"My Boyfriend The Sex Tourist."

Posted in Bruce, hookers, stereotypes, Thai girls, Thailand by expatatlarge on March 6, 2012

Something of a stereotype breaker – at least as far as the “trafficking” situation of some of the working girls in places that cater to mostly westerners is concerned.

At least you can see that not every bar-girl in Bangkok has been dragged off the farm by marauding snakeheads and chained to their beds in a cardboard dungeon. Well, yes, no, not every bar-girl…



It would be an interesting exercise to study the expectations, feelings and motivations of these boyfriends in more depth (say, to the bottom of three bottles of Hennessy) and in a less stereotypical way… If that is, um, like, possible. Nah.


Bruce of course has had some experience of less salubrious working conditions


It is depressing and frustrating to wander the streets by yourself in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, browsing in the shopping malls or checking out the temples. You are old, fat, bald, generally unattractive. You are wearing cargo shorts, a loose shirt or tee, and sandals. You know that everyone in the world is making the assumption that you a sex tourist.

It is even more depressing and frustrating when you admit to yourself that this is exactly what you are.
Bruce (in a more contemplative mood than we are used to.)


Gustave Flaubert, the man who was able to look so profoundly and convincingly into a woman’s heart, was a completely sleazy sex-tourist on his trips to Egypt, reveling in his debauchery… Not that this is any form of excuse…


Knocking The Top Off

Posted in Bruce, massage, Thai girls by expatatlarge on July 18, 2011

Bruce tells E@L he had a massage, sans happy ending in Chiang Mai! WTF? It was his frackin’ BIRTHDAY – thank you Facebook! – but after his rhythmical back slaps and neck pinch, nothing. He gets dressed, walks out in a huff, determined to do better.

Tromps down the street to the least likely to be honest place, in the dark heart of Loi Kroh Road, where a short, dumpy but nice personality mamasan calls out to invite him in for a “massage”. She points down to a shanty room at the back of what was once (like last week) a travel agency judging by the posters of Dubrovnic on the walls.

“You wan massage? 60 minute, 90 minute, oil, Thai, foot massage.”

“No, no,” he says. “I want a happy ending, forget the massage. I want a blow-job or a chuck-wow. Already had a massage.”

She looks at him for a second, doesn’t ask him to repeat the request, but leads him by the hand inside. They go past uninterested, bored girls playing with eye-make in mirrors or plucking at a bit of guava peel caught in a tooth-gap, all too unenthusiastic and unattractive to get a job elsewhere; they don’t even look up.

“Special service, for you,” whipsers mamasan. “But we take our time. No rush, have 60 minutes of massage time.”

60 minutes was not required.


At Club “Paradise”. The usual. Reliable, predictable, professional, nice and friendly.

As the other girl was showering, one was re-energizing her skin with moisturizer (so many showers in a day) and looking benignly on Bruce as he pulled up his underwear.

“I like your cock,” she says, unexpectedly wistful.

Bruce looks up at her as she stands on the other side of the bed, briskly working the cheap lotion into her small breast and thin rib-cage, looking at his package, her facial expression completely neutral: she is stating a fact, neither praising, nor criticizing.

“It’s not too long.”


What do you say after that? Thanks? Yes, so I’ve heard?

He can’t confirm her opinion as, thanks to his his belly, except for an occasional glimpse in these mirrors as it disappeared inside her and her colleague’s anatomy, he hasn’t seen it for years.

“Too long can hurt. Yours nice.”

Nice to know, Bruce supposes.


When Bruce told us this, we completely cracked up… People in the pub, the waitresses, the bar-staff all looked at us. Crazy ang mohs.


Nan — With The Lot II

Posted in autobiography, Bruce, Thai girls, Thailand, travel trouble by expatatlarge on July 8, 2009

E@L was kidnapped today. Taken from the Chiang Mai airport, whisked off in a dark van by a person who spoke no English, and driven for hours into places unknown.

“Are we going to my hotel?” asked E@L. “Le Meridien in Chiang Mai. I have booked on the internet for tonight until next Friday.”

The driver looked confused. “No go Chiang Mai. Tonight I go witchew Nan.”

Nan. That was the name of the hospital E@L was to do the demo at tomorrow.

“But tonight I stay Chiang Mai hotel, right”

“No, no. I take you Nan.” It is a very long ‘a’ in Nan: Naaaaaaahn.

We had been driving for two hours already, which is why E@L thought he had better check.

“Nan is, tree, tree… tree tousant kilometer. Take [he held up three fingers] four hours more to drive. You go Nan two day, Chiang Mai I drive you Friday.”

Shit. For some reason, E@L had done this trip’s accommodation booking himself, online. That means he had to pay in advance. Shit. He had no idea that Nan Hospital was not in Chiang Mai. That there was actually an entire province, 200km (not 3000) from Chiang Mai, called Naaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahn.

E@L had confirmed with the Thai team about the trip twice, to makes sure there’d been no schedule changes. Yes, you can book, schedule no change. But no-one mentioned that Naaaaaaaahn was a separate place, distinct from Chiang Mai and that a separate hotel booking had to be made.

Shit. Why had E@L decided this one time to book himself and not just turn up, expecting everything to have been done for him? Mainly because they normally put him up in a shit hotel (the Imperial Pei) when he goes to Chiang Mai (which is rarely).

So he’s gone searching online for nice deals at better establishments – like maybe a Lanna Villa somewhere, or maybe there’d be a special at a top-line hotel, seeing as how the Thailand Tourist Industry is a basket case at the moment. And there was. The lady who organizes his Thai trips could not get a better corporate rate than the on-line rate for the classy new Le Meridien in the heart of town, so she said he could book it himself. She neglected to tell him that he’d only need it from Friday, not from Wednesday.

Shit. Amazing drive though, over three mountain ranges. Fantastic scenery. Village tribes in hovels, kids playing by the side of the road, water-buffalo being driven up paths, terraced crops on the hillsides, wild jungle in several national parks, waterfalls,… As mentioned, it is about 200km as the crow flies, but more like 350km by road. Long and Very Winding Road. And it was lock to lock for the entire freaking trip across those mountains. E@L tried to sleep but was getting tossed awake at every corner. Sleep would have helped him not see the danger at each glance where his driver cut across the double yellow lines or overtook slower vehicles on the approach to a blind corner or a crest. And going as fast as he could, of course. Eventually, as they were coming into yet another blind hair-pin bend at speed and the driver pulled out across double yellow lines to overtake about 40 yards before the corner, E@L had to cry out: “No, no, pull back! Please, stop trying to kill me, OK?”

“OK, solly,” the driver said, and from there on in he went like a grandmother going to church on Sunday. It took nearly six hours.

p.s. The hotel in Nan is shit.

(…but it has free Internet.)


I swear to doG I am going to die on one of these business trips. I’ve told you before. Check the old blog. Forget the immense cardiovascular risk factors, strokes, heart-attacks and prostate cancer.

E@L has his date with destiny as a passenger in a Datsun.


(Something to tide you over. From The Chronicles of Bruce)

Bruce finished his burger, licked his lips and scrunched up the burger-juice-filled paper to place it in the ash-tray.

Remember ash-trays? Remember cigarettes?

“True story,” he said. Immediately I went into disbelief mode. It must have showed. “I kid you not.” And he put on this butter-wouldn’t-melt look which was quite hilarious on someone with his school-of-hard-knocks appearance. Big shoulders and arms to match his belly, a huge red head with no hair and a bristly goatee and moustache on his acne-pocked face. His thick fingers hardly seem long enough to wrap around the stubbie holder of Beer Chang, but he had already put two down while nibbling on his burger.

“OK” I said, “the hamburger story, let’s hear it.”

“Righto,” he laughed and wet his whistle. “You know Soi Cowboy, right? You’re not a total beginner here, right?”

I nodded. I knew it. I fingered the label on my coaster.

“Here’s the set-up: This is a few years ago, before I was living here. We had this work do in Bangkok, training, marketing, whatever. We’d been at it in the conference room all day, so then we moved on and had few beers and some Thai nosh at Cabbages and Condoms , you know it? Soi 16, not bad grub if it’s your first time in Thailand, not too pricky. Know what I mean?

Prik is chili, isn’t it?” I half-guessed, the bulge of a Thai phrase-book in my pocket.

“Correct. Full points. And afterwards, we put the most of the ladies into a couple of tuk-tuks, while the boys and I, plus one or two of the more… adventurous, or maybe broad-minded is what I mean to say… anyway two of the ladies from the company joined us, and we crossed over the road to Asok and went to Cowboy to check out the show at Long Gun. We stayed there a while, watched the banana popping show and the lesbian show… The girls thought it was hilarious, but tame. It could be pretty gross for some I guess, but not as bad as it used to be at over the road there at Nana, pre-Thaksin. But these ladies they thought it was a tame! They wanted to see some real on-stage fucking. I swear to God, women, I’ll never understand ’em. I had to take the girls to a gay-boy show next night, see some real action, but that’s another story.

“Anyway, it was getting late and no bird in the bar had really taken my fancy. I suppose I was in one of those moods, you know how it is. You can get so over the whole girlie bar racket, right? Some of the other lads had hooked with a bar-girl each and had already headed off to some short-time hotel, or maybe they’d risked the 1000Bht surcharge for a guest at the hotel, I don’t know.

“There were four of us left, the two company ladies, and one other guy – we called him L-G (or Algie, like from that Oscar Wilde, some play…) We called him that because it was his idea to come to Long-Gun tonight, as it’s his favorite place – obviously it was, because he knew the girls’ names and he had already picked up his favorite, a girl called Pim, he’d taken her out a few times before. Actually there were five of us, counting her. And then there was me, with no lady… We were walking along the Cowboy strip up to Soi23 past all the theme bars to find a taxi when L-G noticed a hamburger stand right at the end. There was a girl buying a burger there. She was in normal clothes, a bit suggestive, but not in the uniform of one of the bars on the strip.

“I said – They looked good.

” – The hamburgers or the girls? Long-Gun asked me and everybody laughed.

“I said – I meant the burgers.

“So he said to me – Why didn’t you get one?

” – Burger? I asked.

“He said – No, the girl! There’s one right there for you, and you can share the burger with her as well. It’s a bargain!

“This pretty girl, she was a stunner actually, had paid and was just collecting her burger and turning to walk away when Long Gun approached her. I swear to God he said, – My friend is very shy, he would like to take you home tonight. Indicating to me. She stopped, looked at me for a second and smiled, and then she nodded!

“Well as you can imagine I was very embarrassed, but I got over it. We got in the taxi together with her still eating her burger. We went back to my hotel, I paid the excess and she stayed the night. And she was brilliant in bed. I kid you not, some of the best sex I’ve ever had. Just a random girl who happened to be standing at a burger stand. And she was lovely and polite, and had this perfect body. It was amazing.”

Bruce was rubbing his chin and staring out over my shoulder.

“Did you get her name, her number?” I asked him. “Did you ever go with her again?”

He gradually focused back on to me. “No, of course not. I wouldn’t want to have her number, I might be tempted to call her. That’s not how I operate. I’m not like L-G. Gotta keep a distance. Variety keeps you safe. You never know, otherwise I might fall in love with one of them. And that’d be the fucking end of me, wouldn’t it?” He laughed and knocked back the last third of the beer.

“Bloody L-G, you know he married that bloody hooker, Pim. Stupid fuck-wit. She took for a grand ride alright. But that’s another story, too…

” ‘Nother one, love!” he called to the fierce-eyed waitress who was upset because Bruce could never seem to recollect her name.


With The Lot

Posted in autobiography, Bruce, food, Thai girls, Thailand by expatatlarge on June 26, 2009

Bruce had an added exaggerated loll to what had once been called his “unfortunate” gait this evening. Four hours in the car yesterday morning, an afternoon on the vinyl seat in the cop-shop’s backroom, cheap sheets in the hotel last night and no talcum to lubricate the creases (it had been a rough and spontaneous trip to Buriram to bail a mate out of prison), then another fours hours in the car back to Bangkok, to deliver the chastened mate off to his non-too pleased wife, and then through the traffic jams to his own apartment off Wireless Rd. Sweat rash, flaring around his tackle. “Out of action” until this settles down. In his immuno-suppressed condition he was susceptible to such hazards. He made his way slowly to the pharmacy on Sukhomvit Rd just up from the Marriott where Pei, the lovely attendant, found some of the appropriate cream – part hydrocortisone, to take away the itching, and part mycolytic to kill any fungal spores – in fact the base cream probably did most of the hard work.

Pei was big-boned girl for a Thai, well-fed with it, though she presented an amazing, classically beautiful face that kept drawing your eyes back to it: the gentle line of her nose, her full lips, her huge almond eyes and those not-too-high cheekbones. To the Thai men however she was too brown-skinned and hence working class. In a westerner like Bruce’s opinion, she should get an eating disorder or hit the horse and become a cat-walk model. She should be selling magazine covers, instead she was selling people like Bruce lotions to rub on their balls.

Bruce usually picked up his medications – a wide range we won’t discuss here – from small shops like this. Girls like Pei and the splendidly grumpy pharmacist Boochit (Bruce’s called him Bullshit) made the effort of topping up his prescriptions a pleasant chore.

He came around the corner into Soi 4 slowly, past the fried cockroach and locust stands, gingerly stepped down to the road to avoid a herd (two) of baby elephants on the footpath and waddled eventually to the entrance to the infamous Nana Entertainment Plaza. He looked in briefly, saw the gaudy sign of Pharaohs and thought back to the pre-Thaksin days when all sorts of things counted as “entertainment” and how the shows were now a poor shadow of their previous shadowy hyperbole.

He had a sour stomach from the food in Buriram. There were locust stalls there too – this was not just a Nana phenomenon to shock gullible tourists – but the hot and sour Isaan soup he’d had for early lunch had sat there for hours. He needed a western food fix.

The small stall stands squarely at the Plaza entrance. You have to walk past it to go in, but Bruce was not wasting him time tonight as he couldn’t take a girl (or two) home with this broad purple rash (it looked like a bruise in the dim light of his bathroom) all around his arse.

Minn was a short girl, as chubby as Pei, but with a square puffy face and not at all attractive – except when she smiled. Any slight joke would break her face in half with immense perfectly aligned teeth in a captivating and contagious smile. Bruce gave her a wink, and she recognized him at the rear of the solid contingent of European men around the front of her stand.

Sawaddee na klhup, khun Minn,” he wai-ed to her. Her hands were full of utensils so she could only continue her brightest of smiles. She had on a yellow ‘We Love The King’ polo-shirt under her grey apron.

Sawadee kaaa, khun Bruthe, she said as she flipped three burgers over on her hotplate.

She arranged another bun to toast at the side of the hotplate, pulled up a patty and dropped into a small puddle of fresh oil, cracked an egg into a ring and laid some bacon down. The usual for Mr Bruthe.

“Best burgers in town,” said Bruce to the big fella in front/next to him who had noticed the special attention given to him by the short-order chef and was staring blatantly. “You live here, or are you a tourist?”

In a soft Aussie accent the embarrassed man replied, “Live in Singapore, come here one week a month. For work… Look didn’t mean to stare, just that… well, your Thai is very good.”

“Yeah, this is the place for burgers in Bangkok. Fuck McDonalds and Burger King, eh? I been living here since 2003. All my mates we… if we are in this part of town, we always come here for a burger. You’re an Aussie too, eh?” asked Bruce.

The other man nodded. His 70Bht burger was delivered wrapped into a tight triangle of butcher’s paper with a perfect one-third of it exposed, just begging to be chomped into.

“Certainly looks good,” said the man as he admired its tidy presentation – lettuce, onion, tomato, beef patty, squirt of mustard, squirt of tomato sauce, fry-toasted bun, neatly tucked into the white paper which was folded in such a way as to hold any juices.

“Come over to the bar here, grab a beer to wash that down,” said Bruce. “If you got time.”

“Yeah, I’ve got time.”

“Wanna tell you story. True story. What’s your name, lad?”

The man, no longer a lad, had dripped some juice from his first bite of burger onto his goatee where it eventually fell onto the striped t-shirt stretched over his protuberant stomach, and it joined a stain from his lunch, or breakfast, or yestrerday’s dinner… “My mates call me The Expat at Large,” he said. “Please to meet you…?”

“Bruce,” he said. “You can call me Bruce…”

“Like the sketch in Monty Python,” laughed


The Best Policy

Posted in Bruce, Thai girls, Thailand by expatatlarge on October 5, 2008

From The True Chronicles of Bruce.


Nong had small teeth, short teeth. Memorably short. Very little distance from the biting edge to the gums. What had she worn them down chewing on, Bruce wondered?

Still, he admitted to himself, she was very pretty. With sparkling dark eyes, long wavy hair worn loose, smooth dark skin and soft high cheekbones above a captivating set of dimples*, she carried her still excellently proportioned Thai body with an erotically charged casual ease. But she was not so young anymore. On closer inspection, her muscle tone was more mellowed than the other girls, her tummy a few centimetres too loose now after several pregnancies. She no longer had the saleable hard-body of her youth. She admitted to being 32. She admitted to having only couple of long-term boyfriends from overseas. But she was not available to the customers like Bruce on a daily basis any more: she was now the mama-san of this small beer-bar at the far north end of Pattaya beach.

In this capacity she stood in for Louis, the French manager of the bar, who only came in for one or two beers around 10pm to check on the nights meagre takings. Nong sorted the girls out, made sure they were healthy and ready to work, made sure they were fed, encouraged, prettified; she checked their lists of fines and credits for Louis to later tabulate against what they still owed him for rent and for personal cash loans; she made sure they called out “Hello, welcome!” to all the potential customers passing on the way from the Dusit Resort to the nearby stand to grab a tuk-tuk or taxi along Beach Rd to Walking Street…

The beer-bar Nong was running was one of a pair in the open space at the bottom floor of a Japanese club (Susie). The provenance of this old place was uncertain as was the choice of the three elaborate Roman style columns** which bore the weight across the front of the building. They could not have been selected by owners of the Japanese club, surely not. One hoped that they pre-dated the refitting of the place as bars and were in keeping with its original use. Maybe a small hotel was once here? A bank?

Each beer-bar had its drinking area at the opposite end of the space to the other. They were run as separate businesses, managed by different people and the girls had a fierce but not quite serious rivalry. The bars were mirror images of each other, architecturally reflected at the central pillar and the door at the back of the bars which led to Club Susie. Around that door of dark-glass were lighted signs in green, red and pink curly Japanese script***, presumably inviting entry and promising all sorts of Nipponese thrills in the discreet “karaoke” rooms upstairs. Several shelves of ambiguously Japanese trinkets, like Hello Kitty dolls, flanked the door. Buddhist prayer flags and winds chimes danced in the slight on-shore breeze of evening out by the front of the bar, under red and green striped eaves. Both of the drinking bars were decorated with large yellow and black diamond tiles. There were chrome-framed mirrors behind the glass shelves which held bottles of Galliano, Midori , Vermouth, Cointreau, Cognac, Johnny Walker (Red and Black) whiskey, and of course Tequila, the bar-hostess’s standard short drink. Several show-bottles of twisted glass sported colored fluid that tempted no-one, not the most desperare hard-case. The mirrors reflected harshly back into the customer area all the bright fluorescent tubes and the red colored snake-lights, as well as the mirrors of the equally garish opposite bar. It was not a visually quiet place.

Business? It was quiet in that sense. Bruce was the lone, early customer. He sat and watched the sunset from his red vinyl stool, trying to drink slowly to avoid a sour Thai stomach which would be the eventual result if he continued his preferred Pattaya diet of Chang beer and chili noodles for too many days at a stretch. He turned and hunched his heavy frame forward stretching the blue Hawaiian shirt Ooh had chosen for him in the market yesterday, and leant over the bar to see what the girls were doing. Noi was writing in her diary, practising English. Ooh had been trying out some new makeup style to go with her denim shirt, one which pinched her small breasts into something approaching a cleavage, but had paused to send a txt message. It failed to go. She had no credit on her phone-card. She complained to Bruce: “I owe seben towsend baht, my phone calls!” Bruce shrugged. He was giving her 500Baht for each day she spent with him already. What more could he do? He would buy her a present on the last day. Or maybe a present for her baby in Bangkok.

Mama-san Nong had been seated on a white plastic chairs at one of the marble dining tables, writing something silently for a while. She pushed back the chair and moved gracefully to behind the bar and placed herself in front of Bruce. She wore a conservative black halter top which left some inches of her slightly flabby belly exposed above her grey pants. She smiled a well practiced genuine smile at him. Those short teeth. “Kha Bruce, can you hep me with write letter my terak in London.”

Bruce smiled back and put his beer holder down.

“Of course. What have you written so far?” he asked.

She seemed a little embarrassed at the short letter that had taken her so much time to compose on the table. “My dahling, my terak. I miss you. I love you.” She looked up and said, “That is all I heb so far. You must hep me, hokay.” She handed the letter across to him.

Bruce dropped his chin to his chest in order to hide his amazement and amusement as he read. After a silent spasm shook his shoulders he looked up, took a deep breath, cocked his head and said, in a mock-serious tone, “And DO you love him?”

Nong’s falsely genuine smile disappeared and what seemed to be a real expression came into her face. She pursed her mouth slightly like she was trying to hold back a laugh. Her brilliant eyes flashed at Bruce, sending waves of understanding and communion into his, and her cute dimples rapidly deepened. She was eternally beautiful at this moment, even though her teeth were nearly worn away, even though her tummy was not so taught, even though she was mightily old at 32. She looked at him without guile or pretence. When she spoke to him, he was certain she was being honest. He had never heard a Thai girl speak so truthfully.

“I love his money,” she said.


* Bruce was a sucker for dimples.

** I’m picking them as Composite Order.

*** Hiragana script is the curly one.