Lee Dear or Not Lee Dear That is the Question


lee dear shih-tzu

Lee Dear is Wilai’s new shih-tzu puppy dog. The fluffy puppy was bought from a breeders kennel in Bangkok and flown to Udon Thani airport. Wilai was patiently waiting to greet her. By all accounts, she’s settled down well at her new village home. That’s good, what’s bad is, I’m unsure if Lee Dear is Lee Dear at all.

Lee Dear or Not Lee Dear

When Wilai first told me Lee Dear’s name she had to repeat it several times before I understood, or thought I understood, what she meant. Thai language has five different tones – each syllable is pronounced with a low, mid, high, falling, or rising tone. Wilai appeared to say ‘Dear’ in a rising tone. That confused me. What convinced me that Dear was Dear, was when she said ‘Dear sound same beer and darling’. Although that conviction was punctured and a little threadbare.

Lee Dear’s name was picked from a list of Thai female singers. The Bangkok breeders had selected the name. Wilai and I decided not to rock the boat and repaint the vessel’s signature. We’d go with the flow and stay close to the pier. The name would remain as it was.

I went on a Google word search. A very simple one – ‘Lee Dear Thai female singer’. The results harvested nada, nothing. They only sowed further doubts in my mind. A work friend commented that Lee Dear was an unusual name for a dog and her words echoed my thoughts exactly.

A further conversation with Wilai hacked no new wood from the trees. Requesting a spelling would be fruitless too, because Thais, when talking, assassinate most English loan words. Com-pu-tuuur (computer) is my favourite example of a verbally butchered English loan word.

Google Doodle Dandy

A further expanded Google word search, ‘Famous Thai Female Singers’, narrowed my wild-goose chase down to one name.

file wilipedia


So, after three weeks of studious reasoning, rationale and head scratching, I’ve bought down the curtain on my research. The fat lady is now with the band.

Lee Dear is not Lee Dear at all, and Lydia will always be called… Lee Dear.

“How tragic it is to find that an entire lifetime is wasted in pursuit of distractions while purpose is neglected.” – Sunday Adelaja


I'm a sixty-year-old Englishman living in the town of Swindon in rural Wiltshire and I have a real deep desire to retire in Thailand one day. If you don't have a dream then you won't have a dream come true.

4 Responses

  1. Now you’ve got me worried, I pulled the other week, Crammy I thought her name was, though wasn’t sure. Because every time I asked she said “No, no! Crammy dear!”

  2. Catherine says:

    What a cute puppy! Just me but I’d be tempted to rename it (by asking the man to come up with a name – he’s awfully good at pet names and more).

  3. Martyn says:

    Catherine – One cute puppy that I hope grows to adulthood. Fully vaccinated so hopefully she will. Lee Deer she remains.

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