We went to a local Western bar called the Red Mask last night. I played pool for drinks on the most banged up pool table in existance. The felt was mostly duct tape and the table was warped in three different places. It was also at a slight angle. It was kind of like playing mini golf on a pool table. We met lots of foreigners last night and heard some great stories.
One such story is a guy from Taipei who had been living in Taiwan for five years. He was dubbed the Darkhorse by his friends for his appreciation of Ladyboys in Thailand. The news just rolled in that Darkhorse, taking a ferry to avoid customs, as he was bringing in some illegal cargo, went overboard and was declared by the Japanese Coast Guard to be lost at sea. While the Japanese have lost all hope, the Westerners that knew him believe he is alive and well clinging to a rock somewhere in the straigt between Japan and Taiwan.
The moral of the story is never count out the Ladyboy loving Darkhorse.
The real excitement happened shortly after 1am when the Vietnam police rolled by with a flood light. To our surprise, the power went out and a heavy steel door dropped down over the entrance, trapping us inside. I immediately, for whatever reason, thought of The Lost Boys, and was anticipating the staff to turn into vampires and devour us all. It was explained to me that these clubs were not allowed to be open after 12:00 unless they pay a hefty bribe to the police. So this club has lookouts posted on the street and they signal the arrival of the police and the place shuts down in seconds with all the patrons sitting quietly inside, in the pitch black, drink in hand, waiting for the coast to clear and the lights and music to come back on. It was a unique experience and definately one I am glad we had.
Talk to you soon,