Follow by Email

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Day 7 - Elephants and an unfortunate German

After the uninvited guests to our hut the night before I got no sleep, absolutely none. Squat. Nada. Nothing so you can imagine the form I was in the following morning.  Luckily it wasn't just me, it was everyone.  This pleased me..It wasn't just me moaning in the morning, selfish I know but in my defence I'm sure people were getting pissed off with me.

I sat back and watched the whole group falling apart.  One of the women looked like she was still in shock, she was practically rocking, one of the others kept looking around her as if waiting for the wolves to come back.

Our tour guide was not surprised by the pack of wolves in the hut, apparently this is a regular occurrence and if it happened again we were not to turn on the torches.  This could aggravate the wolves...No kidding..

I was excited with the prospect of today's trek.  This was probably down to the fact that we were travelling by elephant to the next town where I could buy some shoes.  I was packed and down by the river in no time.  I still hadn't showered, this wasn't because I was a manky bitch, it was because there were no showers.

I still wasn't eating, my stomach had literally closed up..I couldn't even eat bread.  It was like the food was getting to my throat and just sitting there.  When I tried to eat I was in agony, so I just didn't eat.  The mountain kids had taken all my chocolate and crisps on the first night but I really don't think I could have had anything.  Water was even a hassle.  I only sipped, and this was when I was totally parched.

When we were all gathered together we where given our designated elephant.  There was a little box on his back where two of us sat.  There was about six elephants in total, and a little baby elephant who tagged along.  I was very excited, my feet which now resembled something that had stood in a bee hive were getting a rest and I got to sit and have a laugh with my pal.

The journey was going to take four hours, this I soon realised is because elephants are quite slow.  And they eat everything, trees, plants anything green.  They grazed on anything.  If you stopped for more than 5 seconds or slowed up they would start munching.

About an hour into the walk we reached a really steep ledge.  I didn't know how the elephants were going to get around it.  It was way to narrow for them.  I figured that at any minute we were going to get off the elephants and we were going to walk along the narrow ledge.  But no, the elephants went onto it.  Weaving their feet around until they found ground with us dangling over the edge of the ledge looking down onto a 200ft drop.

Again my pal and I were clinging to each other.  It took a good forty minutes to clear the ledge before we were back marching through the jungle with the elephant eating his way through it.  When we reached our destination we were helped down by the locals who made rice and vegetables for the trekkers which we ate while the elephants pounded their way in and out of the water.  The sight of those massive creatures rolling around in the water was unbelievable.

As we finished our lunch the trek guide came running over to me.  'I have you shoes' he said.  In his hands were a pair of black plastic slip on shoes.  They were moulded from someone's foot and didn't bend but shoes were shoes.  I slid my foot into the shoe, it was about two sizes two big but I said thank you to the guide and did the whole grateful beyond all belief thing even throwing in a bow.

The members of the trek thought these shoes were hilarious and couldn't stop pointing and laughing, it was nice to feel like I wouldn't be the moany bitch for a while...We started the trek and chat was being passed about the following day. Everyone was looking forward to getting to the top of the mountain and to be able to build a raft and float down the river where the truck would be waiting to bring us back to civilisation.

We were all trudging uphill when the poor German dude screamed out in pain.  We all turned to find him caught in a branch by the ankle.  The trek guide came running back to us and we all gathered around to watch as the guide took a look at the ankle.  It was vile.  It had swollen immediately and was all bruised.

'We need to call mountain rescue' I said.  I had been thinking about getting them called earlier in the week for myself but thought I might be considered a little dramatic, but this definitely needed them.

'No have rescue'  said our guide, his girlfriend started shouting something in German, not sure what it was but I could see she was getting hysterical.

'We are Europeans, you cant leave him like this' said the English dude.

'That means squat didily to them down there, trust me!' I said, all ready to relay my tale of corrupt cops and mortified hotel staff.

'We must walk' said the tour guide as the German writhed around in agony with a look of fear in his eyes that  I could totally relate to.  The tour guide started lifting the German up onto his feet.. AAAAAHHHHHAHAHAHH the German screamed.

'We have to make him a splint' I said, I could feel my McGiver skills coming back into play.  I sent my pal to get two pieces of bamboo.  I took off the bandanna I had and the socks he had given me.  I strapped the bamboo to his foot and hay presto...he was still in agony.

'Look, these C*&ts don't care what happens you, I'm telling you, we need to get you up and to the camp' I said to him as I tried to get him up along with the help of the English dude.

'This is vile, I'm getting on to the embassy when I get back' Said the English dude.

'Good luck with that' I said back as we both took an arm around the back.

He was heavy.  I had been miserable for most of the trip so a little bit more misery didn't matter, but the poor German lad was in bits.  We tried to alternate his weight between us but the guide couldn't have given a pigs mickey about the pain the chap was in and didn't help at all.  I spent most of the time thinking about how I could just abandon him to walk on his own but my dam conscience wouldn't let me.  We eventually reached the village as the heavens opened.  I dumped the German on a stump and started whipping my clothes off.

'What the hell are you doing?' said my pal
'Having a shower' I said as I stood there in my bra and pants rooting around in my bag for the shampoo

The rain was pouring, it was after all monsoon season......I stood there with the women all looking at me like I was a crazy person.  But as soon as I opened the shampoo and the smell of the sweet perfume and the lathery goodness hit their noses they all started stripping off.  There we were, standing at the entrance of camp, half naked, covered in lather and delighted with ourselves.

The mountain kids all stood off in the distance protected from the rain by one of their huts staring at us.  When we finished the rain was still pouring so we headed down to the hut with our clothes in a ball under our arms to dry ourselves off.  For the first time all week I felt disinfected.  I smelt good and my skin and hair were clean.  It was at this moment that I thanked God that this was our last night in the jungle.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Day 6 - No Shoes,a crazy snake and a pack of wolves!

I woke on day six terrified of the day ahead! I was surprised I slept but really I had been suffering from shock and exhaustion from the previous days excursions so it was no wonder I had went out for the count!

The sun was shining so I decided that optimism was probably the best way to go! My feet were in ribbons, there were wounds, well if you could call gaping holes wounds, in my legs and feet, the soles were raw and I had a couple of cuts that I had obviously missed during last nights examination.

I hobbled down to the table and sat with my pal! Everyone gave me a big welcome and all were very concerned about my feet! That made me feel a little better! We were fed scrambled eggs on stale bread! My stomach wasn't the best but I managed half of it, only because I was terrified we wouldn't be fed until God knows what hour that night.

My pal had collected big leaves and one of the Germans gave me a pair of socks to make a pair of shoes! So I started stuffing the leaves into the bottom of the sock and placed them on my feet! They were very slidey!! I felt like with every step I took I was sliding around so I took them off and put the sock on then tied the leaves on with some torn bamboo! I was very McGiver like indeed. This worked a bit better!

We set off and all was fine for a couple of hours, that was until we reached another valley that we had to climb out of. There was a steep slope that was all rocks and trees! The rocks werent nice smooth ones, no, they were sharpe spiky ones that cut into your skin. The leaves had fallen off and now I was just climbing up the slope in just the socks! They were now wet and torn. With every step I could feel all the optimism that I had that morning being sucked out of me! I couldn't even cry.

After a three hour climb we stopped at the top for some more stale bread but I was feeling really sick and no amount of cajoling me would help! I think I was in shock because I couldn't even speak! When the trek guide said we were off I just stood up and started walking! I didn't even moan, what was the point.

Another hour or so later, I think I had slipped into a walking coma because I had no conception of time or distance but there was a big commotion to my left! I was marching along and out of nowhere the trek guide came up with a huge machete! He took a swung near my head, swoosh I heard, I barley looked up from my feet. But I looked up enough to see the head of a snake fall directly at my left foot.

My pal who came running up to me said 'wow, did ya see that, ya nearly walked Into the snake .... You could have died!'. I replied with "there are still three more days of this, I'm sure I be dead before the end of it" and over the snake I stepped! The way I figured it, the faster I walked the sooner this trip would be over. The day continued on pretty much like that! I would have random conversations with random people at various times but I think I was in a trance! I hadn't really eaten in two days! I wasn't drinking enough water because my stomach felt like it was closed and I was totally unclean. It was horrendous!

When we reached our next stop it was night! We could see very little but I figured it was much like the previous nights hut. We all split up in our couples, covered ourselves in muslin to keep out the Mosquitos and used our respective companions for heat!

About two or three in the morning I awoke to the sounds of snarling.... At first I thought it was the Germans having a domestic! Then I
Heard a snap and what sounded like scuffling. With that I routed around for the flashlight one of the lads had given my pal.. I turned it on, it wasn't great but just as soon as I turned it I I wished I hadn't!

A pack of wild dogs had made their way into the hut. There was about five of them! Totally oblivious of our presence and looking like they were going to tear seven shades of shite out of each other! My pal woke up and looked at where my light was shining, I
Could feel her body stiffen! "I think we may be about to die now" I whispered.

I could hear someone whimpering from across the room! The dogs were still growling at each other, I was waiting for the attack I knew it was coming, they were circling each other! One of the dogs leapt at another and all hell broke loose.. They were all over the hut, tearing lumps out of each other !!! It was the most terrifying moment of my life! One of the other women was hysterical! She was screaming and her partner was screaming at her through gritted teeth to calm down!

Myself and my pal clung to each other, I don't even think we were breathing! One of the dogs jumped on another and they both fell out of the hut! The remaining ones followed down the steps... I could hear them savaging each other outside!

Everyone knocked on their torches and the room lit up! We were still clinging to each other and you could tell everyone was shook! One of the guys was asking everyone were they all right! We eventually all settled down again into our couples and the torches were turned off! No one slept that night, myself and my pal hung onto each other tightly for the rest of the night until the sun crept in the following morning!

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Day 5 - Trekking, Leeches and Landslides

I woke up on the morning of the big trek in great form..Iwas a little curious as to what we missed the induction but I figured it was possiblyjust a meet and greet with the other trek members.

I knew we were going to be away from civilisation for fivedays so I packed 5 pairs of knickers, three pairs of shorts I figured Id beable to wash some at the camp each night. Three vests and a toiletry bag.  I packed a couple of bars of chocolate andsome crisps.  I had a feeling  we wouldn’t be eating like Kings on this tripso a few goodies were a necessity and I thought that it might be nice to havesome to hand to the children living in the mountains.

My pal packed her camcorder, her camera, a couple of pairsof shorts and underwear, we were going to share the toiletry stuff so that wedidn’t have too much to carry on the trek and share the weight.  She also packed a shit load of chocolate...Ithink she may have had a problem.  Wediscussed bringing runners (sneakers) but decided what with the weather beingso nice there would be no need for them, our sandals would suffice.  Oh and we packed two disposable raincoats incase of a shower and two bottles of water.
We met at the pick up point at 9am and introduced ourselvesto the other members of the trek.  Therewas a couple of Germans, three Australians and a couple of Americans.  There was also one English dude trekking alone.  Everyone was excited and on form. 

We piled into an open backed pick up and headed in thedirection of the mountains.  About anhour and a half into the drive my ass was killing me but the mountains werebeautiful and the view was astounding. It literally was one of the most beautiful things I ever saw.  There was great banter on the bus andeveryone was joking and singing.

At about 12am we started heading up some really narrow windypaths, the truck took a turn and all of a sudden it tipped over on its side andwe all fell on top of each other. Everyone was in a little shock but no-one was hurt and we all started tolaugh.  We were about six miles from thedrop of point.   We all hopped out of thetruck scrambling over everyone and our belongings.
When we were out we all tried to pull the truck out of theditch it had landed in to no avail.  Thesweat was rolling off of all of us, it was totally humid and I was nearly outof water.  I was starting to wonder how longit would be until we passed a shop so I could get some more.  Now I wasn’t expecting a Spar or a SevenEleven or anything but maybe a local hut shop.

It was apparent that the truck was stuck and we were goingto have to walk to the rest of the way. When the trek guy, a thai lad about 20 year s old in a pair of cut offsand a wife beater said we must walk everyone started changing their gear.  They all put away the sandals and came outwith the hiking boots and sticks.
I figured they were just being over enthusiastic  and asked‘will you guys not be boiling in those boots’ the English dude said ‘we were told to bring them last night, oh youdidn’t make the induction did you’.....Bollox I thought...’what else were we tobring?’  I asked raising my eyebrowshoping he was going to say clean knickers and a few bars of chocolate....’ohjust the usual, rain gear, bug spray, toilet roll...things you would normallybring on a trek’  I throw my pal aworried luck...’We’ll be grand’ she said, ever the optimist.  Yeah I thought, we’ll be grand...and off westarted.

We headed up a hill that didn’t stop for about fourhours...It was warm but there was so much to look at...We had all broke offinto our little groups and myself and my pal were chatting away about the tripand time was flying.  I started to onlydrink when I really needed to, not knowing when I would get to the camp andrefill my water bottle.  About 5pm we hadreached the top of the hill and I felt a trickle of water fall down on me... Iwas starting to rain.

I didn’t mind so much as we were now walking down hill backinto another valley.  We took out ourdisposable raincoats and threw them over us making sure that the poncho stylerain mac covered  the camcorder and thebackpack.  It really started to pounddown and I could only see about two feet in front of me.  I started to get worried because I wasstarting to lose sight of the others. The rain was also causing me to slide out of my sandals.  I was starting to slide down the hill.

All of a sudden the mud started to slide down aroundme.  I got swept up in it and started tofly down the hill.   I was coming downand speed and had no control over the mud or the direction it was dragging mein.  When I reached the bottom of thehill I was chest deep in mud and terrified because I couldn’t move.  I had been swept up in a landslide.  I was bawling..I didn’t know where anyonewas. 

My pal ran up to me. She had got caught to and had gotten herself free.  ‘Get me out of here’ I pleaded...she waspulling and dragging me and then the trek guy came up and between the jigs andthe reals they got me out.  I was lyingin a pile in the mud when I felt it...I had no sandals on..panic set in...Istarted rooting around in the mud looking for my sandals...but I knew it, deepdown...they were gone.  I was going tohave to walk barefoot.

The rain stopped as quickly as it started and there was notime to hang would be dark soon. So off we started barefoot, my pal in her sandals and therest of the guys in their hiking boots...I had a feeling that this wasn’t goingto be as pleasant as I visions of a leisurely stroll through thehills was not going to be realised.

After about 8pm we eventually arrived at feet werebleeding and I was not as chipper as I had been 12 hours earlier.  I had finished my water hours previously andfelt like I was going to pass out...all I wanted was a shower and a bed.  My stomach was killing me and I wasn’t surewhether it was hunger or what but I knew I needed to rest...

I sat down at a wooden bench that was made from a tree trunkand had a couple of rusty nails sticking out of it but I refused tocomplain.  It was dark and someone put anoil lamp on the table.  The guys startedlooking at me strangely...’what is it?’ I asked..’there’s something on yourskin?’ Said the English dude ‘Pardon me’ I asked and with that a little Thaichild comes over and starts pointing at this little slug like insect on myarm...

I looked down, they were all over me, ‘Get them off me, Getthem off me’ I screamed...they were leaches...the little kid who had to havebeen about five years old started pulling them off me...the blood startedpouring out of me...aparantly leeches have an anticoagulant in their teeth sothe blood will just keep coming..for those of you who come in contact with aleech be sure to pour salt on it...this would cause it to fall off and stop theflow of blood, but this is not what I did..

I was sitting there, bleeding from my arms, legs, chest andneck and decided I couldn’t wait for food...I just wanted to go to bed..My palgot me some water and carried me to the hut.  Well when I say hut, it was more of like ashed with no walls and a roof.  ‘Whereare the walls?’  I ask....’We’ll be grand’she said..’I need to use the loo?’ I said....she guides me down this narrowpath to a hole in the ground with a brick either side of it.....’what’s this’ Iask ...’the toilet, I got some loo roll of the Germans for you’ she said nonchalantly...‘Thanks’ I said with a smile.....I didn’t want to appear  ungrateful...but as she walked off I mutteredsome words under my breath too vile to repeat...

I placed my two feet on the bricks, squatted and totallymissed the hole, pissing all over myself...As I pulled up my shorts the tearsstarted to roll down my face and I made my way to the hut wondering where I wasgoing to wash my hands.  I sat on thebamboo floor and just lay down using my haversack as a pillow...what a shittyday I thought as I drifted off to sleep....

Monday, 23 July 2012

Day 4 Late for a flight a a plane with 10 seats!

After the previous nights antics and late arrival home it felt like i had been asleep for about five minutes before I heard the phone ring... It was in fact 45 minutes.

I looked at my watch and realized it was 3am.... What the f@&k is going on, I thought!

'hello' - I answer
'good moning ms, this is reception, your car to airport is ready'
'excuse me'
'you transfer to airport is here'
'but that's not till 4 this afternoon'
'no ms, I sorry, it 4am'
'ok I'll be down soon' I tut at the phone and slam it down before I had a chance to start winging about it!

I jump up and start shoving all our crap into the bags muttering Jesus and Shite a lot!! We throw ourselves through the doors of the lift willing them to move faster, my pal knows better than to even talk to me right now, shes staring at the buttons on the wall and willing each little light to bing a little quicker...down to the lobby and we look like two crazy drunks as we run to the car, throwing the express checkout form at the woman!

When we get Into the car myself and my pal argue about who didn't check the times and we were oblivious to the passing Tuk Tuks and people that had so interested us on our earlier journey into Bangkok! I seriously couldn't be leaving the place quick enough but thought it might be on my terms...

We arrive at the airport and run to check in! Force our way through security and beat our way to the gate! All the while looking like two scruffy half dressed lunatics out for a day trip!

When we get to the gate we run out he doors straight onto the tarmac, the heat and smell hits me in the face! I stand there looking out at what appeared to be our plane but it couldn't have been, it was tiny and had a propeller and looked like it had been in use since the time of the wright brothers! It was like a VW bus with two headboards attached to the sides! I knew I could see duct tape hanging out of something....but I wasn't sure what!!

Awe bollox, I thought we were going to be on a real plane! We are defo going to die on this yolk...I knew things were bad when they seated us according to weight! There were fearful glances being passed between everyone and I quickly asked my pal 'how long Is this flight' - 'only a couple of hours' she said! Ever the optimist....

When we were about to take off everyone had their eyes glued to window trying to see if there was someone starting the propeller by hand and as it bounced its way up the runway people started to hold hands and I'm convinced I heard someone praying in the seat in front Of me....But up we climbed and we were soon soaring through the clouds!

About ten seconds into the flight we were all nauseous! The bumping began and the plane was all over the place, going side to side, up and down and left to right!! It was bad ..... It continued for the entire flight, without food or drink service and then landed with another bump causing half the passengers to cry with relief and the other half to vomit on each other..... I was one of the criers!

When we got off the plane and collected our bags we were taken by another town car to our hotel! It was fabulous... It was all gold and shiny.... It was like a budda palace! We dumped the bags and went out to get some lunch! Chaing Mai was much smaller than Bangkok, the people were nice and there were some really cute little stores! The night life (or day) was similar but not as in your face! We spent the afternoon wandering around and went back to the hotel to have a quick sleep and shower before our induction meeting that was arranged for 9pm that evening in preparation for our trek!!

We hopped into bed about 5 pm hoping to awake at 8.30 pm to meet the trek guide and discuss the trip! You can imagine our surprise when we woke and found it was 2.30am....... F@&k we did it again.... But seriously, how important is an induction I asked!!! It can't be too important can it????

Friday, 20 July 2012

Day 3 - Hookers and Ping Pong

I woke up on day 3 in a strop! I was annoyed with myself for bringing shame upon our hotel! I was annoyed with my pal for assuming I would serve time for her, which might I add I would have done... But she could of at least stood up for me!

I stood firm and refused to leave the hotel. Thankfully there was a rooftop pool which served very expensive cocktails! Very expensive! When you can buy a pair of sandals for €3, and not just a crappy pair of flip flops, Birkenstocks no less, one would be very surprised when they give you the bill and you could shoe a whole family for the price of a couple of cocktails!

We lounged about at the pool surrounded by some fantastic looking people! I'm convinced most of the women were wearing makeup, and not just any makeup, it was like they were all ready to see the phantom of the opera .... But semi naked! The guys were all toned and tanned and were also semi naked!

You can always manage to spot the Irish when your abroad, they are the ones that are pasty white wearing GAA shorts and sport a fabulous looking farmers tan from the elbow down...and that's the women!! Only kidding, but seriously, there we were sitting in the sun at a fabulous pool and out struts a couple of our countrymen! They were as obvious as fire is hot!

When an Irish person is abroad they tend to become overly patriotic, we have a tendency to sing really loudly to Irish songs and always find U2 on the duke box and always seek out your own! These Irish were no different!

The couple we met were great fun, the girl was doing Thailand with her boyfriend before he embarked on a year long trip around Australia, the guy was meeting up with all his friends in Bangkok that evening to start their journey!

They invited us along to the club they were meeting the group at! I was delighted, there is nothing better than safety in numbers! And I didn't mind being in a dive if there are others to play with, so at 7pm all dressed up we headed off in a Tuk Tuk to brave Bangkok!

We arrived at a bar that was bustling with excitement! When I walked into it i might have thought I was in any bar in any metropolitan city. I heaved a sigh of relief.....that was until I saw what can only be described as a life sized fish bowl!

There were two women half naked prancing about each other knee deep in water and a mini waterfall effect falling around them... One would grab the others nipple once in a while or maybe maul her ass...perfectly normal that is until After about 10 minutes I realized the water had risen to there chests and there wasn't as much mauling as there was sway dancing.

Five minutes it was up to their chins and the girls were more jumping and flapping about.... I started to pay more attention to them as I was genuinely in fear for their safety!! Their hair was all over the place, their clothes were totally transparent and they were jumping up and grabbing in a breath before sliding themselves up and down the tank with their boobs!

I looked around and observed that very few people looked very bothered by this! Actually some were laughing and cheering!

After another minute they were totally submerged and were literally threading water! There was a brief look of panic until all of a sudden someone must have pulled the stopper because there was a gush and all the water was out in a matter of seconds and the two girls fell landing in a pile on top of each other!

There was a scream of laughter and out those to got and in came another two! Merciful hour I thought to myself! And I thought I had a shite job!

I didn't pay as much attention to the next two but gave them the odd glance every so often just to check they weren't floating at the top or anything and all of a sudden music started to boom out of the speakers....

A woman walks out onto the stage area and there is uproar!!! Everyone is clapping and cheering and the excitement is infectious! The woman is wearing a bra and pants and starts blowing up balloons. If you can picture a woman trying to blow up a balloon and try to be seductive imagine that because I certainly can't describe it. Not without making her sound like a total hooker, and I don't want to be a bitch.

So she starts handing out the balloons and all the boys and girls are cheering and I'm dying to know whats going on! So she slides of her pants and does a bit of a wiggle! Then shows the crowd a whole load of these little metal balls, like pellets!

'awe' I think... 'she's going to throw them at the balloons' but no, she is not... She proceeds to insert all the pellets into her lady garden ... Then squats.... Takes aim... And starts firing! She's like something out of a world war one sniper movie!! BANG ..... BANG ... She pops them balloons like the lid of a Pringles box! Every single one, the crowd goes wild and I find myself up cheering.... That's some talent!

But does she stop she does not! She starts pulling darning needles out of her VAJAJA . One two three four...... She just keeps on going till she reaches fifteen! I'm starting to think that her minge is like Hermione's magic bag in Harry Potter, stuff just keeps coming out of it!

But the peace the resistance was after she popped several ping pong balls and a couple of colored scarves out of her vagina she grabs a beer bottle and pops the lid off.......with her flaps..... No I hear you say, but I swear as god is my witness she opened a bottle with her flaps!

Needless to say we decided to buy her a beer for her troubles and chat about her training! After a couple of beers we decided to try rescue her! We bought her for €20 for the night and brought her out for Dinner and some drinks! We were in the process of explaining that we were going to rescue her and she seemed up for it until we went to the toilet and in our return she had run off !! We returned to the bar to find her back up on stage blowing flames from her vagina!! We just shook our heads and said...,,what a woman!

That night we fell into bed reeking of bonfire and beer! It was the a fun but eyeopening night !!!!

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Day 2, Nearly Arrested! Bangkok Hilton

After a long rest and recovery beer we decide to hit the streets on Bangkok. As we walk through the huge marble lobby of the Hotel my pal decides to have a smoke! She smoked a very popular brand of american cigs, let's call them larlborough mights!

We stand outside in the sticky air and take in the sights as my pal takes in a long draw on her smoke! I didn't smoke but eventually took it up and am now a recovering smokaholic!

Anyway, she didn't like walking and smoking so after she finished she put her pack of smokes in her fanny pack or bun bag as we call them and off we went to tackle the streets of Bangkok!

The second we hit the pavement we were bombarded with offers from street venders offering Birks at $3 and 5 bandanas for $2! It was great, we sauntered along for about 20 minutes not a bother, buying nick nacks, shoes, and fake designer t-shirts, stuff like that.

The Thai traders were lovely, friendly people with smiles for everyone!

Now we, being two Irish muppets were flashing the cash all over the place, we were a little naive about the whole Experience, that is until we were approached by a policeman!

We were standing next to a street trader, my pal was buying bandannas! There was banter going on between us as my friend was choosing her Colours!

I spotted a police officer saunter over to us! The vender got nervous and took the money quickly! Banter stopped!
The cop hands me a little piece of card, it was laminated and had the following on it!

FINE $2000

No smoking for tourist on Bangkok

Then a whole load of Thai writing, I assume legislation cause there was lots of 1.3 3.6(3) stuff like that!

Needless to say I was confused! I was looking at the page like it was going to start taking to me when my pal turned and said "what's going on" this is the conversation as it happened-

Me- I don't understand we didn't litter

Cop- (in a very authoritarian voice, after all we are just two young women) litter.... Fine dollar 2000

Pal- sorry, I thought you said fine $2000 / she's laughing

Cop- You litter, American, dollar $2000

Me- you've got to be kidding, what did we litter, the place is manky, show me what we added to this....( I'm pointing at the crap all over the streets, Bangkok was not the cleanest city I've been to)

Cop- you litter - he is now waving his little sheet of paper around wildly and shouting at us!

Me- ok show me (I'm getting nervous as he's going kamanshi and I've a feeling he loosing patience! My pal is now white and has turned mute.

Cop- you smoke, you throw away! Smoke! Throw! Still waving wildly and drawing more attention to us! I look around for some help, everyone's ignoring us! Typical!

Me- listen mr policeman show me the smoke I threw away and I will pay your fee! (I'm loosing patience and know this has to be a corrupt mother f@&ker.

Cop- here! Here (he is tearing at my pals bunbag, opening it and grabbing her smokes! (he thinks he's triumphant)

Me- listen here you shady prick, she hasnt smoked since the hotel, I don't even smoke, I'm not putting up with this shite! I want a translator. (I'm irate now, my pal is still mute, I drag her back toward the hotel, thankfully it's not far as we were stoping at all the stalls)

Cop- 2000 batt! Ok ok 2000 batt! He picks up a random butt of the ground, and waves it at us!

Me- give me that (I look. It's some Thai brand) that's not even her brand! I'm walking off now not even entertaining this cabbage!

Cop- 500batt ( he's bending down and picking up every butt he sees)

Me- NO, you twisted prick! (I'm now in a power walk dragging my pal) The Cop is now blowing a whistle!

Cop- here here I find you smoke ( he's waving a filthy butt of a narlborough might ) 200batt only 200 batt. We are all in a jog now and I'm terrified! I see the hotel and take off in a sprint!

We run through the lobby with police in tow! I'm sweating like a dyslexic on countdown! All I can think about is Bangkok Hilton! And me not even a smoker, I know my pal wouldn't last five minutes so I'm going to have to go down for her!

As we pound our way to the desk the anger gets the better of me! And I start screaming for a translator. One of the staff immediately ushers us all out of sight into a board room! I'm so out of breath but start to shout that I want translator and someone from the embassy!

The manager arrived !

The cop and the manager get into some talks in Thai... The room goes silent! Then the manager asks me why I bring all these police into hotel!

I explain the story, how we didn't smoke out on the street, how he said we owe him $2000 then kept reducing it! How he had to search the streets for the butt which wasn't ours! She looked at the cop, he went bright red and looked at all the other cops who now started filtering out of the room.

I had obviously been watching to much csi as I requested that the filthy ancient butt be tested against our DNA.. She informed me that unlike our country in Thailand one is guilty until proven innocent and one would have to stay in prison until DNA was tested with could be months!

I asked to speak to someone from
The Irish embassy. I was informed that the Irish do not have an embassy but the UK represent us! I'd rather be put in prison. Not very PC but let's face it could be there for ever waiting for another country to rescue me!..

That was it, I thought it was all over, I thought, right, I'm going to prison! No point in whining about it! So I just had one thing to say.....,

"right well this is an appalling way to treat a visitor, a cop telling someone who doesn't even smoke that they have littered! Then demanding $2000 dollars for a fine, then 500 batt down to 20 batt, that's like €20.00 how can this be right, I wasnt aware that fines were negotiable, I feel sorry for the fools that pay $2000 out of fear. I won't be recommending Bangkok as a travel destination to anyone.

The cop was really red, the manager was mortified and my pal was still impersonating a mute!

The cop and manager got into a debate in Thai for a couple of minutes while I gave out to my mute friend for being a smoker!

The manager then turned to me and told me that if I paid the fine of 200 batt the whole thing would be over!

I said No! I'm not giving in to that prick! The cop wouldn't even look at me! I said I'm not admitting to committing an offense I didn't even do!

There was more talk between them! The manager turned and said she would pay it on my behalf!

I went mad! I started calling the cop corrupt and shouted that he should be ashamed of himself! He still wasn't making eye contact!

The manager relayed this to him in Thai! He spoke to the manager who told us that some sort of a fine would have to be paid as his supervisor had been informed of the situation!

So I said "I have to pay a fine so you don't get in trouble for trying to extort money out of tourists"!

The manager was really frustrated! She said its either pay 200 batt or of to a cell! My pal started to cry! The cop was practically looking at the floor! You could cut the air with a knife!

"what if I take the fine in my name and you give me the 200 batt" said the manager, my pal was now bawling!

I reluctantly said yes! The money was handed over, a receipt obtained in the name of the manager and the cop scurried away, the manager informed us that in her history of managing the hotel no person had ever brought police to the hotel! I was mortified! We left the room, heads hanging in shame and went directly to our room!

When I walked into the room my pal piped up "Jesus that was a bit unnerving wasn't it" .....

I fell onto the bed and burst into tears swearing I would never step outside the door of the hotel again! I lay there crying for about 10 minutes before I asked my pal for a smoke and a beer to calm my nerves!

What a crappy day!

Thailand...... Leeches, landslides and hooker bars!

Hello there peeps, it's been a while and yes I've missed you!

As I sit here scratching my ass I thought to myself, I must update my blog. But I don't really have that much cabbagey crap to write about its true yes I've since had a dodgy injury and yes I make a show of myself on a daily basis but is there really anything worth writing about, I think not...

And then There i am watching an add about some disastrous drug smuggler in Thailand on the History Channel (I'm watching American Pickers, and yes I'm a total geek) and the mother load floods my mind!

The most horrific holiday ever experienced in the history of holidays! It was nothing short of Horrendous!

I'll paint you a picture....

Myself and a friend enter Trailfinders..we sit in a que and wait our turn. We are surrounded by beautiful shiny and brightly colored brochures with sandy beaches and blue seas! We are called to the desk and a guy (let's call him Philip) introduces himself to us and asks us what kind of a holiday we are looking for. We are looking for An adventure we tell Philip, but must have sun and sea! Thailand is for you guys he says, of course it is, he's on commission!

He starts tapping away on his computer and gives us dates for flights, brilliant, "would you like limo transfers to and from hotels", of course we would...

How about a five day trek in the Chiang Mai Mountains, you get to eat and live with the locals" it's brilliant, I did it myself, it's a must" Sure we tell him, a couple more clicks and that's booked! He looks at us, your moderately fit arnt you? What, I ask, as the stentch of fear is reeking through my skin. My pal the athlete pipes up, of course we are! I know he is looking at me in doubt! Well you guys can recuperate afterwards with a trip to the Islands, white sandy beaches and ocean side cocktails in your own luxury beach hut! Now that's more like it I thought.

A few weeks later and we arrive at Dublin airport, rucksacks on back and most of our family's waving frantically as we go through security! I'm mortified for them, my mom is crying, it's taking ages and it's getting awkward waving back at them every five minutes. After about an hour I wave one last time and breath a sigh of relief, we are finally on our way!

After a four hour stop over in Vienna and a fifteen hour flight we finally arrive in Bangkok! The first thing that hits you is the smell, it's strong, it's fragrant but for an Irish person who grew up on stew and coddle it can seem a little too fragrant, especially when your not sure what it is your smelling! It's also humid! Very humid!

Its monsoon season in Thailand, but its not raining yet thank god, or budda or whoever, I'm about to embarke on the trip of a lifetime! I'm young and reering to go..

We come through customs and see our names on a big cardboard sign and scream in delight! The limo! It's more of a town car but we don't complain as we pass by family's on bicycles and mopeds! Literally family's!

There they were the dads on the seat with a mother on the back holding a newborn while sidesaddle and the a young child on the handlebars while an even younger one is balancing on the frame in between the father and the kid on the handlebars! They are wizzing through traffic like they are in a tank, not even a helmut! The kid on the front had a plastic bowl on his head with a shoelace holding it in place, must be the favorite I thought to myself!

The smells are so strong of spices and herbs and street traders! The sight of big fancy hotels towering over squalid huts and shacks makes one feel guilty to be staying in such lavish surroundings when the locals obviously have so little, but they seem like such humble and happy people as we wave like fools! Obviously thinking, f@&king muppet tourists! Or whatever their version is!

We pull up to our hotel and I feel we obviously should not be here, it's way to posh! It's magnificent, like a temple except with a bar!

The porter takes our rucksacks and tells us that Thai royalty stay here and it often has celebrity clients housed here when filming in Bangkok! I totally feel we are in the wrong place! But off to the room I trot delighted with myself! Boy what a room, it's a cracker!

After a bit of R&R we decide to hit the town, out we go into the street and immediately feel lost! With bun bag containing money, maps and cameras we cautiously walk past venders trying to sell you crickets on a stick, pigs ears, beetles and legs of some poor foul in a sweet sauce, and when I say leg, I mean foot! Claws and all!

We decide to get a taxi. No taxi to be found! So into a Tuk Tuk we climb! It's looks fun! Where you go? A very young small Thai guy asks. Pub or night club we reply in sync! He revs the engine and zooms off at speed down the road, weaving in and out of traffic like a pinball!

Excitement soon turns to fear as he meets a pal of his and decides to take off in the direction of a dual carriage way for a race! The competing Tuk Tuk had three lads on board and while I was screaming at the driver looking for seatbelts they were screaming at theirs to go faster!

The two drivers took off at speed on the straight and I tried to wedge myself between the rim of the Tuk Tuk and the rear! The driver relished every scream I made and when saw tears streaming down my face slowed for a fraction of a second before pulling a wheelie causing the rear of the Tuk Tuk to hit off the ground creating sparks that would put a fireworks display to shame!

They eventually tired and pulled off the bridge down some street and into a lane, skidding to a halt!

I throw myself out of this contraption and swear never to get in one again! He shouts at us "good club, good club"! I reply, where?

"in here, in here" he is guiding us into a little door that looks like someones home! An elderly Thai lady is sitting on a chair sewing something, a man comes over and hands us two beers and demands 200 batt! There are three Thai males in a corner smoking and playing cards, this is not a club!

I look at my pal and say "we are getting the f!@k out of here" she's all smiles," come on its exciting" "it won't be exciting when I'm trying to translate Rape Crisis Centre" I tell her!

We hand over the money as good Irish girls do and are guided into a room that is very dark and has mirrors on every wall, it's small and the only chairs are on one wall! They are not really chairs, it's more of like a bench, it's got a higher bench behind it and there are about 15-20 Thai ladies sitting on them like they are on display! We are the only two people in here!

The ladies glance up and continue to talk amongst themselves! I'm thinking, what the hell kind of place is this! The man comes back to us and asks "which wan you want?", pardon me I reply "you pick" he says. I'm sorry I say, I no pick, I leave! I get up to leave dragging my pal with me! "no no, real nice ladies" he is trying to guide us back "only 200batt" he says, that's great I say, it's the same as a beer, I was appalled! He was trying to sell me a woman for the same as a beer!

The Tuk Tuk guy was waiting for us! Bollox I thought! I climbed back in! Back to hotel! I said!! "no no, nice bar, nice nice English Bar", I didn't even bother to tell him we were irish!

More sparks and some clean underware later we are back at the hotel bar and spent the night on stage with a Thai Diana Ross impersonator signing karaoke songs till the early hours!

Day one was over in Bangkok only four more to go, maybe five days is too many in Bangkok I think as I fall into bed exhausted and reeking of take away!