One thing Old Patong had plenty of[some say too many of]are dogs!
Even in the earliest days of Old Patong, 1979 when we first stepped upon the pristine beaches of Ao Patong, there were already a pack of dogs running up and down the beach from sun-up til sunset, when these “wild” dogs ALL found a home mostly under or ON the feet of EVERYONE that sat in a bar, restaurant, cafe or even lean-back lounge chair on the beach!
As the heat built up from the day, chasing the large water buffalo herd[carabao?]from the jungle/paddy behind the beach 1-3kilometers away, the pack of dogs would nip at huge beasts, trying to herd them, but often a buffalo horn would pick one of the offenders in the ribs and you’d hear a loud yelp as the dog flew through the sky 20 meters…
Natually, every shop/bar/kiosk/bungalow/hotel had “their” own dog,some two or three dogs, with an assortment of cats, lizards, monkeys, and birds. These “pets” somehow would wander off during the day to nose around anything that moved or didn’t move up and down the stretches of Ao Patong.
The muslim village on the northern Kalim end of Patong Beach had a vicious pack of hounds that were a constant torment to the many motorcycle riders/passengers as they turned south onto the beach road from the Wat road. You’d see the motorbikes speeding up as they’d slide sideways around that corner, no one drove slow there, course in Old Patong or maybe ANYWHERE in the Kingdom, no one drove slow ever, be it for 100 miles or 100 meters, full throttle was and is the only way anyone ever drove.
Going east or west on Soi Bangla[Bar Road]you’d encounter a dog running out at full speed from some side shop or alley at YOUR motorbike!
One such occasion unfortunately happened when Dave was slowly cruising back from Phuket town where he’d put his order in for the next days supplies, often emptying a few Singhas, David would stop every 100 meters to “cool off” from the hot sun and learn what the “coconut telegraph” in that area knew of.
Dave, former Hells Angels, now riding a 175cc Honda Twin with the required “007″ custom tail pipes, could be heard rumble by, maybe 100 meters ahead of him actually being there!
Well, the local dogs also knew this sound, as a mater of fact, they knew ALL the sounds of every bike/trike/samlor/tuktuk/baht buse/delivery truck and sometimes even bicycles and walkers shuffling by.
As Dave made the turn from Soi Bangla[Bar Road]to the beachfront road, two of Old Patongs mangiest attacked Dave, bit his right leg and knocked him from the bike! A crowd from Ladas Bar came over to watch the action, David was livid by this time, the two dogs barking, snarling and nipping at Dave as he tried to get up, he already had his knife out and was swinging at the nearest dog, when Lada started screaming that it was HER pet,etc,etc,etc,
Dave was having nothing of and grabbed the dog with the intention of cutting it’s head off and taking it to the nearby hospital to test for rabies.
Lada yelled like crazy and the crowd quickly grabbed the two dogs and ran off when them east on Soi Bangla[Bar Road]while Dave and Lada hurled insults at each other for the next 5 minutes.
Lada kept yelling “pasad, pasad” at David.
Finally, someone offer a cold beer to Dave and he gulped it down, saddled up and drove the remaining kilometer to Thai Garden where he cussed and yelled about everything Thai for the next two hours.
Dao got the “real” booze from his room, imported Gin and Dave sat sullenly at his table while the girls tended to his bleeding calf.
Dave never ended up leaving the bar that night, never went to the local hospital to get the rabies shots,etc, he just did like he did every day, he drank til the sun came up, shortly after this event, the locals started calling David, “Crazy Dave”!
ps: although we resided in the Kingdom for a decade, never once did we gaze upon the famous “Siamese Cat”, ALL the cats we saw were calicos/spotted/some all black or all white, and ALL these cats had one thing in common” someone had broken/cutoff their tails”!!! We had heard that this was some type of voodoo the cats without tails were said to be harmless, but those with tails, which we never saw, were supposedly evil…does anyone know what I’m talk’n bout?