Sex, Thais, and video fakes

Trip Start Jan 29, 2003
Trip End Feb 01, 2004

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Where I stayed
Sugar Guesthouse

Flag of Thailand  ,
Friday, March 28, 2003

25th March 2003:
Had originally planned to get up early to change the dates on my tickets, but this didn't happen. After consulting my lonely planet, I opted to pay a visit to Vimanmek Mansion boasting to be the worlds largest golden teakwood mansion, though if anyone can name another golden teakwood mansion anywhere, I would be most impressed.
We had an English tour, which was vaguely interesting. Brief history - Built in 18 months back in late 19th century and home to the then King Rama V. Now it holds a lot of artefacts, and the present Kings belongings, but in all honesty its a bit wank. Just a big museum really, though I don't know what I expected?
After this, I was told there was a traditional Thai dancing show starting at 2pm which I thought I may as well see before going back. It was actually quite good. They had lots of different dancing including a martial arts display. Towards the end they did a strange dance where a group of people smack together thick bamboo canes in rhythm, and the dancers dance between them, sort of like skipping, but if you get it wrong, instead of the rope going slack, you may get a broken ankle for your troubles. Anyway, they asked for a volunteer, and since I was on my own and unable to show anyone up, I had a crack at it, and you'll not be surprised to hear I dazzled them with my 'Michael Flatley' feet of flames, and walked off to a standing ovation. OK, it wasn't quite like that but I didn't get whacked by the bamboo.
I also visited the the elephant museum, and the old clock museum, which were simply both shite. I made my excuses and headed back to Khaosan.
This evening I had a bite to eat then went for a couple of beers ending up in Gullivers at 10pm, where I bumped into Chris, a lad from Bristol who had worked in Shepton Mallet! He had just been to the Phillipines, and was currently here with his Thai bird. Nice bloke. Did the usual travel chat thing, and then I went back to Sugar Guest House about midnight.

26th March 2003:
Managed to get up early in an attempt to get my tickets changed, but was unable to as I apparently needed copies of the tickets, so I've got to find a photocopier somewhere.
Looking for just this, walking up Khaosan, I bumped into Steve and Kelly, who I hadn't expected to meet until later. We went for a drink, then on Steves 'authentic and cultural sight-seeing tour'.
We went to see the golden Buddha - 700 years old and 5 1/2 tonnes of solid gold, but in all honesty quite disappointing, though I wouldn't mind having noe in my front room. Went to visit the reclining Buddha, but it was closed, and so we decided to head back to Khaosan and also decided Steve would never ever take us sight-seeing again. This afternoon, we got Steves visas sorted, and we're gonna do the whole Cambodia-Vietnam-Laos thing together, departing April 3rd for Siem Reap, Cambodia.
After shower, met Steve and Kelly at their hotel, then met up with Leah and headed for Patpong. Despite our taxi driver taking us all over the place, trying to get us in one of his 'mates' bars, including the infamous 'Nobby No-show' show, we eventually got there, and took a look round the night market.
Now Patpong is famous for 2 things - 1 is the night market, and 2, which is undoubtedly the most famous or rather infamous is its 4 acres of neon lit strip bars and 'sex' shows. We went into 1 such bar, but it was horrible. After sitting down for a beer, we thought that we wouldn't get much hassle because we were with 2 girls, but the dancers come over all the time asking how you are, saying the obligatory 'love you long time' phrase, and trying to get you to buy them a drink. And there is not just a couple or even a handful. In fact there seems like an endless amount of girls, probably more than 100. This was all too much, and I can see why people avoid this place and prefer Soi Cowboy, as there is just too much hassle.
We moved on to a 'show' bar, which was meant to be a laugh, but turned out to be just plain horrible. We sat down and this old girl who must be pushing 50 if not more was doing things with eggs which I didn't want seen done to them. She also opened bottles with her nether regions, and for a finale, she fired bananas out, one managing to land on Steves lap, which caused a ripple of amusement. And the dirty old bag wanted a tip, can you believe that. Yeah alright - 'Don't come near me, you dirty cow'.
We soon left, feeling quite disgusted, as did most of the other punters, in fact I don't see how anyone could get off on that stuff. We got back to the night markets where we felt safe.
We had one more beer in a nice little street bar in one of the side streets, but some of the sights there were just as bad, such as 60yr old blokes walking along holding hands with boys of about 14 or 15? I wonder if Matthew Kelly and R Kelly are related?
We got back to Khaosan and went into the bar we all know and love - Gullivers, had a beer and bid farewell to Leah who flies home tomorrow.

27th March 2003:
Bought a Stussy T this morning, before taking my laundry in to get washed after realising I didn't have 1 clean item left.
Met up with Kelly & Steve, and we headed over the bridge to Sirirat hospital where we had been told about a museum. After asking a few people we eventually found the second floor and entered the forensic museum. Now I know this wouldn't be some peoples cup of tea, but if you can handle it, this is amazing, and well worth a visit, oh and its free!
The museum's showpiece are 2 or 3 bodies, who were killers or rapists or both, and executed, with their bodies being preserved in this very museum.
Their are also still-born babies and infants who have died, and perfectly preserved in famaldahyde or something, which makes for an amazing museum.
You even get to see the effect of alcohol poisoning, through some kidneys, and smokers lungs which put me off drinking and smoking that whole afternoon!
It does get quite gruesome in parts with post-mortem photos of gun-shot wounds, hangings, stab wounds, grenade explosions, drownings, you name it, they've got it. That said, it still wasn't nearly as sick as that woman in Patpong last night!
From here we went to the grand palace, though were unable to enter because of Steve & Kelly's unsuitable attire. Though I wasn't that bothered, as I had already been to 1 palace, and this one was quite pricey. We then went to Wat Pho, which is home to the largest reclining Buddha in Thailand, and at 46m long, and 15m tall, you can understand why. The rest of the courtyards and stuff was alright, but nothing I hadn't seen before.
It was Kellys last night, so this evening we went for a proper meal, well a sit-down job in Pizza Hut anyway.
I was in the Grand Football bar, when Fone from Khao sok comes along and slaps me on the back in her uncomfortable yet endearing way. We played pool with Steve and Kelly and stayed in the same bar all night. Fone even showered us with gifts, giving Kelly a top, and Steve & I joss stick things. It was a good laugh.
Also bumped into a couple of blokes from London. One in particular, Wax (real name - his parents were hippies) gave me some good tips on Cambodia.

28th March 2003:
A thoroughly uneventful day, but a decision-making day.
Once again, I failed to get my tickets sorted, nursing another Changover. Met Steve at 1pm after he had got back from the airport disposing of Kelly, who was a great laugh, and hopefully enjpyed herself.
Helped Steve move into his 80B/night room on the 6th floor penthouse suite with no elevator which made my gaff look nice.
Went to a travel agent inquiring on day trips to Kanchanaburi, which were quite cheap, though there were a lot of things to do there so we thought why not go there for a couple of nights and get out of Bangkok for a bit, and so we decided on our weekend away to Kanchanaburi.
This evening we ate from a street vendor, and then had a couple of beers before having a relatively early night, in anticipation of an early start tomorrow.
I was looking forward to getting out of Bangkok after being here a week, the longest I have stayed anywhere since starting travelling.
There is a rumour going around that Sylvester Stallone is currently in Bangkok, here to purchase a gold necklace, which is 200 years old, and worth about $200,000. Well if he is here, he's not staying in my guest house, or anywhere else on Khaosan Road. Honestly, some people get a little bit of money and it goes straight to their head. Tsk.
This is probably another Travellers Urban Myth, where in fact the truth probably was that Sly Stallone once had an Aunt whose friends cousin once went to Thailand, and bought a cheap necklace off a side vendor. Stories tend to have the 'Chinese Whispers' effect.
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