Away On Business

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The Sukhumvit district is a colorful little place that i would never recommend a family to visit. At first glance, it has the appearance of being glitzier and more upscale than the Khao San Road area we last stayed in. Many of the fancy hotel towers are located in this area- the nice ones. The big fancy chains that cater to the business traveler. The hotels known for consistency, four and five star establishments with ‘rewards points’ and ‘frequent guest’ cards. They’re all here in walking distance of our hotel. This is clearly the neighborhood for the business person visiting Bangkok– for a little bit of work and a little bit of nighttime entertainment. We are here in the disgusting underbelly… where the deepest secrets of the upper middle class businessman are played out for anyone to see.

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I could postulate on the inner workings of the male mind for pages and pages. I will never understand the need to hire a person a third of your age for a few nights of activities behind closed doors. I think very little of these men, but they out number me here. Literally, they are everywhere. This city houses an escort service of exponentially large proportions, with a secure repeat clientele. The client list, by the looks of things, is so large that I think it is safe to say that we’ve all known a few men who have visited Bangkok ‘for business’.

I am tempted to start a new website entitled ‘findyourhusband.com’, where I’d simply stream video from a few conveniently subtle locations along Soi 4. Take a deep breath, ladies. A visit to my new website (still underdevelopment and likely to remain a figment of my imagination) may bring an entirely new perspective of the man you married. Many of your husbands are here- wedding rings conveniently switched to the other hand, temporarily vacationing from the life they lead on the other side of the world. All joking aside. Sex tourism for the middle aged white guy with a beer belly and a lack of dignity is alive and well here in Bangkok.

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Here, the bars have three prices for each drink. And this is no secret as it is printed clearly on the menu. One price is for happy hour, one price is the standard price, and the third is called the ‘lady drink’. Enter any bar along this street and if you so chose, you may purchase a drink for yourself and a drink at a higher price for one of the many ladies of the bar. She’ll sit next to you in a miniskirt and tight top- legs crossed in your direction. She’ll laugh at your lame attempts at jokes and generally make you feel good about yourself. We’ve watched this happen- it’s common, and a shock to see how many grown men actually fall for this. You can’t have a beer at a bar around here and not see this scene played out at the tables around you. What happens after a few drinks, we can only guess. But considering the number of ‘couples’ walking through our hotel lobby, we’re pretty sure we’ve figured out the next scene.

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