21 June 2014

Curiosity

Why did I chose to go for a two-days stay in Hat Yai rather going to Pattaya two days earlier ?. In fact I do not know myself, even if a promotion by Nok Air (2160 THB return all inclusive) was an enticing offer. I think only curisoity lead me there, as this town has not a lot to offer except good shopping opportunity.  

First surprise : I was the only farang on board, both going to and coming from. I knew that the town had been recently affected by some assaults by the local rebels, but I had not heard of any travel warning for the Songkhla province. In town, farangs were very free and far between, the population being clearly divided between the chinese and the locals 

The main reason for my curiosity was obviously the current situation of the local boys bars, which gets very few updates on the boards - I guess someone has to do the job, right ?

Not a lot of changes since my last trip three years ago ; two bars which are still alive and well, and more and more saunas and massage places - that I did not visit. However I could not find the place advertised in the Bangkok Post Nightlife Guide as "Boys Pub Bar", with as address : Nipat Uthit Soi 3 (not very accurate, as there are three Nipat Uthit Roads, all very long and parallel with one another, and only one seems to have a Soi 3).
  
Buddy Men Club : really out of the beaten track ...
Both bars are located close to one another, one along Sriphunawat Road (along a short cut to Akarn Road to be more accurate) and the other along Akharn Road, so in the south part of town. Buddy Men Club was surprisingly well staffed with about seven rather good-looking young men - mostly coming from the North of Thailand. And Top Man Pub had mostly local southern boys and a welcoming owner from Khorat. I took a boy from Buddy Men, a 21 y/o from Chiang Mai which told me he was a tribe boy - rather useless in bed. Pity I had not chosen another one which proved to be much more affectionate when I chatted with him - a thai yai from Burma. Off rate 1500 THB short-time and 2000 THB for the night, including tip for the boy (respectively 1000 THB and 1500 THB). 

So much for Hat Yai, I guess I will have to update myself once again in one or two years, the Buddy Men owner having told me he sees about one farang a year in his place ...

19 June 2014

Marvels of the world

The trip to Siem Reap was long indeed but at least everything went smooth unlike a previous and unforgettable one we had in Laos many years ago. The nearer we were approaching the town,  the more obvious we got the impression to arrive to very special place. Suddenly the roads were in a good state, drivers more respectful and streets cleaner. 

We spent our four days in Siem Reap in the very nice River Queen Guesthouse managed by Richard and his friend, in a fantastic location near the river, close enough to the center of nightlife and far enough to feel a more khmer atmosphere. We were offered a room with a large balcony and I almost immediately felt that I would come back once again. My boyfriend although being generally fussy about accommodation liked it too and quickly became friend with the two house dogs. 

Our three full days there were rather exhausting with two days and a half visiting the temples and the last afternoon visiting the Thonlesap lake after a long tuk-tuk trip allowing a nice immersion in the rural cambodgian atmosphere. 

Your tourist guidebook will tell you about the temples much better than me ; I can only confirm that everyone of them is worthwhile, each one having its own caracter and charm. Marvelous, huge, fine, are some of the worlds which come to mind and I can understand why some people can stay many days exploring them.     
Marvels of the world
                              
As for the visit to the lake, it allows to feel the might of nature which elevates the level of the lake in the rainy season about 10 meters higher than in the dry season, thanks to the water coming from the Mae Khong River ; and to appreciate how finely the locals have adapted to this exceptional natural phenomenon. 
I did not really appreciate the atmosphere in the Pub Street Area which is the local Khao San Road  : very commercial, full of the same young farang you can find in Pai, Vang Vien or Kho Phangan - but to each its own. At least this produces a very lively atmosphere where people seem to really enjoy themselves - I could not help thinking of Pattaya which seems to have lost this kind of customer base. The Linga Bar is the only real gay bar in the place with a higher quality atmosphere than its Sunee Plaza counterparts. We ended our evenings there trying out many of their cocktails ; however we were not impressed at all by the 10.30 week-end show but could not attend the other one in the Station Wine Bar - said to be much better at least for now. 

I was more interested by the massage places which are located just outside the "magic triangle", some with rather young boys and girls where happy ending is strongly hinted at by the street touts, and another one (Hatha Blue Khmer Massage that I could not try) being an openly gay massage place. I went twice with a sweet 19 y/o local guy with a face to die for, and not shy at all when it came to kissing, hugging and more.  

These places, and the fact that many gorgeous boys on the street seem readily available for everything : sure I have to go back one day - preferably alone and without any commitment...                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

13 June 2014

Wild Cambodia

The first impression when arriving in Pnom Penh was the awful traffic and the complete disrespect of the most basic rules of traffic laws. Compared to Pnom Penh, Bangkok looks like Zurich ! However we finally arrived safe and sound to our hotel which was the Siver River Hotel close to the Royal Palace, the Tonlesap Quai and some boys bars - deluxe room with a nice balcony over the street booked through Agoda.

Sitting in the taxi for 25 minutes to the hotel just when Universities and schools were out was more than enough to be striken by the cuteness of cambodian lads ; no fat boy, only smiling and good-looking faces all over the street, with an impression of crudeness that is not found as often among thai boy. 

We spent our two days in Pnom Penh shopping, visiting the most touristy places and strolling along the Sisawat Quai - despite having to confront the unendless and lawless traffic. A tuk-tuk driver brought us to the Killing Fields, after a long trip among populous areas in the suburbs, and despite having read a lot about the Khmer Rouge exactions, I felt really moved when confronted with the reality of the awful crimes that were commited by Pol Pot and his henchmen. In fact no visitor can leave unaffected after visiting the exact location where the genocide took place. How a nation which has so nice-looking and smiling boys (and girls) can produce such awful crimes stands beyond reason. 

Sweet Cambodia
The two bars we visited were the Two Colours Bar just around the corner from the Hotel, and Blue Chilli Bar within short walking distance. Both would compare with the host bars in Sunee Plaza with outdoor sitting and reasonable prices, and also some nice looking available lads.
  
I had a blast at the Heart of Darkness disco. Although not strictly gay, the place was mostly patronized by boys but no flirtation as most seemed to be there for pleasure and not for finding customers. We treated ourselves to a delicious Mouton-Cadet red wine bottle (quickly followed by a second one) for only 30 USD each and I loved the music there : only good international disco music without the local songs that too often spoil the atmosphere in thai discos. For that exact reason, my boyfriend did not like the evening as much as me - despite the red wine he is very fond of too. Being a little bit intoxicated, better to go back to the hotel with a tuk-tuk as crossing some roads on foot would heve been quite hazardous. 

Next station Siam Reap and the Angkor temples but this is 350 km of dubious roads away from the khmer capital...