Fire Breathing Thai

We spent two months in Thailand seeing wonders of that
great country and waiting for all the proper paperwork to go through. I was
taking my bride home—my home.

To speed things up I had to—through a Thai man versed
in getting things done—buy the police chief of a big city a refrigerator. I
couldn’t believe it either—but it worked. I was slowly learning the ways of the
world but I didn’t care. I was in love with an exotic beauty and our wait was
filled with never-ending pleasures and beauty. I’m talking about Thai food, the
people and the country, among other things!

With my beauty as my guide I saw spectacular beaches,
jungle covered mountains, streams where elephants lazed as they took relief
from the heat, monks receiving alms at sunrise and I never once worried about
what was to come.

Julee didn’t let on but she was terrified to leave her
homeland with the man she loved, not really knowing much about him and where she
was going. Through the years I came to see what a commitment she undertook.
Always brave and my guiding light she is the stronger of us and often lends me
her strength.

We stopped in Hawaii for a week and I had to keep
telling her my home was much different than this place that reminded her of
home. I’m from North Carolina and it was late November. I hadn’t been home for
more than two years and the family was waiting to welcome me and my bride.

We landed at Douglas Airport in Charlotte and in those
days you had to walk from the plane across the tarmac to the terminal. It was
freezing. I felt Julee pull her hand from mine and when I looked, her hands
were covering her mouth. She was staring at me in wonder when I ask what was
wrong. She pointed at my breath as it steamed into a cloud right before her
eyes. She started to say something but it happened to her too and she refused
to lower her hands or talk.

We had no warm cloths so we were both freezing by the
time we made into the terminal and the waiting arms of my family. My mom had
brought us both heavy coats to put on. She asked me what was wrong because she
wanted to see the face of her new daughter. When I explained that Julee had
never seen her breath before everyone started laughing but then hugged her in
welcome. Thank goodness I had talked to Julee about American greetings several
times to forewarn her. Thai’s don’t touch unless they are the best of friends
or parents.

She lowered her hands and was so relieved not to see
the steam pouring out of her mouth and to look upon the smiles that were happy
to see her. My family took her in right from the start and made all the
arrangements for our wedding, reception and meeting the extended family. My
respect grew more and more for my mom and dad.

Over the next month my brother, Ben, and I took her to
see sights she never dreamed of. We went to the mountains and Julee stepped in
snow for the first time. We went to all the malls, movies and everywhere I
could think of to show her this new world.

Now we’re back home in Thailand after more than thirty
years and my little American wife misses the USA. But as always she puts up
with whatever just to make me happy.

I do hope you enjoyed this look into a writer’s life in
Thailand. Leaving comment is a way for me to know you and to know if I’ve
pleased you with my little stories!

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