I can't believe I stayed on Haad Rin!

Trip Start Jan 07, 2009
Trip End Aug 04, 2009

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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

After a very very awesome last evening in Ko Tao, it was time to say goodbye to my scuba island to head for Koh Phangan, the notorious party island of southern Thailand. The day began a bit harshly: the sea was rough and I had to hang out on the puking deck at the back of the boat. How pleasant. It doesn't help that there was tons of water splashing up on this deck, so after the 2.5 hours of being seasick, I was also soaked and covered in a thick layer of salt. lol. But it's all good once on dry land again. :)

I had always planned on staying on Bottle Beach, the quiet and beautiful beach on the north coast on Koh Phangan, and then just shuttling over to the full moon party. However, my plan was to meet Hazel and Emma, my Irish neighbours from Don Det (south of Laos, about a month ago) at the pier and figure it out from there. So I arrived around 10:30am and waited around for the girls who were coming in around 11:30...and they weren't on the boat that came at 11:30...or 12:00...or 12:30...or 1:00....at which point I realized that there were actually two piers, and we were not at the same one. Oops. So, after a while, through the wonder of facebook, the girls let me know that they had checked in to the guesthouse on Haad Rin...yes, that's right, the party beach of all party beaches. So, even though this totally pushes me out of my backpacker boundaries, I decided to stay there as well. I had heard such horror stories about how awful and dirty and well, awful Haad Rin is, but I guess since I was prepared for the worse, I thought it wasn't that bad at all. Sure, it's super touristy, but that is to be expected. The beach is actually very beautiful, so I enjoyed my time there.

It was great to meet up with Hazel and Emma again! Couldn't think of better people to go to the fullmoon with...crazy silly girls! So, even thouh I felt a bit ambivalent about the whole Koh Phangan thing at first, I decided that if I was there, I may as well go all out and get into it. We spent hours getting ready, doing the whole body painting thing. Actually, we had no idea what people actually did with the paints they sell everyone on Haad Rin, but we just had fun drawing girly flower and squiggle patterns all over. In the end, it turned out we defenitely had the nicest and most elegant face painting there. lol. But we had fun. I saw this as the beach equivalent of getting ready for homecoming at Queen's in a way.

So what did I think of the full moon party? Well, the sheer amount of people on the beach is pretty insane, but really it was just a blown up version of any backpacker party: same music, same crowd...same same, just with extra buckets. I thought it was going to be all awful techno music, and people on all sorts of drugs and just insane craziness that I am so not into...but it wasn't. I'm not saying it wasn't fun, because it was, I'm just saying it was much more tame than I expected for the all fuss. I remember when I first heard about the fullmoon when I was in Australia, I thought it actually sounded scary...but no, nothing of the sort. lol

So...I debated whether or not to write this next part, because it is so ridiculous, so awful, so AAAAAAAAAARGH-ing that I am afraid to actually type out the words. You're probably thinking: she can't have possibly lost a third camera, can she? Surely, that is impossible. But oh yes, it is. Well, I believe it was pick-pocketed from my bag, because it is truly the only explanation. Also my wallet was taken, which thankfully only contained a small amount of money and no cards. When I reached into my bag to find ONLY my rain poncho in it, I was just in total disbelief. I couldn't believe that it was possible AGAIN. I really just wanted to cry. But the next day, with the amount of pick-pocketing, general theft, and bag-grabbing stories I heard (and I guess I was lucky, cuz some were scarier), there is now no doubt that that is what happened. This is just terrible luck, and I am trying not to dwell on it. But even though I will have so little to show of this trip in terms of photos, I am trying to keep positive and remember all the amazing places I have been without thinking of the photos (and money wasted)............but UGH IT SUCKS!

Anyway, now time for my last few Thai destinations...up next: Krabi.
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