Biggsy Travels

unique travel experiences

Category: Asia

Getting pickpocketed in Bangkok

If I had to choose out of the two I’d probably prefer to be pickpocketed rather than mugged, but that didn’t lessen the initial shock when the former happened to me in Bangkok a few years back. It took just 30 seconds for me to notice what had happened as I did that reassuring pat of the trouser pocket “thing” that we do, but in doing so realised that the rectangular protrusion of my wallet wasn’t where it should be.

Soi Cowboy District in Bangkok

Soi Cowboy District in Bangkok. Source

Part of me felt violated, part of me felt stupid, a small part of me felt upset, part of me even felt guilty! After all it was 1am, I was in the less than salubrious district of Soi Cowboy in Bangkok, and I’d been ticking off that unique experience of watching live “ping pong ball” shows. Although to be honest I’d been more impressed by the entertainer firing out paper darts and popping balloons attached to the ceiling! Anyway I digress. How can a fairly savvy traveller like myself put myself in a position to be pickpocketed, and worse of all the pickpocket had been talking to me quite openly beforehand?

It all happened back in October 2009 when I left a bar at the end of the night and started to make my way home. A hispanic guy in the street started chatting to me, correctly guessing I was English and walked with me all of 10 yards down the road. My “spidey” senses were on full alert so I was fully aware of my surroundings and his reasonably close proximity to me, although the street was fairly busy and it wasn’t just me and him standing there so I didn’t particularly feel in any danger. Within seconds he was initiating a half-hearted football tackle on me with an imaginary football while smiling and cheering “Ronaldo, Rooney!” I went along with it, while still continuing in the same direction. In hindsight I can now see why he went in for a second fake tackle. He hadn’t been able to get at my wallet the first time round! Continue reading

Navigating the Kerala Backwaters by Houseboat

How many trips are inspired by a work colleague’s computer background? Des sits opposite me and had this stunning sunset on his screen that I later found out to be the Backwaters of Kerala, India.

The Inspirational Backwaters Screensaver

The Inspirational Backwaters Screensaver

As luck would have it a friend of mine called Keerthi was getting married in Bangalore in March so Kerala, the Munnar tea plantations and Varkala beach resort all became destinations factored into our 10 day trip – including the Backwaters and THAT sunset!

The Kerala Backwaters is a network of 1,500km of lagoons fed by 38 rivers, which extend from one end of Kerala to the other. The most popular way of exploring them is by hiring a ‘houseboat’ for a day trip, staying in one overnight or even hiring a houseboat for several days. Continue reading

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