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PeterRS last won the day on March 19

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  1. I think the small watering hole was run by one of the mamasans from the old Solid Bar which ran for a few years on the corner close to the Mango Tree restaurant. For a while one of his regular boys helped out at that bar but whenever I walked past or stopped by for a drink, there was rarely another customer. How he kept going, goodness only knows! Solid had its attractions and was a fun place for a drink and an off for those who enjoyed it. But it was not an all-out gogo bar and its clientele was small. Another different kind of bar which some may recall was X-treme Bar on the second floor of one of the Twilight shops (was it where Bonny Massage eventually materialized?) X-treme had the usual bunch of gogo boys but it’s main entertainment was provided by real young dancers who gave a great 30 minute show twice a night. No nudity but these boys were cracking dancers, the choreography was good, often titillating and the boys themselves always great fun. It was run by an unusual figure who had either been a member of the clergy of the Church of England or whose work was related to the Church. Always friendly, his young long-haired student boyfriend would sometimes come into the bar. He was a real stunner! With rarely more than a few customers, X-treme can’t gave lasted more than a couple of years. The German across the Soi then employed them for a while before he dropped them and a few ended up in Roxy in Soi 4. The reverend (as many called the X-treme owner) ended up as a consultant at Roxy. I believe he then returned to England. I always wondered if his boyfriend joined him or he stayed behind. If the latter, some farang must have become extremely lucky!
  2. I tend to agree with kokopelli. The days of Thai boys filling the Bangkok gogo bars will soon be over. IMHO a much better economy in the countryside together with a rapidly changing society will mean an even greater dependence on boys from neighboring countries - legally or not. As we know this process is already well under way. Just changing times.
  3. I doubt if those of us who visited Bangkok all those years ago are stuck moping around with our memories. We are all a lot older now. Some have settled down with long term partners. We have all changed and our interests re nighttime entertainment have changed/evolved over time. We may also have discovered other countries. The scene may not be as vibrant as Thailand but its there in many countries. I for one take life as it comes. I change. The entertainment scene changes. There is still a great deal to enjoy. Theres no doubt that the rise of the apps is one reason for recent changes in the nighttime scene. But internet hook-ups did not start just with smart phones, grindr, hornet and their like. In the second half of the 1990s there were several internet sites where Thai guys put up the same sort of information found on the apps now. There were also gay dating sites like gay.com. I met many guys from those sites. Chatting took a lot longer but the hook ups when they finally happened seemed at least to me a bit more meaningful. I reckon the decline in the bar and nighttime scene actually started around 2000. Blame the first Thaksin government's Social Order campaigns. I think for the first time the existence of male gogo bars, saunas and massage spas was brought home to the average man in the street, especially in the countryside. This was the first time government Ministers were pictured holding up used condoms and hints given about gay farangs coming for sex tourism. Of course Thais had been enjoying their own much larger underground sex scene for many decades. Farangs filling girlie bars were different. That was OK. But in a very conservative society the thought of their country having a reputation as a sex haven for gays was not welcome. The countrywide popularity ratings of that homophobic Minister rocketed. Interesting I think that in the 80s and 90s Thais always seemed to outnumber farang in the bars. Yet from 2000 the Thais began to disappear. Where they went to and why I never thought about till now. Also that bars rarely seemed to bother changing their business model. Owners failed to realise that the general farang customer was ageing and not being replaced by enough younger ones. The only one making radical change was Twilight which completely changed and became Hotmale. Probably the most popular bar Barbiery moved from its ideal Suriwong location opposite Soi Twilight into larger premises close to Mango Tree. The atmosphere was dead, the mostly twink boys became more manly and customers stayed away in their droves. It quickly died. Even though the gay world has got much bigger over the decades there is still nowhere like Thailand. Long may it continue . And long may we continue to cherish memories of so many wonderful times whenever we experienced them.
  4. I never read The Men of Thailand but I have read lots of posts on various chat rooms about what Bangkok was like in the 'old days'. I also have my own memories of the era. Difficult to know how much views have changed as people have grown older and the spectacles pinker. One thing does seem certain though. The gay bar scene was much more active 20 even 25 years ago. My memories differ a bit from BiggusDikkus. The original Twilight bar was quite dark on entry. It was lorded over by a couple of older trans women who fluttered around behind the long bar. There was also a small guy who always seemed to be rushing around adding extra seats on the large floor area at the weekends when the bar was packed more with Thais than farang or pushing boys to get dressed when they were offed. These are only a small part of my memory. The lasting one is of a large number of amazing boys. Until about 9 pm they would do s rather bored soft shoe shuffle 4 at a time on the tiny stage behind the bar. But one of the mamasans would then bark an order when the short pants would then come off and the boys would dance naked. Many were a bit shy and covered their assets. After each group of four came offstage still naked they would walk round through the customers and stand around one of the mirrored pillars. The best place to sit was at the left side of the bar. Once the order had been given, the 4 boys due onstage would sit crouched behind the bar desperately trying to get themselves even slightly erect. They didn't care that a group of Thais and farang were sitting watching them. Later in the evening there would often be a show (maybe only at weekends - not sure). Two pairs of boys would start on the stage, With a degree of athleticism they would then clamber over on to the top of the bar. Theyd then manoeuvre themselves slowly along the bar and back again. Im sorry BiggusDikkus did not enjoy Twilight then. I loved it same as I loved the better run and more fun Barbiery across the road. Also the various bars like Super Lek and the original Super A near where Mango Tree is located. They were in full swing then. There was a lot of fun there, just as there was in the still young Soi 4 and in the small DJ Station soi. Babylon had opened and offered a myriad of delights . The only problem was having to queue to get in at the weekends. Several other saunas had sprung up along with quite a few gay massage spas. The choice was quite amazing. I agree. I also consider myself so lucky to have enjoyed that era. Bangkok was heaven.
  5. For a beach vacation the island of Phu Quoc seems to be worth exploring according to a poster on another site. Seems Bangkok Airways also flies there daily. Its very close to Sihanoukville so I guess there may also be a ferry linking them. Maybe an idea to combine the two. http://gaybuttonthai.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=9574
  6. I can understand why Thailand hits the top spot. Like ggobkk I am surprised that the numbers in Hong Kong are so high. It doesnt seem like a key gay destination since the number of gay clubs, saunas etc, is not particularly high. Would have been nice to see the figures for Taipei/Taiwan. With a bill re same sex partnerships becoming law by the early summer, quite a thriving local gay scene and big increases in gay tourists, it is a more likely gay destination than Japan. I wonder how many tourists fly in just for the annual Gay Pride week-end when somewhere around 140,000 join the March. Perhaps they just don[t spend as much as n Hong Kong, although how anyone knows how to determine who spends what baffles me. Some photos of the last Gay Pride weekend from the gaybutton site http://gaybuttonthai.com/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=9355
  7. PeterRS


    Once that Indonesia poll is over, I wonder if the dreadful homophobic rhetoric of recent years will cease. When the countrys Defence Minister likens gays to nuclear war thats when I decide never to return.
  8. Ive been twice to Brazil. I got mugged in Rio but I was probably as much to blame as the mugger. It was on a Sunday morning and I was just walking around the very empty centre of the city. All the churches seemed packed to overflowing, fortunately for me. I had just passed one when I heard the sound of someone running towards me from behind. Before I could even turn around a hand was clasped over my face and I felt something pulling on my neck. That was where Id been stupid. All the guidebooks say when you go out take off anything that might be of value including watches and rings. For a couple of decades I had worn a gold chain around my neck. Never removed it even in a sauna because the clasp was tough and difficult to open and close. It was just became part of me. So when I put on a T shirt and shorts I did not even think about it. In any case it was covered completely by the T shirt. The T shirt was thin. I did not realise that part of the chain would glisten under it in the bright sunshine. A guy had noticed it and was trying to rip it off me. As best I could I shouted for help. Some guys who were standing at the doors of the church heard me and came running over. As they got close the thief ran off. As he did so, the chain trickled down my back on to the ground! With only a few words of Portuguese I thanked the guys for their help. It then amazed me that a cop car arrived within only about 30 seconds. With only a sore neck, a ripped T shirt, a slightly damaged neck chain and a loss of dignity i walked off and soon got a cab back to my hotel. The city itself is amazing and well worth a visit. Just leave ALL your valuables in your bnb or hotel safe.
  9. PeterRS


    I think his name was John Booth. At one time he had been an English teacher so there was no reason for him to write as he did other than he was having a bit of fun. Sadly he died in very unfortunate circumstances. He had been treated for some form of cancer and thought he was cancer free. Then it returned but he had no cash left for a return to hospital. I seem to recall friends in Bangkok looked after him as best they could and he died in their home.
  10. PeterRS


    Incorrect. In the main Priority Lane (whatever the actual title but I believe it is "Premium" or "Priority") the same entrance caters for first and biz class passengers with passes from their airlines, over 70s, APEC Business Travel Card holders, diplomats, air crew, Privilege Pass holders (which I believe means the Thai Elite programme members).
  11. PeterRS


    Some airlines have withdrawn their priority service for business class passengers. This is because airlines have to pay for each passenger using those priority entrances. Check directly with a Vietnam Airlines office otherwise you will probably get the runaround with different people saying different things. Seems there is definitely a Fast Track Service within the East Immigration Hall specifically for THAI passengers. This photo was posted on the ThaiViss forum some months ago - As for the names given to the Fast Track lanes, I understood = and asI have seen for some time now - that the other dedicated channel between the east and west Immigration areas uses Priority Lane for both outgoing and incoming flights. But irrespective of name, it will either be Priority, Premium or Fast Track. As with the above question, why don't you just call THAI Airlines and ask them to find out for you. No guarantee, of course, that someone with actual knowledge will answer you. But the ground staff at the entrance to the aircraft as you disembark will.
  12. PeterRS


    There seem to be dozens of maps of the arrivals area but none is accurate. Seems to me the Fast Track is closer to D5, so let's just say it is between D4 and D5. Perhaps the easiest way to recognise it is that it is - - between the two main Immigration Halls - very close to the visa on arrival channel, so there will be lots of passengers filling forms close to the Fast Track entrance. However, from what other posters have been writing, it seems there may be another THAI only Fast Track. I have never heard of this or used it. Since THAI issue e-boarding passes, if you do not have a physical ticket perhaps best just to use the general dedicated Fast Track lane. I have never once had to show any physical ticket there - only the Fast Track coupon. Admittedly these are issued by each airline and that is obvious on the coupon. In dozens of arrivals (including on THAI) these have always been handed out on the aircraft and never by the ground staff on arrival. Unless the whole system has changed since my last arrival a couple of weeks ago, there is no notice at the entrance advising that it is not for use by TG passengers. Besides, TG flights do sometimes arrive at the west gates. It's a much longer walk to the East Immigration lines, and I cannot believe THAI passengers have to go all that way for a dedicated THAI biz class channel. But I stand to be corrected on that.
  13. PeterRS


    True, but there are dozens of departing flights in the evenings and many passengers with luggage have to take taxis. These are the taxis which then go into the queue to take arrival passengers into the city. Frankly I have never seen any difference in the queues on a Friday night compared to others. But there are usually queues. As others suggest, forget the costly fast track arrivals service. As a biz class passenger the only benefit it will give you is the buggy from the airport gate to Immigration. But once through, you will spend longer waiting for your bag. So it's a waste. Just remember that the Fast Track Priority Immigration has its own special entrance close to the main west side Immigration area.
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