Book Review: A Broad Abroad In Thailand By Dodie Cross
This is to say the least an interesting and entertaining read that covers far more ground than the title implies. Told with a huge amount of humor we follow Dodie on her sojourn to Thailand, where things do not work out as planned. As she ruefully reflects on in the final chapters, what seems like a great opportunity at the time, had enough flashing warning lights that she should have spotted early on. The story opens with our heroine working a mundane office job during the day, and helping out part time at a local golf course in the evenings. Here she meets he husband to be, the club Pro Dick. Although not exactly swept off her feet in passion, they do eventually become lovers.
It transpires that Dick prior to becoming a Golf Pro has had considerable experience in the construction world. Happenstance puts Dick and Dodie in a position where a two-year contract for a construction project in exotic Thailand is theirs for the taking. A free house, bags of tax free money, what more could you ask for? Of course there is one minor hitch, for Dick to get the full company benefits, he must be married. Whats a fun loving, adventure seeking gal to do? Well if your name is Dodie Cross you of course get married, and start packing! Minor things like 'love' can be worked on later! It doesn't take our adventurous author long to discover that the 'land of smiles' may well be full of smiles, but the company compound where everyone must live is anything but Eden. A repressive management, or to be exact the manager's wife, has created her own version of hell on Earth.
Endless lists of rules and regulations, the company not only owns the employees, but their wives and families as well. Must-attend meetings, shopping trips, card games, and parties are all part of the social calendar. None of this sits well with Dodie, and she of course decides to buck the system, even worse she discovers that Dick is a 60 year old sex maniac! Stress at home, stress from "the bosses," all start to weigh heavily on Dodie, an unexpected medical problem also adds to her growing list of issues. A Broad Abroad In Thailand is a great read, it is written in a very humorous style, I particularly enjoyed the Pigin English dialog with the local Thai people. That on its own makes this book a hit! Dodie, undaunted by minor and in some cases major setbacks,'bags and crashes' her way through life. This is a must read book for anyone contemplating living and working in a foreign land, from marital to medical, the problems are so much greater than being at home. About Dodie Cross: she is a freelance writer who has received numerous awards for her writing and poetry, among them the prestigious Southern California Writer's Conference First Place Award for "Best Nonfiction," as well as First Place in their inaugural Poetry Award. She has accrued first and second place prizes in her published articles. Dodie has traveled the world, writing about her life in foreign countries such as Iran and Thailand, as well as American locales such as New Orleans, Orange County, California and Lake Chelan, Washington. Look for her next book: One Strappy-Sandaled Foot Ahead of the Mullahs: An Expat's Life in Iran Before and During the Revolution.
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