Simple Pleasures at Simple Life

Trip Start Aug 04, 2011
Trip End Jan 04, 2012

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Tuesday, September 27, 2011

I have caught up, but it's only really by cheating. I have managed to buy us an extra day, by making sure I didn't have anything additional to write for today's exploits - making my job a lot simpler to catch up. The reason we haven't done anything today? - Firstly the sun. And secondly the alcohol.
On arrival at Ko Tao yesterday we took immediately to the pool area. A nice little pool and due to the fact it is 'monsoon' season, there is very little people about. The resort on Sairee beach has many little bars and restaurants and the 'Simple Life' hotel itself has it's own swimming pool and bar/restaurant area. The hotel is having some extension work carried out but the builders are generally quiet as they don't tend to use machinery, everything is done by hand. Anyways, back to the pool. We've had 2 months nearly of temperatures over 29/30 degrees. Yesterday was about 27-28, with a cool breeze but with sun. For the first time, we have sat around and enjoyed sunbathing. We were out for about 3 hours in total. We splashed around in the nicely warm pool and Kate noted my back was a little red. I thought it was from where I had been laying down - I was wrong. From 3 hours and some serious complacency I have developed a beautiful case of Pale Brit sunburn and have a sore back, a sore belly and some lovely red burn lines. After getting back into the room I realised my error, but the damage has been done. No sun for me today (which is lucky as there hasn't been any).

Now, I read online about a bar on the beach called Lotus Bar. Sunset drinks are served during their happy hour and we sat watching the sun going down over the horizon in idyllic form. The bar put out little cushions and mats on the sand to make it more comfortable, and we sat taking in a few bottles of beer - In front of each of the mat placements, a small ditch had been dug, in which sat a beer bottle full of a liquid with a sealed cap on top. At about 7pm, it became dark and the barman walked around the beach area lighting the bottles, which are equivalent to a controlled Molotov cocktail. Packed with gasoline, the bottles burnt serenely all night lighting the beach front. The Happy hour had stopped, and me and Kate would return but we headed back through the streets to find somewhere to eat. So many options. We ended up eating in a Mexican called El Gringo, but ate Pizza (It was cheap!), it was very nice. Popping back to 'The Simple Life' bar, we took in a couple of free greeting drinks, for which we had been given vouchers when we checked in.

Aware that the Lotus bar served bucket cocktails 2 for 1 post 8.30pm, we returned to the beach and the vibe had changed a little. Less quiet than before, the music was a louder, and three of the barmen had turned their hand to Fire based tricks. With sticks soaked in petrol, and flaming balls on cables, the barmen twirled their flaming balls left right and centre in a fume filled frenzy. It was highly entertaining, highly intoxicating and with loose petrol flying everywhere, highly dangerous. The health and safety culture hasn't quite hit south east Asia just yet. Every now and again a bit of petrol would land on your clothing, but once the first bucket of cocktail had slid down your throat, you no longer cared. They kept their tricks going all night long, entertaining the crowd, but we had to bow out at about midnight after finding our second bout of buckets just a little too much. Weary, and hammered by fumes and alcohol we stumbled back to the hotel, zig zagging our way along, Kate still grasping the remainder of our bucket in her hand saving it for another occasion. Kate talked to a couple of stray dogs on the way home (I do mean dogs, and not the rough lady type) and we giggled our way past the receptionist to bed.

Passing out relatively quickly, I woke up at 8am to panic about not having my wallet. I couldn't remember bringing it back. I searched about the room in a heady daze quickly locating my camera - well that's one thing at least. I looked in the mirror, and saw a glowing red body staring back - sunburn hasn't suddenly disappeared. Thankfully, in my still slightly drunk state, the pain hadn't started yet. I looked everywhere, in the bathroom, out in the corridor, I took my bags apart, I looked in the minibar (why the hell it would be in there I don't know!) and then finally I caught a glimpse of something near Kate. I lifted her head gently up and there under her pillow was my wallet. She doesn't know why she had it, or when she got it but the relief I then felt was enormous. Panic over. Falling back to sleep quickly, I wake at 11am with Kate and we watch 'The Hurricane' and 'Street Fighter' in our room safe in the knowledge we'd already missed breakfast and with the sky in a dark cloudy state, we weren't really missing anything else.

After doing very little all day, I went for a dip in the pool in the dark at about 7pm and then we went out for a nice Thai dinner. Fully recovered, except for the sunburn, we're ready for our last day in Koh Tao tomorrow. Kate's insisting I get my hair cut.
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