Stickman's Weekly Column February 19th, 2006

The Lengths To Which The Girls Will Go



Although readers often ask me to write about investigations, I seldom do so because confidentiality is promised to the customer. Not so long ago I did an investigation for a gentleman that had a rather novel ending. This guy granted me permission to write about it so can I break my rule of not talking about the Stickman Bargirl Investigation Service.

The task was simple. The customer simply wanted to know whether the lady in question was still working in the bar and whether she was being faithful or not. This is the simplest of tasks. It requires a visit to the bar, establishing whether the lady in question is still employed there and if she is, whether she is on duty at that particular time. If she is, it needs to be established whether she is “up for it” or not. Part of the challenge is doing it all in such a way that suspicion isn't aroused. The investigator needs to pose as an interested customer and see where it goes.

So off I trotted to Patpong earlier this week in pursuit of Noi. I hadn’t been into this particular bar in a couple of years. I ascended the long flight of stairs up into one of Patpong’s darkest lairs, one of the notorious upstairs bars. I entered the bar proper where a number of girls were onstage engaged in the sorts of things that guys who have never been to Thailand simply refuse to believe are possible.

I made myself comfortable on one of the couches, well away from other customers. I’d barely sat down when a girl came out of the shadows and planted herself next to me. I almost did a double take when I realised that she was the very lady I was there to check up on!

Introductions were made and I quickly offered her a drink, a goodwill gesture that I knew would help open her up to probing questions that would follow.

We chatted about this and that and she told me another variant of the hard luck story that most of the bargirls have. I listened sympathetically and agreed with everything she said, the one thing any guy can do to dramatically increase his chances with any woman.

She then started to go through her repertoire of questions in English, trying to find out as much as she could about me. Before too long she had established that my name was Michael, that I hailed from Australia and that I was staying in the Dusit Thani Hotel. Australians are a good pick as generally no-one has a problem with them. Michael is a good name because most of the girls know British football and there are few names bigger than Michael Owen. And it’s a bonus that the girls find him cute. And the Dusit Thani meant I was not short of money. No girl wants to hear that you’re staying in a fleapit at Khao Sarn.

“I go with you, make you happy.”

“What do you mean?”

“I go hotel you. Boom boom all night. Good for you. Have long sleep.”

“Oooh, I cannot take someone back to the hotel.”

“Why not?”

“My wife is there!”

“No problem, can go hotel downstair. 400 baht. Very clean, good loom.”

“Oh, I don’t know. My wife might found out.”

“No problem Khun Miken. Go hotel. Boom boom. One hour. <Various sexual promises made> Only 1,500 baht. You go hotel, sleep good. I number one girl Patpong. Good boom boom for you.”

Now I had all of the information I needed. Noi was still working and she was still up to her old tricks. Without any prompting from me she had told me that she was more than willing to partake in the bedroom Olympics and that was all I needed for the customer. I took a note of all of the jewellery she was wearing, a couple of obviously recent changes to her appearance as well as the colour and style of her nail polish. I slipped away into the toilet to make some precise notes for the customer.

When I came out of the toilet Noi was waiting for me and I held up my mobile phone and said that my wife had called from the hotel and I had to go back. She did her level best to convince me to go to the “loom downstair” but I would have nothing of it.

I was out of the bar quickly and on my way home to type up the report and get it to the customer right away. While it was getting closer to the witching hour in Bangkok, in his part of the world everyone was up and about so I wanted to get the report to him quickly. Had I waited until the next morning, he may well have gone to sleep already.

I went home, typed up the report and emailed it off before hitting the sack.

The next morning there was a thank you email from the customer. He was pleased with the report although obviously disappointed with the result. Still, it is best to know one way or the other he said.

Sometimes guys come back with an email of thanks, sometimes they have a few questions. In other cases there is some follow up required. Upon receipt of that email I destroyed all of the material I had prepared for the case. The case was closed.

I have always wondered what happens after the investigation report is filed. Just what happens next?

What I have told you so far is hardly remarkable. This was a particularly easy case, in fact about as easy as they get. It was totally straightforward, though as is the case when I have bad news to report, it was a little disappointing that the girl was up to no good. But it was what happened next that got interesting.

The customer contacted Noi right away and mentioned that a friend of his had been in Bangkok and had popped into the bar and seen her. As she had told him that she had quit the bar and wasn’t working there any more this was a serious issue and he therefore could not continue with her when the trust had been breached. He was calling it off. It was over. Finished. Thank you and goodbye.

The pleas came thick and fast. “Oh it must be some mistake because that day is a Buddha holiday and bar close.”

“Sorry doll, the Buddhist holiday was a few days ago. This was tonight.”

“Many girls look just like me. He see other girl.”

“Sorry doll, he gave me a heap of information about how you looked that night including some ‘changes to your appearance’”.

Finally, she came out with something he didn’t expect. “It cannot be me. I here in Si Saket.”

The customer thought quickly and then said, “OK, if you are in Si Saket, go to the Kessiri Hotel where we stayed together and take a photo of yourself standing outside. When you have the photo, send it to me. If you do that then I’ll believe you are there.”

“I go now but you must wait two hours because I in village and take time to go main town.”

“Ok, that is fair. But I want the picture within two hours”

A couple of hours later the phone rang. She claimed to have taken the photos but that the disposable camera had died so she would have to buy another one and use that. The customer said that they had agreed on two hours but she pleaded with him for just a little bit more time and then she would send him the photo.

Another couple of hours later, the deadline now well and truly passed, she called and pleaded for a bit more time because she was now at the photo shop but their printer has died and she would have to go elsewhere. She offered to put a gentleman in the photo shop on the phone to verify that there was a problem with the printing machine. She said it would just be a very short amount of time and he would have the photo.

Another couple of hours later, she calls him howling on the phone, declaring her undying love for him and claiming that the internet is down and that she cannot send the photo until the internet connection is restored. She is howling like a banshee, pleading for him to accept her apologies and her devotion of love for him, and only him. He tells her that enough is enough. It is over.

She continues to plead with him and tells him that she promises he will have the photo as soon as the internet comes back online, and that it should be no more than an hour. The connection goes dead and he thinks that is the end of it. He has almost finished his shift at work and it is time to make his way home.

He gets home less than an hour later and as is his routine, he gets a cold one out of the fridge, goes to his computer and gets online. He is surprised to see an email from Noi in Thailand with a file attached. He opens the email and is shocked to see that there she is, standing in front of the hotel, just as he had requested!

He checks the time of the first call from his mobile, some 7 and a half hours earlier. He then goes into his study and takes an atlas of the shelf. Turning to the page with Thailand, he calculates the distance form Bangkok to Si Saket as approximately 450 km. Depending on traffic conditions, that would make the driving time about 6 hours, point to point. If one was to go by bus, it would probably take longer.

Piecing it altogether, he works out that Noi, upon realising that she had been sprung, must have run out of the bar, jumped into the first taxi and headed straight to Si Saket, a fare that likely would have cost her at least 3,000 baht, if not more. She most likely arranged by mobile for someone to be waiting for her at the hotel, to take the photos of her standing outside it, and then get them to a 24 hour internet café right away and email them to her teeruk in Farangland. Including time for stops to make the calls – because it didn’t sound like she was calling from a moving vehicle, all of this would have taken about 7.5 hours.

It was a valiant effort, but it was too little, too late. Nice try, Noi!

WHERE IS THIS PICTURE Competition?

It was a building in Lumpini Park.

Where is that?!

Last week's pic was of the Senior Citizen's Centre located inside Lumphini Park. I was surprised that a good number of people got it right. This week's picture is outside of Bangkok. The prizes are only available to people in Thailand now – either residents or tourists, and must be redeemed within 2 weeks. You MUST say that you are in Bangkok and able to claim the prize or I will consider you ineligible. If you do not explicitly mention you are local or will be in town in the next two weeks, you cannot claim any of the prizes.

FROM STICKMAN'S EMAIL INBOX

Another strain of "bird flu".

When I was living in Pattaya (survived more like), I was constantly recovering from one cold or sore throat after another. Flu sometimes, even caught the chicken pox. It is true that I was staying out late, drinking heavily and eating poorly which is not good for the constitution. After talking about this with my friend we concluded that much of this was due to my contact with the local girls. They were mixing it up with newly arrived Europeans and others from Northern Hemisphere winter, and doing their own version of a pussy driven pandemic. Not the STD type, the orally transmitted type. We dubbed this the “Pussy Flu”. I suppose now you could call it another kind of “bird” flu. As soon as I moved to quieter Hua Hin and settled down (i.e. girlfriend), my health improved dramatically and now I hardly ever catch a cold or sore throat.

On bargirls and mixed cultures.

I have met and discussed on quite a few occasions, with "alternatively employed" girls about their relationships with the farangs that want to pull them out of the scene. All are too well aware of the horror stories associated with this big move for them. They agonize over it, with unreasonable family situations, demanding boyfriends who want to "get them out" or "save" (cough, cough) them from their fate. Some are actually making more money than their boyfriends could cough up regularly, so the incentive to leave is not there as well. Not all are mercenary bitches trying to get on a gravy train, but it's an even spread. I quite like the ones that are open about it. Good for a laugh and to share a drink or two with. The nicer ones that actually love their boyfriends do it way tougher, as each liaison is a breach of their love (in their mind) and they have considerable angst over it. The mixed culture thing can be addressed, but both parties need to compromise. My perception is that farangs believe that the girls need to do all the compromise as that's what they are paying for. This is a doomed attitude…

If we really wanted to do something…

When I was still into the naughty nightlife stuff, a girl (whom I'd known for a while) once caught me checking her ID as she got out of the shower. She said "Hey, don't worry about it. Don't you think we can get fake ones, if we really wanted to do something bad to you guys?" So, the ID is not always / exactly the best solution. A policeman friend of mine once warned me, "Enjoy yourself in Thailand as much as you like, just always make sure your girl is old enough otherwise you'll be in serious trouble."

Sukhumvit adventures.

I had a new experience on Sukhumvit the other night. Instead of being bothered by the pests with clipboards trying to sell timeshare apartments under the guise of a ‘tourist survey’, an enterprising ladyboy approached me with a clip board saying: “Excuse me sir, can I ask you a few questions as part of a survey”. When I told him to get lost he decided to follow me down the Sukhumvit singing the old classic: “Hhands-up, baby, hands-up, give me your heart gimme-gimme your heart gimme-gimme”. Fortunately for all concerned I had had a few beers and found this highly amazing until he finally gave up and left me alone to bother some other poor sod. Unfortunately that wasn’t the end of my grief on the Sukhumvit that night as shortly afterwards I was grabbed by some homeless guy. I didn’t give him the chance to get two hands on me and managed to push him away before he stabbed, punched or whatever. Maybe your students were right when they said Krungthep was not a safe place to be (this all happened around 9 PM between Suk Soi 8 and Soi 20).

For 2,000 baht, would you?

I was standing in the Nana Hotel parking lot a couple of nights ago, chatting with a gal whom I've been with many times before. We were approached by a Thai-speaking Taiwanese gentleman who offered to pay the girl and me 2,000 baht if he could watch us having sex! We quickly realized that he was VERY gay and that it was me that he was most interested in observing. (As a test, this girl and I jokingly offered for him to have sex with me while she watched – and he thought that was a grand idea!) Needless to say, I turned down his offer. I suspect that he would have, at best, jumped in while I was doing her – and at worst, stolen something and run off while I had my pants down!

Pretty girls flocking to Patong.

I think the girls you see in the beer bars and discos in Patong can be a bit deceiving. Yes, there are some very provocatively dressed and beautiful girls there, but many of them are looking for a husband or boyfriend (and a surprisingly large number find one). And with all the young foreign tourists there, the competition for good looking ladies during the high season is fairly intense. If you are much over 40, expect to get dissed by many of Patong's finest. With its large supply of young foreign tourists, many Thai ladies feel that it is an ideal spot to find a foreign husband. Even waitresses and girls who work in hotels and other legitimate businesses are often on the look out for a foreign husband. Some of the ladies you see in discos in Patong do have regular jobs. Some are there looking for a potential foreign boyfriend, some just there to have a good time with their friends. Some are quite willing to go with a paying customer, but there are many who don't quite see themselves as hookers, though money generally enters the equation at some point.

Most of the bars in Nana Plaza were open this past Monday, despite it being a Buddhist holiday. Why? Have the laws become more relaxed? No, I wouldn't say that was the reason…

Checking out Long Gun on Friday night, I note they are back to performing their full array of shows, many of which are the same as or similar to shows that made them famous, and generally acknowledged as the best bar in Cowboy. I was impressed with Long Gun, very impressed. The music was good, there were a heap of really pretty girls, and the atmosphere was one of fun. But sorry Long Gun, the crown for the best bar in Soi Cowboy has well and truly been passed on to Suzy Wong's. Suzy Wong's also had shows taking place, and the shows there were even better, the women even more attractive, and more energetic. Both of these bars are worth a visit, but Suzy Wong's really is hard to beat.

Czech Peter (no, he isn't the Chelsea goalkeeper) is doing his absolute best to wriggle away from the net that is looming over Hollywood. The poor fellow bought a bar which had been closed a few times in previous years and their recent altercation with the boys in brown still hasn't been forgotten. There is huge conjecture as to whether Hollywood can escape what could be a lengthy closure order – or worse!

Another story making a few bar owners angry is also about Hollywood. It would seem that they may be stealing girls from other bars. It is an unwritten rule in Nana that bars won't hire more than one girl from another bar. Perhaps the new bar owner is not aware of this gentleman's agreement…

On Wednesday some of the big boys visited Nana to do some checks and a few bars were closed for the evening. I guess they felt their staff had worked so hard that they deserved an evening off… It's cat and mouse in Nana again.

Is there a correlation between good music and good dancing? I would have thought that there was, but not quite how I thought. Safari Bar is recognised by many as playing the best music in all of the bars in Patpong but it has, without a doubt, the worst dancers. So a correlation does exist – good music is found where bad dancers are!

And for those of you who have a fantasy about sisters, Safari may well be the place you want to hit. I hear that the numbers of sister one and sister two when added up equal 89…

While a lot of the bars made a real effort to dress themselves up with balloons and various romantic paraphernalia and many of the girls were dressed up in all sorts of costumes including Playboy bunnies, a lot of the bars were very quiet on Valentines Night.

The Dollhouse in Pattaya used to be popular but it started to decline some time ago. I have often dropped by in the hope that things would have improved but really, it has never really captured the magic it had in its first year of operation. But perhaps, after a few years of being on the outer they have returned to being one of the better bars again. The Dollhouse has a new manager, many new staff, a new sound system and some very attractive girls. The happy hour is 7:30 – 9:00 PM with local drinks a competitively priced 45 baht and as a bonus, they have Tiger Beer on tap for 45 baht ALL NIGHT. The Dollhouse Pattaya is back on the must visit list.

Club Boesche in Pattaya is causing quite a stir, much the same as Diamond A Gogo did last year when Ricky took over. Some long term Pattaya residents have said that it is the best bar they ever seen in 15 years in Pattaya!

Pattaya has tumbled into the tail end of high season – if the designation “high season” could even be applied this year. The hundreds – if not thousands – of girls who made their way to Pattaya from Isaan three months ago are now sitting around beer bars playing games, eating or chatting among themselves because there are few farangs warming the bar stools; many girls returned to Beach Road, where the boys in brown are being lax about enforcing dictates to keep the beach clean, and other girls are desperately reaching out to former customers offering to share horizontal leisure activities at discounted rates.

In the same way that many beer bars from Naklua to Jomtien were empty or near empty of customers, so too were many gogo bars hurting for business, particularly on week nights. The weekend brought some activity to Walking Street environs. As in the past, the better clubs – those with the most dancers, the most attractive staff, the least offensive music – attracted the lion’s share of visitors. Some gogo bars like Carousel, Club Boesche, Peppermint and Happy enjoyed SRO crowds; others attracted reasonable numbers but certainly not crowds. Most establishments, however, couldn’t draw more than a handful of imbibers from the masses ambling along Walking Street.

The short and depressed high season took more victims of late, including the Circus – which never caught on – and the Zoo (the names alone are reason to close them down).

Ricky, formerly of Diamond A Gogo, has been making some changes in his new position managing Babewatch for the last month. The Covent Garden gogo bar now has more dancers, more attractive staff, better music, and a happy hour from 8 to 9:30 – draught and well drinks at 50 baht. One new gogo that deserves mention is the Bamboo Hut in Centre Condotel, South Pattaya. Despite its unlikely location, the club is attracting decent audiences thanks to friendly and attractive dancers and staff, uninhibited shows, and 50 baht draft. Worth a look.

What the hell is going on down at Patpong? After putting the prices of drinks up, many bars put them back down. Weird as hell, and something I have never seen happen before!

All sorts of nonsense is taking place in Patong in Phuket and no-one really knows what is going on. After a long period of tolerance and allowing bars, clubs etc. to open until 3 or 3.30 AM the long arm of the law descended with an iron fist on Patong on Friday night at exactly 2:00 AM. Red eyed and confused, tourists and no small number of locals were cast out on to the streets, in many cases still clutching their beer bottles and sharing bewildered expressions! It would seem that the local legislators not make up their minds when they want to close the bars. Punters and tourists want to know what the law is so they can adjust their drinking habits to suit. They can start earlier, if they know, but somehow I think that is asking a bit much. To make matters totally confusing, there was no grand entrance by the boys in brown on Saturday night and bars remained open until 3:30 AM. As one Patpong local told me, it is all infuriating!

The bar outside Rainbow has 65 baht drinks – that's alcoholic drinks. Maybe a bit on the short side of a shot, but still reasonable value for those not thrilled at throwing away 120 or 130 baht on a drink. The outside bars should be substantially cheaper than the gogos quite frankly.

Thailand really is not a place you want to get yourself in hot water. The justice system does not have the best reputation and there is a feeling of hopelessness that once you are in the system you have very little influence on the outcome, irrespective of your circumstances. I hate to say it, but probably the biggest crime that Westerners get involved in outside of prostitution (which itself *IS* a crime), is underage sex. Most of it is likely inadvertent – but try telling that to the judge (or newspaper reporters from around the world)! It is a very sad fact that there are a number of girls in the bars who are not of legal age. While Thai ID cards are not too difficult to read, they are in Thai. Or at least they used to be. The new ones now have English on them including date of birth, written in English, and using the Christian calendar. So, as these new ID cards get rolled out, guys really will have no excuse for being naughty boys with women who are not of legal age.

For the exhibitionists who enjoy hanging it out on display, you'll be pleased to know that the Star Of Light once again allows action on the premises, after a period when punters had to get their rocks off away from the premises. I am not sure how the management structure in the bar has changed after the Thai owner passed away in hospital recently of cancer.

The final of the kids' charity dance competitions will be held on Sunday 26 February at Sheba's in Soi Cowboy. A few tickets for the motorbikes are still left. If the final is as great a success as the first two rounds, they will make over 300,000 baht for the kids and Peter has pledged that even if it doesn't reach that level, he will make up the difference himself. This is an excellent cause and worthy of your support.

If you're looking for a new hotel to try out in the busy part of Sukhumvit, you might consider the Dynasty Inn Grande Hotel where the front block is now open. The Dynasty has long been a favourite in Sukhumvit Soi 4 with those guys who prefer not to stay in the Nana Hotel but still want to be close to the action. As it has only just opened there appear to be few guests – little promotion yet I suppose – so for the time being, it is probably a good bet for anyone who likes to "walk in" rather than pre-book. One tip is to get rooms facing the soi, as work is still being done on to the rear block – not heavy construction now obviously, but still some drilling, etc., associated with the fitting out.

Another Thai bargirl has escaped the industry and is making good money online. This particular lass used to work at Peppermint A Gogo in Pattaya and is doing very well online. There have been several sites where guys have been filming in Pattaya at the Penthouse hotel and the Vault and she can be clearly identified by guys who knew her. Apparently, she now wears glasses and was seen back in Peppermint last summer, but left around August with no accounts of her resurfacing anywhere.

Following on from the piece about discussion forums online, I can confirm that Pattaya-chat was not closed. It did close for one day due to the mayhem when various settings were changed and it was back online 36 hours later.

I thought I had seen my first topless Thai women on the beach at Patong last week, but it turned out to be a katoey! Probably not such a bad thing though as the knockers were better than those on any regular Thai girl!

Mrs. Stick said she wouldn't answer her questions this week unless I wrote something negative about Air Asia… Well, my experiences with them are not extensive, but neither are they good. Let's just say that if you are flying locally on a budget carrier then Nok Air has yet to let me down. Air Asia, well, the same can't be said for them!

I reckon if you've got more than three male Thai friends, there's a good chance that you're bent! Truth be told, most Westerners do not have any male Thai friends. Sure, we all know a few males, might be the security guards at our condo building, Thai guys at work, or maybe Khun Sweat, the guy who flips burgers out the front of Nana and sweats at least a litre every night? But how many Thai guys can you say are really your friends? I have noticed that most Western guys who have more than a couple of male Thai friends….bat for the other team!

If you want to be an English teacher in Bangkok then it might be time to pull your socks up. The school I am employed at searched for a new teacher recently and the standard of English teachers applying was higher than I have ever seen. A lot of guys with all the right credentials, good experience, and many seemed like just the sort of teacher who you would be quite happy to see teaching your kids. I was impressed. Whether this is a trend or merely an aberration, I do not know.

The latest in a long line of embarrassments for the Thai tourism industry, and for that matter, the Thai government, on Samui. A cover up? Could it be?! What is interesting is that this got major press in the UK. The following email was received from a long-term reader and would appear to describe the very same event!

This morning getting ready for work, very popular morning television program called GMTV had a guest who had experience a problem in Thailand. Very attractive blonde who went on a holiday with friends and went to Ko Samui. Having a good night she woke up on a deserted beach half naked. She found out later she was drugged by 2 Thai men, how she found out. There was CCTV cameras in the bar where she was drinking and showed two Thai men carrying her out, the best bit is that these two men carried her out past a policeman who was by the entrance door and didn't batter an eyelid. All this showing on CCTV. The next thing she did is went to report this incident to the police where she said that they treated her that she was the victim, the police didn't want to help her as they didn't want the story to get out as this would bring out bad press about Ko Samui. Now talk about bad press about Thailand this was shown on a very busy program on ITV, I'm sure Thailand doing all they can to stop tourist visiting.

In what would appear to be sensible move, the authorities have decided to set the Ranong 12 free. Details can be found here.

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Ask the Sticks

Mrs. Stick is here to answer questions surrounding anything that confuses you in Thailand, particularly issues of the heart. Please note that for general bargirl related questions, Mr. Stick might answer them. It has to be said that Mrs. Stick is not your stereotypical Thai woman. She is not Buddhist and she is not shy to criticise things about her own country and culture, although having said that, she remains proud to be Thai. Mr. Stick will try and answer the questions which Mrs. Stick is not so sure about. Please do try and limit the length of questions to Mrs. Stick to about 100 words. We get many questions that are entire stories of several hundred words which I'm afraid are just too long to run here.

Question 1: Last night, I went on a dinner date with a very nice Thai / Chinese woman in her early 30s. After we finished our meal, we started walking home. When we arrived at one of the skytrain stations, we crossed over to the other side of the street (she lives a few blocks from the station and I live a few blocks in the opposite direction). I asked her "Would you like me to walk you home?". She seemed a little shocked by my question and replied, "No, I can take care of myself. Good night". I walked home thinking "What did I do wrong? She probably doesn't want to see me again!" After I returned home, I chatted with her online… She told me that she really wanted me to walk her home, but the way that I asked was impolite by Thai standards. She said that a Thai guy would just tell her outright "I will take you to your home" and then she is free to accept or decline his offer. She said that asking her if she *wanted* to be walked home means that I either really didn't want to do it and / or that I didn't like her. Is this normal Thai behavior or a big over-reaction on her part?

Mrs. Stick says: This is a normal reaction for someone who doesn't understand the other person's culture, and really, this is not a big deal at all. She has told you how she thinks which is good, there is open communication here. When two people involved in a relationship come from different cultures they cannot just assume everything. She cannot assume that you understand what she considers to be normal in Thai relationships. I know that farang women like to be treated as if they are independent, like they are strong and can look after themselves. I understand that farang women will often pay their own way because they want to feel independent. Many Thai women feel differently and expect that the guy will look after her, pay for her on most occasions and be there to look after her and protect her. Thai women "need" more special care than farang women. But don't get me wrong, a good Thai woman will not be totally needy. If you choose the right woman, she will take responsibility for many things herself. Women do have their own responsibilities in a relationship too. Let's put it another way. When dating in Thai culture, a man is expected to look after a woman, but once married, the woman is supposed to look after the man, not in terms of paying for things – although she may contribute at times, but in most other ways.

Question 2: I was married 3 weeks ago, after a long courtship of no sex. 3 days after marriage we started arguing and she was complaining of being a นกในกล่อง <bird in a cageStick> amongst other things. I was too hard on her because she was not as affectionate as I would like. A week later she has now left. I ended up cutting up the wedding photos and dumping them at her mother's house, not a good thing to do. I am talking with her mother everyday, who insists she loves me. I could quite easily find her, but fear she would hate me if I did, she won't talk to me, her shame must be great. She left home at 14 and has lived alone for 10 years, having never lived with a man before, she is ใจแข็ง <strong willedStick> to the point of being ridiculous. She won't talk about her feelings ever. Her father used to hit mother but is older now. This is the root of my wife's problems. What can I do?

Mrs. Stick says: This is not an easy situation at all and I am a bit stuck on advice to give here. When you started arguing heavily so recently after getting married, and without making a real effort to solve the problem, major damage was caused. I think you both probably need some time to let the anger subside and also give yourselves some space. Then you can see how you feel, and whether you would each like to continue, which if yes, you will have to get together and talk openly to solve the problems. Really, this is a very difficult one if your wife is so ใจแข็ง <strong willedStick>. You have to understand that marital problems can take a lot of effort to work out. Sometimes love alone just isn't enough. You can love each other, but even just living together and being together 24 hours a day can be a bit much for some people. You might have to make some very hard decisions. This woman sounds very stubborn and I am not sure how easy it will be to work out things with her. It is all rather complex and I would prefer not to say too much more than that I wish you luck.

I have been in something of a daze these last few weeks as my day job has been placing all sorts of demands on me. Cripes, it feels as if they've expected me to work all the hours that God sends. What is that all about?! But seriously, I have been hellishly busy and that has meant that some things may not have worked quite so well on the site as usual. Columns have been rushed, email replies have been slow, updates have been a little slower than usual and everything has at times been a bit rough. I'm almost through the storm so things should start to smooth out shortly. Thanks for your patience!

Your Bangkok commentator,

Stick


Thanks go out to Bangkok Grasshopper and Mr. Write.