Day 86: The Sweatiest I've Ever Been

Trip Start May 20, 2008
Trip End Aug 19, 2008

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Flag of Thailand  ,
Friday, August 15, 2008

One of the things you "have to do" on these islands is book a day-trip snorkeling in one of the surrounding marine national parks. The day before we'd booked one, and at 7am this morning we were picked up by the van and driven to the tour ferry. It was to carry us (and 100 other backpackers) out to Ang Thong Marine Park, an array of hundreds of rocky uninhabited islands and some allegedly decent snorkel fodder. We should've booked a Ko Tao trip instead as snorkeling isn't what Ang Thong is famous for (it's famous for the epic views of the Gulf its peaks afford) but the trip would still be worthwhile. It also featured a pig-out worthy breakfast buffet of croissants, croissants, bananas, and more croissants, bringing welcome carbs to my drained and now underweight body.

The tour itself wasn't too note worthy apart from a (very worth it) viewpoint climb that caused me to reach The Sweatiest I Have Ever Been, but some of our fellow backpackers were. There was a clique of about seven extremely obnoxious Belgian Jewish folk, lead by an obscenely obese couple who gave a bad name to my people for the duration of this voyage. There were also the Italians, a pair of late middle aged couples who seemed to be performing some clothed version of Kama Sutra on themselves at various points, one wife of whom was tanned far beyond the point of the tan being attractive and the boyfriend of whom, a lion of a man, who seemed to be constantly posing for a none existent fashion shoot in his speedo. Goof balls, all of them. We befriended a friendly German man who complimented our countrymen, asserting that the American backpackers were the most impressive in respect and intrepidity on his SE Asia travels thusfar . At least I think that's what he said, I might be misremembering.

Nighttime was spent wandering around Hat Lamai, where we stumbled into some sort of free concert in a park featuring a local Thai rock band. Their music sounded vaguely Latino and helped add to an overall impression of South Thailand being the sort of "Mexico of Asia." Also present was a chubby balding old white man lost in a hopeless stupor who successfully creeped out nearly every local woman present. When he stumbled into and then sat down on a random plastic chair in defeat, a little poodle (of all things!) trotted up and began licking his face in wuv. It was adorable! We ended the night early to save ourselves for the next night's antics, the grand finale of Thai tourist insanity... the monthly Full Moon Party on Ko Pha-Ngan , the world's largest rave. I've never been one for raves, and this one would not change that to a hilariously FAIL extent.

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