Oh-man we're in Bangkok (Claire hates this title)

Trip Start Jun 25, 2011
Trip End Dec 24, 2011

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Tuesday, August 30, 2011

So here we bloody well are. Firstly, as we did promise, we'd like to say... we wonder what Victoria Murray is doing now...

Anyway, we survive the hellish flying (with terrible turbulence ove India and an hour delay sitting on the gound in Oman) to reach our Bangkok hotel. Of course we are tired but of course we can't just sleep so we head down to the hotel bar to drink some beers and wach the 'musicians' play all the greatest hits of Lionel Ritchie in Thaiglish. With old Blue (yes thats the UK BLue we're talking about; apparently they are very popular here and we don't have the heart to tell the barlady tht they split up bout 4 years ago and no one in Englnd likes them) songs also playing loudly on the TV overhead its quite the introduction to Thailand.

We go to bed very happy to be here and excited to meet our tour group tommorrow!

31st August:

Claire jumps straight into it and has rice for breakfast declaring 'I could eat this all day'. Whether or not she thinks this in 2 months time is yet to be seen.
After we have sorted ourselves out a bit we jump in  taxi to the Ko San Road to enduldge in western activities such as drinking coffee and looking at tee-shirts stalls; alongside the expected 'Same same but different' t-shirts are a few bizarre ones, the best of which has to be that with a picture of a lady in a bakini snorting a line of coke in the shape of the word 'facebook'. Nice (a few days later we see a guide wearing this at the s-21 genocide museum in Phnom Penh. Wow).
Its much as we expected so after an hour or so we head back to the hotel for a little snooze until at 6pm we meet our group. They're  freindly old bunch - here's a break down:

'Lake' is our female Thai guide. This is here nickname in Thailand as we are not able to say her actual name and even a week later we are not sure we're saying 'Lake' right. She doesn't seem to mind!

Ebony and Simon are a couple from Melbourne.
Marcus, Fabian and Susanah are from Germany but didn't know each other before.
Livia is Swiss and the youngest at 19.
Andy is American and our fellow touring lesbo.
Catherine is English and the easiest of us Brits to understand apparently.
And lastly Becky is a Geordie and we don't understand most of what comes out of her gob. 

For our first night Lake takes us to Cabbages and Condoms, which is a restuarant run by a non-profit organisation which aims to makes contraception and sexual health info as widely available as cabbages. Its a lovely place with some interesting decor, and our large dinners cost us about 6 dollars each.
Lake purchases some local specialities for us to sample: Chanpul is shredded carrot, rice and bamboo shoots and herbs wrapped in a leaf which you also eat and its yummy. Durian, a stewed Thai fruit in coconut milk, however, smells like rotting fish and tastes similar but worse. Avoid at all costs.

The evening makes us excited for what comes next...
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