Getting Fleeced In L. K. Metro?

 

I recently wrote an article about Isaan folk and went from particular cases to generalisations – always a problem. I got told off, and rightly so but I still think the Isaan is Thailand’s most troubled region. I think I will get criticised again for what I am going to write today. Here goes:

Are there any Pattaya punters out there who resent seeing other punters getting fleeced? Does anyone agree it happens to our weaker, richer or newer expats or holiday-makers?

I can’t say it happened (that’s my disclaimer!) but in L. K. Metro last night I think it happened. What? One guy in a particular bar was taken advantage of.

I’d bought a lady a drink but as is my wont these days I didn’t buy a second. If asked by staff or pretty woman to buy another, I usually refuse. The said pretty woman went off to the toilet and never returned to give me the time of day – a fairly frequent happening (for me) these days. No problem. Two guys in their forties walked in, sat down, bought drinks for themselves, then within a few minutes bought drinks for the lady I mentioned and her friend. (The latter had joked with me about a threesome with her, her friend, me.) I watched on, and matters progressed rapidly. The two young gallants bought more drinks and bar-fined the girls, then while the girls were dressing for the occasion, one of the two lads, the one with “my ex” (for want of a better label), got surrounded by staff and he seemed to buy many, many drinks. In the meantime, a Thai birthday-guy was being sung to around a wee birthday cake. He had the usual necklace of baht notes dangling from his strong torso. Anything familiar about any of this? I hope so. After a fairly lengthy wait, the two friends reappeared, dressed sexily. There was merriment about something, the usual fingers made into holes and poked through in anticipation of sticky pleasures to ensue, and the guy with the sexier of the two gals (my opinion only, of course) coughed up substantially. I’d counted four staff and the mamasan knocking back the tequilas. The foursome then frolicked off. I didn’t wait to see if the two girls reappeared quickly.

Judging from the situation and without the slightest inclination to get closer or ask the two guys questions (none of my f…ing business), I did feel one guy in particular was taken advantage of. He could have said no, but he didn’t. He was grown-up and there on the premises of his own choosing. He chose one of the sexiest. She’d told me she was twenty and unmarried. If he was a fall-guy, he could afford it, I suppose.

Many years ago at the beginning of my sojourn in Pattaya I was in Jomtien Long Stay and my next-door neighbour who lived with a Thai lady and was already having problems with his prostate told me that one of the popular bars had hardly any girls working “the other night”. They’d all been bar-fined, he told me. He said if he goes in and is asked to buy a drink, he replies, “See that bloke sitting over there?” (There’s usually a bloke sitting over there and the bar girl usually sees him.) She nods. “Leave me alone. Go and ask him.”

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