Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Nude Farangs +Thai Transvestites = a Typical Weekend in Pattaya

So, like the title suggests, our weekend in Pattaya (way back in, uh, August) was pretty uneventful...I mean, considering the fact that nude farangs and transvestites are as much a part of Pattaya as tuk tuks and Soi Patpong are a part of Bangkok.

OK, I know it seems like I always rat on Pattaya (which is why I have NO IDEA why I always seem to end up in that town), but I will admit that much fun can be had in Pattaya. And when I say fun, I mean fun of the non-sex industry sort. Really. I actually discovered a few hidden gems in and around Pattaya this time around, and will admit that this trip was a weekend well spent.

Our home for the weekend.

The view from our hotel room.
It was pretty cloudy and foggy the entire weekend.
Unfortunately, that didn't stop the nude sunbathers from working on their tan.

We had some cocktails in the lobby, which was decorated with some way cool scenes from Sunthorn Phu's epic poem, Phra Abhai Mani.

And the man himself, Phra Abhai Mani, with his famous lute.

Talk about a killer chandelier...and I really mean that.
Can you imagine this falling like in that scene in The Phantom of the Opera when the Phantom and Christine are singing that totally scandalous song, Point of No Return? Ack.

Steps leading to the beach...

I know they don't get much sun over in Europe, but because these signs were literally all over the place, you'd think those topless Europeans would get a clue and KEEP THEIR DAMN SWIMSUITS ON. But, no. We were forced to witness a large number of nude sunbathers strut their stuff all along the beach boardwalk. I am not even kidding. "Holy hanging boobies!" we cried in utter horror, covering our burning retinas lest we end up contracting some unknown form of eye cancer. I mean, seriously, it was like dangly, gangly, jiggly body parts galore.

Fortunately, one of the hotel staff went and asked them to please -- for the love of God-- cover up. The hotel dude who saved us was totally calm and composed throughout; he must be used to this kind of stuff. Major props to him, especially for being able to keep a straight face whilst talking to an elderly European man who was pretty busy applying sunscreen -- fondling -- his man boobs. I mean, I do NOT need to see hairy, portly 60-year-old men strutting around naked, for chrissake. Nor do I need to see hanging-way-down-there breasts a la South Park's Miss Chokesondick. If I want to see live nudity, I can just swing by Soi Cowboy. I live in Bangkok, you know.

But other than the cavorting nudists, the scenery was nice on the eyes. Nothing to rival the Similan or Andaman islands or anything like that, but definitely a nice change of pace and scenery from BKK.

Two of the thankfully-now-not-naked-anymore sunbathers AFTER the hotel staff kindly asked them to cover up their boobies and various other body parts. BTW, this is apparently a very family-friendly hotel.

I know, I am just as confused as you are.

The Royal Cliff Beach Hotel Resort is huuuuge, and you have to get around the place either by car or the hotel's shuttle network. It's spread out across 64 acres and there's plenty to do there. In fact, we were pretty much holed up at the resort the entire time we were in Pattaya since there was just so much to do and explore.

The sports complex was pretty stellar. Squash, tennis, and basketball courts were available, as well as a gym, pool, and steam room. Oh, reading material was available, too. Most of the books were left behind by past hotel visitors and were in various European languages. The interesting thing is that 90% of them were romance novels, complete with bodice-ripping covers and Fabio lookalike cover models. Curiosity demanded I flip through one French romance novel (hey, I wanted to see what we missed out on in high school French class, okay?). I discovered that the novel's hero was a studly, handsome, well-muscled man named OLIVIER (!!!!!), which made me giggle out loud for a reason any French-taking RIS alumni should know DAMN well why. ;D Ol' Olivier and his true love had a few hurdles to overcome, but when I skipped to the last page -- after a few pages of heaving bosoms and "oh la las" -- and saw "je t'aime, veux-tu m'épouser?", I knew that all was well in the world.

I guess this means that love really does make the world go 'round, huh?

And the moment you've all been waiting for...
Transvestites from the world-famous Tiffany establishment.

Whenever I see a transvestite, I'm reminded of a story a friend from college once told me. Her older brother once asked this girl out on a date, and according to my friend, this girl made Angelina Jolie look like a mop with peaches for boobs. I know, I can hardly fathom such a thing, either. But I guess it gives you an idea of this girl's standard in singling out the perfect plastic surgeon. Anyway, my friend's brother was pretty stoked, and maybe the love gods were smiling on them that day, because the date went fantastically well -- conversation flowed, chemistry sizzled, everything was perfect perfect perfect!

That is, until they checked into a hotel and the clothes started flying off. Imagine his surprise when he discovered that he and his date had a hell of a lot more in common than he'd originally thought. And yes, I'm talking about their nether regions. =X

You guessed correctly if you figured he hightailed it on out of there. Just a cautionary tale for all you unsuspecting guys out there.

Bye Pattaya!
On the way out of town, we stopped by the house of a friend of a friend of the family.

I guess "house" is a bit of an understatement, huh. Apparently the guy was going for the whole European palace look. The result is a little too flashy and gaudy for my tastes, but really cool to check out nonetheless. I think I was more surprised to see a thoroughly European-influenced estate smack in the middle of Pattaya, Thailand than anything else.

There was an Indian version of the Chinese Goddess of Mercy, Quan Yin (or as she's called here in T-Land, Guan Im).

Darling statues that looked more at home in Rome or Greece than Pattaya, Thailand were also scattered throughout the estate.


Currently Reading: The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova, which received lots of hype even before it was published. According to the reviews, you'll either love it or hate it; I'm loving it. This novel has everything -- gothic medieval history, lush Eastern European landscapes, a disturbingly creepy (to me, at least) Vlad the Impaler story, and everything in between. Personally, I am admiring Kostova's clever way in weaving a story within a story within a story, as well as her lovely prose. Can you believe this novel took her ten years to write? Definitely worth all those years, because I could not put this book down. Definitely recommended. After finishing the book, I found myself lusting for the backpacker's life. If only I could live out of my backpack and travel the world over. Twice. Maybe not for life, but at least for a year. Or two. Whatever the case, I now add Turkey, Romania, Hungary, and Bulgaria to my list of Countries I Hope to Visit Before I Die.

Currently Playing: Joy of Life/Trout in the Bath and Rebel Heart by the Corrs. I love love love Irish instrumental pieces by the Corrs (or any random band down at the pub, even). Joy of Life makes me want to do the jig and Rebel Heart makes me want to weep, it's so beautiful. I've always loved these songs, since they were one of the first ones I learned to play -- squeaking and cringing my whole way through -- on the tin whistle.

Currently Anticipating: The new Pride and Prejudice movie by Working Title Films (the same folks who brought us Love Actually, Bridget Jones's Diary, and Notting Hill). I am totally excited about this movie, especially since Pride and Prejudice is one of my all-time favorite novels. Don't kill me for saying this, but I think I'm going to like it even more than the 1995 BBC version with Colin Firth. After all, after seeing this scene, you too will find yourself totally smitten with Matthew MacFadyen's more vulnerable version of Darcy (plus, you have to admit the man has such pretty eyes =X). From the previews, I can't help but think that Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFadyen have so much more chemistry than Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth did in the BBC version. Anyway, much heated debate has been going on amongst hardcore P&P fans, but looks like I'm going to have to wait a little longer before casting judgement, because while it's already out in the UK, it won't be here in Thailand until January -- GAH! For all you lucky arse Americans, make sure to check it out on November 18.

EDIT: Jen emailed me to ask if I have any links to more P&P clips. Sure do. Here are some links to the behind-the-scenes documentary. And here are actual clips from the movie. Enjoy. :)


At Wednesday, October 05, 2005 11:33:00 PM, Blogger Wenny Baby said...

AYA, LYNN!!! How come you came around to the California and Las Vegas area without even telling me! I could have told my husband to drive down there for a few days!! Gosh, I could have seen you! Or you could have at least stopped by Vancouver!!!! Whaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!

At Thursday, October 06, 2005 11:00:00 AM, Blogger k.t.x said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At Thursday, October 06, 2005 11:01:00 AM, Blogger k.t.x said...

with the ever improving plastic surgeons, i m starting to doubt the sexuality of every woman walking pass me.

wow,the house is soo, err, 'versace'...hahaha.

At Thursday, October 06, 2005 3:34:00 PM, Anonymous Paddy said...

i can agree with you there at some of the transvestites do actually look even more beautiful than women. a couple of my friends had a shock of their lives. gosh i haven't been to pattaya in ages...almost 10 years. hope u are well na. talk to u soon.

At Thursday, October 06, 2005 3:56:00 PM, Blogger Jil In Pattaya said...

Ooh lookee! Comment box! Must. Resist. Urge... too late.

1. Hey! Royal Cliff! My house is just around the corner from there. (No really... it is.)

2. Tiffany Show: I'm friends with about half the cast and crew of that show. They're often seminude in my pool. (No really... they are.)

3. Actually farangs are just as offended by droopy boob syndrome as Thai people are, but we think we are sophisticated if we pretend not to notice. Either German boobs are more likely to droop, or Germans are most likely to remove their shirts... I can't say. Ladyboys with great boob jobs who wear a size 2 dress on the other hand... that's OK.

4. Hey! The pink palace! That belongs to Mr. 7-11, right? You saw him there? That spoils a rumor in Pattaya that the house is so tacky that once the fellow built it, he realized what he had created, and never went there again.

5. Guan Im... thanks for confirming that spelling for me. I was just trying to look that up the other day when I was writing about the vegetarian festival. (She turns into a cow, you know. I think she accomplishes that by swallowing the horse pill she is always carrying around in her hand.)

Anyway, Hi... I'm Jil, a fellow blogger from Pattaya. Hope you come visit Pattaya again. We'll put out some pine-scented air fresheners next time you come... it does help, you know.

At Friday, October 07, 2005 10:22:00 AM, Blogger naeglerian said...

Oh dude, I thought I had finally purged the memories of old European manboobs from the dark recesses of my brain (and yes, they are quite dark and recessed), but your entry ruined everything for me. The manboobs, the Speedos, the sunburned imitation of a lobster - it's all flooding my mind now. My dreams are going to suck tonight. And then there was the flamboyantly gay desk clerk who I swore made a pass at me. That's what you get for being friendly. All of that "metta" bunk only leads to trouble; it's scowls and frowns on my part from now on. Aargh!

PS - was that house on MTV?

At Friday, October 07, 2005 1:15:00 PM, Blogger Arkworld said... didn't even tell me you were gonna be out here too. we live only 2-3 hours from vegas.

anyways, glad to see you posting pics on flickr agian. it's been a while. cool new camera btw. i just picked up a new camera myself this week.

well i hope all is well. talk to ya soon.

At Friday, October 07, 2005 3:00:00 PM, Anonymous jirat said...

Hey Lynn! I just saw your pictures of you and your brother visiting Vegas and SF. I'm glad you had fun! Too bad I didn't know about it, or else Jessica and I would've met up with you. When will you come again? You better tell me when you do! haha. Ok take care!

At Friday, October 07, 2005 9:15:00 PM, Blogger S said...

Yay, you updated!!! God, you totally saw a different angle of Pattaya that's not its sex-tourism-nudist-beach expected self. I loved the Sunthorn Phu-inspired statue. That's what Thai tourism should be known for. God I miss the beach. WOuld you believe that I havent been to the beach in like--- I don't know--- 5 years??? As Counting Crows would say in their Long December song: It's been so long since I've seen the ocean, I guess I should.
There's something about beaches. Sigh.

At Saturday, October 08, 2005 3:11:00 AM, Anonymous От Таиланда к moscow наша влюбленность одним said...

Симпатичное подняло с нюхом а petals мягко настолько сладостное и светлое настолько красивейшее цветок с светить цветов яркий. Но что-то настолько смачное о душистом подняло - тернии, настолько острые на стержне, что заточите по мере того как оно растет. Но все еще симпатичен цветок несмотря на тернии колют как раз как жизнь и влюбленность сладостна они слишком имеет тернии вставляют. Но не опасайтесь для того чтобы жить или влюбленность, жизнь неподатная от боли - поэтому выберите розу, вы можете получить повреждение, но вы также приобретете!

At Thursday, October 13, 2005 7:34:00 PM, Blogger Chaichakri said...

wow, nude sunbathing in Thailand... how come I never notice all that ah....

is the land of the smiles so strange?

At Saturday, October 15, 2005 3:20:00 PM, Blogger jeremy said...

hiya lynn,

how are ya?? long time no blog/type/etc! i was in pattaya the same weekend actually as i flew in during the china holidays.

finalized on an apartment i had reserved there, though a little bit more modest than the megapalace in your pics. tried to get my dad to go for the penthouse (available for 90m baht) but he somehow ignored that part of my email.

script isn't moving forward because of future issues in location shooting. apparently all material shot in thailand has to be approved... or people can get into a wee bit of trouble. how's the book coming along?

i'm using a proxy to be able to read blogspot from china. shhhh!!! i always feel a bit naughty doing this...

take care,

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