Thailand is known for a lot of things.
The food, the weather, the lady-boys.
All are as hot as you’ve heard.
So when I was given the opportunity to let my inner female aspect shine through, I tucked back my inhibitions with masking tape and gumption and let my freak flag fly. Well, not really, the masking tape really did it’s job.
We arrived in Bangkok at 1 in the AM. With all 45kgs of our worldly possessions strapped to our backs and fronts we hopped in a cab and set off in the general direction of our Couchsurfing host’s abode.
We met our host, Josh from the Philippines, outside of his building where he showed us our sleeping arrangements and bade us good night, even though it was morning. What a nice guy. After three flights, 30 hours of travel and 13,295kms, we had finally made it back to Asia.
The next day we were shocked to find that we were still in Thailand and SEVERELY jet-lagged. After meeting Josh’s boyfriend, Damian from Belarus, we had a relaxing dip in the community pool before the sun began blazing and made outside uninhabitable.
As we waited out the hottest part of the day, we relaxed indoors with our gracious hosts and fellow Couchsurfer, Jerry from China. To pass the time, we watched the TV show RuPaul’s Drag Race. If you haven’t seen it, watch it now and fill a hole in your life you didn’t know you had. I can wait.
Did you watch it? Right? Its awesome!
During our viewing, Josh showed us a few pictures of him and Damian in drag and Damian informed us that he is a make-up artist. He asked me if I was interested in trying out drag make-up.
I can’t type my exact response because it was full of swear words, but the gist of it was yes, please, and thank you. The boys were having a party that night and Damian told me he would have me looking my best. But until party time, I’d have to spend the rest of the day looking like a schlub.
After the heat had died down a bit, Josh took us out on a tour of the city. We rode the BTS and went to the Chatuchak weekend market, but all the cool kids call it JJ market and we are definitely cool because we bought fake sunglasses there.
Having spent the past few months in Southern California where the only seasons are ‘pleasant’ and ‘nice’, our bodies were not ready for the sweltering heat. We hopped on the underground MRT which is kept at cool subzero temperatures and rode to Terminal 21, which is a fancy airport-themed mall and is also very well air-conditioned.
The heat and jet-lag had sapped our strength so we took the BTS back to Josh and Damian’s to begin my transformation.
I’ve had make-up applied to my visage before. Perhaps its because I am quite obviously a man, but somehow the transformation from dude to queen has never worked. That was, until Damian.
Damian asked how I wanted to look. Apparently ‘like a pretty lady’ wasn’t specific enough so he started rattling off adjectives: sassy, mysterious, constipated. We settled on ‘funny’ so Damian pulled out his impressive collection of make-up and started working.
After 30 minutes my transformation was complete.
There is always something new to learn about the world and about yourself. Never settle and say yes to life, even if penciling in eyeliner feels like being stabbed in the face.
Scroll down to get a glimpse of me as my drag persona: Steva Diva. WARNING: I do not make for a beautiful woman.
Just kidding. I’m fucking gorgeous.
Have you or would you dress up in drag?
What unexpected experiences have you had in Asia?
If you have a funny story about traveling, living or working in Asia and would like to write a guest post to appear in our (Mis)Adventures series, please contact us.
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