(“Got your mother in a whirl
She’s not sure if you’re a boy or a girl…”

Ladyboy bartender – Pattaya

The breakfast wasn’t up to much, but it was included in the price of the room so, hey, why not? The coffee was good – and you know that’s good enough for me!

It was time to go shopping.

Avoiding the touts requires a deadpan gaze ahead – avoiding eye-contact – and the occasional slippery hand to avoid handshakes doubling as guiding you into a shop or to stop. The best line I heard as I was going down a small, quiet alleyway was, “Hey, remember me?”. 10 out of 10 for originality but all it did was make me smile. The guy started to follow me though so I hot-footed it out of there.

I bought a t-shirt (whatever Thai for ‘Red Bull’ is…) for myself.

Heading back along Beach Road, the wind was quite strong and the water was quite choppy. The beach had almost disappeared completely! There were a couple of jet-skis braving the waves but no one was swimming. Pattaya Beach is not up to much really – just a thin strip of sand. The beaches in Adelaide kick Pattaya’s butt!

I was starting to get a bit peckish, so I stopped at The Tip’s Restaurant as there were quite a lot of foreigners eating there – always something to look out for. I had a fillet steak for under AUS$10! It was cooked well and came with chips and salad. Tasty.

After that it was back to the hotel room to dump the plunder and decide what to do next.

I decided to indulge my death wish by going to the interestingly named Tiffany’s Shooting Range. Do you shoot diamond bullets there or something? James Bond might be proud…

I caught the baht bus down there. The shooting range was in the basement of the Tiffany’s Show – an over-the-top theatre staging over-the-top ladyboy shows three times a day. Talk about mixing your enterprises! Anyway, I couldn’t end indulging my death wish because I was by myself. You have to have someone witness your application form; legal blah blah… ah well. Next time I’ll need to take a friend. Any volunteers?

On the way back to the hotel I managed to fulfil my death wish by playing putt putt. I think it’d been more thanten years since I last played miniature golf so I was sure to suck. I got a beer to assist my skills (2 for 1 deal – yay!) and played the course in the fading light. True to my predictions, I died! The quality of the course didn’t help, but a poor tradesman blames his tools. I did do some of the old putt putt cliches; knocking in a ball 8-ball style, switching left and right-handed, etc. The second beer at the 19th was well and truly enjoyed.

I kinda wished I had a mobile phone at the restaurant that evening, just so I could’ve had the following conversation with someone,

– Hey, where are you?

– I’m at this restaurant. There’s an all-you-can-eat BBQ buffet for ten bucks, they’re playing country and western and half the waiting staff are ladyboys!

I just had to amuse myself with the thought.

The food was great (I was doing well so far!) and I waddled back to the hotel stuffed to the gills.

By now it was getting on past eight o’clock so it was time to summon the energy for another wander into the nightlife district. This time I stopped at a couple of beer bars for some beer (duh) and to enjoy the view. These places are all open air and are pretty laid back kind of places. they have girls there to draw in the customers as well as keep them entertained, whether it’s by conversation, games (Connect 4 is the game of choice – I hadn’t played that since primary school!), flirting or more…

It was a pleasant and entertaining way to spend some time. There was a street magician with a cowboy hat, ladyboys doing cartwheels, the usual range of tourists and Thais. It was interesting to note that a lot of the European ladies dressed like they felt they had to compete with the locals in the dressing (or lack of it) stakes. There was a LOT of cleavage about. Maybe it’s just the fashion nowadays… was I complaining?

Went back via another restaurant near my hotel for a midnight snack. The place was busy. Apparently Thai people snack throughout the day – just eat when you want to, and that’s reflected in how the restaurants work. A lot of places had all-day breakfasts and were open until well after midnight. This was paradise!

The telly was playing The Core on the D-grade movie channel. Yup, that was still a silly movie the second time around!