Bar Hopping in Soi Cowboy, Bangkok, Feb. 11 – closed down by cops at 12:30am

“Terrorists in brown uniforms strike Soi Cowboy, 12:30am Monday, February 12, 2007” was my original title. More details below.

Sunday at 6pm, I get a call from Frank. He’s on his way from Sydney to Beijing and has stopped off in Bangkok.
He hasn’t been to Thailand for one year and has been bar hopping around Nana and Soi 4 for the past couple of days. We arrange to meet at Soi Cowboy at 10pm. First stop is Dollhouse Agogo and say hello to mamasan Jip. Most of the girls are too skinny for Frank, so after one drink, we leave.
It’s off to Deja Vu Agogo to see their new show. We buy a couple of the bar girls a drink and then the show starts. Frank cannot handle the noise level or the middle eastern music and we quickly leave.
Looking for a quieter venue, we next stop at Sheba’s Agogo and then Suzie Wongs Agogo. Buy bar girl Poo and service girl On a drink. Frank is getting tired, so we drop into Baccara Agogo for a last drink, before he heads back to his Nana hotel.
Spot my condo neighbor, Andy sitting in front of Tony’s Agogo, chatting with Mark, one of the owners. Sit down with him.

It’s about 12:25am when suddenly, in a well coordinated attack, a police vehicle with lights flashing, enter’s Soi Cowboy from one end and four policemen on motor cycles enter from the other end. Within two minutes, every bar has turned off their flashing neon lights and shut down their sound systems. The bar managers then have to try and explain to their angry and bewildered customers that tonight closing time is right now and not the expected 2am. Semi sober customers and bar girls flood the street. Mission accomplished, the cops disappear to raid another area of Bangkok. There is a new police captain in Bangkok. The previous guy got terminated for his mishandling the New Year’s Eve bombings investigation. The new guy is raising the stakes to extract more money from the bar owners of Soi Cowboy. It is not clear yet which and how many bar areas of Bangkok are being targeted. It’s no fun to operate a bar with this kind of police mafia and no legal recourse.

We head off to after hours bar, Rooftop Garden, to continue discussing the TIT (This is Thailand) way of doing business. At 4:00am the bar is still busy and I head home.

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