Only in Thailand
I was interested in the article posted by Stick Mark II a while ago about the person refused entry into Angelwitch at Nana Plaza, for being of Arab appearance. This I find a bit odd, and will explain later in the submission.
Me…Thailand is my home for 6 / 8 months every year and will continue to be so for as long as I want it to be. Regardless of the new visa laws, if you really want to live in Thailand you can…legally, albeit you will need a bit of cash behind you , or a good income to support yourself while you’re here. Fortunately I fit both criteria, and savor every moment I'm there / here.
To get on with the meaning of me writing this…
6 years ago I had had my first taste of Thailand, and fell in love with the place. On my second visit, strolling through Patpong at night I was greeted by one of the, well, “greeters” trying to get you into their bar / gogo upstairs, which I wouldn't usually have gone into. However this girl had the sweetest smile, and unusually had her hair in plaited pigtails. She spoke good English so I decided to let her convince me why I should go into the bar. After a minute or two of chit chat I said “OK I'll come into your bar only if you come with me and have a drink”. Being a relative newbie I honestly didn't know the protocol on this, and neither did she! Turned out she had only worked for the bar a couple of weeks and was only doing the job to help fund her university studies. Anyway, she said she would have to ask her boss. Off she went and a minute later came back and said “yes I can come to the bar with you but you must pay barfine”. 400 baht later we were in the bar and having a great time. I really got on well with here, and vice versa. She ended up in my room at the Tawana Ramada across the road that night.
The next 4 weeks we were inseparable. I took her to Pattaya, and Koh Samet and she never asked me for money. I did pay for food and accommodation though, which frankly wasn't a lot.
Back in Bangkok I stayed at her apartment in the depths of Ratchada, and met all of her friends, where I was a bit of a novelty as not to many falangs were seen in those parts, and also it was the first time any of here friends had seen her with a guy!
One memorable night we had dinner and drinks (lots!) at the local karaoke bar. There were 12 of us at the table and she acted as translator as I spoke no Thai at the time. We all had a great night, singing, eating, drinking and even dancing on the tables. At the end of the night I was presented with what I thought was my check bin for the 2 of us (under 1,400 baht) and thought it was a bargain considering the great time we had. As we left the whole table waied, said thank you, and followed us out the door! Off we went and I asked my lady friend why they were so thankful and she told me I had paid the full bill – 12 people’s drinks and food all night for 1,400 baht! I was gob-smacked.
I had to go back to Australia a few days after that and promised to keep in touch with my new friend, and we did. She only worked at the bar for another 3 months then got a scholarship to a university in the UK to learn English, where she still is today, and has almost finished her studies. We speak almost every week, and text, and email all the time.
She returns to Bangkok once a year to visit her family and friends and as I now spend much of my time in Thailand we always meet up. She's still sweet, super smart and as Thai girls go, pretty much perfect. Oh, and still single! I do offer my hand in marriage often and she always replies “not yet” so I'm still in with a chance!
Back to the main reason for this story. We met up a couple of months ago in Bangkok, and stayed together for a few days. One day she suggested we go out with two of her friends from her university days in Thailand which I was happy to go along with. She made the calls and the arrangements.
We met at the bar at the opening of Nana Plaza and to my surprise it was two Thai guys who arrived. I must say the thought of a night out with 2 guys (and my girl) hadn't crossed my mind. Although I do have some male Thai acquaintances, Thai guys don't have the best reputation for being a farang’s best friend but I was pleasantly surprised. They were both perfect gentlemen, very courteous with lots of smiles. Perhaps it is the university education that does it. Who knows?
As the night progressed it was decided we would go to a gogo bar in Nana Plaza. My lady friend has always had a fascination with the places and I've lost count how many times we have been to a one together. I never have asked why she likes them and probably never will, not going to jinx it! The first place we went to was the first one on the left on the ground floor (can’t remember the name, haven't been in the plaza since). I went in first followed by my lady and the 2 guys at which point the person on the door started waving her hands. I turned round and gestured to her the guys were with me. All was ok – she let them in and it was amusing to see their faces when they saw the dancers. It turned out they had never seen anything like this before as they never venture into farang areas so it was all new to them. I bought a few rounds of beers and dozens of ping pong balls for them to throw on to the stage at the girls. I don't recall seeing anyone so happy for a long time. They were loving it, and so were the girls!
A large checkbin later and we ended up upstairs and at the entrance to Angelwitch. I went in second behind my lady and remembering the episode downstairs I explained to the door person the guys were with me, all was ok. Angelwitch was packed (as usual) but a space for all four of us was quickly arranged and we all enjoyed the show.
**Rewind to the first paragraph of this submission… If places like Angelwitch which are farang dominated are happy to let Thais into their establishments, and from what I experienced that night it is not common – why would they refuse someone “of Arab appearance” I suspect there was more to the story**
The time of the night came when all the lights came on and the music stopped and the exodus from the plaza began. This sucks!
Hang on. The Thais want to go to Nana Disco. Jeez, I was whacked but went along with it. Every time I've ever been to Nana Disco I can't say I've seen a Thai guy, so didn't have much hope for my new friends. How wrong I was. As soon as the security realized they were with me and my Thai lady we sailed into the disco! I remember on one occasion in there seeing all non Thai girls being physically dragged out so think we were lucky that night.
Lucky for me after two more drinks and a quick shuffle on the dance floor the lights came on and it was time to head home. Outside we said good night to the guys and literally pushed them into a taxi. They didn't want to go home to their wives as it turned out!
“What nice guys”, I said to my lady as the taxi pulled away with them waving madly, “What do they do” I asked.
“Oh they are police officers!” she replied.
Only in Thailand
That is a rather strange story.