(In which I nearly conclude this sorry tale- Part One is here)
I was poking around at my fried eggs and wondering why the fuck Thai people never cook them properly and have they ever heard of salmonella and why were the baked beans cold and all sorts of happy comedown breakfast ponderings.
The night before I had crashed out after about 36 hours of not sleeping. I didn’t want to push it. I’m not getting any younger. Sleep was helped by 10 blissful milligrams of Diazepam. As far as I knew, Orange and Gin had done likewise.
My breakfast reverie was suddenly disturbed by Orange rushing into the restaurant, going, “Oy, bruv- we’ve got a problem.”
“Yeah, well I’ve got a problem too,” I said. “Just look at these eggs.”
“Fuck yer fucking eggs, mate- Gin’s been arrested.”
“Well, I dunno. He’s down at the station. Just had a call from him. Pay up, let’s go.”
Down at the station a sorry-looking Gin was slumped at a table outside in the garden with two pissed off looking police. His glass eye was so wonky he looked like Marty Feldman.
“What happened?” asked Orange.
“It’s no problem,” slurred Gin. “I’ve talked these fine policemen round.”
He said something in Thai to them to which they grunted in a surly yet conflicted manner and then recounted the story of his arrest.
After Orange and I had crashed out, Gin thought he would dose up again and go back to the girlie bars we had passed. Recognising he was out of his mind, he had taken a tuk tuk there and back.
Instead of just paying the tuk tuk when he got back, he had offered to sell him some Mandy and then had invited him up to his room where he had carelessly left it on the dresser along with wads of cash and the cannabis seeds for his planned plantation.
Saying to the tuk tuk, “Help yourself,” he had then left the room to take a shower. When he returned, the tuk tuk driver had disappeared along with all his cash and most of the MDMA.
Gin’s reaction to this was to telephone the police to report the theft. The police, the fat Italian hotel owner and his Thai wife were all singularly unimpressed when they searched the room and found the remaining drugs and cannabis seeds.
“It’s all right though,” Gin said. “I’ve talked the police round and they’re just gonna keep me here until I’ve straightened up. Problem is they’ve got my fucking drugs still and I want them back.”
“But they’ve already confiscated them,” I said.
“Yeah I know but I know where they’ve put them,” Gin replied. “I’m gonna wait ‘til the coast is clear, nick them back and make a run for it.”
“Do you think that’s wise in your state?” asked Orange.
“I’m in total control. Focused,” Gin said, drooling a little. “Don’t suppose you’ve got any of them Diazepam on you, Rick?”
The two policemen were staring at me.
“Don’t worry about them,” Gin said. “They’re sound. We’ve had a right laugh.”
He said something to the police in Thai and they smiled and nodded.
“I just told them you’ve brought me my medicine,” said Gin. “They don’t know what Diazepam is in these parts.”
Reluctantly, I fished my remaining strip out. “Here,” I said. “Only have one. You’re already wasted.”
Gin nodded, asked the police for some water and popped five or six out of the blister pack. They were down his gullet before I could stop him.
Some minutes later the hotel owner’s Thai wife appeared at the station, an angry look on her face. She was closely followed by her fat Italian husband who was carrying something like a baseball bat. They made a beeline for Gin, the Italian shouting something incoherent as he went to swing the bat at Gin’s head. Gin was zonking out, his lightning reflexes slowed to treacle by no sleep for 48 hours and colossal amounts of pharmaceuticals and just managed to duck in time.
The police sprang to their feet. One of them rugby-tackled the Italian to the ground as he was lining up to take another shot. Gin rolled away and got woozily to his feet. Her husband incapacitated, the Thai woman started attacking Gin, chasing him across the yard and kicking him whenever she could which, considering the speed he was going at, was quite often.
“Ow, fucking ow!” Gin was saying, unable to defend himself. The other police officer finally restrained her and they were told to leave.
“You three will check out today!” shouted the Italian as he was leaving.
“Right,” Gin said. “I’ll be back at the hotel in about half an hour. Wait for me there.”
Orange and I waited for Gin over a coffee in the hotel restaurant, both of us finally pissed off with Gin and his extreme behavior. This wasn’t the holiday we had been expecting.
Our talk was suddenly interrupted by angry shouting outside.
“Fuck, it’s Gin,” said Orange.
We quickly went to the reception of the hotel to find out what the commotion was and it was Gin being slapped around by the hotel owner’s wife and the hotel owner looking like he was ready to kill him.
Evidently, he had kicked off his sandals to enter the hotel, forgetting in his state that that was where he had stashed the drugs. The tin foil package had skidded across the lobby where it had come to rest at the hotel owner’s feet.
“That is it,” bellowed the fat Italian hotel owner. “You three have exactly one hour to get off this island or I will have you all shot!”
“Fuck, better go!” said Orange. “Everyone pack your bags and let’s flag down a songthaew pronto.”
Five minutes later the three of us were in the back of a songthaew with its engine running, suitcases, Gin’s motorbike and everything.
Not quite everything.
“Oh, fucking shit!” wailed Orange. “I’ve left me passport and wallet in the room!”
“Well, we’ll have to turn back and get it,” I said. “Be quick!”
Orange leapt out and into the hotel, hyperventilating with fear. The hotel owner was a huge man, clearly connected and not making idle threats about getting us shot. Shit like that happens in Thailand.
He managed to get up the stairs to the now-vacated room without being spotted. A maid was in there, clearing up.
Quick as he could, he lifted the corner of the fridge while her back was turned and retrieved his belongings. “Easy peasy,” he chuckled but he laughed too soon. Coming back down the stairs he was spotted by the fat Italian who, bellowing with rage took a swing at his head. Luckily, the blow didn’t connect. Orange is used to ducking and diving.
He jumped back into the songthaew with a cry of “Go! Go! Go!” and no wonder- the Italian was running towards us with the baseball bat and murder in his eyes. We pulled off with a squeal of brakes, all three of us laughing at the fat twat and flipping him the bird. It was a joyous moment of relief.
“Where to next, chaps?” asked Gin.
“Well, we’ve gotta get off Koh Phangan,” said Orange.
“Ah fuck off,” said Gin, “All we need to do is move up the island a bit. They’ll never find us.”
“Well I dunno,” I said. “What if they do and fucking shoot us in our beds?”
“They won’t,” said Gin. “Trust me. Let’s go to Haad Yuan.”
“Not been before. I hear it’s nice,” said Orange.
“Yeah, it’s great,” I said, “And I suppose it’s safer than Haad Rin- you can only get there by boat. I’m still not comfortable about it, though.”
Gin was nodding off slightly as the songthaew rocked along the coastal road. “Relax,” he murmured. “I’m a birdshit farang.”
Back at Haad Rin, we checked into a cheap hotel and let Gin finally sleep it off while Orange and myself plotted our next move. We were furious with Gin and clearly concerned about being first tracked down and then gunned down.
“That hotel owner’s definitely connected. I don’t think just going to Haad Yuan is safe for us,” I said.
“You’re probably right, bruv,” said Orange. “So what do we do?”
“We need to get off this island fast,” I said. “And we need to ditch Gin.”
“Yeah, but he’s a mate,” said Orange.
“That’s as may be,” I said, “But he’s been a complete liability ever since he got here.”
“So, we do a runner?”
“Yes, head to Koh Samui. At least we won’t have to worry about being shot there.”
“Right, good call,” said Orange. “Let’s put some distance between us and all this madness.”
On the ferry heading to Koh Samui, Orange got a text from Gin.
YU 2 @ HAT YUAN NOW?
“Fuck,” said Orange. “I dunno what to say.” He thought for a moment then replied
NO BRUV GOING 2 SAMUI
Seconds later, he got the reply
YU FUCKING CUNTS. I SPENT MY LAST 200BHT GETTING HERE WITH MY BIKE! WHY NOT FUCKING TELL ME????!!!
“Well, that should be obvious,” I said.
“Muppet,” Orange said, shaking his head.