Stickman Readers' Submissions August 10th, 2001

The Plane Home

We just couldn’t leave Gullivers. It was our last day, we knew it was going to be emotional. It was me and my mate Dan. We just had the best 5 weeks of our lives. Easily. It wasn’t like we waited to get home to really appreciate it. We knew on the last week. Most people my age go on package holidays to Greece or Spain. I’ve been on these package holidays many times before, and although I have enjoyed myself, I’m usually happy enough to board the flight home. But not Thailand. Oh no.

We spent the last night in Patpong. We had already been before, at the start of the holiday. You cannot explain a first time experience in Patpong. On our second night in Bangkok, we (myself & Dan) met up with two couples we knew from our home country. One couple was on a package trip to Phuket, while the other couple were joining myself & Dan to travel down south the next day. We were all staying on the Khao San road and we decided to meet in Gullivers.

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Stan had been to Thailand before (without his girlfriend) so he knew the ropes on Patpong. It was his idea to go. The six of us had just guzzled down a bucket of that Mekhong whiskey / cola mixture so we were all well up for it. After a brief but fun Tuk Tuk ride we landed in the heart of the Thailand’s most renowned Red Light Area.

I remember being in total awe when we arrived in the door of Superpussy. I’d never seen girl’s dance naked on stage before, never mind shooting darts out of their nether regions! Beside a few older men randomly sitting alone against the bar, the place was surprisingly quiet. A combination of the whiskey and this observation gave me some sort of a sudden adrenaline/confidence boost, which led me to dancing around like Hugh Hefner on Viagra. Already the girls were all over us like flies on shit.

They left the couples alone, but proceeded to massage, rub, talk dirty, jest, dance & anything else that would provoke an erection (or some baht) from Dan & me. It did. We didn’t barfine any of these girls, because we didn’t know you could. We didn’t know they could go home with you if you wanted them to. But it was an exhilarating experience from the second we put foot on Patpong. Even if we didn’t get to ‘love them, long time’.

Four & a half weeks later, we hit Patpong & Superpussy once again. We had fond memories of the place, and it was our last night in Thailand. We wanted to make it good. And we had no couples with us this time. Since we left Bangkok we had spent time in Samui, where we realised how much fun there is to be had with the women of the night. Superpussy this time however, was different. I was relatively sober compared to my last visit, and this brought some comforting enlightenment. For it was plainly obvious that most of this ‘girls’ weren’t girls at all. Ironically, considering I was in Thailand – my naivety saved me! We promptly left after being ripped off for the stupid admission price and even more ridiculous drinks price. I even had one Thai boy manage to get an extra 100 baht off me because he reckoned I’d touched his breast on the way into the club. I didn’t want to argue, by this stage I knew only too well Thais can be very, very stubborn. Don’t get me wrong, Superpussy was only a slight tarnish to what turned out to be one of the most enjoyable nights of the holiday. It ain’t rocket science to work out why a night in Patpong can be so much fun, so I won’t bother explaining it. But I’d rather fast forward to an experience I had on the plane from Bangkok to Zurich. The plane home.

Myself and Dan were due to board the plane 23:05. It was 22:25 and we were still in Gulliver’s on the Khao San road. We couldn’t bare leave. Why would you? We had the best time of our lives, we had enough money left for anything we wanted, we had two extremely amorous girls beating us in a game of pool – but we had to get home. Our tourist Visa was up the following day. We were very drunk and having to rush around the Airport didn’t help. Although I was utterly disappointed in going home I never had time to wallow about it in the Airport. We were too busy flying around like headless chickens making sure we boarded the right plane. Luckily (or unluckily) we just made it on. A Thai woman (the only Thai stewardess) greeted us onto the plane with a reassuring smile. She was beautiful.

Everyone was giving us filthy stares as we boarded onto the plane. Most of the passengers were older couples, many of them German, Swiss & some English. We had been delaying takeoff. Many of the passengers looked annoyed and tired. They bore dismissive looks on their faces, looks that reminded me of a distant communist mind state – one that I forgot in Thailand but was soon remembering again. Remembering again I didn’t like that look. Especially now. It seemed cold, then as soon as we were settled in our seats I saw a Thai girl, even more beautiful than the stewardess, sitting one row up on the left with her two children. Dan & I were so emotional (& drunk) that we were singing and laughing then pretending to cry. I knew some Thai so I made sure I spoke loud enough for the beautiful Thai girl to hear. She did. She looked back at me from her chair and gave me an apprehensive smile. She was definitely the most attractive Thai girl I had seen yet. And believe me, there are many!

We all know too well that the bargirls of Thailand aren’t just prostitutes. They are professional actors, counsellors, liars & some are even magicians. They spend years perfecting this combination to make you enjoy yourself to the fullest. Why? Money. Sure many will tell you it’s worth it. They make you feel attractive, sexy, powerful & a man again. You escape your inhibitions and rediscover your youth. All for 500 baht. There is no come down. No complications. They do you a favour. You do them a favour. Most of the time, they have as much fun as you do. That is the main difference from a Thai prostitute & a Western prostitute. Not that I’ve ever had a Western prostitute, mind.

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It’s now about halfway through the flight. The lights are all off on the plane, the only light coming from the various small screens showing ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’. Dan is knocked out asleep by this stage, but I haven’t taken my sleeping pills. I keep looking over at that beautiful Thai girl hoping she will look back. By this stage I have noticed she is not travelling with her husband, maybe she is going to see him. Her two kids are fast asleep on the seats either side of her. It seems it’s just her & myself who are awake. She turns around to put her head in what seems to be a position to fall asleep. I don’t mind because she is now facing me. If she opens her eyes, she will be looking directly at me.

She adjusts to make herself comfortable and as she does she looks at me and smiles. I smile back (probably a little to enthusiastically) – she laughs. I turn away feeling myself blush (even though it wouldn’t matter because it was dark). I grab my headphones & try and watch the movie. I take them out pretty much straightaway realising I’m too drunk to concentrate; anyway something else made me take them out. I felt the Thai girl still looking at me. She hadn’t taken her eyes off me since our last smile. I looked back at her. She was still smiling, though her smile had become more suggestive. Fucking hell.

For the next three hours, she came and sat on the seat that was previously used for our empty cans of Singha & plastic meal trays. We talked and joked, most of it more flirting, she gently brushed her beautiful long nails along my arm, and I played with her hair. I couldn’t believe this was happening. She gave me her number written down with her make-up pen and told me I should ring her sometime. I know I asked if she had a husband but I can’t remember what she said. I was too drunk. I know I asked her many things that night, like how come she was on a plane, but none of it I can remember. It was like an amazing dream. The only sure way I know that it happened was Dan woke up from his slumber during the night while she was next to me. Thankfully the sleeping pills made sure his awakening was brief. But he remembers.

A Swiss Stewardess with breakfast waked me. There was only an hour left on the flight. I had a bad hangover. After a couple of seconds last nights events came into my head. I immediately looked over to where the Thai girl was sitting. She was back in her seat having breakfast with her two kids. Everything was noisy now. Very bright too. Germans muttering away, kids laughing & shouting. I turned around and looked at Dan. He had more sleep than me, but looked like he felt just as bad. If he hadn’t of asked what was going on with us the night before, I would have thought of it as a dream. But I knew it happened. I tried to eat some breakfast.

The plane had landed now and we reached for the baggage carrier. This was the first time we made eye contact since the night before. I felt ashamed and I didn’t want her to see my hangover, bloodshot eyes. She looked at me and smiled. That beautiful, beautiful smile was even more so in the morning. She made a gesture pointing at her head. She laughed and said I was crazy. I laughed and returned the smile.

All the way to Passport control I was searching my pockets for her number. It was hard to search carefully and rush to Arrivals at the same time. I knew she gave me her number, I even remember her name scrawled on the crumpled paper. Dan kept on telling me to hurry up and it doesn’t matter if I find it or not. I’m hardly going to ring her, and if I do what then? ‘Hi, I’m the crazy farang you met on the plane to Zurich, fancy coming to Switzerland?” Dan also said she was a proper Thai girl. As in she wasn’t from Isaan, or wherever the bargirls come from. He knew by her skin & features. Wow, a proper Thai woman! Not a bargirl? Bingo!

So now I am back home over 3 weeks. Still have the Thailand memories strong in my head, especially the girl on the plane. I never found her number. But in a way I’m glad I never did. If I hadn’t of lost it, I probably would have called her. But then what? The plane was the perfect setting for what happened before, if I called her it would ruin the memory. Nothing would of came of it other than a few awkward exchanges. Thai girls (even the non-bargirls) are all about interaction, not long distance phone calls with bad English. They’re simple smiles go so much further than women of the West’s stimulating conversations & ambitions. But only for ‘short time’. And that’s the way it should always be. In my time in Thailand, I learned much about the most amorous female race in the world. Like many other men I graced their beauty with sheer pleasure. But I also met some pretty wise ex-pats. Thai women are beautiful, complex creatures that we hot-blooded Western men will never understand. And we shouldn’t try too. We want to save the fun loving, happy, sexy little cuties. But then if we do,
all is not as it seemed.

Thailand. Instant gratification.

Hedonism without the guilt.

But not for keeps. Not for ‘Long Time’.

Stickman says:

Nice story, nice summary.

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