Book review ‘Leaving Thailand’ by Steve Rosse
When we were thirty three years old, both Steve Rosse and myself were planning a visit to Thailand, to stay there for an extended period of time. We both had close relatives who were sick and we were worried about leaving them. Both of our relatives urged us to leave and follow our dream. We both did. That is how we arrived, and mostly, that’s where our similarities end.
Steve spent most of his time in Thailand in the south of the country, either on Phuket, or nearby, and lived an eventful and sometimes crazy lifestyle. Which changed him in ways that he perhaps never expected… despite having read the classic novel A Woman of Bangkok, which he cites as one of the reasons he upped and moved to Thailand.
Part way through the book Steve notes that men are more lineal in their way of thinking, whilst a woman’s mind tends to flit about rather more. Steve enjoyed the company of many a lady while in Thailand, for longer or shorter periods of time, and his affinity to the fairer sex, I would say, has resulted in Steves’ way of thinking becoming a little more like that of the ladies that he adores. Not quite as lineal as he imagines a man’s mind to be.
As you read through his pages he takes us on a rollercoaster ride through many of his jobs, experiences, and the colourful people he met along the way. Both male and female. One moment he is a set dresser for an Oliver Stone movie, the next he is a newspaper columnist, the next he is working as a public relations chief for a five star hotel.
The narrative moves without warning from a smoke filled room with a hack typing his latest story, to hobnobbing with movie stars on a Hollywood size movie set, to welcoming royalty in an elegant hotel property. Or living a romantic dream with the love of his life, on a beach – for five months, ten days.
While the title of the book is Leaving Thailand, most of it is taken up with stories of his life there, or reminiscences of it while he is back in the States. It is an interesting insight into a guy that came to live his life in Thailand at the same time as I did.