Ok so since my last post I have...
* Been extremely drunk in Bangkok a few (!) times
* Seen a ping pong show (no, not table tennis)
* Been to the world's biggest crocodile farm, fed crocs, touched a tiger and played with monkeys
* Flown up north to Chiang Mai (traditional Thailand)
* Been bamboo rafting and elephant trekking
* Had probably the nicest meal you can get anywhere for 90p
* Had an interesting massage experience
* Flown south to Phuket
* Stayed in a hotel with no windows
* Drank lots in touristy Patong
* Moved into an awesome place just off Karon beach
I'll post some pics of my place soon. It's pretty awesome. It's a brand new appartment block minutes from the beach, but it has it's own pool with diving board, sun deck, snooker table and as there is no-one here yet we basically have free run of the place. Wireless internet is up and running so I'm going to be hitting the tables nice and hard for the next month. I've really missed playing, and our internet in most places has been horribly unreliable.
I've certainly enjoyed the trip so far. Photos are up on facebook so check them out there. I'll get round to posting a few choice ones on here shortly.
My good friend Ben who is out here with me has decided to start up a poker blog too, you can have a read at Holmes' Big Deal which is now also linked on the right.
I played 1k hands of poker tonight which is the longest I've played in one sitting for ages. That makes 2k hands for the month (!) for $600 profit. Now that I have decent internet I'm going to be playing loads, so I'll have more to say on that front soon too. Meanwhile here's a cross post of my massage experience...
Chaing Mai is lovely. It's sooooo much different to Bangkok. You don't get any hassle whatsoever, and people seem genuinely helpful, rather than $$$ driven. We had the signature northern Thai dish for lunch today, called Khao Saoy (Cow Soy) which is chicken with soft and crispy noodles. And boy is it nice! We finished off with water chestnuts in coconut milk for dessert, has anyone had these?? They are quite nice but such a weird texture, like very doughy on the outside, but sweet to the taste. The centre 'nut' almost tasted like a mini digestive biscuit, and the coconut milk was amazing. A two course meal with unlimited top ups of bottled water all for 90p a head!!
I had my first Thai massage experience last night. We decided to wait until outside of Bangkok so as to be more certain of the establishment's authenticity. This went pretty badly wrong, but not how you'd immediately think! We walked past the hotel reccommended 1kBH/hour (£20/hr) place to find a much cheaper option. We saw a sign which we followed to a very nice looking place where we could get 1 hour for 200BH (£4). That'll do very nicely!
We were greeted by a tiny local who was very openly, gay. No problem I thought, bet there's the odd gay masseur knocking around (!) When a few more of them swarmed in however the alarm bells started to ring. Katrina was obviously delighted with this, as she was here with her boyfriend and with the stigma that comes with these places this was basically her dream non-threatening outcome. Before we had fully worked it out, K&B were whisked away to their own private room and me a Briggs were left wondering whether to bail. We were brought some magazines to read as we would have to wait 10 minutes for the next room to be available. I immediately flicked to the back to see if I could find some adverts for this place. I did...under the 'Massage for Men, by Men' section. So I try not to sound too impolite and asked the front of house fruitcake if they have any female masseuses working here. He was actually really nice, "Oh yes we do! Would you prefer a lady massage?" So I nod and say yes please. I don't know if I did over react a bit, the place was really really nice, but it was on the same page as adverts for a parlour called "You-2-Come Massage for Men" with a topless adolescent thai male wrapped in a towel as it's poster child, so maybe it was well founded.
So anyway we did get 'lady massage' but I'm not entirely sure mine qualified. After I got changed into thin cotton pants and shirt for the massage (which have since given me a rash), she started by kneading my calves and thighs with the strength of a thousand tigers. I think she and Arnie were seperated at birth. Actually just like in that film Twins, only Arnie got all the shit genes and she got all the super strong ones. Oh my God it hurt. I bet it was really good for me but to be honest I didn't feel revitalised afterwards. I think I'll opt for a more relaxing one next time!