New Years at the beach
Trip Start Sep 18, 2010
86Trip End Jul 27, 2011
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Our double-decker bus looks decrepit, especially the wind shield, not much of which is not cracked and taped. Constant stops along the way make us wonder if the engine will last. It's not the most comfortable of rides, but at least we have two seats to ourselves each. And what can you expect for under $20 return. The 5 hour journey takes many more hours, so by the time we arrive at the ferry dock, cross to our island, share a truck taxi to our beach and check in to our bungalow, the sun has already gone down.
Right away, the island vibe is much friendlier than our good old Khao San yell-y atmosphere
The next morning, I am feeling very chilled. The island vibe is kicking in....Directly looking at the ocean, I am sitting at a table built over a hole in the veranda. My feet are dangling with the sea underneath me. People are nice. Their lack of service culture doesn't bother me. Neither does the pathetic breakfast. Or the bebbly beach. Or the shower that wasn't really hot and had no pressure. Who cares?! I am on the island!
On Koh Chang, people are riding motor cycles wearing next to nothing. Taxis are pick-up trucks with two benches in the back, fitting up to 12 people, two of those standing on a platform
One night, we haggle for a shared taxi fare and refuse to pay the price the driver insists on. After several failed attempts at finding a cheaper ride, we realize we'd been haggling for 70 cents worth of savings. Traveling on a budget does that to you.
2011 arrives for us six to twelve hours ahead of most people we know. And I don't know of anyone else that was as lucky to celebrate it on the beach. I am no fan of the drumming beats of mostly trance and house. But it is quite the spectacle to watch. Western security forces would cringe at the lack of safety regulations. People drinking fluorescent mix drinks out of plastic buckets, the kind kids build sand castles with. Fire artists engaging intoxicated tourists into jumping fire hoops. Drunk (and who knows what else) party goers dancing on a 10 meter high, shaky scaffolding. Victims of the debauchery passed out in the sand, occasionally poked at by concerned other attendants to check if they still stir
We decide we want to move to the nice sandy beach and stay one extra night. Flash back to the first entry from Thailand. We were supposed to learn a lesson about moving places then, remember? Turns out, we didn't pay attention at travel school. So yet again, we waste most of the day trying to find a place to stay. And so we spent our last day on our first Thai island with a little less beach time than we had expected. But we'll be back, no worries.
Happy New Year everyone!