The Real-Life Exploits of Bangkok’s: Bangkok Babylon

In the colorful tradition of Hemingway’s A Movable Feast, Jerry Hopkins recalls his first decade as a Bangkok expatriate by profiling 25 of the city’s most unforgettable characters. Among them are the man thought to be the model for Colonel Kurtz in Apocalypse Now, an advertising executive who photographs Thai bargirls for Playboy, an Oscar-winning screenwriter who moved there to die, a Catholic priest who has lived and worked in the Bangkok slums for 35 years, a circus dwarf turned computer programmer turned restaurateur, three Vietnam war helicopter pilots who
opened a go-go bar, a pianist at one of the world’s best hotels who ended up on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted list, a detective who tracks runaways who fake their deaths and a documentary filmmaker who lives with elephants. All of them “escaped” to Thailand to reinvent themselves and live out their fantasies in one of the world’s most notorious cities.

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