So I know you were all wondering about how our trip to Pattaya went. Let me say that we got there fairly seamlessly. We purchased panchos from the front desk at our hostel, put them on over our packs and trekked it to the subway station. People starred since we were wearing them on the subway because they were too hard to take off, but we made it just fine and dandy. The only downside to our trip there was that the 2 hour bus ride turned into a 4 hour bus ride because all the roads were flooded due to the insane amount of rain. I'll post pictures on FB of that later cuz that was just cray. I was really worried for the cars and everything that were driving down rivers where there used to be streets. Apparently no one else was too worried though because as I've learned, this happens all the time. Who knew.
We made it to our hotel in Pattaya riding the Songtaews (which were quite fun) and then decided to go and try some food. Pretty typical along the beach (although no one was on it cuz of the rain) there were lots of shops and bars and restaurants. Everything was kinda covered with tarps because of all the rain.
Quickly did we learn the makeup of this city. Let me break it down for you:
1. White old men. Seriously, I've never seen a greater population of white old men in one place. I can't even describe.
2. Thai women to hit on said old men and keep them company, mostly only flirting.
3. Thai transgenders. They are women, but they have a penis. Don't judge, people, it happens. Some of them were very pretty. Some of them you could easily tell they were men. Some of them were about half way through their process change.
4. Gay men. There was an area called "boyz town" in which this was a place for many gay men to go.
5. Straight guys who wanted to watch go go dancers. There's an area called "walking street" (because no cars are allowed there) and it's just filled with clubs with go go dancers.
6. Couples...not sure why. But this happened as well.
That being said, you can see how Brigitte and I were a bit out of place in Pattaya.
Our personal escapade consisted of going to our hotel, getting dinner, going to a bar where there were old men with trannys hitting on them (unbeknownst to them) and enjoying ourselves watching the situation, going back to the hotel, trying a different road in the area, finding pretty much the same kind of bar but it had a live band and soccer, going to get food, then going home and going to bed.
The forecast said it was supposed to stop raining for a few hours in the morning so at 8 am when we saw the sun, we booked it to the beach. We sat in a nice lounging chair for a solid 2 hours then the rain rolled in. That's when we decided to check out and catch the bus home. Unfortunately, the next bus wasn't available for 2 hours so we waited at the bus station playing hangman for 2 hours (hangman really does make the time fly!) This time our bus ride home was only 2 hours, as it was supposed to be, and we arrived at our new hostel in time for dinner.
We walked along one side of the street which was very crowded with food vendors and shopping. Then we thought we'd cross to the other side and all those vendors were just setting up. We came back to the hostel because we weren't hungry, then we tried again and found that the side that was super busy before was now taking down all their stuff and the side that wasn't busy before was now super busy. We found some food, walked through another outdoor shopping area (we're trying REALLY hard not to buy stuff......until we get to Cambodia where I've heard it's cheaper...) and had a drink watching essentially the same exact thing that was occurring in Pattaya happen in Bangkok. The only difference this time was that all the shows these men were trying to get you to come see were "____ ping pong." Don't let your virgin eyes figure out what that is. I was just told and I don't ever wanna know.
Aaaaaanyways, we enjoyed that adventure and we're now sitting in our new hostel, meeting people, figuring things out and relaxing. It's a crazy world out there!