I have been traveling to Thailand now for just over 15 years and, during this time, have made many friends both Thai and farang (foreigner). As a avid golf traveler, most of these friends are linked to the Thailand golf scene – or maybe a local bar, but that is another story. Also, as an owner of a golf travel agency I regularly get asked to play golf at many different courses throughout Thailand and in particular the Bangkok area.
A couple of weeks ago, I, and a visiting friend from Phuket, were asked to make up a foursome at Thai Country Club. My friend, Brian, is English, but we won’t hold that against him, and it was his first ever visit to this course. I, on the other hand, have played there on many occasions, recommend Thai Country Club to practically all of our golf visitors and am pretty well known by everyone there. They greet me by name at any rate. Well, this particular day, we were playing with a member, an American, and a German expatriate friend of his. Before golf we all met in the restaurant where they serve some of the best food in Bangkok. If fact for lunch there is a buffet fit for royalty and if you have followed my fascination and particularity with Thai food, then you know that is saying something!
During our lunch Brian had to disappear to the ‘horng nam’ (toilet or water room to translate literally). Whilst he was away one of the waitresses came up to me and asked the name of my friend. I told her, she went away and I thought nothing about it and told Brian nothing about it. Lunch over, we went to play golf.
After a great game, I forgot our score, which surely means that we lost, we arrived back at the clubhouse. Sitting down to have a cool drink of water and a cold towel, Brian was amazed to be addressed by name and asked how he had enjoyed his game and if he had played well. It turns out that the waitress had let everyone in the clubhouse know what his name was, along with an appropriate description, and he was addressed by name all evening long. He now firmly believes that Thai Country Club is the very best golf club, and who can blame him.
When little things like this happen, and they often do in Thailand, they can really make you day and appreciate the subtleties of the Thailand service oriented culture. So much for TIT, actually golf (and life) does not get any better than this, anywhere!
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