After finishing our training camp at Rawai, and catching a taxi to Patong we were on a mission – an ’achieve a 30 before 30′ item mission.
It had been a long time coming and finally the time had arrived. For a long time Duane has talked about getting a tattoo and even knew what he wanted the tattoo to be, but he always hesitated as he wanted to ensure he found the right person for the job.
Tattooists in Thailand are amazingly talented – particularly in the style of tattoo Duane was wanting. So after much discussion and lots of research we found just the man for the job who specializes in the Japanese style that Duane always loved.
Duane had been talking about this tattoo for a few years and now was the best time to seize the moment. We had planned on staying at Maui Thai for a second week but decided that if Duane did actually get this tattoo he would miss a few sessions of training. Even though the accommodation was so good at Rawai it was still 800 Baht there and back in a taxi if we were to stay at Rawai, and then we also had to decide if Duane would be able to even train straight after having a tattoo done – considering how much you sweat at Muay Thai! The decision was made to head to Patong to meet the tattooist (Alex) and say goodbye to Rawai.
We found a place to stay close to the chosen tattoo shop in Patong and set out for the afternoon to discover the ‘Patong Chaos’!
The shop we went to is called Indian Tattoo (www.indianbodyart.com). Alex is the senior of the shop and an amazing tattooist. We met with Alex the afternoon before the tattooing began and discussed Duane’s idea. Alex then spent the afternoon drawing up the tattoo to ensure it was perfect for when we returned the next day. There are a few different types of tattooists in the shop ranging from realistic tattoo styles, cover-up specialties and a Japanese Style specialist – the style Duane was after which made Alex the man for the Job.
We spent the rest of the day walking around and checking out a few shops. We quickly got sick of having “DVD mate” said to us every few meters and being asked if we wanted to have a suit made. At first it was quite funny but after a few hours of it, it gets really annoying. We ended up in a the shopping mall trying to escape the heat. We had spoken to a few people at the training camp that mentioned the face massage was a ‘must do’ so we found ourselves booked in. Now Duane loves a good rub down, twist and back crack so if it’s not full on Duane won’t like it but, Duane went along with it because in his words ‘it could be nice’. Well, right from the moment we climbed onto the bed it started. An intense face massacre would be the only way to describe it; it hurt more than any back cracking, rub down Thai massage that we had ever experienced. But on the positive side we walked out feeling fresh with very clean facial pores.
From there off we went only to see the fish tanks with all the fish that nibble on the dead parts of the skin on your feet. We looked at each other and talked ourselves into it. After putting our feet into the tank the fish attacked like a bunch of hyenas on a dead carcass. The feeling of this was too much for Duane, he was squirming like a little girl, even pulling his feet out a few times when it all got to much. Kim on the other hand was taking it quite well, the feeling of it is like a million bubbles running up between your toes and up your legs. After all that excitement we found ourselves at the Full Moon Micro Brewery and decided to relax we had to try the beer. It was good, but in all honesty not the best when cost as much as 2 dinners on our budget.
Finally it was a day Duane had waited a long time for, we headed down to the tattoo shop around 1:30pm for the 2pm start. As Alex started showing Duane the work he had done he was amazed in what Alex had come up with from the vision Duane had explained to him. Without further delay Duane was in the chair and Alex with the gun in hand, this was it. Bizz bizzz bizzzzzzz and we were off. A few hours passed and all was going well. Because of the size of the piece Alex had said we would do it over two days back to back 20 hours of tattooing.
After the first 10 hour day we called it for a night and headed home at 12:30am to get some sleep and be ready for the day two start at 2pm. Work was progressing nicely but carried on for a little longer than predicted and ended up requiring an extra half day. So, on the third day it was only going to be a short session, just enough time for the colouring to be completed and this took 4 hours. So after all was done it was 24 hours of tattooing and the end result was more than Duane could have ever dreamed of. He finally had imprinted on his skin the tattoo he had always dreamed of.
Some friends from Australia had just arrived on holiday in Phuket came to meet us at the tattoo shop. It was perfect timing because Kim could go out and have a few warm up drinks while Duane finished up at the shop. By the time we all got together everyone was a few drinks in and happy and it was time to hit the streets of Patong! We all headed out for a well-timed night out on Bangla Rd. It was so good to have some familiar faces to talk to and have a laugh with. It was such an awesome, wild, fun, crazy night but what happens in Patong, stays in Patong – so nothing more to add here!
Every time we have to travel the next day we always end up having a big night the night before. A pattern is forming and it’s not a good one. After a good feed and some goodbyes we headed off to the bus station to start our next leg of our journey to Bangkok.
And for all the people asking …. NO – Kim did not get a tattoo in this instance however it may be on the cards in the future … you just never know.
Showing the amount of detail Alex achieved