Seven’s Vacation: Pattaya

‘Sup my dudes, it’s Seven. I just rolled back into BKK after 4 blissful days in Ptown, aka Pattaya. Here’s what I got up to:

The first two nights, I stayed in Baboona, which despite the terrible name sits at a prime location on the beach road between Sois 3 and 4. Agoda rates them as “Excellent,” however they might’ve overshot a bit. The truth is, there are some really great things about the place, and also some really terrible things.  The great things are: the bed was awesome, as was the shower, and the air-con. And lets’ be real—those are the most important hotel amenities. Also, when it comes to Ptown, the view needs to rock, and Baboona positively nails the view (see the attached pics). But that’s it for the pros. Now, the cons…

The fridge was tiny. In order to fit my half-finished bottle of Two Hands Angels’ Share Shiraz I had to remove all the contents and the middle rack. Also, at 6:00 pm a set of automatic balcony lights came on and stayed on till sun up. So a brooding whoremonger who maybe wanted to sit in the dark smoking a cigar while looking out over the dark, moody sea……can’t, and the light shown through the breaks in the curtains, interrupting my sleep. The wi-fi is weak and unreliable. There’s only one lift, and it’s the world’s slowest lift. The breakfast is sub-par, and the staff (except the ones at the front desk) are uncannily rude. I theorize that it’s because most of the clientele are Chinese, who have over time whittled down the employees’ souls till they’re now merely a shadow of their former selves. Lastly, the TV is awful, but it’s pretty much a given that TV sucks all over Thailand. Apparently they’ve never heard of an underground insulated cable.

When people talk up the location of Baboona, they’re probably referring to proximity to the beach. However, for folks like Seven the advantage is its closeness to Soi 6, which is a short two-minute walk away. I was able to double-dip The 6 daily with an afternoon cocktail session followed by a nap back at Baboona followed by a follow-up Soi 6 run in the early evening before schlepping down to Walking Street.

The 6 is born, lives, and dies a death every day. Officially, the street opens at 2:00 pm, but you can usually find a couple of half-open joints with a random setup girl willing to uncork a beer as early as noon, as long as you sit quietly and behave. It’s fun to watch the handful of bewildered tourists looking cock-eyed at closed bars because they were too stupid to research the operating hours before coming here. These are the labor pains before The 6’s birth. Then, as the shadows of the south side bars begin to stretch out, the girls roll in for work one by one converging in a soft soi-wide din of female voices gossiping and talking about food, signaling that The 6 has come to life. The afternoon shift are a unique breed. They must balance hospitality and friendliness for the casual punter not looking for sex with the lusty come-hither dither that’ll secure them a bar fine from an afternoon delighter. They are experts at reading body language and subtle hints. They can sniff out and coach a shy first-timer, and convince a lazy, experienced daydrinker that what he actually wants is an afternoon bj (damn your seductive eyes, Aung!). The feeling when drinking cold beer on a hot, sunbathed soi surrounded by randy chicks is akin to adolescence, when a young, starry-eyed boy’s prospects lay ahead of him in a dizzying list of possibilities, and the first blush of sex comes to a boil like magma in a volcano.

A couple of hours later, you’re in the thick of it. Drunk, unsteady, but still positive, grabbing a tit or two, laughing alongside girls who may or may not be laughing at rather than with you. But you’ve committed and there’s no graceful way to exit, so you keep going hoping that fate will intervene in the form of the right aggressive lass and her acceptable ass, who will take charge and lead you onward. If she swoops in, you’ll soon find yourself on a hard mattress with one pillow and a fitted sheet from the 1990s. If she doesn’t, you’ll reach your beer limit and return to the hotel to regroup, confident that after a rest and a reset, you’ll have better luck. Just like in your late 20s.

The evening session is like life in ones 30s and 40s, when you’ve had enough experience to know what to expect but you’re not willing to throw in the towel yet. So you keep bar hopping, and it’s the same story in each place. You’ve got one eye on the girl who’s talking to you who you don’t want, and one eye scanning the place for someone more appealing. Kind of like marriage.

Late in the night, The 6 is approaches old age. It’s dark, bleary, and the spectre of Death seems to reach out from every dark corner with a long, boney hand. Although to be fair, that’s often just an aggressive ladyboy. And then, inevitably, the music stops, the lights shut down, and bar girl and monger alike stagger off in various directions, monetarily, physically, and emotionally spent and soon to be lying in repose on a hard slab in a pitch black room. Unless they have cocaine, in which case they’ll head to a dance club. And tomorrow they’ll awake to do it all again. Overall, The 6 is looking good. The bar Mafia known as the NightWish Group have tightened their iron grip on the scene, expanding from their 16 bar empire to, as of last count, a hundred. And they’ve hiked the price of a beer to 105 baht. No one’s complaining because…well…who can you complain to? It’s a baropoly.

The second half of my holiday was spent at a different hotel—The SeaMe Too on Soi 10. Their photos deceptively show wide, serene sea views, failing to mention that last year a new hotel went up directly in between SeaMe and the beach. So now, the only view is the wall of that new hotel. On the plus side, the rooftop pool is terrific, as are the hotel staff. And when I wanted to eat dinner while smoking a cigar with my feet in the Jacuzzi, the waitress brought my food up from the lobby restaurant. I bet if I’d asked, she would’ve fed me by hand as well.

Soi 10 is an easy stroll away from LK Metro, so I downed a few adult beverages there one night. It’s had a face-lift since my last visit and looks positively resuscitated. I swung through Ginza, which is currently sparsely staffed with mostly husky girls if that’s your thing. Also Kink, with tons of hot youngsters in sexy uniforms and the most comfortable booths of any gogo in Thailand. Crystal Club was rammed with dancers in their 30s plus a couple hot ones. Touch—a former favorite—was a sad husk of its former self with 8 below average looking dancers in total. And Sugar Sugar, which was rammed with customers despite a 6 to 1 ratio of unattractive dancers. I got the feeling that most of the patrons were regulars who made casual visitors uncomfortable the way a gang might shun interlopers on their “turf.”

As for Walking Street, much has changed and much has remained the same, so in other words nothing has changed. Bars continue to open and close, and sometimes reopen. Super Model A Gogo has opened twice this year, most recently thanks to a new Chinese owner. Dolls A Gogo has expanded from Soi 6 to open two other locations in LK Metro and Walking Street. And the latest best addition is Beavers on Soi 14, owned by the Electric Blue/Dollhouse guys. There’s even a doorway from EB into Beavers, which is convenient. They’ve got a bevy of new, enthusiastic girls who never learned the meaning of the word “inhibited.” I also passed through New Bat and Moon A Gogo, two more new places. Both were filled with super friendly girls. And then of course I hit all the old chestnuts: Dollhouse, xXx Lounge, Electric Blue, Pin-up, Taboo, and just for shits and giggles, Living Dolls. No hotties in Living Dolls anymore, but they were serving two-for-one beers which was at least some consolation.

Somehow, every night I ended up back at Soi 6, shuffling down the lane like a zombie, blurry-eyed and semi-coherent. Every few feet, a pack of girls swam into focus, shouting hello and grabbing at my crotch. I tried to say something witty but I’m pretty sure it came out as “Mumumeh mehhhhh” as I breathed beer fumes into their smiling faces. No one succeeded in luring me to their bar until my final night, when the lovely Mem tempted me to her side with her fetching smile. She’s a lovely young lass. She looks a little bit like Halle Berry—like if Berry had a Thai half-cousin. We enjoyed each other’s company until the beer made me cross-eyed and I had to leave. The night crescendoed at Dolls. There were no seats inside so I slumped in a chair on the terrace where I somehow ended up buying pork intestines for myself and three girls. The only reason I remembered it is, I found a photo of the food on my phone the next morning.

Overall, it was a nice holiday. Every Bangkokian should get out of the city and down to Ptown once in a while, for the change of scenery, the sea air, and different breed of girls. It’s good for what ails ya.

Swing by on Friday for another Delirium Days frowback, and between now and then, cheers to the four B’s that make Pattaya so great—beaches, bars, beers, and babes. And thank Buddha for that adult playground and all the sweet ladies who make it fun in this, the greatest country in the world—Thailand.