Angeles City Revisited Part 4
I first visited Viking bar in 2019 and was disappointed. The line-up had too many UFO’s (Old, Fat and Ugly) and they weren’t even making an effort – just standing around, playing with their phones, and looking bored, so I was interested to see if it had improved. Here is a daytime photo of the bar (the night shots were out of focus). The only sign you can see says “Pirate”, as the name “Viking” is on an LED display which is turned off when the bar is closed.
As soon as I walked in, I felt the atmosphere, which was generated by about 20 very lively girls clad in glittery dresses, dancing, laughing and joking together, and seeming to have a great time. Yes, bargirls can have fun too – it’s like anything in life – it’s what you make of it. They can laugh with their friends, enjoy a few drinks, spend their earnings on the latest smartphone, a new dress, a new hairstyle, or even (Valhalla forfend!) a tattoo– they can even get to make love with a sweaty, overweight, elderly westerner, or if they are lucky, a handsome young Korean with one of those mop hairstyles.
I don’t know who the owner is, or how he got the idea of the Viking theme, but it is well done. Outside the bar is a sort of Viking ship with seats and tables, and the stage is another Viking ship with a dragon prow. I felt at home there because I like to think that I have Viking heritage. I am from Yorkshire, which was the central part of the Danelaw in times gone by. My ancestors were most likely Danes and would have felt quite at home near those Viking ships, though perhaps they would have carried the girls out over their shoulders without paying the barfine, and if anybody objected, there was always the bearded broad-axe. We are (a little) more civilised today and are prepared to pay for our pleasures – and in Viking you really do pay! My San Mig was 150 PHP (compared to a standard 135, and Champagne’s 100). Strangely, their manager had missed a few tricks, because lady drinks were the standard 350 and barfines the standard 4,000.
Viking is a great bar, but I was disappointed to smell cigarette smoke (it is illegal to smoke indoors in the PI) and was disgusted by the state of the toilets. However, these are minor quibbles. I don’t go to gogo bars for the quality of their conveniences, but for the quality of their girls, and in this respect it did not disappoint. The girl-quality was much higher than my last visit pre-Covid, and there were one or two girls I quite liked, especially #42, who had a warm smile and an above-Filipino-average sized chest.
That evening a pair of weirdos had been going up and down Walking Street and coming into the bars doing a crazy kind of dance act. One was petite and quite cute, the other was overweight and kept flashing her ugly balloon-like breasts. I guess were high on shabu (the PI equivalent of yaa-baa). There was an open space behind me, and they started doing their act there. The girls on stage stopped their dance and gawped at them, and I was worried they might bump into me or make some other kind of trouble and so moved to the other end of the bar.
I got chatting to two waitresses, one 32, the other 39. The 32-year-old was dumpy and looked, if anything, older than her age. The 39-year-old was quite pretty and looked much younger. They told me that waitresses earn 100 PHP per day (time for a minimum wage in the PI!) Of course, that would be made up by tips, but with so many waitresses in the bar, their share would not be much. I said, “Why don’t you work in a mall for 400 a day?” “Need High School diploma,” one replied. It was interesting to talk to them and hear about their lives – single parents, of course. My guess it that maybe 75% of the girls in AC are there because they are single parents. The ones without children are usually there to support a poor family. The fecklessness and poverty are bad for them, but good for us, because whatever you want, you will find it in Angeles City. I could have had a wife three times over, and I’ve only been here three days. I’ve had my dream LBFM (I don’t like that expression, but I’m telling it the way it is) and there are plenty more available. You want a virgin? Take your pick, it will cost you about the same as a week on the Costas, and I know which I’d prefer. Want a devoted, loving heart? Try the waitresses. Some are as pretty as the dancers, but don’t want to strut their stuff. Just want to have a drink and watch the girls? Plenty of bars, including bars which are more like showbars (though you can still barfine) such as XS and Club Atlantis. In some ways it’s a sad, dark place, but for some it’s paradise. Quite a few girls meet their knight in shining armour, and more than a few guys get what they can’t get back in the west.
I was distracted from this philosophising by the realisation that my move to the other side of the bar had put me right in front of #42. I had not noticed before because the chatty waitresses were blocking my view. On closer inspection, I liked her even more and asked one of my waitress friends to invite her down.
Trixie, 22, baby of four months. I looked at the magnificent melons and said hopefully, “Still have milk?” Unfortunately not, or I would have barfined her there and then and spent the rest of the evening on girl-milk instead of San Mig. I still wanted to get my hands on them though, especially as, taken as a whole, she was a fantastic package. Pretty face, full lips with slightly protruding teeth, slim waist, long legs. How lucky we are to have such beauties to satisfy our every whim! I will admit that I am no stranger to Trike Patrol, but many of their “models” are only so-so. Why watch Trike Patrol when you can come here and do it for real with girls who are just as good or even better! (Lots of reasons, actually: for example, your wife won’t let you, you want a “real” relationship, or, like a friend of mine, you are convinced that the girls in Angeles City are trafficked and full of STD’s).
Unfortunately, it was hard to have much of a conversation with Trixie because the music was deafening and the DJ a big show off, walking around the bar with his radio-mike doing a sort of DJ-Karaoke. Nobody comes to a gogo bar to listen to narcissistic DJ’s. They have discos for that kind of thing. We come to get girls, and we want to talk to them first. I tried to talk to her about the Viking theme, but she had no idea who the Vikings were, and did not even realise that the stage was in the shape of a Viking ship. Indeed, she turned out to be like so many AC girls: pretty, sweet, but not that interesting to talk to, and not very hands on. That’s OK if you’re like that guy who films ExploitedTeensAsia where the girls look deadly bored, but these days, I’d rather not bother unless I can get some kind of connection. So I passed on Trixie, though I would have liked to get my hands on that handful, milk or not – maybe next time.
My head was swimming after five San Mig Lights, so I took a walk to clear my head. I went beyond the western Walking Street barrier past half a dozen bars with the idea of popping into Insomnia. The next bar after Insomnia is Old Club, but it was closed yesterday, so I was surprised to find it open. (I found out later from one of the girls that Tuesday is a day off for everybody and the bar is closed).
Note the text under the bar’s name: “Music Bar” and the microphone logo. This is a hangover from the gogo bar crackdown of 2013 when barfining was made illegal (in return for American aid). Bars had to pretend that their main offering was music – not girls. You will also see bar signs with the additional text “Resto-Bar”, as gogo bars were not allowed to open during Covid, only restaurants. Those few customers who were lucky enough to be able to visit one of these “Resto-Bars” would find themselves presented with a bought-in menu and served by a dozen scantily clad waitresses. It must have worked though, because the menu is still available in Old Club.
This bar is my “heart” bar, because many years ago, when it was called D’ Club (a name that you can still just make out on the mirror behind the stage), I met a very special girl here, and I always pop in when I am in AC and think of her (while I am choosing my next girl). I was disappointed to find that it had been refurbished, though, thankfully, the refurbishment was only superficial: the old, worn seats had been recovered, the tray tables revarnished, and the toilets refurbished, but the layout is the same – very much old-style gogo bar. There was an attractive line up of 6 dancers which, in that small bar, was quite enough to fill the stage. There were three customers including me.
A cute little thing at the far left of the stage caught my eye. I noticed a flash of red on her ID card and assumed she was a cherry, so I signalled her to join me. As it turned out, she wasn’t a cherry. The red was just the background colour of the bar name, but she was the next best thing: 19 and cute as a button, with her top knot and ponytail hairstyle, and winning smile: Hannah, from Manila. The waitress said she was a new girl, but Hannah just laughed and told me she had been one month in the bar. The “new girl” thing is one of the pieces of bait that they use to get a barfine (along with the “18” thing, and “I give you anything you want, long time” thing (no, that’s a quote from Full Metal Jacket). What they usually say in the PI is, “I’ll take care of you” (and the ones that say it usually don’t). She was just my cup of tea, but there was no chemistry. Why should there be between an Asian teen and (as the stereotype has it) an Old, Fat and Bald westerner? (I’m not fat or bald, and perhaps being bald is better than having that signifier of old age – grey hair). Fortunately for us oldies, there is sometimes chemistry: for example, when a girl senses that we are sensitive souls who will treat her well. In any case, our pesos are as good as Kim Young-kwang’s (who is he? Only the most Handsome Korean Actor of 2021). Anyway, I decided to pass on this one. If there is one thing more depressing than going back to the hotel alone, it’s going back to the hotel with a girl whom you have already realised will be a waste of space.
It was getting late. Some bars close at 2, many at 3, and few go on till 5 (back in the day, several were open all 24/7). Also, I’d had a lot to drink, so it was one more bar, one more San Mig ,and bed. I decided on an old favourite – Brown Sugar. Here is the bar frontage photographed in daylight. Notice the sign on the door: “No Fire Arms”. It’s one of many indications (like armed guards outside stores) that Angeles, like the girl in the song, “is so dangerous”. It feels less so these days than in 2006 – but perhaps that’s because I am getting used to the place. One thing is certain: it is a lot less safe than Thailand.
Inside, I found an almost empty stage with only a few bored-looking girls standing around, hardly moving. Where were the rest? Had they been barfined, or gone home early? I didn’t ask because I had just spotted a girl with a pretty face and a buxom body of the kind that rarely survives a barfine until this late. Noticing my adoring gaze, the waitress said, “Is there anything you like?” and I said, “That girl,” getting up to point to her as clearly as possible so there would be no mistake. She was by my side in a heartbeat: Julie Ann, 23 with a child of 4. She said she was from Olongapo. The name rang a bell (not the one in the bar – that’s just for show-offs with more money than sense), but I couldn’t place it at first. Then it clicked – Olongapo, near Subic. Had she worked in Subic bars? Yes. So this was a girl who had clocked up some mileage. She was quite a package, though, with the best pair of boobies I had seen this trip. Perhaps not quite as large as Trixie’s, but on full display in a bra that showed as much as possible without them popping out into your willing palms. It was quite a sight, and I wanted those boobies in my bed. She had a pretty face too, though spoiled by a perpetually bored look. Indeed, when I had first noticed her, she wasn’t even dancing, just sitting on the stage bartop yawning – a red flag, this, as it might be the sign of a bad attitude. However, the bar was about to close, and she was probably genuinely tired. I chatted to her for a while, but when the house lights flashed as a sign to drink up, I said, “I’ll meet you outside instead of paying the bar. How much?” “3,500.” Not much of a discount there, then. “How long will you stay?” “Short time.” Sadly, my first hunch had been right: she was a wham-bam-thankyou-ma’am kind of a girl, OK, perhaps, for a horny youngster, given that killer body and those blockbuster boobies, but no good for me. So I passed on her and went home alone.
Total cost for the evening, c. 6,000 PHP (91 GBP, 105 USD). Not bad, considering that included lots of bars and lots of chats over lady drinks – though I don’t know how I’ll be able to keep it up on a retiree’s budget!
To be continued…
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