31 December 2015

Happy New Year



Land of Smiles

A job well done by the admen of Lay chips in Thailand. The boys are all over Facebook posing with the bag over their mouth.

Sorry, they are much better-looking without it !

12 December 2015

Wish I were there

I am now at home and cannot help thinking that my planning was quite poor this year. Not really my fault because I had to squeeze in my last trip between some of the few commitments I still have at home, but this made me to miss the "Bike for Dad" event.

Ready for the ride !
I love riding a bike (not the noisy and puffing kind), I love Bangkok and Thailand, and this event was an unique opportunity to blend my two passions. And this in a quiet and secure environment, far from some rowdy drivers who make Thai roads the most dangerous in the world. Seeing the Ride live on the thai TV made me regret not taking part still more. What struck me the most was seeing all these people smiling and obviously happy to ride together behind the Prince.

Oh, I do not wish to be too excited, and can imagine the social and political background of this event. But if riding a bike could make thai people more united, I am all for it. I could even imagine that this could be an incentive for them to ride their bikes more often in their everyday life, and generally to live in a more healthy way, but I would not hold my breath.

In some way I could manage to take part in the event, as one of the rides planned out of Thailand took place not far from my home. There were about 150 people attending, mostly thai people living there, and mostly women. The atmosphere was very cheerful, with everyone smiling and happy to be together paying a tribute to the beloved King. I could spot two or three lads that I would have liked to know better, but it was obviously not the right place to even think of it.

On top of that, I understand that there is now a big two-weeks annual festival in Udon Thani with a lot of shopping, parades, live music and fun (and some brawling too). It is called Thung Sri Muang Festival, takes place from December the 1st onwards and is aimed at honoring His Majesty the King. Reading from Facebook, it seems that every boy living within 50 miles around wants to go, but obviously they have neither transport nor money nor place to stay in town … I guess I could have selflessly helped some (or at least one every day) by offering bed and board free of charge, with some beer money as a bonus.

So time to be smarter when planning a next trip to Thailand … But then there is always something interesting going on in this fabulous place !

Thung Sri Muang Festival, Udon Thani
Festival in Udon Thani

02 December 2015

Saphan Kwai massage shops

Samuel Johnson could have said it : "when a man is tired of Bangkok, he is tired of life". Eleven nights and a half in Bangkok versus only nine in Pattaya : if that is an indicator, no doubt I would lean towards the Big Mango against Sin City every time the usual fruitless quarrel rears its head. Between my trips, I spend more and more time around my homely hotel room in Saphan Kwai, and this for one plain reason : I feel really good there.

Most of my days were spent going here and there in Bangkok ; when in Farangland, I live in a quiet - albeit very scenic – place, so any reason is a good reason to partake in the vibrant Bangkok life among thousands of people. When enough is enough, I then come back to Saphan Khwai, often being the only farang left in the BTS train after Phayathai station (except on week-ends). And from the station, it's then a rather circuitous route to my room, in order to see what's is on offer in front of the many massage shops now operating in the area.

thai massage boy
Waiting for a customer
I did not visit all of them, and this was probably wise as I read in a thai forum that not all provide extra services. Most have a queue system, so you will go with the boy whose turn has come ; however you usually can insist on choosing the boy you prefer, or even ask for one you know from a previous visit or from someone's advise. Do know that except in Nine Spa, there is no privacy if you ask for a thai massage or foot massage. Other kinds will entitle you to a more or less private room, but usually with light partitions not going up to the ceiling (common air-conditioned system). If you have time on your hands, it has been suggested that you ask for a foot massage first, just to see how things are working and which boys meet your requirements.

The places I visited were all clean, welcoming and charged reasonable rates especially before 5pm. So from Saphan Kwai BTS station (exit n°1) and going back towards Pradiphat Road, you will pass by these shops :
> Amor Spa and Am Fine under exit n° 1 : two adjacent places, one small and the other larger where I could saw some handsome lads but did not enter.
> Going on along Phahonyothin, enter the second soi on the right leading to 39 Underground Sauna : again two adjacent boy-only places on your right with many cute guys : I-Sabay and Romphruk. I went twice to the latter, which has mostly vietnamese boys ; extra-service proposed and tip agreed, and then the boy will more or less accept to be in the nude
> Turn left, pass by Phahon Theater (another infamous gay place by all accounts), you will find Pailin on your left. Few boys in front of the shop but it seems busy inside ; strict queue system I am said, including girls.
> Follow the very narrow pathway and then turn left back to Phahonyothin : facing Big C you will pass by Noble Spa, and then Sabaidee just at the corner of Pradiphat Road : these are shops with both boys and girls and a queue system as well, but you could probably avoid it if you order an oil massage and ask to choose – especially in the last one where I had only a nice foot massage by a nice girl.
> Cross the road and go to Big C, follow the car entrance and exit on the right of the mall and then turn right on the Soi leading south to Suthisan Road : you will reach Seven Massage who has just relocated in a subsoi here. Boy-only place where I did not had enough time to go, but looks promising and very professionnal.

thai boy massaging thai boy
Will extras be part of the game ?
And finally there is of course Nine Spa in the Liberty Garden Hotel, the only place which comes close to a real gay massage shop with private rooms and slightly higher prices ; here, extra services are part of the game, possibly including hard ones. You choose your boy from a tablet which shows their pictures. The cashier is not always available and as he is the only one you can see in the flesh (so he has a definite advantage over others), you could regret it at first. Most of their boys are nowadays hill-tribe boys from Tak province ; I highly recommend Phet who knows perfectly how to make you shiver with pleasure along the whole process, bringing you like in a trance when serious things begin.

The premises will undergo a complete renovation, and the shop will have to move near the BTS station – but I still do not know exactly where. If I don't get any information before my next trip, be sure I will comb the entire area until I can find it !