logo version 4.0
Tales From Bangkok
geb dok mai
July 30, 2001
Ah Bangkok. I have decided it is what happens when you take a city like
NYC and make it smoke a bunch of crack. Don't get me wrong, it is
incredible, and a place that I now call home. tee hee. There is so much
going on here... nothing out of the ordinary, just well um, 2000
vendors selling the same food on one block, and 2000 other vendors
selling these little pieces of paper that I bet are lottery tickets,
but who knows?

So, let me paint you a little picture, just for fun and cause its air
conditioned in this internet cafe thingy. No coffee.

So, there you are sitting the the main office of your future employer,
its nice and clean, there are some british people there who teach, some
guy from North Carolina, who also teaches, but you wonder what it
actually is, and for the most part it is fairly calm. A lady, named
Tely of course, comes up to you, asks you a few questions, and sits you
down at her desk upstairs. You go over all of the stuff that you talked
about over the past few months over email, and everything is great...
then bang, Simon comes in. Simon is a high strung british man who has
clearly lived in Bangkok for a while. He is so high strung that he is
constantly turning red from forgetting to breathe. You tell him your
story and this guy is no longer what americans call "a happy camper."
He is upset that your are unsure if you want to be there a year, he is
upset that you want to figure out what you to do about this contract,
he is convinced you are going to jump ship before you even get on. You
of course are just one man, so you do what any other one man army would
do. You leave (gracefully of course)... and go to talk to Tely. She is
quite calm about the whole situation. She tells you about Simon's
concerns and that she isn't concerned at all cause you are going to
like it so much. Then she says, go get your bags from the airport.
(They had arrived earlier, and you were supposed to go get them) So you
take a cab, both ways, but you do better because you learn how to
barter a little, and you figure out that tipping is not standard. So
you get back and she says, "This is Fereasdjanfdadfkneld, but you can
call her Few. She is going to take you to the branch that you will be
working at." Then you say, "But, Tely I thought I was going to be
working here." She says, "Well, this is where you have been placed, it
is not far." So, you go with Few and get in a cab with all of your junk
and you start driving. and driving. and driving. "How far is this
place?" answer: in traffic or not? reply: is there ever not traffic?
answer: 1 hour. You aren't annoyed or disappointed at all. It is gonna
be great, you just know it. It turns out that even when you get there
you don't know where you are, but you are there... and its great. So
then you are introduced to Eel. who incidently changes her name on you
all the time cause its funny. Later on she was Ejew. or something like
that. But she takes you around to look at appartments. Luckily, I mean
very luckily she knows what she is doing. So after a while, you find a
place on the top floor of a new apartment building (new for Bangkok and
quite nice), with a river view, and a balcony and the whole deal,
except there is no air conditioning. But Eel comes through and
convinces them somehow to put it in, for no extra charge. You assume
they are going to rip it out of some other room. But the best part
is... it is only 3500 baht... and 3000 baht next month if you pay on
time. which is about 75 dollars and they give you a place to stay for a
day while they get the a/c working. heh. you love life but you still do
not know where you are... but you don't care.

To get to your apartment, you walk through this crowded hallway filled
with vendors and then video games (heh. it all over you think. cause
you love video games of course) and then you are dumped into this wide
alley. There are people in garages and on the street, a bunch of dogs,
lots of relatively tall buildings, clothes hanging everywhere, some
woman in a salon hair dryer in someone's garage, some people watching a
tv that they dragged outside, blah blah, it is beautiful. So you turn
right onto this pseudo street, and in front of you is this huge 8 floor
building that is all black and glassy, ah home. The doorman only has
one arm (no joke) and there are kids playing checkers outside with
bottlecaps that they found. There is a small store down stairs with
bags of rice that you can scoop out, and a refigerator that keeps the
sodas warm. The land lords are nice but speak a little less than a word
of english, but you wave and they nod back. so sweet.

So, anyway, I met my boss today, he's from the philipinnes (sp?). He is
pretty awesome, I wish I could remember his name. so bad. It'll be okay
though. These names are not the easiest. I think his is Arnie, for

I really like my neighborhood, its busy enough but not downtown so the
neon and stuff isn't really an issue.

I get the best service everywhere... they say "oh so handsome" and
bring me stuff. I think I just look like someone who is easy to rip
off, but I'll never know either way, and that is the beauty of it.

I am going to go eat, its 8:30 pm.

Maybe I can find some food among the 2000 vendors. just maybe.

Hope all is well, ahhhh. rice and chicken and other unknown meat.