Monday, October 26, 2009

Status Report:: Bangkok Day 1

Arrival in Bangkok, nothing to report except the normal (long) immigration queue was moving just as fast as the (abnormally long) APEC queue! Hey what's going on here!

When I came out of the Landmark Hotel (after being surprised naked in the toilet by the cleaner as I was about to have my freshen-up post-flight shower) it was raining outside too. Plan One was to stay dry without an umbrella and Plan Two was to find that cheap seafood market I often go to... but of course I can never remember the Soi number. I came over Sukhomvit Rd at the Nana Plaza station and made the mistake of turning right where I came down the steps at about Soi 71/2. That sent me into the heart of brightness - the longest, narrowest, most claustrophobic circus tent around. I am talking about the tarpaulin, plastic sheeting and steam of the Bangkok Sukhomvit street market. It stretches from Soi 3 (Nana Rd) all the way to Soi 17 at the Robinson's Department Store. In the rain it can be a complete nightmare.

It wasn't that busy tonight, but even so, as it was 34deg and rainy, you can bet I was sweaty as a fat man in a tropical city and grumpy as all heck by the time I had gone all the way down, checking each soi in vain, and then come back again. The rain was light by now, but I was still being dripped on from the cracks and leaks in the plastic roof, harassed by vendors and blocked by vague-walking European and Middle Eastern shoppers who dawdled at the weirdest, kitsch, overpriced "bargains". Then, next to an array of "Calvin Klain"[sic] underwear, I saw a pirate DVD stall that advertised "HARDCORE SEX, LESBIAN, GAY, ANIMAL"[sick] titles...

Class act, this Bangkok.

Grabbed just a couple of non-porno DVDs* - none containing any animals whatsoever, except for "The Hangover", which I believe features a chicken in a non-sexual scene or two. Also grabbed "The Other Man" and "Good" - 'Good!' said the lady selling the animal sex DVDs, pointing at the Viggo Mortensen flick about Nazis. "Genuinely Hilarious" says one of the quotes on the cover. "Delightful", "Irresistible", "ACTION-PACKED" say the others. What is this? - Springtime for Hitler meets Diehard? I presume I can trust her judgement in these movie-type things, so I took it, hoping that the cover comments were fake.

(They are. IMDB Synopsis: John Halder is a 'good' and decent individual with family problems: a neurotic wife, two demanding children and a mother suffering from senile dementia. A literary professor, Halder explores his personal circumstances in a novel advocating compassionate euthanasia. When the book is unexpectedly enlisted by powerful political figures in support of government propaganda, Halder finds his career rising in an optimistic current of nationalism and prosperity. Seemingly inconsequential decisions lead to choices, which lead to more choices... with eventually devastating effect.)


I found my restaurant back at Soi 7 of course, about 30 feet from where I had first crossed the road. After the spicy tamarind soup (with strange sea-creatures in it), I decided to grab an iced Starbucks from just next to the Bookazine there to chill out my taste-buds. As I went around the corner I made the mistake of looking back at some exposed dark flesh through a slashed-like back of bright green dress and was eyed most wickedly by one of two Nigerian, Jamaican (? -- they were black) hookers who were eating at an outside table on the corner. The look she gave me, one eyebrow up, piercing eyes, crooked grin, it could have burned a man's heart to a crisp if it wasn't made of adamantine stone, like mine. I not sure if she wanted me to drop dead on the spot, or take her and her friend to my hotel room back for some coke (and Viagra and [non-nitrate] blood-pressure medication) fuelled sexual excesses. Whew, girls, let me settle in first!

I had forgotten that outside Bookazine is a small area at a bus-stop that has no night-market and been instead populated by dozens of freelance hookers, like the street-scene in Irma La Douce, only with two paces or less between each girl. If a cop asks, I guess they can say they are waiting to be picked-up, by the bus I mean. Right in front of Starbucks there are about 12 girls all smiling at me, one or two asking me how I was...

Ready, I say, still not quite acclimatized, for a Java Chip Frappuccino...

(Rule # 3,575: Never pick up freelance hookers.)


* Might have to rethink my previously non-porno DVD lifestyle now that I know the Internet is bugged in Singapore. I scored two MDA warnings last week!


expat@large said...

BTW, I've NEVER done coke, tbough we did have a briquette burning AGA-like stove when I was a young'n. Covered soot I was, like a kid from the cola mines... I mean coal mines.

Dick Headley said...

That's odd. All I remember about Bangkok is the temples and the wonderfully friendly tuk-tuk drivers.

Indiana said...

Good to see that your heart is as strong as ever.

And dh, that would explain the thai boat :-)

Isabella said...

You should start taking photos of these people...could be interesting :)

expat@large said...

DH: that's all you remember. It's what happened before you blacked out that's important...

Indy: heb good heart

Izzy: what, my word pictures aren't enough for you? Wish I had my cerebral donwload working to show you the look that African hooker gave me...

Momentary Madness said...

Time to take up yoga, and meditate.
Wouldn’t pass up a deco (meaning I’m not immune, but I wouldn’t go out peeping either) in a bedroom (by chance) passing by, but looking at a porno movie just couldn’t do it for me in any way. I know it’s all a con and if not it’s (god knows to what degree) dodgy, and then the guilt would set in.
When I think of placs like
Bang-your-cock I get a shiver.

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