I don’t believe my Thai ex-girlfriend of two years ago would mind seeing her name in one of my posts. Especially since I have recently sent her a generous amount of money paying off the remaining debt on her house, with the leftover proceeds intended to help her son and daughter finish college.
Somebody had to do it…
Rasamee and I met in October of 2010. I had just moved to Thailand and was living in a simple studio apartment in the city of Pattaya, which is a kind of sexual Disneyland for middle-aged Western men. She was working as a hostess in one of the neighborhood bars, going by the name of Lawt (easier for the soused customers to remember) and claiming to be in her late thirties. Though she was in fact some seven years beyond that, her dark looks fooled me completely — and this was before I’d had anything to drink.
Both of us being new arrivals in Sin City, we quickly hit it off. I found her very easy to be around, mostly because she wasn’t some calculating twenty-something Thai girl who views foreigners as winning lottery tickets. This was simply a woman trying to make extra money to pay off her debts and send her children to a local university back home. Besides the bar, she was also working overtime at a nearby restaurant. I admired her commitment and was soon pitching in to help the cause.
Though she was technically my girlfriend, I didn’t have her move in with me, preferring a measure of privacy. Nor did I support her full-time. She continued to work at the bar and sleep in a large dorm-like room nearby where most of the girls stayed. At times, when she was especially tired, she’d use my place as a crash pad for an afternoon nap.
It was a pleasant arrangement for me. For our “dates”, I would pay her bar fine and we’d go out to eat and play some pool. Later, we’d retire to the apartment for maybe a movie and night together. In many ways I was a good friend, always willing to lend a hand such as when she needed a new foam sleeping pad. We went shopping and I purchased one for her, then proceeded to drag the unwieldy item seven long blocks in the suffocating heat back to her room.
Unfortunately the good times did not last. After six months together, I moved to Bangkok and broke things off when I decided I didn’t want to get serious. However, I continued to provide her with money when crises arose, such as last year when the bank was about to repossess her home. Rasamee’s ex-husband, whom I hope someday ends up with testicular cancer, had years before left her and the kids for a younger woman, not bothering to provide any support whatsoever. Though it took some persuading, I eventually stepped in and paid off most of the outstanding loan. A sister covered the remaining amount and though this saved the house, it still left Rasamee with what was by her standards a large debt to her sibling — a condition I have just rectified.
Despite my good deeds, I am no saint. As the post title implies, I am not always thrilled at what seems to be a never-ending stream of problems and requests for help and often wish it would all go away. At the same time, I recognize that having a place to live and providing one’s children with a good education are not unreasonable wishes. It’s clearly a time in her life when some charity can make a difference.