You tend to see odd things on holiday …. perhaps they’re not odd for the locals, but they sort of make you look twice and scratch your head: like the gent I saw at Frankfurt airport: in his 40’s wearing a nice business shirt & lederhosen, without a trace of irony.
Sarah wanted to buy some t-shirts and bits & pieces for the kids last night – we’re almost home, so have to make sure we stock up on kid friendly things for our return – so we headed for Patpong. I won’t trouble you with a long winded description of the sights (touts for girly bars) and smells (most amazing, a few eye wateringly bad) … But first up on the list was something to eat.
It was a Thai religious holiday yesterday, and alcohol couldn’t be served. (NB: check the calendar before traveling!) Unless it was in a paper milkshake cup. And as if by magic, I was transported back to Stalactites in Melbourne, circa 1983, where they used to serve red wine in cappuccino cups and stubbies of VB hidden in brown paper bags, this being a long time before Victoria’s licensing laws were overhauled.
But that wasn’t the odd thing.
We were drinking our beer flavoured milkshakes, chatting and waiting for the food when I noticed a bloke crossing the street with food, under covers, on a tray. He walked to the restaurant, a couple of the wait staff appeared, took the food and put it in front of diners. And then it happened again a minute or two later.
It seems the kitchen was somewhere across the road.
Now if we’d been in a seaside town and he’d carried plates across from the main part of a restaurant to some tables that they’d setup on the sand, I wouldn’t have even blinked. But this was in the middle of Bangkok, on a 4 lane road jammed with traffic in both directions. We made a few jokes about food being run over, but when it arrived was very good, and had no obvious carbon monoxide aftertaste.
Dinner and a few milkshakes done, next up was shopping.
T-shirts for the kids. Check.
Copy bag. Couldn’t find one she liked.
Then I started looking at copy watches. As a fairly full time #watchnerd, I’m always interested to see what garbage people buy (and they wouldn’t be selling them if people weren’t buying). Horrible Rolexes seemed to be the biggest seller, closely followed by painful Omegas and nasty looking Panerais.
I stopped to chat with a few of the stall holders, and it seems what’s on display are the C grade versions, while the A & Bs are kept under the table (no, I don’t know why). And if you line the three versions of the same model up, you can see the differences, although even the A’s still have a slightly off look about them, eg: the otherwise excellent looking Deep Sea’s date wheel was off centre.
What I did like was the odd model variants: colours, dial & hands variations that have never appeared in the real catalogue.
Did they really recognise that the GMT II I was wearing was real? Or were they just pulling my chain? I’ll never know, but I did have one stall holder offer me an entire tray of dodgy Rolexs in exchange for mine.
A fun night out!