A continuation of the story of Crab’s new boyfriend and a phallic phenomena.
The first I knew of the relationship was when Crab sidled up to me and mimed, by banging her index fingers together, that she and Pi N were together. I was pleased for her, but a little surprised, having not had a clue anything was going on, despite seeing them both every day. She explained that, if Shrimp and I were happy, they wanted to marry. I couldn’t possibly see a way this could present a problem, but little did I know….
Now, marrying the first time in Thailand is a big, frilly, make-up caked extravaganza. But if that union doesn’t work out, in the truly pragmatic way of Thai life, the couples just go their separate ways, and no more is said about it. There are no bitter court battles for control of assets or custody of children, the single woman is reabsorbed into her family with little comment or fuss. There isn’t even really a label or name for a divorcee, it’s not really necessary to discuss her status.
When, as in Crab’s case, she wants to remarry they have a quiet coming-out party, which is more like a public statement of serious intention, than an actual formal ceremony. Nobody is concerned in the slightest if papers have even been filed and formal divorce agreed on, seeing as the majority of marriages are rarely legally registered anyway.
In Crab’s case, after she breaks the news to me, an amazing drama of soap-operatic proportions ensues. Pi N’s boss and partner come into the restaurant on his behalf, to request Shrimp’s permission for him to date Crab. Shrimp explains, in no uncertain terms that Pi N has a wife already, and there is absolutely no way his sister is going to be a mier noi or a gik of anyone. The boss reassures Shrimp that Pi N is no longer with his original wife. Shrimp demands that Pi N come himself and ask his permission directly.
I am staring in absolute amazement, jaw on the floor, as they all decide between them the fate of Shrimp’s forty-five year old, older sister. Crab herself watches anxiously from the kitchen, reading Shrimp’s reaction, watching his face, to learn if she will be granted this new and unexpected shot at happiness. Eventually, the situation is resolved. Shrimp is assured the previous wife stakes no claim on Pi Nop, both by the man himself and investigation via mutual contacts in their hometown village. Blessing is given and Crab is giddy with delight, and the possibility of financial security, for the first time in her life.
So that explains the need for a lucky giant penis then. And that evening we have a dinner and small party for Crab, who produces a skin tight, red satin dress to celebrate her good fortune. With it hugging her matronly curves, she sits demurely, with no hint of her usually fish-wife like tones. No doubt, this is more happiness than she could have hoped for at this stage in her life, and her red-satin-radiance speaks volumes about her final, lucky moment to shine.
I hope that all her dreams of security and homemaking will come true. For her entire life since she was a young teenager, Crab has been the sole breadwinner and provider for her four kids.