I love Chiang Mai’s ladyboys. You would have to be shortsighted, drunk or fooling yourself to think they were born girls. But they are undoubtedly beautiful in their own way.
Every night at the Chiang Mai NIght Bazaar they put on a different cabaret show. It’s free if you buy an overpriced drink for 100 baht (you’ll get an ugly from the waitresses if you don’t also give a big tip. And no one gives ugly looks like an overweight transvestite.)
We went twice.
The songs ranged from classic drag queen standard like Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive and ABBA’s Dancing Queen with the tone ranging from cheesy to haunting and poignant to confronting.
One act saw one of the girls fighting off a pretend gang attack by her backup singers then ravish several men in the audience before closing the song on all fours whipping her long dreadlocks around headbanger-style.
The thing that remained constant was the energy and commitment all the performers showed. They really did seem to be enjoying themselves.
In all, fabulous.