Reed in Asia
A trip to the seaside
There was no rush to get up the next morning, so I just lazed in bed a little, then made myself a cup of tea, switched the local radio station on and found some music to listen to. Just lying back on the bed and thinking, I realised that I had not sent a telex to GQ and I hadn't phoned the UK at all yet. So I picked up the phone, dialled an outside line and then phoned home, after a long time Myra answered the phone and was talking very quietly, I told her that it was me in Bangkok and then she said to me "Do you know what time it is here?", I hadn't even considered the time difference, she went on to tell me that it was only 04:00 and that I had just woken her up. I apologised and said that I would phione her again at a more reasonable time and she put the phone down. I was awake properly by then, so I went to the bathroom, had a shower and shave, got dressed and then I started packing a small bag to take with me that day. I then sat by the window and started to write a telex message for GQ, I said that the dome equipment at Don Muang had been checked okay and that I was leaving later that day to go and sort out the problem at the naval base in Sattahib.
I took the telex message down to reception and they sent it for me, I then went to the dining room, ordered a pot of tea and started looking through the menu. It was lunchtime by then so I thought that I should have something substantial to eat before we go to Pattaya. I ordered a green chicken curry, a bowl of Tom Yam soup and a plate of chicken fried rice to go with it. Whilst I was eating my meal, Adrian and Eddie walked in and sat with me, they started talking to me about the night before and how they had had a good time in Patpong, talking about the girls and some amusing incidents and went on to say that I should have gone with them and that I would have enjoyed it, I just smiled at them and nodded to appease them, but I was not really interested in the wild nightlife in gogo bars. Eddie was interested in what I was eating and he asked if he could taste the curry, so I gave him a spare spoon and let him try it, he enjoyed it and said that he would order it for himself too. Adrian looked at my food and just said "How can you eat that foreign rubbish?" and when the waitress came over, he ordered fried chicken and chips, apparently he ate that everyday and he wouldn't try any Thai food at all, "Oh well! Different people have different tastes".
During the course of the meal, Adrian started talking about Pattaya, he had been there a couple of times before and he said that it was a great place, he said that the whole town was just like Patpong in Bangkok, go-go bars and girls everywhere, he went on to say that he wished that he was going with me. After Adrian had finished talking about Pattaya, I was not looking forward to going there now, it did not sound like my type of place at all. After lunch, we went to sit in the lounge and ordered some beers. We were just sitting there drinking and chatting when Dumrong walked in, I checked my watch and it was 13:45, so I said to Dumrong that I was just going upstairs to get my bags and that I would be right back down again. I got back to the lounge a couple of minutes later, put my bag and briefcase by the chair and sat down to finish my beer. Dumrong had just got a beer, so I ordered another one for myself. We all sat there chatting and drinking for a while and then Dumrong said that we had better go, he grabbed my bags and took them to his car, so I quickly drank the remains of my beer and stood up to follow him, as I was leaving the table Adrian said to me "You just remember what I told you before" and tapped the side of his head with his forefinger, I smiled and nodded to him, said goodbye to Eddie and then headed for the door.
In the car, I put my seatbelt on and then we set off. I was interested in everything outside, so I was just staring out of the car windows, I had never been outside of the Don Muang area in the three days that I had been in Thailand, so everything was interesting for me. One good thing about travelling with Dumrong, was that he was a smoker too, so smoking in the car was not a problem. On the drive to Pattaya, I just sat there smoking and looking out of the windows, we were driving down a dual carriageway and the countryside going to Pattaya seemed very flat and nothing of interest really, apart from the heat, I could be in any country. We stopped once at a service area and Dumrong asked me if I wanted anything, so I got out of the car wandered around some of the shops and stalls there, went to a 7-Eleven store there and bought a large carton of strawberry milk, then returned to sit in the car and drink the milk. Dumrong came back to the car carrying plastic bags with many things in them, he stuck his hand in one of the bags, pulled out a ball shaped paper bag, gave it to me and asked me to try it. I opened the bag and inside was what looked like a large ball of dough, I bit into it and it was like bread, but it had spicy meat in the centre and it was very good, he told me that it ws called 'Sarapow' in Thai, so I made a mental note of this, because I liked it.
We set off again for Pattaya and we arrived there about one hour later, I saw the main part of the town go by, off to my right there seemed to be a lot of roads leading off and many buildings, but we just kept on driving for a while, eventually Dumrong made a turn to the right, we drove up a hill a little and then we turned left and started going downhill again, I could see the sea not too far away and then we turned into a hotel carpark, I looked at the sign and it said 'Asia Hotel', Dumrong parked the car, we got our bags and walked into the reception there. The people in reception seemed to know Dumrong and they started talking in rapid Thai together, occasionally Dumrong would point to me, the people would look over at me and then start talking rapidly again. After a while Dumrong came over to me and gave me a key, "This is your room" he said in English and then he led me to the lift, we then went to the third floor, I found the room and opened the door. The room was very similar to my room in the Airport hotel at Don Muang, the only main difference was that this one had twin beds. Dunrong said that his room was just two doors down on the same side, he then started walking to his room and said that he would meet me down in the reception area in about one hour.
In the room, I took my washing and shaving stuff out of my bag and put them in the bathroom, I then went to the refridgerator, checked the contents and took a beer out, opened it and sat on one of the chairs next to a coffee table near the window. There wasn't a lot to see out of the window, I could see a hill behind the hotel and I could see the hotel carpark, it was starting to get a little dark anyway by that time, so I just sat there for a while relaxing, drinking beer and smoking cigarettes. I hadn't really seen any of Pattaya yet, this hotel seemed to be quite far out from the centre of the town, it was very quiet there. After I had finished my beer, I took a shower and had a change of clothes, then I went down to the reception and sat in the lounge, a waitress came over to me and I ordered a beer from her. A few minutes later Dumrong came and sat down, he asked me if I wanted to go and see Pattaya, I shook my head and said no, I said that I just wanted to relax here at the hotel that night. After the description of Pattaya that Adrian had given to me, I was in no hurry to go and see it really. Dumrong then said that the hotel had a good restaurant, it was outside on a terrace and he said that you could see the sea from it. So after I finished my beer we went to the restaurant and it was very nice there with a bit of sea breeze. they had Greek food in there which I like, so I ordered a big meal, with more beer of course
Sitting there waiting for the food and looking out to sea, I saw lots of lights on the sea, I realised that they must be boats, but the lights seemed very bright, I mentioned this to Dumrong and he then told me that they were squid boats and that the lights were used to attract the squid. The meal when it arrived was very good and I was enjoying sitting there watching the squid boat lights, so after the meal, I just continued sitting drinking beer, looking out to sea and thinking about what I had to do the next day. Dumrong left me sitting there and said that he had to go and see some friends in Pattaya and that he would meet in the dining room for breakfast the next morning at 07:00. I continued sitting there sipping beer and looking out to sea until the restaurant was closing and I was asked to sign the bill. So then I went to the room, phoned reception for an early morning call, put the radio on low and fell asleep quite quickly and early that night.
I shall be adding to this site over time, so if anyone is interested then please have a little patience and call back here from time to time. One of my very few pleasures in life these days is beer so I shall be occasionally referring to beer, I just wish that beer was the only reason that I am legless all the time
Thanks for viewing my site, cheers for now, Legless
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