10 minutes into this book, I began to wonder if I should get Ms. Hillary to
review it, rather than myself. Chuck Wilson’s Guide to romantic
adventures in Thailand (ISBN 978-974-357-252-4, Bamboo Sinfonia, 2010)
appeared initially to be a primer for lovesick swains, or how to survive one
night in Walking Street. However, since the octogenarian lady was not kindly
disposed to me that day, I ploughed on regardless.
According to author Wilson, there are four romantic
1. Being single
2. Having a girlfriend
3. Getting married (and staying faithful)
4. Getting married (while having extramarital affairs)
Wilson is described on the back cover as a travel writer
living in Thailand and who can read, write and speak Thai, thereby giving
suitable credentials for someone to be an ‘expert’ in Thai-farang affairs.
However, it is unlikely that a non-Thai can judge Thais in these situations.
In the early part of the book, author Chuck Wilson
states, “The name of the game of romance in Thailand is fun. It’s all about
enjoying life to the fullest… The game of romance should be played out so
that both you and whoever you are romancing at the time, for however short
or long, win.” Anyone with even a modicum of regard for the people around
them would agree. This is an excellent premise to accept before going
further into the book.
Taking his first “adventure”, Chuck Wilson states that
being single means that your life is self-centered, you do what you please.
One of the attractions of Thailand, he opines, is the never-ending supply of
attractive women, and many of them can be found in South Pattaya - but
remember that these are bar girls.
Some of his other touted “advantages” in being single is
that life is cheaper as you only have to feed yourself, and not a wife and
children as well. This is a rather obvious fact and someone who couldn’t
work that out by themselves should not be allowed out without a nanny, let
alone go to a go-go bar.
A chapter is included written by a private investigator,
as it is strongly suggested that a check be done on any girl the likely lad
has designs for long term associations. The figures quoted are sobering. Out
of bar girl liaisons around one third make the grade, but two thirds do not.
The attraction of the easy money in the sex industry is too strong.
There are several color plates in the center of the book,
all of Thai girls, but many of them are of the same Thai girl. I remain
confused as to why this is so. With “So Many Girls!” in the title, why was
it necessary to publish repeats?
At B. 485 on the Bookazine shelves, it is not an
expensive read, but I did find some of the advice rather repetitive (like
the subjects in the photographs); however, there is enough food for thought
for those contemplating cross-cultural marriage, though there will be many
who will say that all marriages are a minefield. And they may just be right!