Lost Backpacks!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Trip Start Jul 31, 2007
Trip End Jul 30, 2008

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Thursday, October 4, 2007

Checked out of our Hotel at 12pm, and left our backpacks at the travel agency we booked through, spent the afternoon in Bangkok and then went and waited for the bus, met a Korean Lady and a guy from Alaska while we waited so chatted to them, our bus arrived, really nice, and loaded our backpacks on and got comfy on the bus, even had a stop for food, and there was a toliet on the bus so real comfy!!Had a nice sleep, then we stopped, so went down the steps and the guy waved his hands at me and said no, i asked Ko Toa? he said no, and the doors closed, so i let Baz know not our stop and we fell back to sleep.
Then a couple of hours later the bus stopped again, they shouted, "everyone off" and you are so lost in translation out here, so we all got off, and we were in a street???????????? okay, wheres the ferry??? But then we noticed our backpacks were not on the coach???!!!??? mine Baz's and a scottish guy named David,(who we later discovered has travelled the world about 3 times over and loves columbia of all places??) well we said to them " no backpacks, where are our Backpacks??" they just looked and laughed at us, so i tried again, pointing at other backpackers backpacks, again, no response!!! i looked at Baz and Dave and they both said, we talk to them we'll end up punching them, understandably, this was our lives!!! and by this time the other backpackers had clicked onto our problem, and they said, this isn't on, so again, i tried to get some sense of what was going on, and the lady who was with the travel staff, said "everyone follow me" and started walking down the road, well noone would, cause we'd lost our backpacks, and they were all like, dont leave the coach until you know whats going on, all this is in broken english with many different languages being spoken, but fairplay to everyone for sticking by us, so then me Dave and Baz are talking and it clicks to Dave, that this was the wrong stop for Ko Toa?? problem number 2!! not the staff letting us know, oh no, us lot working it out, so i walked to where the others were waiting for us, and said "any of you going to Ko Toa??"  No they were not, all off to Ko Panagh!! Ahh we were beginning to work it out, when the coach stopped and i went down the bloke waved at me and said no, and the doors closed, actually we should have got off there, and they would have unloaded our backpacks without us, hey, who would notice 3 extra backpacks without anyone carrying them??? you would think they would check numbers at stops, they had all our names on a clipboard with where we were getting off!!!! so we then explained to the guys we were going to Ko Toa, and they then began to realise what the fuss was about, and then shouting at the guy who said no to me, who had made the mess up who was now hiding on the bus, so then they ring this thai women and hand me the phone, all the others are still waiting for us at this point, refusing to go with the woman, well i have had a better conversation with a goldfish than i did with this thai lady, in the end giving up, i handed the phone to Dave and said you have a go, so he was struggling then went into a fluent conversation, organising that we'll pick our backpacks up from a dive center in Ko Toa called new wave!! ace we thought, when he came off the phone i asked how he manage to have such a clear conversation with the lady, he said i didnt, there was an american guy in the background, he got fed up with her, took the phone off her and i spoke to him, ace we all thought!!So we all walked with the lady up to another travel office where we had to wait until it was time for our ferry. Next problem, how do we now get to Ko Toa, we were supposed to arrive at 9.30am, on one bus and one ferry, so the lady explained we had to catch a ferry with the others to Ko Panagh and then to Ko Toa ,(spellings could be completely off here!) so then David made it very clear he was not spending another Baht on tickets and we got all new tickets for the next ferrys, it said Ko Panagh, then Ko Toa on the tickets, so then we get piled in to the back of what looked like an ex army truck, with jokes being made from the others like "right have we all got our bags, oh no, not you three" everyone laughs,!! yeah yeah, very funny!! but they were all so nice, we were talking to a couple of girls from New York too, discussing the lost in translation, and they said, the thai just laugh and say yes to everything, so the day before they asked this Thia bloke, "are we gonna die?" and he laughed and said yes!!!!!!!!! so this army truck took us down to the ferry stop to wait for the ferry, so on we get to this ferry, it is now 8.30am the following morning, we travelled for another 3 hours on the ferry and on the second stop, we all pile off, Dave has been to Ko Toa a couple of times, and he was saying its changed a bit, we walked off the pier and looked up and the sign said Welcome to Ko Panagh??!!?? Arrgghhh we'd got off at the wrong stop, so we all legged it back to the boat, which luckily was still there and said Ko Toa??? they said sit there and wait, pointing at the pavement, okay???? so again, they said 2 stops to Ko Toa, but infact it was three, we stopped at Ko Sumai first then Ko Panagh and again, lost in translation, noone knows what your saying.
So we sit talking on this step, thinking our boat will arrive infront of where he told us to sit, then five mins later this guy comes up to us and says "where you going", we told him and he said "get on boat" we were surrounded by boats?? "which boat?" he pointed at a boat behind us so on we get and we finally arrive at Ko Toa, at 2pm so we had now been waiting around and travelling for 26hours, so then we had to find this new wave dive shop, so we walked into a dive shop and asked where it was, and they said its at another beach and pointed on the map, so as it turned out they wanted to charge us 100 bhat each to get a taxi (which is a cool 4x4 off the roader open back truck) up to the other beach, so then Dave suggests, Baz to wait with me and he'll go up and get all 3 and then bring them back, and we cut the costs and share, so thats what we did, and yes he got them!!!!!!!!!! when he got back we all had a well deserved drink, and he mentioned that when he got the backpacks the staff said "wait, people want to see you", he was like stuff that, got our backpacks i'm leaving, and he said it was a Korean lady and a guy, he saw them walking towards him as he drove off in the taxi, and then it dawned to us, the couple we had been talking to in Bngkok while waiting for the bus, had got off at Ko Toa, realised we hadn't, looked after our bags for us and that was that guy, who Dave said was the american guy talking to him on the phone, and then they would have got to the dive shop at 10am, and they had waited til 2.30pm, for us to arrive to pick up the backpacks, so they had looked after our backpacks for us the whole time, when we explained it all to Dave he felt bad for leaving without speaking to them, but he wasn't to know, so now our whole time we keep an eye for that couple as we owe them the biggest thankyou.
So at 5pm that night we had finally found digs, really cheap and clean and nice but back to cold showers again, went out grabbed food and fell into bed at 11pm, after 35hours from checking out of our hotel in Bangkok.
So today, nosed around, the place is completely just for divers, we took a twenty minute walk upto a beach up the road, and it was lovely, did some sunbathing, and walked back, and had a very quiet evening. No culture shock here, very very westernised, the beaches and water are nice, but think we'll move on in a day or so to another island.
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