In response to 'Kicking out the undesirables' (Postbox 10th December)
I first of all do not think that anyone from any A.S.E.A.N country would want my Thai wife. I could possibly have seen this happening around nine years ago but she has changed considerably since then. We have been happily married for ten years. I consider ten years to be a short length of time like a spit in a wind storm. I always say "getting fatter and older together".
My wife has a daughter and I was uncle to her when she was six. Now she is sixteen and I am poppa.
My wife has managed a successful business of eight years of which I am a 'silent' partner. We have Thai documents (partnership) to prove this. I support the business when needed.
Concerning our daughter's education she is in a very prominent high school in Chiang Mai. She is in grade 11. We want her to eventually go to a good university such as C.M.U.. I help support our daughter's education too! I am constantly transferring money over from my country to help with our needs.
We also have a block of land in our local area of which we will build a house on it eventually. I can say that we are not "hi so" as my wife comes from a middle class family the same as I do.
I can honestly say that I do not drink alcohol of any kind. I don't drink beer, wine, whisky or spirits. I never acquired the taste of alcohol when I was young and in a way moved to Thailand to escape the yobbery, wankery and binge drinking in my country.
Now, you are probably asking yourself how old is this guy? Honestly, I am fifty years old.
Do I fit what Thais are seeking "disciplined, neat, clean, organized, mentally stable and responsible foreign people"? Perhaps?
For eight years I taught English at government high schools, factories, a small language school, an elementary/high school and an elementary school. The first six years were very good. I taught at three high schools. The first year in the south. Three years at a school near Chiang Mai and two years at another school again near Chiang Mai. Teaching took a nosedive after the six years.
In to the seventh year, I became involved with a teaching agency. This experience was not a good experience and I am glad that I experienced a teaching agency at this very late stage of teaching English in Thailand. I think I would have stopped teaching entirely if I had this experience during my first year of teaching.
As an example, the foreign teachers employed through the agency at a high school were all told that we would have a three-week term break. This changed dramatically to working an extra two weeks doing thirty hours a week(all together sixty hours) instead of the usual twenty hours a week while threatening your current teaching position.
By the end of those two weeks you just didn't care anymore.
Another issue with the agency was that foreigners needed visas and time to get visas to work legally. The agency moaned about the time involved to get a visa.
We all know about small language schools and what they don't provide. I worked at one for four months and did not get what was necessary to work there so I stopped at the end of the fourth month. Not having any official documentation from the small language school at all I did not get paid for the fourth month either.
I stopped because of not having the necessary documents as this really rides on your shoulders after some time.
During the last year I taught at an elementary/high school. I was employed at this school for one reason which was I didn't drink alcohol. During a Christmas day activity morning I was accused of drinking. I had been sick with a flu for two weeks, taking medicine and still coming to school. I have never been accused of drinking in my entire life until that day. How would that make you feel?
Lastly, at an elementary school I was abused by a true foreigner hater. If you have had the experience of being confronted by or even verbally attacked by a true foreigner hater in a school they can be real
nasty pieces of work. Never in my life have I experienced a person with such a hatred towards foreigners until now.
Would I want to teach again? Perhaps? Perhaps not?