Sunday, August 02, 2009

Three-Coin Prose

from Three Coin Prose: Bangkok (2008)

In the lobby of the Malaysia Hotel, the Internet is coin-operated, 8 minutes for 10 baht, which is rather exorbitant. These messages, therefore, will not be too lengthy, just three coins long. If anything runs on, or gets too graphic, by all means skip it.

Despite the city's reputation, there are many hotels in Bangkok that are entirely decent and respectable. This is not one of them. The Malaysia Hotel deserves every well-oiled inch of its sleazy reputation. The sofa in front of reception is at all hours draped with hustlers. There is no charge for guests. Even single rooms have two beds because it is assumed you'll need them. The restaurant (poor, but get the Chinese broccoli with preserved pork) is open 24 hours and there are times I am the only person dining not accompanied by a gorgeous transgendered whore.

I do not purchase anyone. I do my push-ups and wait with bearded quivering lip for volunteers. I am 34--lately it seems I am waiting longer. Still, I prefer volunteers. I recognize this may be difficult to believe, considering my location, but, as anyone who knows me will attest, I have a tendency to confess everything, no matter how embarrassing or even shameful. If I start buying muscle boys I'll let you know.

I stay at the Malaysia Hotel because I am, like hornpout, most at home in murky, sleazy, bottom-dweller type environments. The Oriental is simply not my hotel, and neither is the Sofitel. There is no use in pretending I am rainbow trout.

1 comment:

Andy Heath at Preston Book said...

Sounds like quite an adventure. I can sympathize with your desire to stay among the lower rungs of society, as I like to do this as well. I feel very much like an observer in these situations more than a participant, but such experiences keep me grounded. Damn, I would love to go overseas somewhere interesting - that would exclude Western Europe in my humble opinion.