Last day in Bangkok… back to Dubai… and then the UK and then back to Dubai…

Luckily for me/us – we didn’t have a hangover when we woke. Score!

Bright eyed and bushy tailed – Miss Tim and I decided to go for a walk to Lumpini Park. Something we used to do when living at the Mango.  We’d try to go for a walk there each morning around 6am.   We love that part of the day.

We headed down Sukhumvit, turned down the soi by the ‘Jonas Bridge’ and walked about a mile down there to access the walk-way.   We love the walk-way!  There is no one there and it passes through a Thai neighbourhood.   Some great sights for sure.

Lumpini Park was looking a bit worn out.  Dead plants, tatty looking buildings, mud and shit all over the place.  I know it can’t be easy to maintain but a landmark like that really should be better looked after.

They have replaced all the free gym equipment though.  Looks very nice and a real nice touch. IMG_2231

New gym equipment. Nice.

Lumpini Park is one of my favourite places in Thailand.  Great to just chill-out, read a book or if you’re a Japanese tourist – take selfies.

A few hours lost there – it was time to pack my stuff, have a bite to eat and head to the airport.

I do like the food in Mulligans – and as it was downstairs from our hotel room – seemed ideal.

We ordered our appetisers and main course.  Made a point of saying we’d like the appetisers before the Main course.

Not sure what went wrong – but the main course arrived.  I didn’t bother mentioning the Appetiser as it was too late. If they took back the main course, it’d just sit there and go cold.

We ate – a little pissed off at the (once again) poor service.

I saw the Owner/Manager – Farang in a shirt and called him over.  Told him how I enjoyed the food but for the third time in a row – our order was mucked up. He seemed totally baffled and confused how it could happen and I gave him some advice from one ex-bar owner to another – ‘GET THEM TO WRITE DOWN THE FUCKING ORDER’!

Back to the airport in yet another 20 year old Taxi and back to Dubai.

Not much time in Dubai as the next weekend I needed to pop to the UK and sort out some vehicles.   It’s a nightmare having a load of cars and bikes in Storage.  Each year I make sure they are all serviced and tested.  Total pain in the arse and I need to addresses this. I blame eBay and me having too much time on my hands.

The 2 days in the UK saw me drive from the south east of England to Edinburgh.  Again, I have to say what a pleasure it was to drive in the UK having gotten used to the defensive style of driving I have adopted in Dubai.

I am seeing car crashes on a daily basis here.  Really pisses me off how fucking arrogant these arseholes are and what poor driving skills they have.

Weather in the UK was lovely too.   It’s these days of nice weather, roads where I don’t feel I am going to be in a crash and people who don’t make pig like noises and gob in the sinks next to you while you’re washing your hands  (disgusting habit by certain folk in the UAE) that make me miss the UK.  One day I shall spend more time there and settle down.

For now, the next trip to the UK will be in October to attend a motorcycle show for a weekend and after that – Christmas with Miss Tim.

Back to London Heathrow after 2 days.  Turns out Emirates are once again revamping their lounge.  They seem to do this a lot and as far as I can see – it’s never changed a bit.

Right now, Emirates people are to use the BA lounge – which, I have to say is not that good.  It’s big – but feels very corporate.  No atmosphere.  Shite.

Back to Dubai…. Being Ramadan still, it’s not a nice time.  Bars / Restaurants closed and no booze served until after 8pm.   Next year I’ll be going elsewhere for the month.

Only a few days left and Miss Tim was to join me.  Just aswell, as my little Roomba vacuum cleaner was not giving me his best work and Miss Tim just loves to clean!

With Miss Tim back – we had a busy time coming up with Ramadan coming to an end.

Miss Tim back to save me from the boredom of Ramadan
Miss Tim back to save me from the boredom of Ramadan

What better way to celebrate?  Hire a yacht and have a party of course!

Not as expensive as you'd think....
Not as expensive as you’d think….

To be continued…..

Next up…  Ferrari shopping, Partying in the Marina, Friday brunches and the upcoming visit from Jonas!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“I’ll not be back”…..(in an Arnie accent)

People talking on phones, kids running around playing, babies crying, phones ringing and people stuffing their faces – the kind of thing you’d see at a park or maybe at a fast food restaurant.  NOT what you’d expect at the cinema when watching the latest Terminator movie.

I have NEVER been in the company of such ignorant, arrogant, rude FUCKING ARSEHOLES in my life.

I could not believe what i was seeing.  Did no one give a shit about other movie-goers?

Next to me were KIDS of around 10 years old, munching on what sounded like carrots for the entire film. Next to Miss Tim, some woman was eating a foot-long hotdog and other food on a PLATE!

The guy in front of me kept taking phone calls and infront of him – kids were walking around and talking, screaming, laughing.  A complete joke and an unpleasant experience.

Now, the Terminator movie is a PG15 – which I asked the Cinema worker outside what it meant.  Basically nothing.  Anyone of any age can go in and watch.

Okay, so there is no nudity or bad language in the movie – but there is a lot of shooting and violence.  Not really a movie for kids under the age of 5.

Of course, looking around, none of the offenders were American or European.  Draw your own conclusions.

From now on, anytime I want to watch a movie, I shall be getting on an airplane and flying to Bangkok.  Extreme? I don’t think so.  I think a small price to pay to not be in the company of these people.

Slowly but surely, I am starting to fall out of love with Dubai…..

 

 

 

Two Nights in Bangkok – Part 2

Part 2

Jonas and I hit the streets – already with a bit of a buzz on.  We’ve ditched the house vodkas and been on the Grey Goose.  The only thing French that doesn’t give me a headache.

Off we trotted to iDarts to see how they’re getting on.   No girls outside and no one inside. Man, this is like the Mango all over again.

The staff woke up and we had a drink with the Chinese Manager type girl.  She remembered me from my last  visit and we chatted and had some drinks.

Not sure if we drank a lot or the drinks were expensive, but within half an hour our bill was more than 3k.  We made our excuses and said we’d be back later when it ‘should’ liven up.

Where to next?  Well, since DavetheRave had departed Pretty Lady, we’d heard the place had gone to shit – so went to check it out.

It was early – around 20:30.   The place was packed with girls.  Even some old faces from 2011 were there.  They still remembered Jonas and I from the Mango parties.

Loads of new girls on stage.  If the place has gone to shit, then I’d like to see it at it’s peak.  It was only due to the bill hitting 6k that we decided to head out to somewhere else..

Mandarin it was.  They had two girls who were twins there on my last visit.  They were fairly tall and had short hair.  I wanted to see if they had still kept their ‘uniqueness’ they had about them after a few months on the pole.  I also wonder if anyone took the pair of them?  Wouldn’t that be weird for the Sisters?  Of course not.. they’re Pros.

The twins were still there.  However, they didn’t dance or sit near each other.  Not even glance at each other.  Me thinks some man (money) had come between them?

Out the door, it was 21:30.  Dave told us not to come over until 22:30 so we headed back to iDarts to see if anything was happening.    My god… it had transformed in the hour we had been away.

The place was busy.  Full of Asians playing DARTS!!!  Really?  What is the interest?  Mainly dudes admittedly.  Maybe I am just ignorant thinking all guys that are in the Nana area are there looking at/for women?

Greeted by the Manager again, we hit the vodkas.  Some girls were offered up to us but we were not interested.  Time time to hit the street after another large bill.   It may have been down to the amount we were drinking, but I am now thinking the drinks at iDarts are not the cheapest.   Having said that, I could not tell you the price of a Vodka and Coke anywhere in Bangkok.  Except for the Aussie bar where it was 250bht.  Or was it Mulligans?  Can’t remember?

Time to hit Patpong.   Traffic was a little busy and we didn’t want to loose our buzz.  We didn’t want to lose our lives either, so decided against taking a taxi bike.  A tuk-tuk it was!

We don’t usually like tuk-tuks but for this instance it was ideal.   10 mins later we were in Silom for the cost of 200.  Basts.

First up was The Strip.   Not many customers at all.  The girls on stage looked like they had been around the block a few times.  There was not the ‘fun’ atmosphere we have come to expect from some go go’s.   Good thing about these places is they have no idea who we are and we can act like we’ve just arrived in Thailand for the 1st time.  Of course, that was until Jonas broke out into Thai.   Girls attitudes then changed.  It’s as if the girls of  Patpong have a reputation and they know about it!

Off to see Dave next at his new gig.   It had been a while.

The Black Pagoda isn’t a conventional togo with girls on poles with rows of seats facing a stage.  Infact, I didn’t see any poles or stage – but then I only hung out it one area of the bar.    I’d liken the venue to more a bar – with a load of hot girls mingling around in.  And the girls were certainly friendly enough.

Dave was having fun too.  He had a good crowd in.  Stickboy was hanging out with stickbaby, the Ghost of Pattaya past was also in the house.   Hopefully Jonas and I didn’t over-stay our welcome, but chatting, joking, drinking with the guys made for a real good time.  Of course, having a bunch of girls around didn’t hurt the atmosphere.

As we had a group of girls at the table we ordered Tequila.  Why not?  A round of 4 or 5 tequilas were ordered.  The usual raise them in the air, chink glasses and down them took place.  I noticed the girl to my left giggling – having poured her tequila into my Vodka Coke thinking I didn’t notice it.   Well, I didn’t, but Jonas did.  His eyes were starting to close, which I guess helped him focus on the devious little deed.  Cow.

I promptly ordered two more rounds of tequila for the girls and made a point of excluding the little cheat in front of her friends.   She apologised profusely, but it was too late.  No more drinks for her.  Dave was at the table and heard what was going on.  He gave her a telling off.   A lesson learned for her.  You just never know who it is you’re taking to.  I could be a normal visitor, or I could be someone looking to spend a lot of cash on the girls and a good buddy of the Manager. You never know!

Dave was a great host and was very popular.  Introducing me to people as the Big Mango Bar always gives me a little lump in my throat… even more so when people actually remember the Big Mango Bar!

The demon drink was finally catching up with Jonas and he was starting to fall asleep.  Standing up!

Now here is where things get interesting.  Security had spotted Jonas sleep staggering.  They came over and started ushering him out the door.  I couldn’t just let this happen – as Patpong security were not the most trusted of people in the world.

However, these guys were great.  I followed them all out the the entrance where they put Jonas on a sofa and said to me that he could stay there and have a little sleep!  These guys were great.  One of the girls even handed over a bottle of water.

On that little gesture alone – I’d put the Black Pagoda head and shoulders above all other bars that I have visited in Patpong, Cowboy and dare I say it – Nana.   I’ll exclude Pretty Lady as they have always taken good care of us.

I slipped the security dude 200, apologised about my drunken buddy and asked him to keep an eye on Sleeping Beauty.  He did and thanked me for the tip.

I went back inside to continue drinking.

Time flies when you’re having fun and I lost track of time.   I went to check up on Jonas who was coming around.  I told him we were heading back to Soi 4 and went back into pay the bill and say my goodbyes.

When I came outside, Jonas had gone.  He’d engaged auto-pilot and was heading back to Soi 4.     I jumped on the back of a bike and headed for soi 4 too.

I got dumped off at the end of soi 4 and called him.  He was at the end of soi 4 – the other side of Sukhumvit holding (hugging) onto a lamp post.

We decided we needed food.  Didn’t fancy the usual chickens feet/beak soup so headed to the place we only go when we are drunk.  – McDonalds.

Miss Tim was back at the hotel – so we decided to head back there to stuff our faces.

The walk down Sukhumvit has always been entertaining for us. Especially when drunk. I can’t remember the reasons we were laughing, but laughing a lot we were.  To the point of hysterics.  Remembering  old times when we were down Sukhumvit and laughing about something made us laugh even more. God knows what the people sitting at the street bars thought us couple of laughing idiots.

Of course, this would not be a typical night if various girls didn’t shout out ‘Jonas’ as we walked past many street bars.

Back to the hotel (which I don’t remember walking down soi 11 to?) we broke out into more laughter – resulting in Miss Tim just shaking her head and wondering what was wrong with us.  I fell of a chair.. there were fries all over the floor and various bits of chicken stuck to the wall.  What can I say?  We were drunk.

Jonas was given strict instruction to take a cab home from our hotel. DO NOT go back to soi 4.  DO NOT head to the bridge on soi 2.  GO HOME!

And with Jonas gone, Miss Tim cleared up the mess and put a bottle of water and some neurofen next to by head where I had passed out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two Nights in Bangkok…..

(Apologies for the recent radio silence – been busy. Popped over to the UK for a few days – and now have a few minutes while I sit in the B.A Lounge at Heathrow. Which I might add… is shit!)

Day 1…

Arrival

Once again, I got the public taxi where I was given a numbered ticket which lead me to the oldest, shittiest, smelliest taxi in Bangkok. There was no LPG tank in the boot, just a coal burner. I couldn’t be arsed to turn around and go back to the ticket machine so took it like a man and got in the cab.

No electric windows, airbags, seat belts, working dashboard. It was ancient. Is there no law for what they can use as public transportation?

As I was only in Thailand for a few days, we decided to spend the time in Bangkok instead of heading home to Hua Hin. So we needed a hotel..

The Hotel

We had a soft spot for S15 but last time we stayed we were not overly impressed so decided to go elsewhere. Back to Citidines on Soi 11. An old favourite.

It’s been about a year since we last stayed there – and will be another year before I stay there again. What a shit hole it is now. We opted for the Super Delux suite (3k per night) – whatever that is. No tv in the bedroom and the sofa was not big enough for 2 to lounge on. Pretty poor. On top of that, there was only one little window for the 3 rooms. Not impressed!

Next time we’ll try out the hotel above T21.

With no Rats around, Miss Tim and I we able to hit what has always been my favourite restaurant in Bangkok. – L’Opera on soi 39.

Again, it was one of the oldest taxis on the road that stopped and took us to L’Opera.

For those of you that don’t know L’Opera Italian – next to the restaurant is their Wine Bar. I have always eaten in the wine bar rather than the restaurant. It’s a nicer atmosphere and for some reason there is something nice about being at high tables.

Sad to see this place empty
Sad to see this place empty

Once again, I was disappointed and saddened by what has become of L’Opera. The place was deserted. We were the only customers in the wine bar. Looking through the windows to the restaurant – that looked empty too. It’s not as if there were a bunch of staff sitting around twiddling their thumbs either. I am guessing it’s been empty for a while. Shame. Real shame.

 

It had been a long day – so we headed back to the hotel to get some sleep. Tomorrow was Friday – which meant drinking day!

Up early to get the Citidines/Mulligans breakfast which comes with the room… to be honest, it’s not really worth it. Used to be good. Sign of the times.

The Shopping

Time for shopping. Headed to the new Emporium (can’t remember the name)  to check out the shoe-shops. Can’t say that we were impressed. Yes, it’s all nice new and shinny – but very Japanesey. Looks to me like it was built for the Japs. Lots of stupid cartoon pictures everywhere. Not for me.

Back to Terminal 21 for some lunch and to meet up with the only other Rat in town. Jonas!

First thing is first, check out the shoes. Has anyone noticed the horrid smell of shit a few shops away from the Nike Store? It’s been quite pungent for a few years now and nothing seems to have been done about it.

After a spot of lunch Miss Tim, Jonas and I decided to see what soi 11 was all about….

For a night out – we needed money. So off to the exchange to change up a bunch of GBP for THB.

Before handing over a wad of cash I had to go through each and every note to make sure there were no pen marks, numbers or blemishes on any of the notes as they wont accept them. WHY?

Why is it the exchange will not except any notes with biro on them but half the notes they hand me look like Rolln and his crew have been drawing on? Another item on the list to bitch and moan about. Bastards.

Dropping some crap off at the hotel, we had a few in Mulligans. Once AGAIN the level of service was shite. How hard is it to remember 1 beer and 2 Vodka & Cokes? Not very. And certainly not when it’s your job. We didn’t get the wrong drinks, but two minutes after ordering the service girl came back to the table and asked our order. WRITE IT DOWN!!!

Next up was the Aussie Bar. Sorry, but it was just plain shite. Miserable bloody place – drinks were expensive and there was a smell of piss at the front. One drink and done.

‘Cheap bastards’ was not open so we kept walking. Just as well, as I can’t stand that place. Full of people that think they’re cool – drinking on a street. Tossers.

Soi 4 it was then. Big Dogs was first up for a bit of people watching. Saw some old faces, had a laugh at some of the sights coming into the Plaza. Never gets old.

Bar 4 was next. The drinks were flowing well. Once again, the order for 3 drinks was too much to remember – so the staff once again had to return a few minutes later and ask us what we ordered.

I am getting pretty sick of this. I even make a joke at them when ordering – asking if they need to write it down.

Not much fun to be had – and the girls all seemed past their ‘best before’ dates.

Time to head for Hanrahans to meet some pals of Miss Tim. Hanrahans is now becoming one of our favorite bars to hang out at. Not sure about the prices – but they have high tables and chairs!

Several drinks later, Jonas and I were set free to go on a little walk-about……….

 

To be continued!  (iDarts, Mandarin, Pretty Lady, Black Pagoda, Street Urchins)

 

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…