OUT OF TOWN - DIARY
From ANDREW DRUMMOND,
November 15 2011
Joseph McCluskey, aged 74, is a charming and witty Scotsman from Ayr - 'Rabbie Burns Country' - and has lived in 'The Village', Pattaya, since he retired from teaching.
He admits at his age obviously his faculties have waned a bit. He has Parkinson's disease, sometimes gets anxiety attacks, and uses a mobility scooter to take his mongrel dog 'Milis' (Gaelic for sweet) for walks. But life's good when he is not being advised by so called foreign 'local property and legal experts'.
Joe with Milis
'Don't worry. I'll make your worries go away,' comforted American Drew Noyes after he was brought to PAPPA Co Ltd, in Thepprasit Road, Jomtien, said Joe.
Joe had read in Noyes' 'Pattaya Times' that it was illegal to hold a house in a company name in Thailand, just as he had done, and that the authorities were planning a widespread investigation and clampdown. He had a panic attack with visions of being made homeless.
It's easy to see how a reports and scare stories like this can worry a man of Joe's age, particularly prone as he is to those anxiety periods, even though his paperwork was in order and he paid his taxes on time.
But how was he to know that the Pattaya Times is not so much a newspaper but a vehicle for Noyes' self promotion and property and legal businesses and to get him into city hall?
He had just picked up a paper which was left lying around. But it prompted him to go and visit the man who describes himself as the most 'credible and re-assuring professional foreigner' Thailand has ever seen. Enter Drew Noyes who assessed the situation as quick as a flash.
'I'll give you 200,000," said Noyes
Said Joe: 'Mr. Noyes asked if he could come and look at my house and I let him. He took a look around and said. 'Don't worry. I just happen to have a company available which we can put the house into and it will be perfectly safe until the end of your life'.
'Then he said: 'What's more we will even give you cash as well - 200,000 baht. It would be more, but the house, well its 20 years old isn't? It also needs a bit of attention''.
Joseph McCluskey, perhaps a little put out by Noyes descripition of his home away from home, was a little cannier than Noyes took him for and he sent Pattaya's 'most credible and reassuring professional' packing with a wave of his crummock.
Well, actually he did not have his crummock to hand. But had he been Glaswegian he might have said something like 'Get tae f**k!'
As it was Joe politely said 'thanks but no thanks' thinking to himself as he said 'what sort of (neap) turnip does this man think I am.'
Not surprisingly Joe did not like the odds. With easy access to everywhere in Pattaya his 3-bedroomed terraced house of the city's Third Road should be worth at least 2.6 million baht.
And if he were to read any more issues of the Pattaya Times he would hear even that value is going to multiply three fold as Pattaya becomes the next Asean hub.
But, more seriously, because if we start believing the Pattaya Times now we way as well check into Craig Dunain*, if Noyes is reduced to chasing senior citizens like this, just how much further is he prepared to go? We already know about his dealings in Thailand's housing for the poor.
As for that 'company' that he had prepared, well regulars on this site will already know what happened when Noyes sold an American couple a company.
I had been talking onto the phone to Joe two or three times over a month or so and, as I was in Pattaya on other business, I thought I would drop by and see him. And what a pleasure it was. I left him cheerily heading down the road on his mobility vehicle with Milis in the lead.
My business was in city hall with regard to the 'Richard Haughton' fiasco (see last story) and lo and behold whom should I see but Drew Noyes himself, together with his inseparable friend Niels Colov, boss of the 'Pattaya People' , former President of the Pattaya-Jomtien Rotary Club, property and legal expert, former pimp, and Knight of Rizal.
Both were nodding knowingly along to a speech (in Thai of course) on what Pattaya was doing for flood victims in Bangkok. It was clearly a meeting to be seen at.
Colov and Noyes - nodding and texting
I half expected him to be offering some of those canoes he keeps at his house in Jomtien Soi 11 (pictured below) but no The Noyes just sat their nodding his approval to statements made from the Mayor without having a clue as to what they were.
I did not have time to talk to Noyes as I had to attend a meeting downstairs in the Consumer Protection Department. Besides Noyes was due out the following day on the 'Sexpats Shuttle' to Angeles City.
But if readers want to know in whose name Noyes put his own property - well watch this space.
Meanwhile Noyes wife 'Kung' will be running PAPPA'S Pensioner Services...that is until Noyes gets back from Fields Avenue, Angeles City, and a meeting with Colov's friends, the gang from (Northern Thai) NT Realty who have set up a Philippines office.
*Craig Dunain. One of Scotland's largest mental health establishments situated in the Highlands near Loch Ness.
Pictures: Andrew Chant