Shabby in Bangkok

I woke up sore this morning, had breakfast then rushed to an all day meeting – eight hours in a chilly conference room before an hour long drive in a taxi to dinner. (Probably a mile away as the crow flies. )

Dinner was inauthentic Thai, or so I was told by an American who’d lived in Thailand for six years. I guess he had as good a sense as anyone of what constitutes inauthenticity. There was lots of vegetarian food, so I couldn’t fault them for that, but I made the error of drinking two large glasses of beer, forgetting that I’m not in England but in a humid, hot country near the tropics. I guess the glacial air conditioning in the offices must have tricked me.

Now, I can drink. I’m not going to boast that I can down ten pints without it affecting me, because that’s manifestly untrue. But I can get squiffy after a couple of pints and then keep chugging on, packing the booze away even as I grow more and more sluggish and stupid. In England, after five pints of something strong like Stella, I know I’m going to have a bad morning after, but in Hong Kong, or Singapore, or apparently Bangkok, half a pint is enough to have me bumping into furniture and feeling godawful, long before the hangover arrives.

And so it was tonight. I got home, felt awful, decided not to take a bath, took off half my clothes and fell into bed, clutching the pillow for dear life, and then got a call from a friend who was visiting from Hong Kong for an evening (who I hadn’t seen since the weekend I broke my toe this March, when they got married – the two events hopefully unconnected), and how could I turn down the offer of going to a nearby rooftop bar? I mean, what could possibly go wrong?

Something tells me that the one quick drink ahead of me won’t be one, and it won’t be so quick. It will be drink, although that will probably make things worse.

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