I Was Propositioned On a Train in Chiang Mai
It started as an innocent train ride. I had bought my ticket the day before, which meant I ended up with a private first class cabin, as the other options were full. It was a bit pricey, but still cheaper than flying, so I booked it (yes, I could have taken a bus, but I would have never slept, and you can’t move around as much).
I arrived at the train station in Chiang Mai early, found the train, and made my way to the last car, car number 3. I climbed aboard, found cabin 5, and settled in. Nothing too exciting there, other than the fact that I had a hide-a-way sink, a small TV with a VCR player, a reclining bed, and a small table. It was small, but cozy, and I laughed as I realized that I was in a Chinese train (seeing the Chinese characters made me miss my train journeys in China).
As the train began to leave the station I pulled aside the pink curtains, grabbed my laptop, and started to do some writing, as I watching the world go by. It was peaceful, and calm. Everything I want a train ride to be.
That didn’t last long.
I was sitting on the bed, writing, when an older American man popped his head into my cabin. He had grey hair cut into a buzz cut, and over-tanned, leathery skin. Apparently he works out, as his upper body seemed to strain against his shirt. There was absolutely no attraction. None. Notta. Zilch.
“Hi! Would you like to have a beer?” he asked. I was hesitant, I wasn’t sure if I wanted one, but I decided to be polite. I grabbed my wallet (to pay for my beer), but he said he had plenty, and not to worry. Was this mistake number one? If not, then what happened next is probably mistake number one. You see, I went to his cabin, next door, and sat down to have a beer. We sat on completely opposite ends. He said his name was Paul, and we started chatting.
It was an hour in, and a large Chang beer, before I learned that he lived between Chiang Mai, Bangkok, and Pattaya (Thailand’s sex capital). I was disappointed. I had hoped that he was a normal expat, not a sexpat. Instead of normalcy, I tried to keep my skin from crawling as he spoke of the girls he’s had, and how he loves Pattaya. He also talked about Huay Kaew Residence, and how his friends all live there, which made me really happy about the fact that I fled from that place.
We continued to talk, and drink. He had brought a Bento box dinner with him, and insisted that I share it. I was reluctant. I don’t like to try new things on trains, or buses, incase my body rejects it. I eventually gave in.
We continued to talk, and drink. I was hoping to stop, and escape to my cabin to work. He was clearly getting drunk.
“I should really go. I need to work.” I said, trying to be polite.
“Work? No, you relax. I make you relax.” I pretended that I was hearing something different, but he continued, “Stay with me, I’ll make you forget.”
That’s when my radars went off, and I knew I was not staying. No more beer. No more bento. No more talking. I needed to go back to my cabin. He kept telling me to stay, and I kept saying, “No, I need to get some work done.”, then he’d come back with, “I can make you forget all about that. Come, stay with me.”, I left.
As I walked into my cabin, closed the door, and locked it, I couldn’t believe what had just happened. Clearly, he was drunk. I doubt that would have happened if he had been sober. I also couldn’t figure out how things when downhill so quickly. I thought it was one of those innocent traveler moments-which I’ve had plenty of over the years-but no, it was something more than that. I was like there was a big shiny red target on my boobs, and he wanted to hit a bullseye.
I wish this were the end of the story, but it’s not.
I sat in my cabin, reading. It had been about an hour since I had left his cabin, for mine. Suddenly, I heard a knock on the wall. Not the kind that comes from banging your knee, the kind that comes from rapping your knuckles. I ignored it. Soon after, I heard a knock on my door. I thought it may have been the beverage lady, so I opened it.
“Are you done? You come to my room? I make you relax.” OH. MY. GAWD. This guy wasn’t going to stop. I politely said no, I needed to make some calls. I then grabbed my phone, and tried to reach Katy from Intrepid in Toronto. I’ve been trying to connect with her for a couple days, and this seemed like the perfect time to try again. Too bad it didn’t work. Damn cell reception.
I decided to turn off the lights in my cabin and sit in the dark. I figured that if he couldn’t see lights on, then maybe he’d forget about his proposition. My plan was working pretty good, until I had to pee.
I tweeted, asking someone, anyone to call me on Skype, so I had a reason to be distracted. Didn’t work. I wasn’t ready to give up though. I waited until my bladder felt like it was going to burst, then tried to open my cabin door quietly. The doors were not meant to be quiet. It creaked, and knocked, and I prayed he was too busy to notice. I made it safely to the bathroom, then back into my cabin. I felt like I could teach the art of being stealth. I was damn proud. 5 minutes later there was knocking on my wall, and then my door. Ignored them both.
The Bento box did not sit well. By midnight I was feeling off. My stomach was uneasy, and the swaying, and rocking of the train wasn’t helping-nor was my full bladder. I tried to avoid leaving the cabin, but around 1am, I had to do it. I slipped out, hoping he had passed out. On my way back, he found me. I stood in the hall. He only had shorts on, and I was now sporting another layer of clothing as my cabin was too cold.
“Are you coming? Let me make you happy.”
“Sorry. I really don’t feel well, and I want to sleep.”
“That’s okay, I can make you feel better.”
I quietly went back into my cabin, and locked my door.
I never heard another knock, on the wall, or my door. Finally, he was letting it go. It took 9 hours, but it finally happened. I laid in bed, battling a bad stomach for the remainder of the ride. When we arrived in Bangkok, we saw each other in the hallway. I looked out the window, or at the floor. He did the same. It was awkward, and I hadn’t even done anything. OMG can you imagine what it would have been like if I had?!
As much as I love Asia, the fascination with my boobs can be too much. There are days when I wish I could find some sugar daddy who will pay for a breast reduction, I wouldn’t even care if he used my leftovers to give his mistress a breast augmentation. I just want them gone. Seriously, can I walk into a doctors office, and request a reduction based on personal safety concerns? I could totally make a case for that. Hell, I could do an entire PowerPoint presentation on it!
Boobs around the World, this should be my next blog.