The “Home” page is my daily blog. The remaining tabs contain previously blogged, episodic ‘stories’, which are now re-published in chronological order.
It has been five days since I last blogged.
A fair bit has been going on in the past few days so I had better get on with it.
On Tuesday I awoke at the crack of dawn and drove to Bangkok and made my appointment with the psychiatrist at Bumrungrad with time to spare.
I told the psychiatrist that I was very happy with the new antidepressants and he informed me that the drugs had not yet reached their maximum effect as that would take around six weeks.
I had been taking them for only two weeks, so he prescribed another four weeks’ supply, at which time I would need to see him again to fully assess their effect.
My second appointment was with the psychotherapist. I think it was a very positive session, at the conclusion of which, a few personal targets were agreed.
I told him about my alcohol relapse after 15 days, but he didn’t seem as bothered about it as I expected him to be.
He said that this pattern of drying out and relapsing was quite predicable for someone with my background which covered literally decades of drinking.
He urged me to reconsider the idea of going into detox, so I have agreed to at least contact the detox centre that he has recommended and see what they have to say.
We discussed the idea of me returning to AA, as after two attendances a couple of weeks ago, I stopped again.
I told him that there was a reason why I was reluctant to return to AA, but that the reason may appear to him to be a silly reason, although for me, it was quite significant.
I told him that previously, every time I returned to AA, I would be ‘smothered’ by well meaning members; effusive in their desires to welcome me back to the fold and their insistence on passing on their ‘home spun’ philosophies of how to avoid further relapses.
The first time this happened I was quite overwhelmed and humbled by the experience and by the depth of feelings that were displayed on my behalf.
However, I have now relapsed so many times that for some reason I just can’t face the prospect of all the members singling me out for yet another ‘special’ welcome.
I just want to creep back, without any fanfare and slowly pick up the reigns as a regular attendee.
My doctor suggested that I solve this dilemma by arranging to have ‘one to one’ sessions with my sponsor for a while, rather than go to the open AA meetings for a while.
This sounded like a great idea, as coincidentally, I had bumped into my sponsor a couple of weeks back for the first time in months and had promised him that I would call to arrange a get together.\
Moving on, I have to report that my therapist is far more understanding and supportive of my trials and tribulations with the women of Thailand than most of the readers of this blog.
He understands what has been driving me in my ever-growing list of failed relationships. Furthermore, he does not see anything inherently wrong or harmful with me trying to find a long term relationship with girls that I meet in bars.
There are good and bad women everywhere and he is firmly of the opinion that it is quite possible to meet women in bars who can turn out to be good and long lasting partners.
Like me, he thinks that there is not much difference between a farang/bar girl relationship which is usually based on money in return for “wifely” services and typical a western relationship where there is invariably an unspoken acceptance that over a period of time the husband will generally contribute a majority of the joint assets and the wife will perform other ‘services’.
There are many exceptions of course, both in the Thai and western world, and it is dangerous to generalise.
However, the principal of who brings what to a marriage/ long term relationship, doesn’t really change that much, wherever you may be in the world.
It would seem that it is my choice of partners, rather than where I meet them that has been the main cause of my relationship traumas, and my therapist sees no reason why I shouldn’t find a suitable partner in a bar if I change my criteria for the ideal lady.
Difficult – but not impossible.
I had previously told him about Wan, the lovely lady from Roi Et who had been so solicitous of my welfare and almost smothered me in kindness, but who carried a little bit too much’ baggage’ for my liking.
I told him that I had always looked for someone more ‘feisty’ and challenging than Wan seemed to be and that this was probably the reason why my relationships always ended in disaster.
Last Tuesday I told him that I had been thinking a lot about all these failed relationships, and have concluded that at the ripe old age of 64, it was time I gave up chasing these 22 year olds as I now accept that it will always end badly.
I informed him that just recently I had been back in contact with Wan, and that I was seriously considering asking her to get together with me again to see if we couldn’t have another try at making it work.
Wan is 31 and is by far and away the nicest girl I have ever met in my life. Maybe if I tried again I might grow to love her.
He agreed that it might be the solution to my relationship issues and was certainly worth a second try to see how things may develop.
We also talked about me living in Pattaya, as so many of you have told me it is the worst possible town I should be living in.
Once again, without any prompting from me, he told me that he could not see any reason for me to move from Pattaya. He too liked to come to Pattaya and thought it was a good place for farang to live. He agreed that there was much that Pattaya had to offer quite apart from the enormous red light district and the thousands of bars.
He also reiterated the oft-repeated AA adage that it matters not how many bars there may be or how easy or hard it may be to obtain booze. To the committed, practising alcoholic, he will find a way to obtain alcohol wherever he happens to be.
At the end of a good session we agreed that we would in future meet once every two weeks rather than on a weekly basis as the Doc felt I was making good progress, in spite of my drinking set back.
There is no doubt that he is a very caring, kind person who really wants to help me.He told me with a wry smile that he actually dislikes taking too much money from his patients.
He said this in such a sincere manner way that I absolutely believed him.
Upon my arrival back in Pattaya, I stopped by at Tan’s bar for a spot of lunch.
Tan was there and this was the first time I had seen her since the disastrous attempt to rekindle our relationship a few days previously. She studiously ignored me, much the same as she had before her feeble attempts to patch up our long dead affair.
Some of my readers have chastised me severely for even trying to become involved with her again and also my apparent compulsion to continually return to ‘her’ bar.
I will try to set this particular record straight.
I have been going to ‘Tan’s Bar’ for well over a year – in fact virtually ever since it opened for business. Tan was there from day one, but she didn’t become my girl friend until relatively recently.
I like the bar. It is one of the best appointed bars by the lake; it has wide variety of cheap, tasty food – both western and Thai – cooked in their adjacent restaurant; it has a very friendly atmosphere and the owners and staff always make everyone very welcome.
Last but not least, I can invariably find a few of my friends there when I drop by for a bite to eat or to have a few drinks.
When I first broke off with Tan, I deliberately gave her bar a wide berth as I did not want to see her when I still had strong feelings for her.
Over time, my feelings for her declined, and one day I thought: “Why should I avoid my favourite bar just because some whore who worked there had hurt me and dumped me?”
So when I decided that I was more or less over Tan, I slowly started to patronise the place again and pick up where I had left off some months earlier.
I was made extremely welcome by one an’all, except Tan who continued to ignore me, and that suited me just fine.
Nothing could have surprised me more when a few days ago, Tan’s friend told me that Tan wanted to get back with me.
None of us are perfect, least of all Mobi.
I know, I should have told Tan’s friend to tell her that it was all over and that I wasn’t interested in Tan any more.
But I just couldn’t resist the intrigue. I would be lying if I didn’t admit to a smidgen of residual feelings for her – feelings that were still lurking somewhere in a tiny corner of my heavy heart.
I have recounted what subsequently transpired in my recent blogs and I completely concede that my resulting anger tantrum and my childish sending of phone messages to Tan was stupid and unnecessary.
I should have risen above all that, but sad to say, my emotions were being fuelled by alcohol, without which, I doubt I would ever have been tempted to even talk to her again, let alone indulge in the foolish aftermath.
Tan is done and gone but I am not going to let a foolish fling with her stop me from going to one of my favourite drinking holes.
Wednesday happened to be the birthday of a certain young lady who worked at a bar in Nern Plub Wan.
It was her 23rd Birthday and she was a delightful looking girl. She always wore the most micro of short shorts, showing off her beautiful thighs in the best possible light.
She is a soupçon short of being beautiful. At certain moments she is completely beautiful, but at other times, maybe when she smiles or just looks in certain ways, her face loses that indefinable something that sorts the real beauties from the ‘also runs’.
The lady’s name is Dee and I have known her for a few weeks.
I first met her a couple of weeks back when she had only been working for a less than a month and although she claimed she had never been out with a customer, she was happy to go home with me.
She was quite delightful and I particularly remember her insistence in massaging me from head to toe using Johnson’s baby oil, before getting on with the more serious activities of the night.
I fell out with her a few days later.
The day after she had gone home with me, she called to tell me that she had to rush home to Sa Kaeo to take care of her baby who was sick in hospital.
At the time I took her at her word, and would call her every day to enquire about her and her child. She told me she would probably stay home for several weeks, and in the circumstances I could hardly complain – after all I barely knew her.
Then one day, after several days of absence, I happened to do a U-turn in the soi where she lived and there, as large as life, was Dee, walking along the road with carrying some shopping!
I started to drive away, but she called me back on my mobile and we had one of those crazy conversations. I was angry that she had lied to me so blatantly and she was adamant that she was entitled to tell me a ‘small’ lie as she wanted to see if I would ‘misbehave’ in her absence.
It was all a bunch of bullshit, and I told her so, before driving off in a huff.
Anyway, as you know I am never one to bare grudges very long, (unless it is Tan!), so we later made it up at her bar and this Wednesday was her birthday.
I had agreed to meet her and her friends at the bar so I duly arrived to foot the bill for a small party of her and her friends, plus of course the ubiquitous Mobi.
It was a good afternoon and we all had a riotous time until I received the bill.
They must have assumed that I was drunk as the bill was just under 5,000 Baht. When I perused the details to find out why it was so ridiculously high, I spotted a single item of 3,000 Baht for 30 ladies drinks, all drunk by just one lady.
It was clearly an attempt to rip me off , but I calmly let my ‘Birthday girls’ argue it out with the cashier, and after about 20 minutes they returned with a revised bill of just under 2,000 Baht, which was the ‘ball park’ figure I had been expecting.
A salutary experience
I had switched allegiance during the course of the afternoon’s carousing and departed at an quite an early hour with a friend of Dee’s.
I must admit that Dee took my desertion of her with admirable and steadfast stoicism.
The new girl was Nan, a nice, extremely sexy 24 year old who spoke pretty good English. I thought I was in for a good night but unfortunately it was one of my less successful trysts.
As soon as we arrived home she collapsed on the bed, fully clothed and slept like a baby.
It was before 8 p.m. and I waited in vain for her to wake up and join my little private party.
When it seemed pretty apparent that she was going to sleep the night away, I gave up on her and settled down to watch some movies on my P.C.
I finally crashing after midnight as there was no sign whatsoever of my lovely lady waking from the dead.
In the event she slept right through to 10.30 a.m. the following morning, by which time I had lost any desire to have my evil ways with her.
I dropped her back to her bar, where she also lived, and mentally re-affirmed my decision to give up the unequal struggle to find the future Mrs Mobi in one of these places that only seems to employ ladies under 25 years old.
As so many of you have commented, maybe it is high time to start acting my age.
So upon my return home, I decided to call Wan and ask her if she would be prepared to come to Pattaya and talk to me about giving our relationship another go.
She told me that she would come to see me in Pattaya on Sunday afternoon.
Then, just as I was about to call my AA sponsor to arrange a meeting with him, a new, incoming email shot up on my PC screen.
It was from a fellow AA member, with the shocking news that my dear sponsor, who I was just about to call, had passed away 3 days ago.
I was absolutely dumbfounded.
How could it be?
I had seen him a couple of weeks back and he seemed to be in pretty good health. He had given me a lovely, strong hug and he really looked full of vim and vigour and full of his usual infectious high spirits.
Not a bit like someone who was on the point of death.
I couldn’t believe it that he had really died, but a few quick calls soon confirmed the terrible news.
My sponsor was one of the gentlest, kindest, happy men I have ever had the privilege to know.
He was so generous in spirit that anyone who knew him couldn’t help but love him.
I will continue this tragic episode tomorrow.