In Thailand, two left golf shoes a hidden blessing
So there I was, sitting in my office working. Dreaming about the coming day where I was going to play my first game of golf in about six months.
One of the reasons that I settled in Phuket, Thailand was the all-year-round warm temperatures and the ability to play reasonably inexpensive golf. And I hadn’t played in six months, what was I doing?
I was so excited with the prospect of approaching golf that I felt I had to go over all my gear in preparation for the event and especially to wear in the new pair of golf shoes that I bought pre-Christmas. They have been sitting in their box, eagerly awaiting me to get up and play. It was time to dust them off, try them on and walk around.
I got one shoe out and it looked great. You know, all new and shiny. I got the other one out and “what the …?”
They are both left shoes.
Being Thailand, this is not all that out of the ordinary. Stranger things have happened but there was only one thing to do, head down to the mall where I know I will have a dual language conversation to nowhere.
After more than two years here, I have learnt that when there is a problem, it’s best to attend to it with another Thai in tow. I packed my wife and baby son into my pickup truck and drove us all to the mall where
I politely showed the two left golf shoes to the attendant at the store where I bought them. Of course, he doesn’t speak English and I had to let my wife do my battle for me.
The first response from her was that I would have to wait one month while they send them off to the company and return with a left and right shoe. “No good” I said. I am playing tomorrow. I need these shoes, why is this happening to me? More discussions and for a while I thought nothing was going to happen. How could I play golf without my new shoes?
To my surprise, the manager who was now involved, suggested that I choose another pair and they would deduct the price of my returned left shoes. Ahhhh, a solution. This does not happen here, it’s all going along too smoothly, what’s going on?
I selected a new pair of shoes (priced more than double the original lefties) and quickly left the store two hours after my initial discovery. Things don’t happen quickly here either.
A happy end to the day and about the only way my wife would have let me buy another new pair of golf shoes.
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