Thailand and sex

Thu, 02/28/2013 - 07:09 — Compost Stu

The sun rises through an oppressing layer of thick brown haze, nearly obscuring the furthest phallic towers that litter the Bangkok city scape. A solitary bird somewhere in the near distance produces a cry that could be interpreted as a sad indictment on bio-diversity in this hot, dirty city. Bangkok awakens, canvas covers removed to reveal the street vendors workplaces, traffic showing early signs of entropy, the mornings warmish sewage pulsing beneath the iron clad sewers. The odours here range from intoxicating tropical delights to foul stenches, all filtered through the insidious solid smog that resides astride my nasal hairs.
An elderly western gentleman sits casually with his young Thai lady friend (or lady boy….?), eating his western breakfast while I sip my coffee and indulge in a green papaya salad. As the morning progresses, the scenario repeats itself over and over. Sex tourism, Bangkok style. 50 Y.O. + western men of a peculiar stereo type are the most common. Outwardly they appear awkward with their Thai ladies, not quite knowing how to relax. My guess is these are the men who find it difficult with women in the west. The easy going friendliness that the Thai girls offer helps break down their performance anxiety, alleviating their self-consciousness. Perhaps their Christian sex guilt complexes are so entrenched it takes a Buddhist culture to relieve them.
The ladies, for the most part, are not bar girls. They represent the growing number of women who inhabit the grey area between outright prostitution and genuine dating. Young and quite often of a beauty that western men appreciate more than their Thai counterparts, they use dating sites to chat, message and cam with incoming Farangs (white fellas). They all appear to be genuinely looking for love, any age, any nationality (except Thai).
I’ve met a lady that is out of work, and running low on cash. She is a hospitality worker, looking for work in a hotel. She has a disability. Her eyes criss cross and wander around in her eye sockets, giving her the appearance of a blind girl. Even though she is fluent in English, very pretty and quite intelligent, it is hard for her to find work. Anti-discrimination laws are not what they are in Oz. She lives in a one room apartment you couldn’t swing a cat in. She has virtually no possessions (in this I am envious) and sends regular payments to her parents in impoverished Surin province. From her I learn that there are many more women in Thailand than men, and that there are so many Lady boys, the remaining male statistics are all the more diminished. Why this is so she cannot say, although I suspect that the role of Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals in the environment are rampant here, due to years of lackadaisical pollution laws.
She has been using the dating site for a couple of years and it helps her get through tough times, though she says she is sick of one night stands. The modus operandi is something like this: She meets a guy, they go out to dinner at a nice place, she’s charming and sexy, dressed to the nines. They go out for a drink afterwards and if all is OK back to the hotel all tipsy and amorous. The next day is a shopping day, where she will quickly determine if the guy is a “Cheap Charlie” or not. She will hang out with him as long as he is paying the bills, or until the next date is due, whichever comes first. I think there is a genuine hope that every guy will be the last one, and she will meet her lifes love, but the tourist always has to leave and the merry go round never seems to slow down enough to jump off.
P.S. Before I left Bangkok, my friend found a job at a hotel reception, but is struggling with migraines and nausea linked to her eyesight. I’ve offered to help her find $$ for an operation to correct her eyes, simple laser surgery, but she refuses. She is proud……and life is tough.


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