This is the first Thai man who the writer interviewed, discussion focused on leisure time in Taichung. Firstly, the writer was using general questions such as “Where are you come from?”, “What do you do here?”, and “What is your point of working here?” Generally, their answers are that “I come from the North East of Thailand”, “I am working in the metal factory”, and “the main reason for working here is money”. After the conversation, the writer spent time, and drank Thai beer with this the interviewee. It was important to establish and acknowledge this time as relaxed situation. Then the writer began to ask him about, what are Thai worker doing on their rest periods? Before replying, a flourish of facial movements shifted his expression, indicating a greater seriousness or consideration.
Then he said, “Normally, it depends on their individual tastes. I think most of them like to go to have some activities in ASEAN SQUARE such as karaoke, drinking, shopping, and some of them working.”
The writer said, “Really?”
He said, “Yes, they go to find a part time job in that building such as washing dishes, pushing food cart, and lifting things. I think it is their personal favourites.”
The writer follows with, “And you?”
He said, “Personally, I don’t like to go because I have overtime(OT) working. For me, the monthly salary is 20,008 that is not enough. Do you know? My salary is deducted by many things such as labour and health insurance, 2000 NTD for a room and many kinds of tax.”
The writer said, “So how much do you really have left each a month?”
He said, “It's not stable, it depends on OT working. I cannot tell the exactly amount.”
Some labourers have many OT hours but their money can still be deducted by something such as tax refund. For instance, some factories have to give tax back 18% but they just give 6%, and there is no reason for workers. However, it depends on each factory. If the owner of factory is good, labourers get lucky. If a small factory as a family business, everything depends on the satisfaction of owner.
While in discussion, the subject would stretch beyond the subject of rest periods. There were wider concerns and worries. It was clear the process offered a welcome release.