About Me (1)
Philippine Islands (8)
* Kinabalu and the Last Leg
* Peninsular Sprint
* Like a Diamond Out a Goat's Ass...
* Adios Philippines
* I Will Eat Your Unborn Child!
* Learning to Play
* I Love Sufing
* Reunited (And It Feels So Good)
* On a Cool Night, Just Let Me Hold You By the Firelight
* The Temperate Zone Spreads Her Chilly Tentacles...
* It's All Good
* Eyes in the Back of My...Back
* The Road to Hell
* Getting High in the Low Season
* Just a Quickie...
* Oh My Buddha! (Part Two)
* Oh My Buddha! (Part One)
* Life's a Bitch...
* Holiday in Cambodia
April 17, 2005
Getting High in the Low Season
I. Bangkok Gets an Enema
Thank God for the rain, especially in a crowded and polluted metropolis such as Bangkok, Thailand. A hard shower washes away the filth of city, and after a few hours, the sun returns and everything sparkles like a diamond out a goat's ass.
I had been pretty anti-piercing my whole life, not on other people of course (that's their business), but for some reason, I felt compelled to get my ears done. I told this to Sara, an English girl living in Spain, who I had been kicking it with, and she persuaded me to just do it...do it now. Stefano came with his byrd, Natalie, and after a couple Beer Changs, he led me to a studio off Khao San Road. Done. One in each ear. No pain. No problems. Everything is cool and I quite prefer the look. Sara even bought me a great-looking spike carved from buffalo horn, So there, that was surprise numero uno. The second surprise awaits at the end of today's entry.
II. Ich Bin Ein Suesser Bube...
After one day of sport-climbing on Muay Thai Wall, which was superb, I returned to the bouldering cave and haven't been able to leave since. Offering shade from the hot sun, superb problems, and unlimited potential, why would I want to leave anyway?
Song Kran, the water festival which commemorates the Thai New Year, commenced on April 13th, and even on quiet little Ton Sai Beach, the locals were keepin' it live. I met a wonderful German woman at one party named Anita, and we have since become bouldering buddies, etc. She is very strong and has excellent technique, (plus her thick German accent scares me up the boulder problems) so she makes an excellent climbing partner. She has also been teaching me German for the last few days. Quite a fun and easy language to pick up; I am considering studying it when I return home.
We have spent the last few days together working on most of the established problems in the cave and have sent most of them and also established a couple of our own, one of which I think is truly superb. After a few hours of bouldering, I usually go through my general strength and conditioning workout and then eat a truck-load of barbecue with Stefano at night. Our fingers are swollen and our skin is wearing thin, so today we decided to rest up and let our bodies heal.
Kayaking here is also a great way to change up the routine and get away from Ton Sai. A couple days ago, Stefano, Erin (Calgary), Anita, and I rented some kayaks and toured around the peninsula, scoping out soe of the nearby islands. I still can't get over the geology here; the limestone cliffs are so stunning!
III. Under the Gun
I met Ah near the Rock Shop on Ton Sai Beach one quiet evening. I had noticed a fresh tattoo he had created on one of the climbing guides a few days before and thought the work was excellent. He let me know he was in the business and had all his equipment here in his bungalow. Sounded really sketchy to me at first, so I sort of dismissed it. Anyway, then we got to takling about punk bands, getting excited over this song or that one, and eventually had pretty in-depth conversation on subjects ranging from what we consider important in life to our mutual dislike of senseless chatter. I had a very quick adn deep connection with the guy. Really smart dude. I asked more about his tattoo operation. Turns out he is a traveller as well...worked in Samui for awhile in a proper tattoo studio, but got sick of the package/party tourists...but most takes his tattooing very seriously. Like me, he hates when people just pick a tattoo off the wall without thinking about it. He uses only brand-name ink from Europe or the USA. His needles are single-use only and he has an autoclave. All right, cool. So we spent about three hours discussing a design for me that night and another three the next night, drawing, erasing, smoking, agreeing, disagreeing, etc., until Ah created this:
I was extremely pleased with his design and prepared myself for an evening of pain. And was it ever painful! I have been in some pretty gnarly scraps, broken bones, shredded connective tissues, been kicked in the balls, been bitten by poisonous bugs, and even had my fair share of toothy BJs, but I have never experienced pain like this before. For damn near six hours, I was screaming like a prison bitch being forced through the gauntlet for the first time. Flexing, kicking, biting down on t-shirts and water bottles, squezing the hell out of Anita's hands (bless her heart for staying with me through the whole experience). I never cried out in pain from a tattoo before, but damn, this one was bear unbearable. Worth it, though...definitely worth it.
"Only passions, great passions, can elevate the soul to great things."
Posted by Gary on April 17, 2005 05:51 AM
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