Sunday, January 30, 2005

Koh san road

First off thanks to my bro for hooking me up with this blog site, since I put it on my wish list last email. Moving on....Christine and I awoke before the sun had peeked out over the mountains of Hong Kong and headed for the airport to be whisked away to Bangkok, where we hoped the true debauchery would ensue. After enjoying the worst airplane food (that's saying something) I have ever tasted we landed in Bangkok. My first sight of Bangkok was a golf course that had been built right between the runways. The golfers even have to cross the runway twice to get to the back nine. Swaying palm trees, sunny skies, and small Asians in funny postdated clothing...I love this place already. After Customs, which was faster than a supermarket checkout line we boarded our bus to the infamous koh san road(the backpacker Mecca of SE Asia). The koh san road is not very long (3 blocks), but crammed into those blocks are more drunken sunned burned euros than hasselhauf summer festival, with all the sights and smells of Chinatown after a fresh rain.
We were tired from the travel, so we checked into the first place on the koh san strip which was the koh san palace. The name should say it all, we barely had any bugs and the water was almost luke warm, but the location was right in the middle of koh san hell. We were so jet lagged, and but managed to rally for some angrily drinks with the mobs of tourists at the local bars. The bars of koh san are a bit of a sad sight. Upon entry there are hundreds of local Thai girls guarding the door trying to "meet" nice foreign gentleman to buy them a drink. Luckily I had Christine to protect me from their onslaught. As you penetrate the front lines you are treated to watching people dance, who obviously don't dance that much back home, try to woo their new Asian friends with provocative euro dances, such as the arm-pump, off beat stager, or my favorite the hip thrust slam into the back of their victim. After a few beers, and the realization that we were not going to enter in to any stimulations conversation, we headed home.
The next day we treated ourselves top some local delicacies, of pathway for Christine and curry for me, that would later become every meal for us in our never ending quest for the best Thai food in Thailand. Peanut sauce would come into play later, but to a lesser degree. After some serious convincing of Christine, we left our passports in the hands of some koh san travel agents for our visas and purchased aflame ticket to koh samui, which is an island on the non-tsunami side of Thailand (Indian ocean). We than began to hit the streets in a series of non-essential purchases, which we were helplessly trapped into because of the cheap prices of linen and novelty tee-shirts. Koh san is not a wonderful place. Everyone is trying to encourage you to part ways with your currency. I even had a tuk-tuk driver stalk me for 3 days trying to give me a tour of the city. I wish I were joking, but the man literally met me at our hotel entrance every morning and would put his stinky arm around me. I would have to contort my body to get away, and than have him stare at me through our entire breakfast everyday waving and smiling. Out of thousands of tourists, I was the one he decided would like to go on his tug-tuk tour. A tuk-tuk, by the way is a death trap of a motorcycle converted into an el-Camino style vehicle. We had to vary our eating patterns to lose the man, and had to pay close attention the pirated movies that every cafe plays. Every cafe has a listing of pirated movies playing that day, and that's how you decide were on is going to eat. They have every new release rental and current movie theatre selection playing at all hours of the day.
We tried to take in some culture at the grand palace, which used to house the king of Thailand. The king is no little deal over here. People have been shot for insulting him, he is a living god to the people here. He is also the longest reigning living monarch in the world. After an unsuccessful trip to the US embassy (closed for Martin Luther Link B-Day) we went to the palace to see the one thing in Bangkok not to be missed, but upon arrival realized we were not dressed appropriately. Everyone must wre close toed shoes, long sleeve shirts and pants in the holy sites. After further fruitless negotiation, the authorities decided that my assless chaps and arm tassels would not be approbate in the holiest area. Its funny to think how different our cultures are. In retrospect Koh San Road is not the backpackers Mecca we were told it to be. It was filled with dirty foreign men both young and old escorting around too young Asian prostitutes, drunken capri wearing euro trash, and ragged smelly hippies. In all honesty I can't wait to come back....


Blogger Adam C Beder said...

Great stories. Keep em coming.

You are not missing much in NJ, although your buddies in MA must be all whipped into a froth about the Pats. I guess that they got lucky in baseball season so they think that they are due another national sports championship.

Go Jets!

Have fun in the east.

2:08 PM  
Blogger Living in Thailand said...

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4:06 PM  
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