Monday, August 29, 2011

The other side of paradise

Pattaya by night is a different place. And definitely not a place for kids, and yet...there were youngsters here. All these photos were taken in Walking Street.

I don't know whether to admire Thailand for being honest and open about their seamy side, or just sickened by what is the underside, I guess, of a great many cities in a great many countries. Is it better to be hypocritical like Kuala Lumpur? And hound women -- or pretend they don't exist -- when they try to earn a living this way? I don't know. I just know that I would like to be sure it was a choice of adults. I'd like to think they all had a choice.

I can tell you I didn't see too many truly happy faces, just plastered-on smiles that disappeared the instant the prospective customer did.

In between the girlie bars and the sex parlours, there are many legitimate businesses.

Even an art shop with an artist painting a portrait from a photo
And a temple -- with a wrapped up tree, and offereings
Here's a close up of the offerings
And here's a shot of the true beneficiaries of the offerings. Yep, those big eyes are alive...
A wig shop outside a bar and an indication that many tourists are Russian speakers. So are some of the sex workers.

4 comments:

Rowena Cory Daniells said...

Ouch ...

Tsana Dolichva said...

Interesting post. I'm going to skip over the sex workers and just note that seeing the Fanta offering is an interesting mix of old and new. And that there are lots of Russian tourists in Europe, too, though that is perhaps less surprising.

Jo said...

I think I prefer Thailand's attitude to that of KL. Not that I know too much about it. Its a bit like the days of "virtuous Englishmen" when piano legs were wrapped and hidden and pregnant wives were also hidden from view. Nobody did it after all!! Hypocrisy was rife in those days. Sex is an integral part of life so why are people ashamed of it?Prostitution is the oldest profession in the world however the girls get into it. There but for the grace of God etc......

Glenda Larke said...

All I can say is that after I emerged at the other end of the street, I felt somehow...grubby.

There was a large tourist police presence.

And I think it is generally healthier to have it out in the open...but I'm not convinced that even the open, controlled prostitution stops the illegal flesh trade, the power of pimps, the use of children, etc etc, in any country on earth. Especially not when it becomes so inextricably mixed up with illegal immigration.