words of a song become reality.
picture is not solely flesh, the girls for sale are mainly concentrated around a few side
streets, but the traffic is everywhere: Busses; cars; taxis; tuk-tuks; the sound of
blaring horns; whining motorcycles that never stop for pedestrians; and the policemen
trying to make their whistles heard above the noise.
Tranquillity can only be found at some of the wats,
or temple-monasteries, but walking around them, and in some cases up them, is hard work.
Plastic bags filled with crushed ice and soft drinks are sold everywhere; to refresh all
and sundry, suffering from the tropical humidity.
At the floating market, it is interesting to see
the old ladies still trading produce from long wooden boats, but the tourists themselves
can become the spectacle.
� Michel Guntern
An attractive girl paddles up to a tourist barge
with an armful of straw-hats, a kaleidoscopic clash of colourful flower garlands, and a
These normally sane people pay extortionate prices to be herded
around the waterways. They wear straw-hats on their heads, flower garlands around their
necks, photographic hardware on their shoulders, and suck fresh coconut milk through
straws. They are content, they are a part of the floating market.
Bangkok turns fake: t-shirts and watches are for sale on the pavements:
quality, All good price!" Of course.
embroidered Ralph Lauren's are harder to emulate, and some of the copies look more like a
tennis player on a shire horse. Sow on labels are easier. A group of Polish speculators
need an extra taxi to take their shopping to the airport. A Benetton shop in Warsaw's main
street, now sells the United Colours in Polish Zloty, but the high price of the
genuine article (almost a month's wages for some) gives the importer of a cheaper copy a
are the girls; smiling at the male as though he is the only one. And what a sight some of
these couples make, strolling around together the next day. He is big,
beer-bellied; his pink skin covered in coloured ink, and he sports a beard -- as if to
hide his face. She is made up to look western, smiling, willing, and comes up to his gut,
if she wears high heels.