So the next day I go for another suggestion from Dr Q and hit "Boat Noodle by Victory Monument" aka Golden Boat Noodle aka Ruathong Noodle. Right away I was blown away by the price tag of whopping 12 bahts (40 cents) so I order one, but the server looks at me funny and asks "that's it?" then he tries to sell me a curry noodle which is about 50. Yo, you working on commission brother? I was hoping to find other street grab later but what the hell.
Then my first order comes and I go Ahhhh; it's like the size of a Cup (O') Noodle. Literary three bites. Punchy, amazing, flavor-for-days kinda bites but teeny little. Then I notice many patrons have 5-6 bowls in front. Oh this is fun - then my boy's rec, the curry noodle arrives and yes, another great one. A delicate balance of rich sweetness and the heat mixed with the crisp that comes from fried wontons and sliced onions. Brother, can you hook me up with another rec of yours and a cow stomach for me to replace this one that's full?
Alas, I just have to drag this old system for one last night, and I picked night market. I knew that it would've been better with more people so you can share the variety, but as Dr. Q advised me, I wanted to see where locals hang out at night. And do they come out en masse (I know the good amount here are Chinese tourists, but where are they not?) eating big plates of grilled seafood, skewers, weird rainbow-colored grilled cheese toast, fried cockroaches, imitation crabs straight-up, huge mounds of meat-bone things, what have you. Then buy Western/Japanese flavored hipster tees and trinkets, iPhone cases and selfie sticks, get you nails and facials done, maybe a minor plastic surgery, who knows. Across the 20+ barricade are rows of rooftop bars, VW bar-trucks, bar tents, girly-bar-adjacent establishment? and one Munich-themed bar that had a classic rock band with a horrendous gender-ambiguous singer. So yeah, I'd come out here on a Sunday night till 1am if I was a local.
What I actually ate; very-carefully crafted grilled quail egg skewers that were perfect appetizers. Boiled ginko nuts in sweet iced milk (AWESOME IDEA, the sweetness rounds out the distinctively biting ginko flavor). Tapioca rice pudding thing that looked cool but tasted okay. Tiny pancake-like things with shrimp-flavored something. I don't know what it was, anything but good. That's all I could do but I'm sure I missed a lot of good stuff. More fun than expected given just 8hrs ago I was so miserable I couldn't even bluff. Fun extra as an almost-Osaka'ite was to see how takoyaki grill were used in many creative ways. Outside of regular takoyaki (comes in more variety like only dough, corn, shrip, sausages etc) they make tiny okonomiyaki things with it, aforementioned grilled quail eggs, and even some sweets. Crafty mofos.
Then I proceed to 20+ area and sit where a singer, acoustic guitar and a kit drummer were playing local pop covers among the Thai youth sang along loudly and poor Leo over ice. Wish I was online to Shazam some of these. A little ballad-heavy for my taste, but I wanna know what they like. My lime juice was very good but it was too stuffy despite a dozen fans going all directions, so I moved to a rooftop location for much-obliged "rainbow of tents" shots. A convict-looking server simply said "beer and whiskey" so I ordered a bottle, poured into a cup and did not drink. The fatigue, the crowd, the noise - had to get away and neutralize. It helped that folks next to me weren't there for chatters it seemed, mostly on their devices and cigarettes. So I blankly stared at the pretty lights and sat there motionless, almost meditative, thinking what to do with all the thoughts I've gathered on my walk of the earth.