Full Moon Madness

Trip Start Nov 14, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Saturday, May 5, 2007

A pleasant surprise on the over night bus journey from Bangkok to Surat Thani in that we bumped into Claus the Austrian we met in Diu and again in Goa. We met at a service stop but unfortunately he was going in the opposite direction.
We decided to stay away from Haad Rin (where the Full Moon Party is) as it can severely damage the budget with non-stop partying. On the boat from Surat Thani to Ko Phangan a rep from a resort talked us into staying on the opposite side of the island. It was beautiful, quiet and our bungalow sat right on the beach with a tiny palm tree for shade. However on the second day it started to rain and never really stopped for the rest of the time we were there. There wasn't much to do when it rained so we headed off to Haad Rin on a couple of motorbikes to go and sample a few bars and restaurants. The next day was my 25th birthday. Ben and Amy bought me a vest, tin box and a beach dude style necklace. Raining all day again we started to think we should move to Haad Rin because our beach was almost redundant. On the night we went there to celebrate my turning of a quarter century old by taxi. The taxi being a rip-off which has resulted in the taxi men driving brand new pick ups and basically owning the island. We met up with Katie who we met in Goa and her mate Alice. We had an expensive Italian meal which was lovely and then went on to lose the plot on the Thai Buckets (remember - whiskey, coke and lethal Red Bull). We bumped into a lad we met in Luang Prabang, but you know when you inexplicably just have nothing to say to someone and after a joyful hello you stand in an awkward silence. Well we were like that and I think we bumped into him just about everyday. He is going to Sydney too.
The next day and hung over we decided against moving that day despite the magnificent eagle caged next to our bungalows keeping us awake in the morning. It turned out to be a good thing because that day three comical Dutch lads, Christina and Anneka from Sweden, Canadian Nick, a lad who thought he was Sting and did nothing but meditate and a group of Irish that did nothing but drink. Honestly they did not stop. So we started to have fun in the rain, drinking, watching footy, drinking and playing chess. Amy's new favourite game.
Canadian Caitlan met up with us again on the night of the Full Moon Party which turned out to be one of the strangest nights of our lives.
Firstly, we had been drinking all day and Amy was flat out asleep when it came to getting ready to go. I tried my hardest but anyone who knows Amy will understand that waking her  up is nion impossible. She refused and screamed that she never wanted to go to the Full Moon anyway. Despite the Full Moon Party being ours and 10,000 other people's sole reason for being in Ko Phangan. Remember we left Ko Phangan a day before the party in February so that we could experience it for the first time with Amy. Anyway, as I walked to the taxi without Amy I was so annoyed I just had to laugh.
We were told by the rep on the boat that we would have a free taxi to the Full Moon Party. They wanted to charge us 200 Bhat each which disgruntled nearly everyone. We crammed into the taxi. I jumped into the front while everyone else clambered on to the back of the pick-up. Totally unaware of everyone arguing with the taxi man about the price, the next thing I knew , I was getting dragged out of the taxi by my neck. None too plussed I swiftly got into my pushy, what the f*** you doing mode. A few quick remarks about his mullet and podge followed and when I walked away - WHACK he punched me on the back of the head. I turned, everyone now staring in disbelief  and was about to retaliate. I didn't fortunately  but went to see Amy and tell her what had just happened. She couldn't believe it. I went back to wind him up a bit more but he had disappeared. Apparently he had 'lost face' something very important to Asians. One man told me it is a really good thing that i didn't hit back because the taxi men, police and other underworld types basically run this mad-capped island. Anyway one good thing came from the whole charade. It woke Amy up and she was now ready to party.
We got there but it was raining. Therefore we drank even more bottles of Chang, more vodkas and a couple of Thai Buckets. Then the real madness began. The whole beach was full of bars playing various kinds of dance music from trance to Break Beats. After a bit of a dance we went and sat by the sea and watched the surf role in, a hundred or so lads pissing in it and a couple of skinny dippers splashing around in it. Then we heard some shouting and screaming. Four girls were dragging some bloke  out of the water. Not what you need in the state we were in but with our lifeguard skills we thought we had better go and have a look. We did and about ten other people did the same. Amy took charge but I have to say this guy looked dead. He was a westerner and in his late 20s early 30s. His mouth was locked up, there was no pulse and he was blue. Nevertheless Amy checked his airways, checked for breathing and started mouth to mouth. Someone else checked for a pulse then a girl started CPR. This went on for twenty minutes. Nobody knew when to stop because none of his friends were there to say, no lifeguards came (there wasn't any) and when the Police turned up all they did was push people away. News of an ambulance arriving came so we lugged his body up to the road but there was none there. I sprinted about looking for it to no avail. So they loaded him on to a pick-up and few people joined him to hospital. As the pick-up drove off, the pair of us (very drunk by the way) looked at each other and Amy got upset by the fact there was no ambulance. Thats just how it is here so we tried not to dwell on it too long. Amy was a star and we decided to forget all about it as he was probably dead for a while and we did all we could. Plus we had most of the night still to go.
We partyed on and had a good time. In the morning I was dancing in the bar up on the cliffs looking  over the beach when I noticed Amy fast asleep on a nice bit of sand. No sign of Ben though. Ten minutes later one lad said "Is that your girlfriend?" I looked and saw one of the funniest sights ever. Amy was asleep but the tide had come in a little bit and the water was lapping up around her. I told you, impossible to wake. Everyone was asking if she would be Okay. I assured them "yeah she will be as happy as Larry."   One lad said I should check. I dared him to do it. Just as i was about to head down the steps to see if she wanted to come for a dance I noticed Ben staggering up the beach. He spotted me and started waving. He started to shout something and then tripped over Amy. Hilarious! We all decided we better head  home as it was now well into the next day. A mad taxi ride home with excellent craic from a Frenchman and a couple of days of trying to pull our heads around followed. Well some attempt as it was very close to impossible to sober up with the Irish lads hanging around. Unfortunately, while taking drunken photos of each other Ben decided to delete one showing how drunk he was. He deleted them all??? We lost every photo from the hill-tribe trek in Luang Prabang, all the kick boxing and elephants in Chaing Mai and my birthday and the Full Moon. Fortunately we found a place that might be able to restore them, however in the transition between our bungalow and the shop, I managed to lose the memory card.
The next days continued to rain, everyone seemed to be depressed and hangovers that a lot of people were trying to postpone with the aid of Chang were starting to take hold. We decided to leave for Ko Toa.  
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