It’s the long December weekend, everyone. Time for this old Red-Light rat to stretch his sack along with his horizons and bail out of BK for a bit, just to see what else is out there to wet and whet both whistle and appetite, respectively. The closest destination is, of course, Ptown—or Pattaya for the uninitiated. I jammed down on Thursday with a reservation for a sea view room in a swanky hotel that threw out discounts like Seven throws 20s at pole dancers. At present, it’s Saturday morning and I’m having coffee on my balcony, typing away whilst the Beach Road slowly wakens to a breezy, sunny winter day.
Thus far, t’s been a short, strange trip. A couple of months ago, soon after escaping quarantine I came here and spent three glorious nights with three lovely Soi 6 girls. This weekend, all of them are absent. In fact, finding a girl on The 6 who is above a six has proven futile. The dearth of good-looking girls has put a solid damper on the trip, and on the state of my balls which are currently a deep blue hue from lack of use. All weekend, people everywhere seemed to be asking, where are all the hot girls hiding out? All I could think of was, Alas Seven wept, for there were no girls left to bugger.
To make things worse, the bars on Soi 6 have discovered a way to make money in the absence of tourists—livestreaming. Every bar has a camera that the girls crowd in front of to twerk and flirt (twirt for short, copyright BKK7) with lonely locked-down lotharios the world over. A flesh-and-blood customer in the bar is a nuisance. It’s a suicidal business model, but in this Covid world, you gotta do what you gotta do. Word on the street, however, is that the cops will shut down the cams soon, unless they get their cut. We’ll have to wait to see what develops. For this weekend, at least, Bangkok Seven isn’t welcome in the beer bar.
After coming up empty on The 6, I jumped a songthaew to Walking Street to check out a few gogos and say hello to Tony, the manager at Dollhouse. The conversation was the same everywhere—It’s too quiet, we won’t survive much longer, when will the ban end, is it this bad in BKK…people trying to keep their chins up but the end of the financial road is in sight. You wouldn’t know that, though, looking at the girls. The lineup in Dollhouse was fantastic, as was Pin-up’s and Taboo’s, the latter encased on three sides by a plastic wall as if the girls were live dolls in life-sized display cases. Every place that was open, that I went to, was fun, though in the end I still went home alone. All my usual girls were gone, and I didn’t have the energy to reel in a new fish.
But I’m not just here to get laid. I can do that in BK. No, I’m also here to eat. And eat I have. Yesterday I made a special trip to the Dark Side (Pattaya east of the highway, where all the expats live), to my friend Andy’s restaurant, Route 66. Andy, the former owner of Electric Blue and The Steakhouse in Patpong, has set up shop here in Ptown with a diner and off-road tour. It’s not quite The Steakhouse, but it’s a fun setting with good food, even if it’s 20 minutes from the Beach Road.
I had the Route 66 burger—pepper jack cheese, bacon, onion rings, bbq sauce—fries, jalapeno poppers, and blueberry pie with ice cream. It all went down smooth, in…I want to say….less than one minute. I inhaled it. So even though it was much further inland than I ever cared to be, it was nice to have a meal reminiscent of The Steakhouse and to see some old friends.
I arrived back at the beach in the late afternoon, tried out The 6 again, and again came up empty. So I called an audible and took a motorbike taxi over to LK Metro. It was a harrowing ride. I haven’t feared for my life like that in a while. The driver seemed to barely have control of the bike, and even appeared to play chicken with oncoming traffic multiple times. He dropped me at LK at 7 pm—too early for the gogo bars. I was surprised to see several new beer bars that were open and crowded with women in their 30s and punters in their 60s. That’ll be my scene someday, but not today. I gulped down a Witte draft at the craft beer joint and went back to The 6, like a lost child, unsure where to go or what to do.
I had a grand total of two beers on Soi 6—one in Baku, the other in Wrath, the latter whilst dodging the livestreaming cameras like a scene out of Mission Impossible. I finished the last one just as the Pattaya Music Festival was getting into full swing. It was a terrible racket that went until midnight and rang all the way down Soi 6. “How much longer is thing going to last?” I shouted at a girl in Avarice. “Don’t worry, only one more night after tonight,” she replied. Jeez, another night of this cacophony? I didn’t think I could take it. And even as I type this, they’re doing the sound check not 80 meters from my hotel room. Fuck this noise.
….It’s now three hours later and I’m back in my apartment in Bangkok. No beach view but the bed is more comfortable, and one of my harem is already in a taxi on the way. Which means she might leave in time for this old Pongrat to Pong. Which would be just in time to catch the last couple of bands at Bangstock—Shenanigan’s’ all-day charity concert. Time to jump in the shower and ensure my balls are properly shorn. See you in a bit…
Well, my girl came through, God bless her, and she left me enough time to do a quick tour of the Pong. I arrived at Shenanigan’s just as Cottonmouth went on. The place was packed and rocking. The gogos also had a fair amount of foot traffic (not sure if these two facts were connected). I swung into XXX Lounge for a glass of whiskey and a Cuban cigar, and imagine my surprise when I saw their—wait for it—livestream Facebook setup. Yes, that’s right. The cyber-client phenomenon has found its way to Patpong. And who can blame them? All around the world, there are pent-up, lonely blokes trapped inside their houses by their governments’ draconian lockdown measures. It makes sense for the friendly, comely, lovely ladies in TLOS to reach out, digitally if not physically, to touch the hearts of these long-distant customers while they touch themselves, or perhaps just look on, dreaming themselves here through the power of simulacra. Everybody wins. The bar stays afloat. The difference between the XXX Lounge and the Soi 6 bars is, in XXX there’s still plenty of seating space for actual live punters to file in and pull a fetching filly onto their laps. In my humble opinion, every smart gogo owner should follow suit.
Here’s to hoping that, wherever you are, you at least have access to the internet. And if you do, here’s hoping you can find your way to the live streams of the girls in Patpong. Right now, you can find them on their respective Facebook pages, and in the near future, you’ll be able to access multiple channels at bkknites.com. Cheers, everyone. Keep calm, and stream on.