Dew is from way down in the Deep South of Thailand, in the province of Pattani, on the Malaysia border. This is not the Thailand that most people know. A very high proportion of the population is Moslem, the people are darker skinned, and they have their own dialect.

There is, sadly, trouble in that province right now, but this is far from being a recent development. A century or more ago Pattani was trying to break away from Siam, and if you visit the Museum of Cannon in Bangkok there is a huge gun the residents of Pattani were going to use against the king's troops, until it was seized from them.

Anyway, before the current troubles flared up I went down to Pattani with Dew to spend some time in the family home. I hadn't been before. Their house is in a tiny hamlet tucked in amongst rubber and banana tree plantations. It's a traditional Thai building, largely open, with most activities taking part on a raised open-sided platform. There is no road nearby, only a dirt track that leads from the main road and connects the scattered little hamlets that dot the countryside. It is all very peaceful.

Dew's family lives off the land, as do so many rural Thais. In fact, it is difficult to understand how anyone as exotic as Dew can have come from a background like this. We drove around on Dew's motorcycle, went back to the house for an evening meal, and then there was nothing much left to do, Mom and Pop had already gone to sleep on the platform.

"Come take a shower", said Dew. I followed her through the garden, expecting to find a phone booth-sized shed with dipping jars, which is the typical method of ablutions. But Dew took me into a corner of the garden hemmed in by high bushes and trees, to a standpipe that stood about six feet high. She turned on the water, and with her back momentarily to me, in one fluid movement slipped off her shorts and her t-shirt. Then she stepped under the shower.

I looked at her velvet-brown back and her peach of a bottom, with the water gleaming on her skin. Standing there in the hot night with the scent of the flowers and fields around us, and not a sound to be heard except for the breeze in the trees, it was one of the most erotic moments of my life.

Later, I wondered. Had the lads of the surrounding hamlets, who had grown up with Dew, suddenly taken an interest in her when she became a ladyboy? Did they ever try to come peeping through the bushes when she took a shower? She was so beautiful. I asked her next day. "Crazy!" she said, laughing at me, and I never got to find out.