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In this insightful gem, journalist and life coach Wanda Hennig writes wisely, hilariously and sometimes poignantly about sex and food; living for three-and-a-half years at the San Francisco Zen Center; moving solo from one continent to another; meditation; creative mindfulness strategies and more. Cravings: A Zen-inspired memoir about sensual pleasures, freedom from dark places, and living and eating with abandon (Say Yes Press). Edition Two (Mouth Orgasm edition) published August 2017 (ISBN 9780996820523 paperback; ISBN 9780996820523 eBook).

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Thailand travel 6. Single boomer? No need for the Marigold Hotel

Submitted by on August 1, 2016 – 4:26 am
Patong beach Phuket

To nearby Patong beach by tuc-tuc from Kamala.

So funny to watch some of these old ex-Pat guys. What did that Thai woman have on her T-shirt? “No money, no honey.” An honest woman.

And sure thing. You look at some of those dissipated prunes, swollen alcohol-induced noses, big bellied, “not if he were the last man on earth” for most of the women they’d probably meet “back home” — walking around with pretty young Thai women. Not trying to tar all with the same brush — but a lot of them. Expect for some women, it’s a kind of job. If you don’t have a profession or an education, probably better than some other jobs they’d get.

To reiterate, not saying all farang/Thai relationships are in that mold… You can spot a mile away the ones that are.

Fun is a tuc-tuc to Patong

And fun, meanwhile, is catching a tuc-tuc into Patong with Kerrie and exploring for much of the day. You’ve been to the sex shows, you don’t need to go again. At least that’s how it feels to me. There was curiosity, but I did that last time. The Cosmo story time.

Patong beachfront Thailand

Patong beachfront street scene.

And not that people only go to Patong for sex and sex shows. But it does have the reputation.

Elle, meanwhile, whisked me off earlier to her corner travel agent. I buy my flight to Chiang Mai. On Thai Smile. They give you a 20kg baggage allowance, included. Something to always watch out for, that this is included, otherwise purchase it upfront. Cheap at the price. Flying tomorrow: flight WE272. Costs me 8,988Bht, which I think, discussing it with Elle, is a little less than $100. In fact, $260 I realize later. Yikes! What happens when you’re still getting accustomed to the money, honey.

Not worth obsessing about the money but good to have a handle on it and then forget about it. My ticket price, not good. But good in that it gets me there. And a lesson for next time.

I pay cash, drawn via ATM, as credit card would have been 900Bht more. The joys of travel these days. All you need is a debit card and a credit card. Remember travelers checks?

Best exotic Marigold Hotel alternative

Meet some of Elle’s women friends. See you don’t need India’s Best Exotic Marigold Hotel to have an adventurous life-out-the-box post-60. Just a bank balance of something like £25,000 for three months before your annual Thai assessment, I learn. Then you report to the cop-shop every three months to have your passport stamped and you can live the ex-pat life in Thailand.

Men and women, hundreds, it seems, do this. Couples. Singles. Party person. Creative person. Find your spot and enjoy.

It’s a close-knit community. Elle says, at least in her circle. Everyone watches for and takes care of each other. “If you’re sick, someone will bring food to your door. Many of the guys have Thai wives. Working wives, because a lot of the men who come here and marry Thai women are not rich men.”

© Words and photos Wanda Hennig, 2016

Don’t miss Thailand Travel 7.

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