Really, I just wanted my furniture to go to good homes, and the only charity shop I know of on the island doesn’t take furniture. So I gave quite a bit of my furniture away last week to the people in my local community in Patong, Phuket, and it was amazing seeing local Thai families showing up in old pick-ups and motorbikes with sidecars even (!!!) to take the furniture away. It was like, a family activity 🙂

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This must be one of the craziest sights: I gave away the mattress, and this guy took it away on his motorbike!!!

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The massage lady, Reena, looked at me suspiciously when I offered to give her my things. “How much you want?” She demanded.

Me: “Free, because I don’t need them.”

She: “Why you give to me?”

Me: “Because I love you, haha.”

Anyway, here is one of the pieces I gave her: new display cabinet for her to display her oils in 🙂

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And just a bit of backstory about Reena. She runs a small massage parlour on the Phrabaramee Road, Patong. Massage here costs THB200 an hour (that’s less than £5), of which the masseuse gets THB100.  From the RBH100 Reena makes per customer, she has to pay THB20,000 a month rent.  During the low season, she often gets only one or two customers per day, and she supplements the shop’s meagre income by taking in laundry.

What makes Reena different is she does not exploit her girls, who are from the small villages far from here.  She allows them to sleep in the shop for free, and you can sense that it is a happy place.

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Moving on from Reena, here’s someone I gave my garden furniture and crockery to. She runs a little ‘travel agency’ near the Patong dolphin roundabout.  Actually, the ‘travel agency’ is no more than a stall on the roadside.

She barely makes any money in the low season (though she is there from 9am till late), but she is always cheerful and beautifully dressed (I gave her this hat from Georgia).

She faces huge competition from the internet and other big savvy operators, but she never has a bad word to say about her competitors.  But what made me decide to give her my daughter’s beanbag was the fact that I caught her sleeping here! And it’s great to see my garden furniture being put to good use each time I drive past.

“Now I have cafe,” she jokes. If you are ever in need of travel services, please look for her near the dolphin roundabout in Patong. And who knows, she might even serve you tea from my old teapot 🙂

What an amazing week to bring to close our four years here ❤

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Photo: wrought iron bench and glass-top table from my house. And she’s wearing that furry hat!