|Bangkok comes alive at night (flickr user fotografm)|
by Ian Mcintosh - Travel Agent Update
There really is no show on earth like Bangkok at night. The best place to view the action is from a cab. Firstly there is the traffic. Never ending - cars, tuk tuks, families of three and even four perched on tiny scooters, beautiful girls, their long dark hair trailing in the breeze, fly past my window. No need to hang on. No need for a helmet. A million lights appear from nowhere to illuminate streeets jam packed with everything from people to bars to restaurants and massage parlors and it is only 7pm. The driver smiles as we pass the banana club - "for men only. Only open at night." There are hundreds of others ranging from German style beer halls to lavish clubs that take up four floors. Every strip of pavement is now taken up with tables and chairs as Bangkok's workers sit down to eat wonderful dishes whipped up in woks and hotplates from tiny mobile kitchens. Just the aromas are enough to set your stomach groaning. Not just one or two streeets - but every street. Why would you eat at home? Thing is I have never had the courage to sit down and join them, which really irks me.
Adding to this riot of colour, atmosphere and entertainment is everyone from go go dancers to the the most mangy dogs ever that stagger about eternally scratching themselves. I usually end up buying them dinner. Tonight I travelled from the Holiday Inn on Rama 1 road to The Landmark in Sukhumvit followed by the Ambassador to see my tailor and finally to the German Beer Club on Soy 5 followed by The Amari Boulevard for a cocktail in the foyer. On the walk I was invited to strip clubs and worse, restaurants by the dozen, offered porn movies, cheap pizzas...the list goes on. Thing is it is all done with the famous Thai smile. Frankly I love every minute of it. Back in the hotel now - its 9.30pm here - the car ride took nearly an hour and cost B100 - about $4. My 2 handmade shirts plus having a coat altered will cost me $90.