Day 47: One Night In Bangkok

There were three in the bed and the little one said… The two beds when pressed together formed something of uneven double. This meant one of us would have to sleep on the uncomfortable gap, seeing as Sarah was quick to say she wanted to sleep by the wall, I’d be the lucky one who received the honours, as I can’t imagine she’d have wanted to sleep next to Brandon the snorerer. It was very hot in the room with only a fan to keep us cool, but somehow, the three of us managed to sleep, Brandon got up early like usual to go out exploring, when he returned at midday to wake us, he informed us of things in the area, like cheap breakfast bars and the such.

The two of us got out of bed, sticky from the humidity and lack of air con, and to our surprise, Brandon had managed to talk the owners into giving us a bigger room for a bit more money where we had a bed each. We moved our bags next door, then hopped in the shower. When we were done we walked down the street to grab some breakfast. Because it was afternoon by this point I ordered a burger, which compared to ping’s was disgusting. We returned to the hostel where we found Brandon napping and theatres of unspent for a walk down Koa San Road. The main plan for the day was to visit Pantip Plaza, the heaven like technology superstore, we continued to the end of Koa San until we found a taxi truck in traffic. The driver agreed to take us there via meter, as opposed to a fixed price, it took around half an hour to get there due to terrible traffic, but, when we finally arrived it was much busier than our previous visit.

We were there for good couple of hours as Sarah wanted a tablet of her own, as she grew tired of sharing, and I wanted an iPhone, as my digital camera broke and at some point I’d need a phone anyways. We climbed the levels of the building, asking people behind their little stalls for prices of copies and genuine tablets they had for sale, as well as actual retailers. In the end I walked into an Apple iStudio, where I was told that an iPhone 5 would cost 24, 550 baht (that’s five hundred and one pounds back home), slightly deterred by the price, the next line that came from the employees mouth, ” you can get tax back at airport, seven percent off total price.” Hmmmm seven percent you say, this would make the device four hundred and sixty five pounds, I gave it some thought, but decided to leave it for the time being, the ultimate reason being, they only had it in black. I’ve got nothing against black pieces of technology, my tv was black back home, I just wasn’t sure if I wanted to spend that much.

When we had seen enough, the three of us caught a tuktuk back to Koa San Road. It was a sudden realisation of where we were again, as I had forgotten the tuktuk drives made stops in shops, and that’s why it only cost us thirty baht to get back (sixty pence). This was Brandon’s first experience with a tailor shop, so, he was kind enough to show interest in buying a suit, but when he tried to leave and said he’d think about it, the attitude of the staff member soon changed. Brandon was quick to put the guy in his place and left the building with a business card. The three of us were then driven to our destination, where, before returning to our hostel, we grabbed some street food. Back at the hostel I worked on my blog like usual, while Sarah read her kindle, again, like usual, and Brandon went to an internet cafe to talk with his girlfriend back home. It was around half past eight in the evening before I called it a day on my writing, during the last few paragraphs, Brandon and Sarah went to the shop to grab some rum and coke. When they returned we split the bottle between us, mixing the alcohol into three separate bottles.

Seeing as it was December, it meant I could shave my beard, as I only grew it for Movember really (but Ben, Movember is for moustaches not beards, yes, well, I CAN’T GROW ONE, SO A BEARD WILL HAVE TO SUFFICE). We took some before photos, then, for the first time ever I think, I filled the sink with manly man fluff, however, I was quite sad as I set the shaver too short and I was left with stubble in my glorious manes place. Of course, Sarah was happy she could see my face again, even if it had turned skinny due to lack of food and exercise, it wasn’t until I was free of the beard that I realised how thin my face had become. I had a quick shower to rid my body of fallen follicles and rejoined the two guys in our room. It wasn’t long after this that Brandon went back to the internet area to chat with Steph (his girlfriend), while Sarah and I remained in our room, drinking and watching tv shows. When the final show had finished, we ambushed Brandon’s conversation where we were able to see around his home in America via webcam (yes nan, they can do that nowadays).

After saying our goodbyes, we quickly returned to our room to grab somelast minute things for the night ahead, then, Brandon (I’d like to go on record saying this was all his idea, which it was) suggested we go somewhere named Soy Cowboy. He worded it to make this place sound like a strip of bars that we could weave in and out of, while slowly becoming more, and, more inebriated. When we arrived it transpired, that Soy Cowboy was actually a red light district, full of strip clubs. I should have remembered the name, as only the day before, I was reading a travel book that explained many young girls are sold, unknowingly, by poor families into the sex industry, with the promise they’d be going to a good job, and one of the places to do this, was Soy Cowboy. It wasn’t a nice place to be, with Sarah’s face dropping when she realised where we were. Now, not to sound egotistical or sexist, but, I have visited the occasional strip club on nights out with guys back home, and none of the girls in those establishments ever looked half as sad as the ones there. You could tell, not a single girl wanted to be there, with most of them just standing against a pole rocking side to side, I didn’t want to buy a drink or anything else on sale there, as that would mean I would be supporting the sex trade…. that, and the prices of alcohol were extortionate :P. We walked to the end of the strip, where there were two bars separate to the stripper scene. We enjoyed a few beers there to relax a bit, when all of a sudden, Sarah perked up and said she wanted to visit one particular club named Cockatoo. As you can probably guess, this turned out to be a room full of lady boys. Upon arrival of the threshold, we started having a laugh with a group of them outside, where they were more than happy to laden us with condoms and lubrication (note to self, condoms and lubrication is a great name for a rock album). The three of us stuck around for all of five minutes, before closing the door on Soy Cowboy, and it’s middle aged male punters, and caught a taxi back to Koa San.

The night was beginning to look as though we might have finally captured the illusive midnight beast. However, when we walked to the first bar, it was shoulder to shoulder with people, and Brandon had the sobering realisation that he was running out of cash, fast. Unfortunately, he was on a budget, as in a few more days he would be returning home to the loving arms of his girlfriend, and two cats, Quattro, and Fupa. With that, the three of us used the bars bathroom, and made our way back to the hostel. The time was around three a.m., during our return walk, there was a stall still selling t-shirts and vests. Seeing as I was drunk, I made the collective decision to purchase something, I chose a thin white vest, with the image of a tattooed lady on the front. As superfluous as that last sentence is, I only feel the need to include it in the blog, as for once, Sarah actually had no qualms with my clothing choice…. probably, because she was drunk too. She was even the first one to put it on, and continued to wear it in her drunken state all the way back. When we grew closer to the hostel Brandon left us, to continue talking with Steph at the internet cafe, while Sarah and I, returned to our room, where we attempted to watch Homeland, safe in the knowledge, if ever we had kids and they became too much, there would always be a job waiting for them in Soy Cowboy.

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