Thai Thoughts and Anecdotes Part 181
Dedicated to the Nana Hotel (aka the Mothership): voted the finest hotel in the world by the IMS (International Mongers Society)–
ANOTHER GREAT DAY
Jesus Mary and Joseph it's hot. Sweet Jesus on a cracker it's hot. Christ . . . Christ on a cracker it is hot. Pizza oven hot. Center of the sun hot. Inside my teeruk’s vagina hot. Boiling hot. Burning forearms hot. Ronn Tdubb Tdaek (whatever). And of course the ever popular: "Fxxx me . . it's hot." Let's go back three. BURNING FOREARMS HOT.
As I leave the air-conditioned lobby of the Nana Hotel my forearms start to burn as if they are on fire. Even before I have crossed the car park my arms are alive with pain. It's so hot the stupid taxi drivers leave me alone–something that almost defies a law of Mothership taxi car park physics. I'm ok with the heat and the humidity but this is attention getting. Heat and extreme heat don't bother me that much. I have a rare medical condition called RSG (Recessed Sweat Glands) so sweating and perspiration is never an issue (59 years old and never once used deodorant). But this is Burning Forearms Hot (BFH).
However, the beauty part of this weather is that it forces me to slow down, and retrench, and re-establish priorities, and just generally chill (no pun intended) out. So the walk over to the bookstore on Sukhumvit will be a slow one. 2:30 p.m. in the afternoon in Bangkok during the hot season and the sun just seems like a torch. So we'll do some slow walking. Amble by the Mini Mart and remind myself to pick up some yogurts, and drinks, and nuts on the way back. As I pass the Greenhouse on Sukhumvit just before the Landmark hotel I temporarily consider going in to have one of the work-of-art desserts in the air conditioned eatery. But I keep going. Then up ahead is the guy who sells the 20 baht orange juice containers.
I buy one and stop to drink. Holy Jesus On The Cross it's hot. Christ it's hot. Suffering hot. Satan's underpants on the stove hot. End of the world hot. Hell's Waiting Room hot. 'Stick-a-poker-in-my-ass-and-not-even-feel-it' hot. Burning napalm on a baby's ass hot. Happen to notice that in the median strip of Sukhumvit there are now papier mache or clay animals of some kind: rabbits and roosters and pigs, etc. What the. . . ? What are the wacky Thais up to now? God damn it's hot. I figure it must be about 176 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degrees Celsius). Probably about 204 degrees Fahrenheit (95 degrees Celsius) in Essan. So living in Essan is like living at the exit end of a car's tail pipe; and living in Bangkok is like living in a drunk farang's underpants. Everything is relative. No wonder the girls leave the Northeast plain of dust and drought and come to Bangkok. It hasn't got anything to do with poverty. That's all a load of buffalo dung. They are simply trying to escape the heat. Going from 204 degrees Fahrenheit to 176 degrees Fahrenheit must be a blessed relief. Anyway, drink over it is the western tourist's hunt for a trash receptacle. None in sight. Don't ask me what I did with the orange juice container and straw.
Ok, back to the plan. The reason for the early afternoon Bangkok deathmarch is to go to the Bookazine bookstore to pick up some fancy magazines, and one of those incredibly expensive local western author novels about Thailand. You know the ones I mean. Sexy covers, and intriguing plot line teasers on the laminated dust jacket, and you read them in the bathtub, and five seconds after finishing them you can't remember anything you read. Intellectual Chinese food sold as sexy naughty international pablum to tourists. Just killing time. The aimless wandering of the tourist. No schedules. No watch. No agenda except to please myself. No quotas to fill. No one to impress. No one to fear. Just living an unreflective animal life. Eating, and peeing, and unloading on the crapper, and napping, and bonking, and sticking my head out the car window. Low standards and no dreams. Now I'm living. A little late but at least I figured it out before the final curtain.
When I lived in the Caribbean I used to have contempt for the locals who answered any question about what they were doing by saying, "Just Liming!"
Translation: "I ain't doing anything with my life, and I think it be kool to not be doin' anything with my life, and I think it be extra kewl to say 'I ain't doing anything with my life' as if it is some kind of philosophy."
I used to continental (white boy) choke on this every time I heard it. I used to think:
"Just limin'? Why don't you get up off your sorry black behind and do something?"
Now here in Bangkok during the hot season with my forearms on fire, and the sun a torch on my neck like a magnifying glass I am reconsidering the natives of St. John, and St. Thomas, and Tortola, and St. Croix, and Peter Island, and Little Dix Bay, and Cane Garden Bay, and East End, and Water Island, and Frenchtown, and all the rest of the burnt out boring Caribbean. Maybe the next time some farang asks me what I am doing I'll say,
"Jus limin' mon. I'm a burnt out farang mon; but I got me some of that there filosofee."
Down the sidewalk I can see the Skytrain crossover to the other side of Sukhumvit. I have to go up the three story high staircase and cross over and then down again to get to the far side of Sukhumvit and the bookstore. Could have crossed over at the corner of Sukhumvit and Soi Nana but that crossing always scares the heck out of me. Way way too dangerous. So I go the long way and make a fun thing out of it. Anyway I am almost there. Up ahead I can see the Skytrain stairs and they are packed. It is 2:30 in the afternoon on a week day and they are packed with descending Thais. Is it an early day at work because of some Thai holiday? No idea but the stairs are packed. At the bottom of the stairs I look up and see something that has to be delivered to you in life in the form of an experience. A dream is not enough. No dream could match the reality.
Descending the stairs are young fertile dressed up Thai females by the hundreds. Office girls, and department store girls, and middle class women, and university girls, and early shift bargirls, and high school girls. Singles, and doubles, and groups, and packs of sexy, feminine, sultry, dressed-to-kill, dick hardening, heart breaking, soul effecting women. It is like standing at the bottom of a three story waterfall of every man and boy dream you had since age 17. Most of the women take no notice of the solitary down-market farang standing at the bottom of the stairs in worshipful stunment. If I stood in the middle of the bottom step they would just go around me like a herd of stampeding buffalo around a single pronghorn antelope. But some of these beauties make eye contact and smile.
I am not a good or natural smiler but I smile today like a sugar addict in a candy store. Smiling completely without agenda. Just smiling as a reflection of my interior stateâ€“so so happy. Just transported by the beauty of these women. Some of the early shift bargirls make eye contact and smile at me in a different way. God bless them. All of the early shift trannies make eye contact that would melt kryptonite. Hypnotic lethal laser beam locked-on smiles and eyes that just shut me down and pick me up at the same time. Sorry, trannies: I'm not man enough and I know it. But thanks for the eye contact and the smiles. I love you all.
I look up and to the left and I can see that the crossover is packed with these women. They just keep coming. I forget why I was out walking in the first place. I forget about the bookstore. I just stand and make contact and smile. Then it is over. They are gone and I am standing on the sidewalk at the bottom of the stairs alone. I am supposed to climb the stairs and cross over and go to the bookstore. That was the plan on this murderously hot day in Bangkok. But I have completely forgotten the plan. My mind has just gone blank. Like a brand new stricken amnesia victim I can't remember what I was doing, or divine why I am standing at the stairs to the Skytrain. The descending waterfall of Thai femininity has just neutered my brain.
So I turn around and start for home. Back to the Mothership. On the way I stop at the Greenhouse and have one of their fabulous desert creations. Then around the corner on Soi Nana I pick up some magazines and newspapers, some chicken and mystery meat, some flowers; and then into the Mini Mart for drinks, and yogurts, and nuts, and candy. Exiting the air-conditioned Mini Mart with my bags of loot and flowers I am nearly knocked down by the heat. Sweet sufferin' Jesus on a burning forearm it is hot. Satan's dick on fire it's hot. And for the experienced Sukhumvit monger: 'Bus-Stop restaurant greeter girls look dead' hot.
Reminds me of the first time to Thailand. The plane landed at Don Muang airport at 11:55 p.m. Midnight. Exiting the air conditioned plane was like getting hit in the face with a plank when the heat and humidity of Thailand slammed into me. Stunning. Mindblowing. And if this was the situation at midnight what was it going to be like in this country during the day? Never forgot my first landing in Bangkok. Midnight during the hot season. Blastfurnace. The acres of black tarmac and concrete giving up heat that had been stored during the day. Welcome to Thailand. But on this day it is ok. I am high as a kite on Thai female beauty, I've got bags of loot and tourist flowers; and I am headed for the Nana hotel.
Tomorrow I'll remember the bookstore across on the other side of Sukhumvit. But for now it is out of mind. And it is ok. It has been another great day in Bangkok. Another great day in Thailand. God I love this place.
The mothership awaits Dana's imminent arrival…