Trip Start Nov 19, 2002
8Trip End Feb 29, 2003
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Got a 17 hour bus from Bangkok to a town on the west coast called Krabbi. Bus was air conditioned, and Matt has a gameboy so it wasn't as bad as it could have been.
We got a ferry from Krabbi to Ko Phi Phi, a pretty small island nearby. We had heard that it was a bit of a travellers place, but it turns out that the main part of it is more of a package holidayers haven. No matter.
Now we're out of the smog of Bangkok the sun is shining and it's more like the tropical paradise it should be. This island is probably the most beautiful place I've ever seen - it's all limestone mountains, thick green jungle, and white sand beaches fringed by palm trees.
And the water is warm. I don't mean it's not cold, like the beaches on the south of spain. I actually mean you get in and it's warm. It's fantastic.
We've been staying in a pretty shitty and not all that cheap place , sharing a big room because everything else is too pricey. It's definatly a tourist place and not a backpacker retreat.
That's all changing though! Today we got a boat taxi around the island to another beach, this one is even more like paradise. There's about 30 people around the place staying in beach huts, two restaurants and nothing else. We've booked ourselves in to two huts - they're great places. All wooden, no electricity, but absoloutely beautiful. They have en suite bathrooms, but it's like, you open the bamboo door to this other room that's got rocks for a floor, exotic plants growing, and in the middle there's this white porcelin toilet!! It's absoloutely great!!
We also went snorkelling today, which was cool as can be. We're living the absoloute high life, and as from tommorow we're going to be living in our own tropical paradise with nothing to do all day but swin, sunbathe, snorkel, read and chill.
I can't believe how great it is here!!!
But, you know, I hope the weather's not TOO bad where you are.... and it did rain a bit last night... and mosquitos are a nightmare (my arm swelled up last night, and matt amused himself by saying "Don't worry mate, that just means they've laid their eggs").
But the food is fantastic. You have to tell Richard that I'm eating noodles, fried rice, and a variety of chinese takeaway type dishes for EVERY meal, and it's costing no more than a few quid!! In Bangkok we were living on Phad Thai (noodles), costing 10 baht a go (one sixth of a quid, whatever that is!)
Things are great, and you may not hear from me for the next week as I enjoy the wonders of a no electricity paradise....
Living in beach huts surrounded by palm trees less than 100m from a white sand beach and warm sea isn't ALL good you know.
for example, the amount of animals that cohabit with us can get quite upsetting. I was bitten on the foot the other day by some misc. animal, and it swelled up and hurt quite a lot (the foot, not the animal). It's better now though.
And in the bar toilet the other day, which is an outside shack that you carry a lantern to, we all got thoroughly shit scared by the BIGGEST spider I have ever seen in real life. True, not as big as spiders can get I am sure, but this one was definatly 'one of the boys'. Matt came back from the toilet shaking slightly (he is aracnaphobic) and as I got up to go he said "Be careful mate, there's a huge spider on the wall and it looks like it can jump'.
And the mozzies are annoying, and there are a lot of ants.... oh, and a milipede lives in our bathroom. And we started to notice these susisciously thin black worms around our shower that look rather parasitical... we have taken to burning these on sight.
It could be worse though. Matt and Emma have taken to sleeping fully clothed as their mozzie net is below par and they have experienced bats and rats as well as the aforementioned night time friends. It makes me worry that there is one REALLY big animal living under our bed or something, keeping the other pests under control and waiting for it's time to strike.
Apart from that things are cool. We've come back to mainland Ko Phi Phi today, hence the e-mail, to get money and whiskey (the bar charges western prices but the supermarket sells botles of whishey for a quid). We also want to eat in one of the lovely themed western restaurants. I havn't had anything for days that didn't involve rice, noodles, chicken or a combination of the three. I asked for the only beef dish on the menu last night, and was informed a few minutes later that they didn't have any beef. Would chicken be OK?
I want a steak! Actually, I want a McDonalds Double Cheeseburger, but a steak will do. It's not that I'm missing my western roots, it's just that when you eat in the same small restaurant three times a day, which has a menu written on a piece of cardboard ripped from a box, you want a bit of variety.
It doesn't feel at all like it's december. Hard to think that a few tyhousand miles away England is sinking into such depressing tirades as 'X shopping days till....' and Xmas TV guides featuring, I should hope, Goldfinger and StarWars.
Speaking of Bond, we had the privilidge the other day before leaving for our secluded paradise of watching a pirate copy of the new Bond film!! It was great! MAybe it was just the setting, but both me and Hookes (both Bond afficienados) agreed it was the best Brosnan Bond by far.... we had been drinking though.
So it's all cool, things are fine, and I have a new elaborate scheme to try and visit China while we're over in that neck of the woods (won't be till late january so no need to start worrying yet)
Love to all,