Birthday on a beach

Trip Start Oct 30, 2012
Trip End May 01, 2013

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Flag of Thailand  , Krabi,
Saturday, March 16, 2013

First impressions of Bangkok was how different to India it was; skyscraper buildings, tourists everywhere and the streets were clean. We walked down the 'clubbin strip' at 3 in the morning, we felt like we were back in Tenerife as all the holidaymakers drank like there was no tomorrow. The only difference was several Thai ladies stood behind their street stalls cooking up everything from pad thai noodles and chicken skewers to crispy bugs including tarantula and scorpion. They must have been making a fortune off the drunks as they stumbled up to the stalls to scoff maggots.

Food, food, food, everywhere we looked. Sausages on sticks, chicken satay skewers, fresh pineapple chunks.  The pad thai egg noodles we ate on a street stall was delicious for a mere 70p. Our mouths watered, we were so ready to experience the whole new cuisine.

On arriving in Thailand we didnt feel a culture shock due to its western ways, however our shock came in the form of a huge hike in prices. The 20hour journey down to Koh Lanta (island off the west coast) cost a staggering 15, where as in India you wouldnt pay more than a fiver for a similiar journey. Looks like we will be sharing not 1 meal, but every meal a day now.

Koh Lanta was tourist central, there wasnt a Tesco express and Boots like in Bangkok but finding a British fry up was easy to come by. We stayed in a luxurious wooden hut for my birthday that even had curtains it was that smart. Birthday celebrations began with a boat trip round the local, uninhabitated islands. We sunbathed on the tip of the boat the entire day, breaking off for snorkeling and a trip in to Emerald cave. The boat pulled up to a tiny island with a huge cliff face, upon further inspection we noticed the tiny cave opening with tourists bopping in and out. The cave was pitch black inside and involved a 10minute hair raising swim through the unchartered water. Afer what seemed like an hour we saw the light at the end of the tunnel and reached the perfect lagoon.

Kam had decorated the balcony with balloons, a hand made banner and flowers to suprise me on my birthday. After enjoying breakfast al fresco we headed to the local animal rescue centre for a day of volunteering. After a tour of the poorly dogs and cats we got geared up with a bowl and water and took a few dogs down to the beach for a roll in the sand.  I couldnt help but make comparisons to where we volunterred at in India, the standard was generally better and they were actually eating dog biscuits, where as in India the centre received alot less funding therefore the dogs diet consisted of watery rice, lentils and crumbled biscuits.

In the afternoon we enjoyed a Thai massage on the beach, it was so different to an Indian massage as in Thailand the focus is on improving circulation. Wow, the womans hands were strong, at some points I think my air flow was cut off as my throat was skillfully jabbed in to the bed. Before getting up I was lumbered in to a few yoga positions to relieve any remaining tension, it sounded like a bunch of fireworks exploding as every vertabrae was cracked. The unique experience ended with refreshments; cup of tea, crackers and banana slices. That little personal touch that India always forgot.

In the evening Kam had booked a table at a tapas restaurant with the table decorated in candles and flowers, it was perfect. To finish a lovely meal the waiters came over singing Happy Birthday with a cake covered in 23 candles and my name proudly written in the middle.

On the last day we did something that we had vouched we would never do; hire a moped. After hearing all the horror stories about inexperienced drivers on the foreign roads you could say it wasnt our most sensible idea, but we did it and we survived. After an hours driving lesson from our (very patient!) hotel guy we aimlessly traveled around the island stumbling across isolated beaches away from the hustle and bustle of the tourists.
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misfitzy79 on

I have enjoyed reading about your journey so far hun! Some wonderful memories and stories to tell - and to share those memories with a friend must be amazing!! Look forward to hearing more - thanks for sharing :)

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