to play fight on the floor while I was sitting on the sofa with beer in hand. I won’t go into detail but I woke up next morning with a sister either side of me.
There were none of these shenanigans in my room in Khon Kaen, just two sisters sleeping beside me.
Next morning after more Google Translate, they said they were going home to change and would come back later. So I left them off and organised to meet them later. When they came back dressed in new clothes but still the same style, they took me out to a hydro dam, then a temple which had about one million steps to reach and then the older sister buggered off leaving me alone with my date. I had obviously won her trust.
I felt so sorry for my angel-faced date. She didn’t want to be with me and I didn’t want to be with her…the communication was just too difficult. But we struggled on. We did dinner and drinks and tried to make convo…but it wasn’t happening.
We went back to my room to watch TV…as that was all that we could do to entertain is both, even if I didn’t understand what was said, at least I could look at the pictures.
My weekend wasn’t over yet. I still had one more day to go through. Her sister turned up at my room about 11 PMthe next day. They were taking me out to dinner somewhere far, far away. Me and my date went out to meet her as she waited in the car. Next thing this little 4-year old boy is running up to meet me. It was my date’s son, a happy wee child and dressed to the nines compared to his mum and sister. They drove me out to a lake with floating tables where we sat down to eat and drink. Lo and behold, next thing her mother, her father, one of her grannies and her brother are standing there looking and smiling at me. No one had told me that it was meet the parents day!
Of course no one spoke English and here I was on a raft eating food that they ordered and which I didn’t know what it was while all the time trying to make convo via Google. We sat around smiling and nodding and pointing and looking and me wondering how on earth I could make this all end so I could go back to being a happy single man again. I wasn’t ready to support an entire family although the thoughts of me driving around in their huge shiny black Hillux on their rice estate yelling at the serfs to plant the rice faster did sound appealing.
Finally someone said “We must go!” So we all departed, me and my date and her son and her sister got into the big ute and drove back to my room. All weekend I had not touched this angel on earth, she just looked too nice and petite and ‘not interested’. I still have photos of when we were together and I still look at them with fondness of such a weird and wonderful and wacky and totally fxxked up weekend. We said goodbye at my room, both of us with a total sense of relief that the weekend was over. I’m sure I could have had her that night were alone in my room but you know, she didn’t want it, she didn’t want to have to be with a man so her family could live a better life. She wanted her own life that was made with her choices. I wonder where she is now. Did she find a man she liked? If she is still on that dating site, does she resent her parents for putting pressure on her to find a man? If only she spoke English or if only I could speak Thai, I would really have loved to get into that mind of hers to see where it was going.
Anyway, she left and I was alone in my room packing up for my flight the next day to Chiang Mai. I had an appointment with a dentist and then another few dates lined up. I still had 86 days left in Thailand and I had just got my Tinder and Badoo love apps sorted.
The author cannot be contacted.