Once upon a time in Indonesia – by Flank

I am back in Perth after my BKK stint. The QV 1 is winding down and we are doing curtain walls and internal services.

I grab a chance to go to Batam Island in Indonesia (about 40 min off Singapore). We were building the jacket and the modules for the Chevron Nugini Kutubu project. This was to be followed up with a hook up off Kutubu and I was to spend 12 weeks at sea on the BOS 355 down the track.

Board the plane Perth-Singapore. Easy, relatively short flight, a few brewskies and we’re good. In these days, Singapore was still under Lee Quan Yu so they gave you a hard time when your hair was too long…mine wasn’t.

Got to Changi, walked off the plane and the humidity hit me like a warm wet towel across the face.
I was met by a local employee from Bouyges Offshore and dropped to the hotel for the night..

Too knackered to go to the hotel bar….sleep…at 7 am off to Finger Pier (stupid name) to take the Ferry to Batam.

This was the beginning of an awesome time where eventually I met my now ex…

So in Batam, it is a tax free island, cheap booze…worked for me. The main town is called Nagoya but most of the Island was used for offshore construction yards.

At the first I was in a hotel until the company could secure me a house.

Next to the hotel was a “Coffee Shop”…hmmm….since I am not a Coffee drinker, I went anyway to check it out, acting on a tip off from the hotel doorman.

OK. it is called ‘Mega’…interesting name for a coffee shop. Had to walk through heavy curtains and rock music inside (Indo being Muslim, all these places were kind of disguised but every one knew anyway)…guys you know where this is going right.

Dark inside, local girls some pretty some rough…ok Chinese Singaporeans sneaking around…spineless pricks.

I grab a beer. I meet Ida. Cute as….I didn’t speak Indonesian then but somehow we managed to have a good time and we hooked up. After Thailand, this was a totally different experience. I don’t think she drank a lot but I managed to get her shit faced to a degree I had to carry her to the taxi and my mate, the doorman had to help me to get her to the room…some coffee shop right. I wasn’t too fresh either so we both slept it off and both looked like shit in the morning…Selamat Datang Indonesia!

We were hitting site hard…work sun up to sun down, which is basically from 6am to 6pm. We all went through several litres of water a day to stay hydrated. The Project Manager was a nice guy but he was pushing the project hard. The 355 was booked for the hook up and shit had to be out there in Kutubu in one years time. Everytime a Manitou crane used for the roll over stood idle shit hit the fan…..

But with all this going on, we used to leave site around 6.30 at night, straight to meet at the Mega.

Still in work clothes, covered in dust and shit…no worries. The girls knew we were coming. A mix of thirsty Aussies and French guys…We hit the Heinekens and it was on.

Ida was there most of the time waiting and we had some top times and I slowly started to learn the Indonesian language which is a shit load easier than Thai.

Eventually I met a girl called Rosa…she took me for lunch to a traditional Indonesian restaurant which is a bit like Dim Sum…so lots of little plates of stuff (padang food). I was not used to this shit and I tell you, fucked if I know what most of it was. I soldiered on, not wanting to appear like a pussy, washing it down with Bourbon and Coke.

Long story short, Rosa and me didn’t do much that night as she was in bed and I was in the toilet
spraying from every orifice in my body. She thought that was hilarious….I did not agree…

Back in Thailand…

Day 1 & 2

After a 3 month break from Thailand, I should have been more excited to return. In the last 10 years, the longest I have been away from Thailand is 6 weeks. I have always been excited to return.

For some reason I am just not excited this time. Why? Not sure. Yeah, I wanted to see Miss Tim of course, but all the other things that used to attract me no longer do. All the things that didn’t used to bother me, now suddenly do.

Arriving at the airport – I went for a taxi. The new system is in place where you get a ticket/number from the machine and head to the parking bay of that number. I got the ticket with number 29. Went the bay of 29 to find a locked car with no one in it. Stood there in the heat for a few minutes until a driver arrived with a load of passengers – waving a ticket with 29 on it. Can’t be bothered to argue – no point. Just another typical Thailand trait.

Back to the ticket machine and off to find bay 40. Once again, no one there so I had to wait by an old pile of crap that looked to have been built in the 80’s. Some old duffer arrived and opened up his 4 wheeled skip. He tried to fob me off by asking me if I knew about airport taxi and the 100bht surcharge and no meter. I told him to put the meter on, I am not a tourist and I am not paying the 100bht surcharge. Off he went. Had the twat not tried to scam me, I’d have handed over the usual 500 I normally give taxi drivers to take me from the airport to Sukhumvit. Not this time.

Breakfast

After checking into the Hotel S15 – we decided to have a little breakfast at the Black Swan. The BS breakfast has always been good and as it was just across the road – it was a goer.

I had forgotten. The Black Swan has moved. Doh. Not too far though so off we trekked to Soi 19. Bit of a hike to be honest but sure it’d be worth it. Or so we thought.

One thing that kind of pissed me off, which highlights how lazy the Management/Owner is…  there was a sign on the door of the old venue that read ‘We are moved to soi 19’

Being this is an ENGLISH pub with prodomantly UK or Western Expat customers, you’d have thought the notice to all customers would have been written or checked by someone who’s English is their Mother tongue?!

Has the management changed? Certainly the staff have.

Inside the new Black Swan is much smaller than the old. At 10am, they really don’t need to be playing dance/house music videos. As is most (British) Pubs, you have easy listening music in the mornings.

We were the only customers so we thought service would be quick. We were wrong. Kept waiting for quite a while – I ordered the full monty English breakfast that I’ve had many times in the past.

While waiting, I dropped a pen top on the floor, under the table (we were in a booth) so put on my phone torch to have a look for it. What a shock! Under the table there were chunks of old toast, the odd chip, the usual hairs and dirt and a coin or two. It didn’t look too clean that’s for sure.

One thing I prided myself on at the Mango was each night (or morning) the stools were raised off the floor and the floors were mopped. There is no excuse for having dirty floors if you have a cleaner.

The food was not like it was or how I remembered it. I shall not be returning, leaving The Queen Vic and Chequres my only places to go for breakfast when in Bangkok now.

Headed over to Pantip in the afternoon to have a computer cleaned and filled with new software. I really do find Pantip a fascinating place. The work carried out on my computer would have cost 100’s in the UK. Here… 500bht. I am sure I could have got it less than that but hey, its only 500bht.

For those of you who have never been to Pantip, it’s a place where you can get pretty much any gadget, computer, accessories and DVD’s. After looking around various little stalls, Miss Tim asked what I was looking for. I told her an ‘under water smoke alarm’. It took a minute or two before she realised I was pulling her leg.

Hotel

S15 has been a fave hotel of ours for a little while. Conveniently located, clean, good value. Ticks all the boxes.
This time… things are different. I am not going to acknowledge the maintenance going on in the lobby or the lift being out of action – this is a necessary evil and can’t be avoided. However, I don’t excuse the chambermaids chatting to each other at the tops of their voices to each other from one end of the corridor to the other. Hearing Thai’s speaking (fast) is not exactly soothing on the ears. A few time I had to open the door and ask them to keep the noise down.

The reception staff were efficient as ever – filling out all paperwork for us which other hotels seem not to do.
Through the night, I could hear music. Thought it was coming from another room, so was all set on knocking on peoples doors and giving them what for.. turns out it was the hall speakers and their piped music. I guess they forgot to turn it off at night?

I guess we’ve outgrown S15. The next one to try is Terminal 21.

Friday was wedding day. No, not mine. Miss Tims best friend Nok. Miss Nok married a Spaniard last year. She has been living in Spain a few years now. Nice girl. The main wedding took place in Spain so it was time for Miss Nok to have her Thai party.

It was my 1st Thai wedding (party) and I am hoping my last. It’s just not for me. Had it have been anyone other than Miss Tims pal, I’d have made excuses not to go. I totally understand that it’s important for the Thai girls and how much pleasure/excitement they get from it. I do. I get it.

It was all about Miss Nok and I wasn’t going to spoil it by being the grumpy farang sitting on the table looking miserable. Well, I was going to try not anyway.

I wasn’t the only Farang. There was a table of about a dozen Spaniards who came over for the party in support of the Groom which was good for him. How many farangs have to do this on their own without any other white faces there to chat to. Sorry, but it’s Thai. I am not Thai so have no interest in this.

The day started at 7 with all the Monks blessing them with good luck. I did point out it was too late – as they’re already married so his luck is all gone. No one gets my jokes.

At 9am they were serving Thai whiskey and all sorts of food dishes. At 9am! I’d have much preferred a boiled egg and some orange juice, but as I said – it was all about the Thai’s.

First time I've had red wine for breakfast.

First time I’ve had red wine for breakfast.

There was a band – which had two male singers and a separate female singer. Is it compulsory for all male singers to be gay? Anyway, when the music was on, the farangs got up to dance. I can’t help but think this was due to them starting drinking at 9am. They danced to the Thai music. Only them. All the Thai’s sat there pointing and laughing.

 

One old guy kept giving me shit about me going up and dancing. I politely smiled and said it wasn’t for me. Behind my recently professionally cleaned pearly smile I was muttering that if he keeps it up, he’ll be needing to visit a dentist soon too. The old duffer just wouldn’t let it go. Why was I not keen? Well, lets face it, farangs can’t dance to Thai music. It was plain to see to all the Thai’s and me. I was not about to have this lot poke fun at me. Put on a bit of Bee Gee’s Stayin Alive and I’d have been up there bustin my John Travolta moves – but as they didn’t, I sat firmly in my seat.

All was going well until things started to wrap up around 2pm. This is where things went a little dark. Again, it’s a Thai thing, but in this day and age I’d have thought things would have moved on or evolved a little. The old Thai’s were badgering the Bride and family about how much money the Groom had paid. It all came down to money. This upset Miss Nok and she was in tears. On her wedding day party of all days. There was money there – laid out in some golden bowl which was photographed by many people, wrapped up in some golden cloth which was then carried by the mother with a big smile on her face. How vulgar. I know, I know, it’s a Thai thing. But when you break it down and point out to them that all they are interested in is the physical cash – it’s vulgar. If it were me and I was asked what money I was bring to the party so to speak I’d be saying, well, there is the houses, the cars, bank accounts, living expenses. What the fuck have YOU ever given anyone?

Nope – it’s all about the visual of how much cash you can sell your daughter for. Horrid.

Soi 4

Back to the hotel for a quick change and head to soi 4 to meet the rats. The rats this time were – Rick Masters, Spats, Lomeo, Aussie John, Khun Jim and GM. The girls were with us but they were off to do their own thing.

One thing I noticed more so than I have in the past is how dirty and untidy soi 4 is these days.  The garbage on the side of the street, the smells, the general grime of the place.

It was good catching up with the rats. Bit or reminiscing about the old days. Many of it in the days of the Mango. What has become of the old Mango? We thought we’d take a look.

Under the name of iDarts, the old Mango has some Electronic Darts machines. Never played on them or wanted to. Still, they have booze so off we went. One of the 1st things you’ll notice when approaching the Mango is a small group of girls at the end of the soi in little pink figure hugging dresses. Not a bad start. They walk with you to the bar and hang around. The bar is pretty much how it was when it was sold as the M Bar but a few minor floor changes.

The hostess came over to us, took our drinks order and asked us if we wanted any company. Perfect. Not pushy, very polite and friendly.

We all had a little chat with her about the bar and it was all good. There are some plans in the pipeline for a ST hotel upstairs – which was on our plans back in the day. Good luck to them.

iDarts is certainly a bar you should include on your crawl of soi 4 with the rats.

Next up was the Plaza!
As per usual – the 1st stop was Pretty Lady, I mean Spellbound. The girls greeted us like superheros as per usual and a good time was had by all. DavetheRave looked to have the worlds problems on his shoulders and was trying to figure out the owners next step. He told me the show-girls had walked out as the shows were cancelled by the owner. To be honest, I had forgotten all about the shows. I go there because of the staff, girls and of course Dave are a great bunch.

Out the door and up the stairs to Mandarin. It’s not a place I like going to. I HATE it when an aging, pug ugly Mamasan marches a couple of girls upto you and offers them up. If you’re not in the mood or just don’t fancy them you tell them ‘no’. How does that make those girls feel? Some young girl getting rejected by fat old men more than twice their age? I’d like to think that we are more than capable of flagging down a Mamasan, waitress or even the dancer in person should we want to engage with them?

This time was different. There seemed to be a different vibe inside. Upstairs was even open as they had so many girls. Looks to me like they have a fresh stock of girls. The girls who have been there a while were mulling around – not looking too happy. I find it funny that the veterans of Mandarin are still only very early 20’s!

Where to next? Well, this is where it gets tricky. We regrouped outside and openly asked ‘where is next’? There was a time we had a full menu of venus to visit in a night. Now we found ourselves scratching our heads.

Rainbow 1 was close by so we went in there. Non-descript. Can’t remember much about it. It’s just another generic gogo.

Out of there and into Erotica. Not too many customers but plenty of girls in good spirits. There was even a boob or two to be seen around the place.

Drinks finished… approaching midnight, we had our fill. There was nothing else in the Plaza we wanted to see.

Is this what it’s come to? Standing around trying to think of places to go? Sign of the times?
We called it a night.

Watches synchronized, the plan was to meet at Hemingway’s the next day.

1 Month in Dubai – Some photos

Life in Dubai has been passing at 1000mph this past month.   Moving into an apartment is a ball ache which takes time. After shelling out a years rent up front, then getting the electric, water and internet connected is not exactly the easiest thing to do in the world.

Still, it’s all done now. Moved in, internet up and running, knives, forks and Marmite are now in the cupboards. All that’s missing now is Miss Tim.

I’ve sent out the Batsign… hopefully she’ll be here at the end of the week.

Some pictures for you… of my time here so far….

Drunken one night… 3am munchies. This guy is actually wearing Simpson pajamas!

Must have been a bet?

Must have been a bet?

Some tasty cars here for sure. We all know that. The money these people have can only be described as ‘vulgar’.   I’ve found a car I want – but it’s no way in the league of the average Joe here.   It’s does have a 5.7ltr engine though. More on that later.

Yeah, but is he happy?

Yeah, but is he happy?

When Lambos and Bentleys are ten a penny…. This is a real head turner….

still don't know what it is?

still don’t know what it is?

I still can’t express how impressive the Dubai skyline is when driving through Downtown. Truly awesome.

One of the things I like about my new Downtown apartment is the coffee shop. Perfect place to grab a bit of breakfast and take in the early morning sun. Not a bad view either…

The view as I come out of my front door.

The view as I come out of my front door.

I’ll be happy when Miss Tim get here – so I can share it all with her. I have a good circle of pals here which is cool, but there are things I want to do which really isn’t appropriate with a bunch of guys.

This is a nice little trendy bar called the Barasti. For me, I’ll take this view over the Golden Bar any day.

It's just 'nicer' than the bars I am used to.

It’s just ‘nicer’ than the bars I am used to.

As I am now working 9 to 5, just trying to make a living, people are asking me what is Miss Tim going to do to amuse herself while I am at work? Well, apart from sleeping, the Dubai Mall is within walking distance. The Dubai Mall being the largest in the world I am told. What do Malls have?
– shoes. I sent her this picture I took the other day.

This is going to cost me...

This is going to cost me…

Dubai is expensive. Compared to Bangkok.. Bangkok is a bargain. I’ve been burning through cash like Jonas goes through women. I am putting it down to settling in and getting to know the place. Now it’s been a month and Miss Tim is inbound, I can calm it down a little.

Having said that – there are an awful lot of shoe shops here.

Long Weekend in KL – by Lomeo

Had it been 90 days already? Pretty close, so it was time for me to head out of the kingdom for a few days. As I said before, I can’t stand doing the standard ‘visa run’ and prefer to explore the surrounding countries when the opportunity arises. Kuala Lumpur was the chosen destination this time, as Juliet has a pal here that she hadn’t seen for a few years and I’d been keen to take a look for some time as well. Continue reading

Dubai Update – by Rafiq

Just bringing this post to the top of the pile… give it a little freshen up!

(note that this recent entry about Dubai is a follow up to a Dubai post published in 2009)

Dubai:

Firstly the rates stated by Bkk in his post are pretty much unchanged it all comes down to how good your negotiation skills are CIS girls will start prices at 2000dirhams early in the night but as the night wears on they will eventually drop to 1500dirhams… one major point to note from experience regardless of the fact that the girl is a hooker be nice to them and respectful and friendly throughout the night and u are sure to get them for 1000dirhams for LT I Have never paid more than 1000dirhams for a hot 8-10 CIS girl…. a great place to find them is at a club in deira called Red Square which is in the Moscow Hotel the entry is 100dirhams but well worth it this place is packed every night opens at 9:30pm and closes at 3am but usually gets packed at around 11:30pm I highly recommend it if u like Russians Kazakh and even Iranians there too…. I usually tip the bouncers every now and then and they tend to keep an eye out for girls according to your tastes and send her over for intros I usually tip 100dirhams….. Continue reading

Chiang Mai Diaries Day 1-3 with GamblinMan

(Thanks GM for a submission of what ‘normal’ people do outside of BKK. This would actually give ROLLN a heart attack.)

Days 1 and 2

First of all, I have only been to CM twice, this being my second trip. It is purely my observations and experiences there, I am in no way an expert on the city.

My sister and her husband were over here for a holiday, going to Vientiane, Chiang Mai, Bangkok and KL. I liked Chiang Mai when I went up there last year so I decided to catch up with them up there. It was an interesting time and I thought a post was in order. I hope it helps anyone thinking of going up there in the near term.

I flew out of Don Mueang with Air Asia, there are so many airlines flying to CM (Thai, Air Asia, Nok Air, Bangkok Airways, Thai Lion to name a few) that it is easy to find the one that suits you. Taxis very well organised at the airport, 120 baht to anywhere in town. We were staying at the Chiang Mai Plaza, it is an older hotel with good facilities that is being let run down. All our reservation requests were ignored and the rooms by the pool we asked for were still having the carpet changed. Same excuse they used last time. Nice but this is the last time I will stay there.

Picking your hotel in CM is easy, get one close to the night market and Loi Kroh Rd (bar street). Transport is not difficult but walking distance is better.

First night I didn’t do much, I was still a little hungover from the previous night at Hillary 2 with Lomeo. I blame Lomeo, not Jonas this time. My date with the cute 36 year old had gone downhill fast so after Hillary 2 I headed out to see Coyote Girl for a nightcap, but I digress.

Next day dawned hot and humid. Being in holiday mode, shorts were called for. We headed out for a curry, according to the sign it is the best curry in CM and you can only get it there, nowhere else. Basically it is a mussaman chicken curry with potatoes. I have to admit it is the best I have had, place called Aroon Rai on Kotchasan Road. It also happens to be about 10 metres from the gogo (Spotlight) that I frequented on my first trip there. I had every intention of renewing the acquaintance that evening. We spent the day wandering around the shops and cafes etc (me) looking for a suitable gift for Coyote Girl and counting down the clock ’til bar time.

Having a pre dinner drink, a lovely Sav Blanc from Tasmania, in my sisters room on 10th floor of the hotel when the earth moves. We are all hanging onto the furniture and I am trying to decide if I can make it to the swimming pool below if I jump. My sister and hubby grab their passports as soon as it finishes and we are out of there. I didn’t worry about my passport but I did finish my wine.

If anyone has ever been on the 10th floor of an old hotel in Thailand during an earthquake, they will confirm my feelings. Total fear. Doesn’t take long to realise there is absolutely nothing you can do and go with the flow, or shake. We evacuated but only one other customer did and the staff not worried at all. It was a 6.3 magnitude earthquake, centred around Chiang Rai.

Went for dinner in a local institution, The Dukes, or in one of them anyway. Apparently they were investigating an outlet in Bangkok a while ago but nothing came of it. Food was quite reasonable. I was so full that I had to walk it off, that was my excuse for not going back to the hotel with the family anyway.

It was late enough to go to a gogo so I headed along Loi Kroh Rd and around the corner to Spotlight. Walked in and there were about 5 girls on stage. Quite a big stage but I don’t know how it was taking the weight. Same as the last time I was there. At that time I only saw 2 girls under 50kg, this time there were more girls but none very petite. I had hoped to catch up with CM girl but she was ignoring my messages so I assumed she wasn’t available. As I walked in and stepped to the bar, there was a scream. CMG was there and working, she looked as good as before and hadn’t been eating too many hamburgers.

We didn’t bother with more drinks/bars, we went straight back to the hotel. We tried to keep the noise down so my sister in the adjoining room would not twig to my assignation. She only did ST which I am happy with so she went home richer and I went to sleep with not a care in the world.

Day 3

My cares returned at 8am when the aftershock hit.

Only about 4.5 or something on the rictus scale but it was enough to rock the hotel and wake me up. I followed the example set by the hotel staff and went back to sleep. Woke up around 10am and went to meet the family for another day of wandering and eating.

I do like CM from an expat point of view. It has lots of things to do for tourists, direct flights to lots of interesting places, good bars and restaurants. In my opinion it is the most Farang friendly of Thai cities outside Bkk. The islands, Pattaya and Hua Hin are good but they aren’t cities.

Came back to my room and thought I would watch some tv, I had two channels in English so that made choosing easy. Looked for the tv remote to turn it on and couldn’t find it anywhere. My next thought was that I could have not been so unlucky as to have another bar girl steal the tv remote from my room. Yes, another. I have witnesses to the return of the first one so it is a true story. Luckily, after a more thorough search I found it down between the beside table and the bed.

Dinner was had that night in a lovely place on the river, River Market Restaurant. It is the last place on the right as you go down to the river on Loi Kroh Rd. Very nice food, great service attitude and atmosphere to die for.

River @ Anantara

Again, I ate too much and a walk was called for. Straight up LK Rd. and got to the area of bars with the Muay Thai ring at the end. Not sure of the name but it is easy to find and lots of fun. Had time so I thought a look and a beer were in order before heading to Spotlight again. There are about 40 bars here arranged down either side, going down to a larger area with the ring. Walked down the middle, looking for a bar with reasonable girls and not too busy. Saw one that fitted, went in, sat down and there was May.

May used to work at Hollywood in Nana and later, outside of Playskool. She knows many “friends” of mine and thought I was still with Tattoo Girl. Small world. One drink and a promise to come back and I was off to Spotlight again.

CMG was waiting and we ordered a couple of drinks. There is an old oriental guy who has been there every time I have gone in, sitting at the same stage side seat and having a great time. Apparently he goes there every night. He smiles so much that his eyes are almost invisible because of laughter lines. He reminds me of a character from Tin Tin. I sit and watch the show from the back of the bar. Getting to know the mamasan now which means buying drinks. One customer is drinking red wine, the bar staff pour the remains of a Penfolds something into a glass, pull out a completely different wine from the ice and fill it up. The punter didn’t complain.

We decided to go to May’s bar and watch the Muay Thai and have a few there. Got there and atmosphere was not conducive to a good time. May and CMG giving and receiving daggers. CMG informs me that her flatmate has a bar in there and she wants to go and say hi. She comes back a bit later and wants to move there.

I was pleasantly surprised with her flatmate, lets call her CMG2. I was beginning to regret taking CMG again, she is good but variety is better. Stayed there for a few drinks and a hookah of some apple flavoured herbs. I don’t smoke and neither does CMG but that didn’t stop her. I was happy being entertained by the Muay Thai and CMG2’s tits, in no particular order.

Muay Thai most nights here is good entertainment, I imagine the guys (and girls) doing it don’t get paid much and they do it for real, you could feel the punches/kicks/elbows etc. After a fight, the combatants walk around asking for tips and they deserve whatever they get.

Back to the hotel and a damn good rogering for CMG.

Day 4…..

The Bridge on the River Kwai – by Graham

One of the tourist attractions in Thailand is ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’. Apparently named after a movie or something?

It’s one of those famous bridges. Like the rope bridge in Indiana Jones or the bridge on soi 2 where Jonas and the ladyboy…… well… it’s a famous bridge right.

I can’t say that looking at a bridge was top of my list of things to do. Not when the list had items such as sleeping, drinking and stabbing myself in the leg with a fork on it. Driving 19 hours to see a bridge was not a priority. Continue reading

Japan Trip – by MiB

I had no intention of going to Japan. I asked Little Miss Rayong (LMR) if she had some time off work would she like to do something together. I thought she would say something like, Go to Siam Paragon shopping. Or at the very worst she would want to go to Phuket. But no she said Japan. Continue reading

Driving in Tunisia

Many moons ago,  I found myself working for a major oil company in Tunisia.   About 1km from the beach and it never rained, it was pretty nice.   I was part of the Project Management Team for a load of engineering modifications at an Oil & Gas Terminal.  All boring stuff.

There was a bit of a problem with our Engineering / Construction Contractor back in London, so the ‘team’ had to all head to London for a few months.  All of us that is, except a pal and I who recommended we stay at site and man the fort.  Any why not?  A beach in Tunisia knocks spots off rainy old London.  In addition to our team of two was Mick, – a Cockney geezer from our Engineering Contractor in London sent out to do a couple of little jobs.  Ha.. the fools!

With everyone gone, this left Geordie, Cockney and I to pretty much do what we wanted.  Of course, we did all the work we needed to do, but after work was play time! Continue reading

BBQ Week in HH – by Big G

Part 1

Buying sea-monsters 1st thing in the morning is not exactly what I call fun. But then I am sure there are many things that I’ve had Miss Tim do early in the mornings which wouldn’t have been her 1st choice either.

The troops were in the minivan heading to HH. A bargain price at 2700, considering a taxi is around 2400.

When the troops arrived, the plan was to have a few beers then leave the women to do whatever it is women do when we’re not around (dance around in underwear I’d like to think)– and then us lads head into town for a few more beers. Easy. Continue reading

Koh Samui trip.. outside soi 4. – by Big G

On New Years morning, I should have been, like most of you, working on a hangover. Maybe still fast asleep or kicking an LB out of bed claiming that was the last LB due to a new resolution. I however, was heading to Koh Samui. I wasn’t quite sure why we needed a taxi, as Miss Tim assured me that Koh Samui was just at the end of soi 4. She lied.

After getting over the initial shock that I was no longer in soi 4, we scuttled through the airport without causing any arguments or fights, which is unusual for me. Maybe I have mellowed?

I am not sure how long the flight was, as we both fell asleep the moment we sat in our seats. I should have asked someone sitting near by, as there was not a hope in hell of any of them sleeping whilst we snored.

I’ll not give you all the details of the trip – just the highlights. I can’t have you changing your opinion of Miss Tim now can I? Continue reading

A few days relaxing in Phuket – by Daywalker

Each year, I feel like getting away from it all and treat myself to a little holiday…

I’ve tried to persuade the girlfriend that there are many nice hotels in soi 4, but she insisted we go further afield.

After putting up a good fight, some tears, name calling, dirty dishes left in the sink, laundry thrown everywhere, she told me to grow up and stop being a big baby.  Being called a bigbaby is possibly the worst insult ever.

This was all for show really, as there is a place in Phuket that I like, and have been a few times now.  I just didn’t want to seem too keen.

‘Might-get-you-there Air’ was cheaper than soi 5 night crawler so there was plenty of money in the holiday budget for a nice hotel.  The Melisa Villa Resort was my retreat of choice.  It’s in Kata a stones throw (if you’re an Olympian) to the sea. Continue reading

Getting away to Koh Chang by nurseRon

– editors note.  Thanks to nurseRon for his 1st reader submission!

As I’m a bit long winded and lack a proper editor, this comprehensive piece will be presented in finger food sized chunks! If you like quiet (Betty Ford clinic kinda quiet), beautiful, semi-untamed tropical Islands with beaches and outstanding seafood, top notch accommodations at very reasonable rates, read on……

I’m  on my 5th trip to Koh Chang and continue to find it a relaxing and entertaining adventure each time.  I go because the city wears me down after a week or so. As I get older the constant bombardment of stimuli, filth and scumbags lurking around Bangkok taxes my senses so, that I need a holiday from my holiday!  If you thrive on high energy and enjoy the never ending supply of ambient noise and pollution on offer in Bangers,  this will most likely bore you to tears!   That said lets figure out how to get off the Monger district and onto my favorite little retreat… Continue reading

Straight to Pattaya/Party by The Notorious BMG

Everyone has a different theory on how parties are best put together.  I think we can all agree that the best parties are usually had out of town, away from prying eyes and certainly out of your area code.

I arrived at BKK airport around 4pm on a Saturday.  My pal was waiting at the airport.  For some reason, girls seem to worship him.  Lets call him Jesus.

The plan was to head straight to Pattaya for the night and then return to BKK the next day to meet up with my other pals/girls/work colleagues.  I allowed myself 1 night of freedom.

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Son of Return to Vientiane by ratchada

[Father Post here: Return to Vientiane by ratchada]

Well, I have been to Laos (three days in May of this year) since my last report, but since it’s been about a year since that missive I thought I would post a sort of update.

This trip started with a flight from Bangkok to Luang Phrabang, a destination I highly recommend for those who haven’t been…basically, it’s everything it’s cracked up to be/touted as: misty, high in the mountains, quaint, almost unbelievably picturesque…and it really has not changed much since my first visit there five years ago.  I also have to say, though, on the occasion of my third visit, that if you’re an action-oriented, city rat like me, it starts to get old on the third trip.  Two days is definitely enough, and that’s what I did on this trip.  Don’t even think of going to Luang Phrabang to play…you’d do better further north in those bleak Lao cities on the China-to-Thailand truck routes, and that’s only if your idea of fun is concrete block hotels, brothels, and sharing your girls with Chinese truckers.  Not my idea of fun, that’s for fucking sure.

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