Trip Start May 28, 2012
46Trip End Oct 24, 2012
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We were on the North of the island with a lot of the super fancy resorts, and our comparative little shitter was sort of tucked in amongst them with the cheapest beers. We spent most of the time on the beach for the first day but on the second we took cover under the gazebo into myriad hammocks because we got crazy sunburnt. Jamie had also caught a cold and was all blocked up and miserable - most likely from the cold air conditioning on the bus ride from hell - so it was another quiet relaxy day had by all
We had booked to stay at this first place for 3 nights and then move to another guest house (the one we wanted originally but was full for the first three nights). We rented a bike and did the move a km down the road to the next place one bag at a time. This bungalow was also basic as can be, but was actually sitting on the beach. Hammocks everywhere strung up between the trees and on our balcony. It was pretty spectacular. A lot of swinging and book reading was done, interspersed with multiple swims in the blue water. The beach at this end of the beach was a bit rocky so we had to walk *gasp* about 30 metres to the right to get back to the nice, rock-free sand. I managed to leave a good amount of toe on that beach from the rocks, but succeeded in not attracting a shark feeding frenzy.
While we had the bike we did a ride around the island and saw just how built up and westernised it is. Jamie had read that it was the most westernised place after Bangkok and it certainly looked that way. It was pretty hard to find beach that didn't have a resort plonked on it, and if it didn't have a resort, it probably had dive boats leaving. It was pretty crazy. This was in low season, so lots of the places were empty, but it must be nuts in high season if even half the places fill up
I did a loop of the island early one morning while Jamie was trying to sleep off her sickness to check it out and it really wasn't that spectacular because it was so built up. There are many McDonalds, bars, about a million pharmacies, Tesco's, more bars, and everything that isn't one of this is a restaurant with no-one in it. It was all a big strange. There aren't actually many places you can see the beach because it is so developed, and then the road pulls in off the coast and goes inland across to the other side. The whole loop road is about 50ks and took about an hour on the scooter (riding carefully because there is an average of 6 deaths a month because of foreigners driving too fast - there are three - THREE! - hospitals on the island so must be a good business to be in.
After that excitement it was back to hammock swinging and reading. The staff were all really laid back and pretty funny, the main head honcho lady told us the wifi password was a secret because it was the next door resorts network and she had somehow got the username and password for her guests! There was one crazy dude that was a bit nuts and must have been some relation to the staff. He literally sat in the hammock all day everyday talking to himself and sneezing and making annoying nose and cough noises as if he had a really bad reaction to the sand or something
The most eventful and exciting thing we did the whole time was probably venturing out to go watch the All Blacks and babe Richie for the night at a full on Kiwi bar half way round the island. We had seen the game advertised on our scooter adventure so we locked it in and were actually pretty excited for the game! BBQ'd burgers were going cheap in which Jason tucked into one and a few beers. I tried my hand at the first wine I've seen in months - unfortunate it The bar was not in the main drag of town so it attracted a few rowdy old blokes, some who were kiwi and some Aussies who were also going for the All Blacks
That night (our last night) THE RAT CAME BACK! But he was outside this time or under the floorboards because we could hear a plastic bag rustling like there was something moving around on it but there was no plastic bags in our room! It wasn't a very good sleep that night either 'specially because everytime I heard something, I would tap, hit or shake Jason awake for him to look around with the broom again! We were picked up at 6.30am and were taken to the ferry. After that it was a bus across to the other side of the peninsula to Krabi and the other islands. We got some sweet front row seats (best seats on a bus yet) at the top of the double decker - too bad the trip was only two hours!