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Makha Bucha Day in Bangkok Part 1



Black Pagoda Patpong Bangkok

It was only when I read Stickman’s Weekly for 2nd February that I discovered that 8th February was Makha Bucha Day, a Buddhist holiday when all the bars would be closed. That was a disappointment to say the least, as I had already booked for the weekend of 7th to 9th February. I searched the Internet in the hope that Stickman was wrong about the bar closures, but what I found made it even worse. By law, the bars had to close for 24 hours from midnight on the 7th February. That meant I would get only three hours in the bars on Friday, and none at all on Saturday! The only consolation was that Stick had mentioned that, last year, the Patpong bars were open.

Another concern was the coronona virus outbreak. I am not worried about the virus as such because I believe it to be more likely to be an outbreak of media hype than the 21st century Black Death. My main concern was that it might cause travel delays. In the event, it made travel more pleasant. When I requested an aisle seat on my Air Asia flight, the assistant said, “Plenty of spare places because a lot of people have cancelled.” Not only did I get my aisle seat, but I got an empty row of three, so I was able to stretch out and sleep comfortably. When I got to Don Meuang, I found that immigration was less crowded than usual. There are special lanes marked “Chinese Passport”, but as all flights out of China have been banned by the Chinese government, these lanes were used for any foreign passport.

On my last visit I met a girl I wanted to see again (Chompoo, #36, Dollhouse). She was going round and round on the carousel at the far end of the stage and was looking very serious – but she had one of the best bodies I had seen for a long time, with a large (but not over-large) pair of well-shaped breasts, with nipples of the size and colour of an old penny (though without the engraving of Britannia). Over a lady drink I discovered that she had been working in the bar for a just a few days. She was interesting to talk to, but so shy that I decided not to barfine her.

I forgot all about her until a week before my trip, when she began to go round and round in the carousel of my mind (along with another girl, Dao, whom I had met at Butterflies). I realized that her shy stroking of my arm was more genuine than Dao’s dry humping in my lap, that her serious nature was more in tune with my personality, and that her age (33) put her on my side of the fence. In short, that she was a woman with whom I could have some kind of connection (and that’s what I’m looking for these days), so I decided that I would definitely look her up again.

However, when I finally got to Bangkok after my hard working week, I felt that I wanted to relax and have a few drinks before getting down to the serious business of “birding” (as we call it in the Doncaster dialect), so I decided to visit a few bars in Nana Plaza, just to look and enjoy the ambience.

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I decided on Billboard as I had only popped in for a quick look on my last visit. The place was so full that there was hardly anywhere to sit, but the waitress found me a place in the middle at the back. From there I could get a good view of the bar. To the left was a tub filled with ankle-deep soapy water in and around which 11 topless girls danced. Five of them were OK-ish, and two really appealed (#88 and #925). #925 was just about perfect. She was the right size (what I call “Asian-sized” – so many Thai girls these days seem to be approaching western proportions). Her face was a smooth oval with fullish lips set off by the glitter of braces when she smiled. (Either the standard of dental care has improved in Thailand, or it is just another craze, because they all seem to be wearing them). She had long legs, a slender waist, and near-perfect breasts: full, but not over-large, well-shaped, and not a trace of sag (what’s the word? – “pert”? “perky”? “pulchritudinous”?). I could have looked at them all night. Why didn’t I? – I’m a bit wary of the stunners, as they often have a bad attitude – not always though, and I might have checked her out if I hadn’t had other plans (Chompoo!).

At the other side of the bar was a carousel on which I counted about 20 girls wearing white bikinis (it’s hard to get an exact number when they are going round and round). Once again, the standard was OK-ish. I have to say that I was impressed. The sheer number of girls and customers, and the vibrant atmosphere reminded me of how it was in the Plaza on my first visit in 2005. There was only one thing about the bar that I disliked – the smokers. Just about everywhere else in the world has banned smoking in public places (even the Philippines) but it seems to be the norm in Nana Plaza bars. The music wasn’t great, either, but then, that’s probably down to my tastes (which are about 50 years out of date) – I wish they wouldn’t play it so loud, though (the seats were vibrating!) Somebody should tell the DJ’s that gogo bars are not discos. Men go there to meet girls and want to be able to chat them up.

A lot of the girls seemed quite large by Asian standards, though not many were actually fat (I’m referring to their overall scale). I wonder if it might be an optical illusion created by the ridiculously high heels they all wear these days (it was the same in every bar I visited). I asked one girl about her seven-inch heels, and she corrected me and said they were eight-inch – and some of the other shoes I saw looked even bigger. Most of the shoes are not just high heels, they have platforms as well.

Of the girls on the Carousel, #78 appealed the most (Asian-sized, well-proportioned, killer smile), though I was put off by the large tattoo on her left thigh. More and more bargirls ink their bodies these days, often covering large areas. Is this place the culprit (a tattoo salon just a few doors down from Nana Plaza)?

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I decided that I had enough time to try another bar, and seeing Rainbow 3 (an old favourite), decided to see how it had changed. Not much, actually. There was the same central stage with a fair few girls on it wearing white bikinis and monster shoes (about 18 – 22, depending on the set changes). Their standard was OK-ish, with a few beauties. I quite liked #56 and #81, and would have called #81 for a drink if I hadn’t had other plans). So a good line-up (by 2020 standards) – but there were probably more girls than customers.

Time was getting on, and I wanted to get over to Soi Cowboy before some other horny punter got my girl, but I saw the sign for Spanky’s, and decided to take a quick look. As soon as I went through the curtain I felt the atmosphere – the bar was humming, and so packed that I had to walk all around it before the waitress finally persuaded me to squeeze into a corner near the shower. That put me just a few feet from the girl doing the shower show, but I didn’t fancy her, and would have preferred a good view of the stage. The bar is basic enough, with a central stage, one row of bleacher seating on either side and a shower cubicle in one corner in which girls take it in turn to dance half naked, keeping their panties on (all the three shower shows I saw in three different bars were like this – is full nudity banned in Nana?)

The gogo girls wore red bikinis with red, fishnet tights and red garters, and most were topless. There were two sets of about 18 to 20 girls interspersed with shows. Compared to the shows in Angelwitch and Long Gun the shows were bland, and the showgirls not particularly outstanding (I often see this, and can’t understand why they don’t take the opportunity to showcase their best-looking girls). An example was the lesbian show in which two average-looking girls pretended to lick each other’s pussies, though they kept their panties on, and their tongues never got closer than an inch or two (ask an old Asia Hand what a lesbian show should be like!). The music was good though, being mainly slow-rock classics. As I watched, I felt that high that I get when I am in a lively bar with pretty girls and good music (and a few bottles of Beerlao) – just to be there and feel that is often the best part of the experience.

After the shows, the gogo girls came on again, and I spotted one I really liked. I’m not going to give her number because I’m keeping her for myself (as if!). It was her hair that I first noticed. Bargirl hairstyles these days are a lot less interesting than they used to be. Back in the day, there were all sorts of interesting confections: pigtails, ponytails, bangs, tapers, plaits, kiss curls, topknots, etc. (and sometimes the whole lot combined!) That’s more or less what Nam had: pigtails, a ponytail and two cute kiss curls framing her cheeks. She was pretty, too (with the ubiquitous braces) and had heavily mascaraed eyes with blue shadow and glitter on her eyelids which had the effect of emphasising their Asian almond shape – taken overall, it made her the essence of Thai-girl exotic. She was very touchy-feely too, so much so, that I found myself asking about the barfine (long time – I don’t do short time because I am looking for that elusive “connection”). I was a bit shocked at her answer: 1,000 for the bar, 6,000 for her, so I replied with my beginner’s Thai, “Pang maak!” (“Very expensive!”) She thought for a moment, then offered to meet me after the bar had closed (which would be early, as the following day was Makha Bucha day). How early, she didn’t know, so I took her number. I hadn’t changed my plan to see Chompoo, but I was thinking that she would be a good back up. If Chompoo turned out to be a disappointment (and they usually are when you have built them up in your mind), I would ask Nam to come and join me on Makha Bucha day (to drink the heady tipple of her lips as a substitute for Singha, which would be off-sale).

I checked the time and was surprised to see that it was already nearly eleven. So I paid my tab and hotfooted it down the Sukhumvit Road. Soi Cowboy looked as inviting as ever, and I would have liked to linger and try a few new bars – but there just wasn’t time.

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So I hurried on to Dollhouse, pausing only to take a pic of the iconic sign over the bar and the one the hello girls wave at you about the naked girls.

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I settled down in my usual place (to the right, near the centre) and cooled down with an ice-cold Heineken (no Beerlao here). The sign was right about the naked girls. There were 12 girls on the stage, four of them topless, and four of them naked. The table dancers upstairs usually dance naked, but I didn’t get up there on this visit. The girls were of a good standard (they always were, which is why this is my all-time favourite bar), and there were a few I fancied, particularly #5, who was Asian-sized, and had a beautifully shaped body, marred only by a tattoo around her bellybutton. However, Chompoo was not among them. I felt a twinge of anxiety, and wished I’d left Nana Plaza earlier, but felt sure that she would be in the next set.

She wasn’t.

Panicking now, I asked the waitress for Chompoo. She had never heard of her, so I gave her number – #36. Luckily that did the trick. She said she was in the upstairs bar and that she would bring her to me. I breathed a sigh of relief, and settled down to wait, luxuriating in a mental picture of that perfect body.

A few minutes later, the waitress returned with a bargirl in tow – it was #36, sure enough, but it was not Chompoo! I was flustered for a moment and almost sent her away, but remembering my gentlemanly principles just in time, I offered to buy her a drink. I questioned her closely, but she had never heard of Chompoo. I can only suppose that Chompoo had left the bar and that the new girl had been given her number. I chatted to her for a while, then suddenly remembered the time – nearly closing time and I hadn’t got a girl! I was too late for #5, as she was sitting with a guy to the left of me, and I didn’t fancy the new #36, so I decided to hurry back to Nana Plaza and try to get Nam before the bars closed.

It was just past midnight when I walked into Spanky’s. The stage was empty, the house lights were on, and the girls were getting ready to go home. I asked after Nam. A few queries were passed around and the answer passed back – “gone home”. Whether I had just missed her, or whether she had been barfined a while ago, I don’t know, but I had certainly missed my chance for that night.

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