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Take Up Thy Samsonite & Walk
By Meyer Lansky
"What?...you're living in a flat with six birds?....I'll see you in eight hours" was my reply to Ronny down the blower. I wasn't as excited as I should've been when I mutter them words. I said them matter-of-fact like, with no real enthusiasm and a somewhat laboured drawl. I certainly didn't sound like someone who was on for shags galore with a bevy of beauties. I sounded more like a man responding to a reminder about his appointment at the clap clinic.
The flat where the girls were staying was in Sydney, Australia and they were staying with my mate Ronny. I was in the White House Hotel on Koh Samui in Thailand. So the 'see you in eight hours' shout was some way out, but I got the feeling Ron already knew that, after I'd used the sarcy tones to answer him back - I'd learnt from past experience to take everything Ron said with a pinch of Saxo with him being a bit of a Billy Bull. But I needed a change, plus Ron owed me a few quid. I'd been stuck on the island for a couple of months and was sick to death of Thai slit and I fancied my chances with some English backpackers holed up with Ron in Sydney.
I put the phone down on Ron and kicked the maid out of bed, then joined her in the shower. It was the same every morning, the two maids would come in , one would sort out the heap of clothes on the floor, the other would take the 200 Bart off the bedside cabinet and sort out my early morning wood. Every morning I woke up with the smell of funk in the air. Like oil-vapour in a garage it hung around wafting out signals to the cash hungry maids. The same smell would also linger around when I was getting my mid afternoon rub down, from the alluring lady masseuses. They too would smell the funk in the air and would also succumb to extra money for sexual services. The White House Hotel - to call it a hotel was an injustice - was an idilic paradise of beach-side semi-detached villas, in gardens of greenery with pools laden with koi carp, with a smart restaurant and bar leading out to a private stretch of white sand and blue sea. So the young nubile maids/masseuses weren't the only draw to this island Shangri-La. The food was also exquisite, as my bill showed when I checked out, it was peppered with restaurant and room-service charges. But boy did I enjoy those Tom Yum Goong soups that they knocked out.
At night I would ride through mansions of glory in suicide machines.......well not quite, more like small tuk-tuk's and mopeds as I made my way out to indulge in the night-life. Some nights it was Thai boxing or disco dancing in the clubs, other nights it was seedy games of cards in a back street brothel in some favela or what ever they call slums over in Thailand.
The nights were spent doing many different activities but all of them ending on the same score, me back in my hotel room with a Thai whore. Maybe 'whore' is too strong a word, they could of been barmaids, waitress, or even a girl I'd coped for in a club, but every single one of them wanted paying. So come to think of it, whore is the right word to use. Come four, five o'clock in the morning they got turfed out as I got some sleep and dreamt about the morning cleaning brigade. I learnt to turf them out early with a couple of pounds in their pocket, otherwise you run the risk of the 'whore cling-on' when they expect breakfast and shit. They start to get too clingy and start thinking their your girlfriend - fuck 'em, then fuck 'em off, that's my motto.
My taxi for the airport arrived and I jumped in the back with my dark blue & walnut Samsonite case. When I left a dreary London to go on my 'backpacking' tour of the world my friends looked at me & my case with perplexity. They were surprised by my choice of baggage, when other travellers get off on tours of far off places, they're more than likely to be a little bit more sensible and use a ruck-sac, but not this Randolph Scott, no way daddio. I was doing it the other way round to all the Tarquins & Victoria's on there gap year from Uni, whose fathers are holding millions for them in trust funds. The ones that like to slum it around Vietnam and India, thinking by getting down and dirty with the locals they're on some kind of moral crusade. Fuck that!, I was doing completely the opposite, I was a working class lad doing his 'gap year' tour type thingy in the lap of five star 'Paris Hilton' luxury. I had flown first class to Bangkok and after spending a few nights in the 'real' Bangkok Hilton, not the cockroach infested prison one, I caught a flight to Koi Samoi and ended up in a taxi to the White House.
It was the same taxi driver who was taking me back to the airport to catch my flight to Bangkok and then hopefully Sydney. He dropped me off and I waltzed around the hut of an airport. I stood out a mile, pulling my Samsonite on wheels behind me, as I made my way in the check-in queue. Amongst all the sarongs, flip-flops and ruckies was me in a pair of Gucci loafers, grey armani canvas keks, grey Armani Collezioni shirt and Cartier shades.
I settled down into my business class seat and sneered at the smelly hordes making there way to the back of the plane. The cute Thai air-hostess pulled the curtain across, so the cattle at the back couldn't see me getting my Bloody Mary's served to me in a glass. I laughed to myself as I thought about them trying to drink out of their cheap plastic counterparts in leper class and on smaller seats aswell.......ha peasants! My sneering turned to perving, as I was getting off on the seams on the Trolly Dollies stockings as she crossed her legs whilst sitting in her seat opposite me. It was hard-on city for me all the way to Bangkok and after briskly catching a taxi to my hotel the Sheraton Grande, my Paris Hilton smugness was about to be dented by a jobs-worth snotty nosed receptionist. I was trying to check in and when I noticed the tariff on the wall behind, I demanded to see the Head Receptionist straight away. The price for the Presidential Suite said 20,000, me thinking the price was in bart (which would of worked out at about £300) got the receptionist to take me up to the see the room. Once I had seen the marble bathrooms (x2) with their Jacuzzi's, steam rooms and gold taps, the bedrooms (x4) with their Queen size beds and cinema telly's, I was smitten."Is everything to your satisfaction" the man said "Yes I'll take it" I said, but going back down in the lift the alarm bells started ringing. Surely a room of such grandeur would be well more than 300 quid. The alarm bells rang out good and proper when I was on bit of a haggle with the smug twat, it was then he informed me that the price list was in dollars and not bart. I skulked off to a modest size corner room for $400 and told him to shove the gold taps up his skinny Thai arse.
In every hotel room you're more than likely find a bible, In most hotel rooms you will come across a Yellow Pages, Thompson Local, or some other book with adverts for local things in. This room had a bible and a Yellow Pages with hundreds of adverts in for hookers and after a quick phone call I had my companion for the night. I entertained her in the cocktail bar knocking back Strawberry Daiquiris and spurting out my life story to her - yes to a woman I've never met before. I don't think she took it all in, not with her rudimentary use of the English language but she looked enthralled anyway. We left in a drunken stupor and she guided me via a tuk-tuk ride to the most basic of restaurants, but it turned out to be one of the most fastidious feast's I've ever had the pleasure to fill my face with. To start off you take a walk around a supermarket with a basket, the wares on sale were; all types of meat, fresh fish in tanks, lobsters and other crustaceans and lots of fruit and veg. You fill your basket up, pay the lady at the till, then tell her how you want it cooked and finally take a seat in the restaurant and wait for your food. We both devoured plates of Lobster in garlic butter, followed by mussels in white wine,garlic & chilli sauce and backing them dishes up was poached sea bass on a bed of steam rice and to finish off, she had banana fritters with ice cream and I had a large brandy. As drunk, plump and full as I was, I still managed a 10 out of 10 when we got back to the room. The poor girl didn't stand a chance.
I like Bangkok airport, I enjoy the hustle and bustle of the place -the many different nationalities all weighed down with luggage scurrying off to catch their flight's. I was off to book my flight and I first went to see what deal I could get off British Airway's. They came up trumps, with a top hand, of an open return to Sydney, leaving in 4hrs. I got on the plane and became a sneering fool yet again. It's hard not to sneer with your chair practically horizontal, a sea of cushions under your head, sipping from a champagne floot as a Trol Dol asks you how you want your fille mignon cooked. I could only imagine the horrors partaking the lesser unfortunates down in skivvy street. Eating their TV dinners while getting DVT I expect. Anyway enough of the riff-raff and back to my palace of Luxor. After my five course meal I quickly fall asleep and drift off....
I'm walking up Ramsey St pulling my case on wheels. I go and hunt out Mrs Mangles and when I knock Plain Jane Super Brain answers the door in her school uniform (of course). She invites me in and starts stripping straight away, but I stop her and tell her to leave just her pop socks on, she follows my instructions and then gets down on all fours. She beckons me to strip, so I gladly agree to her invitation. I slowly start to take my shirt off whilst humming that stupid stripper tune "da da daa daaaa.....da da daa daaaa" (you now the one). I'm down to my boxers and just as they fall to the floor Jane starts crawling on all fours towards my rigid.......
....I awoke from my slumber suddenly with the thud and then screech of the tyres skidding on the tarmac as we landed. I was one of the first off and was waiting at the carousel for my case when I first spotted this muzzied-up uniformed psycho nazi watching me. From that moment I knew I was in for a tug. He watched me go to the toilet, he watched me go for a ciggie and then he watched me collect my case and start to walk down the green 'Nothing to Declare' channel. I passed him and was just waiting for the hand on the shoulder. I didn't have to wait long, it came after only a few steps. The firm grip and force that he used to turn me around told me I was in for a grilling.
"Can I ask you where you have flown from please Sir?"
Why? when you know exactly where I've come from. You been observing me for the past 3/4 of an hour and you watched me - like a hawk praying on a mouse - when i picked my bag up from the carousel marked Bangkok, so why fucking ask me??
"Bangkok" I muttered
"What is the purpose of your stay in Australia"
Listen fucker , just stop with the small talk and tell me what your really thinking. 'I have stopped you because you look bang on top' is what you really want to say to me. But you've got to go about the fucking houses and ask me all smart-arse questions, don't you?..anyway this answer will knock ya sideways ...*deep breath*
"I got bored of Thai hookers so I came here to sample the delight's Australia has to offer" I boldly told him.
This comment only set him off more and now he wants to know where my visa is and he laughs when I tell him I didn't think you needed one if you flew in from Thailand (to be honest with you, I had totally forgot that you need one). He found my wad of cash and started asking "what do you do for a living?" and other personal questions. He went through my case with a fine tooth comb and found nothing incriminating, but I some how puzzled him. He then took my passport away for a very long time and when he returned he hit me with a few more questions which I presumed were of the 'thinking out loud rhetorical type', but I gave a smart arse answer anyway.
"What is someone like you doing buying a plane ticket from Bangkok to Sydney, using cash, 4hrs before the flight is due to leave, then arrives without a visa but with a wad of cash on his hip and tells me a cock&bull story about wanting to come here to shag Aussie babes because you've had your fill of Thai hookers??!!"
"I know mad innit" I laughed.
Next thing I'm getting carted off for an x-ray of my stomach, just to make sure I haven't swallowed any balloons full of drugs. And yes they did do a bit of anal probing. After 3hrs at the hospital - add them to the 1hr spent in the airport - you could say I was getting mighty upset. I didn't know if they were going to kick me straight back out, when they found out I was an innocent man. An innocent man who's only crime was to have a wad of cash on his person and no visa. In the end and with much turmoil muzzy man stamped my passport and told me, if I didn't catch a returning flight in two weeks time, he would personally come looking for me. A mate had told me how hard it was getting in to Australia but I didn't think it would be that hard!
Tune in next month to see if I finally hook up with Ronny & the buxom backpacking babes of Bondi Beach.
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