Readers' Submissions

Splendour In Surin

  • Written by Sydney Tom
  • January 8th, 2004
  • 4 min read



Ok; as you probably know Sydney Tom got married. I don’t do it all that often, so it was a bit of an event. I will write a longer report on the event of the wedding and all that stuff, but I wanted to quickly comment on “Happy New Year” and give a trip report from Surin.

I was amazed how difficult it was to get out to deep dark Isaan on the 28th. Eventually I swallowed my pride and took a taxi to the big hotel in Surin. It was 3500 baht, but Khun Taxi who turned out to be a moonlighting policeman was good and drove me from the airport to my apartment in Bangna included in the 3500. The normal taxi ride is about 250 and I would have gone to MoChit anyway just about next to the airport, no I thought not bad I got a 500 baht ride for free. Khun Taxi was really nice and we had a fun trip.

What totally amazed me was the amount of traffic, like the endless buses and the number of Bangkok taxis. When we were near Korat getting fuel there were 5 Bangkok taxis there filling up as well.

After going to the big hotel, I actually got half a night for free. I checked in at about 3:45 am told them when I was leaving and they wanted 2 nights pay. I told them I was just checking in early and I was not going to eat breakfast the first morning. They agreed and I got 1 ? nights for the cost of 1. Good luck to the “Fields of Gold” hotel in Surin.

After calling Mrs Sydney Tom and having her just about collapse knowing I was in Surin and not Sydney, she borrowed a light truck and came up from her sleepy village. When I properly woke we went out for breakfast. I found a new bar area in Surin. There is the traditional one next to the Big hotel with the Karaoke etc, but if you walk directly out of the hotel and then go to the bus station (all of 100m) there is a small bar area there. The girls seem pretty and there is a bar that also serves a good breakfast (Farang Connection I think). It is more farang oriented than Thai or Japanese, so if you are a lonely farang in Surin City, you know where to go now.

As an observation, we were sitting there eating breakfast and looking at the bus terminal. The number of obvious bargirls getting off the busses was amazing. What I also thought was funny was the two Bangkok ­ Pattaya busses pulling into Surin. Obviously Surin was a better destination than Pattaya.

Ok, we did our happy new year shopping and went out and had some fun, including a Thai girl’s ultimate pleasure ­ a trip to the gold shop. Mrs Sydney Tom does drip in the stuff, and sometimes I ask her if she can hold her hands and head up with all the weight. As a side note the pure or 100 or 99.999% gold is actually 96.5% gold. I had some tested in Sydney and that was the average number.

Something else to think of, When you give teeruk a big tip after your holiday and take her to the gold shop ­ if you close the clasp on the gold as much as possible it makes a spooky resemblance to the Thai Airways logo.

Ok, so we go to Prasat to get some food. I get bored so I go over to the 7-11 to buy some chocolate milk. It is also near the bus station and I observed more bargirls getting off busses….. My god, who will be working in Bangkok over the next few days. Also in my wanderings I found this really dodgy restaurant with a karaoke machine. It had pictures of nude women on the walls and the girls were all in high heels and wearing those really tight green beer outfits….. All I remember is it generally near the Krung Thai Bank ATM machine.

My God what a queue for the ATM’s I waited about 20 minutes just to get my turn. I must say I think it’s a bit rude when people turn up with 5 or 6 cards and do the family banking.

Yes Stick, thanks for quoting me, but when we got to the village, I am sort of accepted a local but just the surrealism of it all wandering around looking at pigs being killed etc, not speaking their version of Thai all that well really means you can only look and learn, therefore you start describing all this stuff to yourself. Eventually you are saying things with a cultured accent like “The mating habits of …..”

Finally it was wedding time Jan 1, 2 and 3 are the lucky days. Mrs Sydney Tom told me a more practical reason ­ there is no work growing rice at the moment and its cold and nice to have someone to sleep with to keep you warm……

Look out next for “The Wedding”.

Stickman says:

If there are two times to avoid intercity travel in Thailand, it is New Year and Songkran. Yep, it is amusing watching the buses pull into the provincial bus station and watch the working girls get off with their customers who they boss around. So much for a relaxing holiday!