Gorgeous Koh Samui

Trip Start May 31, 2005
Trip End Aug 31, 2007

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Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Checked out of Big John's on the 25th and spent all day on the Khao San Road. At 6pm we met a guide who took us to the bus stop ready for our overnight bus to Koh Samui. The bus was typically late and we waited an hour and a half for it to arrive. Met a girl from Oxford and guy from Israel who warned us about dodgy overnight buses and how they abruptly wake you up in the morning and hurry you off the bus onto another. Then you realise you've had stuff pinched from your bags. We took note and climbed aboard the greatest bus ever. It was like being in first class on a plane. Reclining large seats, big fleece blankets, air con and TV. It was almost too good to be true for a fiver each....
We watched the crappest film in the world and before we knew it, the whole bus load of people were flat out asleep. This bus was comfier than some of the beds we had stayed in. During my sleep, I thought I felt my bag being tugged from under my feet. I remember coming to and stamping on my bag so that it wouldn't move and remember thinking "we're not going up a hill, so why is my bag slipping backwards??". Of course I was half asleep and didn't think anything of it. The bags were right under our feet and seemed quite safe!!!! Next thing you know, some guy is bellowing down the bus "Hurry, Hurry, Koh Samui, Phi Phi, Koh Tao, off the bus now, hurry, quickly now". Everyone rushed to get off the bus thinking we were going to miss this 'connecting' bus which we didn't even know we had to get. When we were sat on the next bus, still half asleep and feeling very dopey, i remembered what the israeli guy had said and as the bus moved off I checked my bag. Despite being padlocked and so I thought safely stowed by my feet, some bastard had managed to pull out my wallet and had stolen 5000 baht (about 65 quid) and 3 of my credit cards. I was so angry. I stormed down to the front of the bus and shouted about what had happened. They pretended to not be able to speak english and ignored me. We stopped in a petrol station 5 minutes later and we asked if we could call the police but there was no phone. Everyone was completely unhelpful, and more than likely, all in on this scam together. Another couple had 7000 baht stolen too. We have no idea how they managed to do this. Unless they had little secret doors underneath each seat, as the bus was pretty much full and we had people sat behind us. It really is quite sinister.
Thank god Tom had his mobile phone and although it probably cost a tenner a minute, i called my credit card companies and cancelled the cards. Turns out the bastards had already tried to use the cards and security had been alerted and the fraud teams were dealing with it. I felt sick to the stomach and realised how stupid I had been to even think we were safe on this big luxury bus. It really was too good to be true.
Anyhow, with the cards cancelled I tried to relax a little while Mike and Tom thought of sinister plans to trap these rats should we get a nightbus back to Bangkok.
On arrival at the port, we got a taxi to 'Lamai' which is where we're staying. The taxi dropped us off at 'Sea Breeze Bungalows' when we thought he was trying to scam us, but turned out to be quite fairly priced at 3 pounds a night with private bathroom, air con, fan, towels and loo roll!!! And right next to the beach!
We got on our swimsuits and went straight down to the beach, which is gorgeous. Clear blue sea and white sand. Not to mention the clear blue skies and bright sunshine. It's really nice and just as beautiful as the caribbean.
So we have been chilling out here for a few days - just lazing on the beach, swimming and snorkelling. We went to the tourist police and filed a report about the theft - they said this happened on a regular basis and that they recently arrested a whole company for this kind of scam. There must be thousands of people out there that this happens to.
Went into 'Cha weng' which is the next town along and very touristy and took a look around and had some dinner.
We are moving to 'Amadeus beach bungalows' tomorrow as only 2 quid a night. Think we will stay here for few more days and then move on to another island. Do a bit of island hopping before we go back to Bangkok.
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countrybumpkin on

Working is so 1990's
So I quite like this not working mallarkey!
Only 3 days into it, but its fun! Got back from Glastonbury last night. Great laugh. Got through 48 tinnies in a weekend on my own!
Bad luck about the money situation, and I won't say I told you so, but I will stress again, 'Thailand is the most dangerous place for stuff being nicked. Its a criminals dream!' In fact, I am thinking about turning to crime for my next job. I know somebody who will pay 250 squid for each passport he gets. I'd only need to get 2 a week! Just pop into a hotel, behind the counter where foreigners have to leave their p/port for 1st night, and hey presto!!!
Anyways, put a money belt on, keep all c/cards, moolah, and passport in it, to avoid being a victim. Look on the bright side! At least they didn't get your 1989 Panini football sticker album hey! Always got Ian Rush in mine!
Yeah, its sunny here, so I'm spending a bit of time in the sun, and reading whilst flicking through Thai brochures, and convincing Louise we're off there in September! She's keen, so its only a matter of time before we get a date.
Chang is the best beer there is, and you can drink it all night, as there are trace amphetamines in it, so the more you drink,. the more you want to drink! But have some water by your bed to avoid the dreaded Changover!
See if you can drink a whole bottle of Sansong whiskey! I managed it, but did break my camera, almost drowned, woke up on a beach, then layed in my own vomit!
Thomas your sack trucks were the bollocks! Everyone told us, they wouldn't handle the mud, but how wrong were they!
Keep in touch and let Mike and Tom have a little paragragh on each entry even if it does take them best part of a day and contains nothing but obscenities?
Rigt, best go and sunbathe my Peter Andre body in the midst of screaming women and ice cream van drivers........

countrybumpkin on

Mines a Stella
I want to hear more about Dans idea to plant your bags with land mines!
I think its a great idea, and I am also glad to hear that our soldiers are given the chance to bring back some of this memorabilia in their backpacks
I think the only way you can get them back legally is to kill every other Thai person you see, as they're all probably in on it!
Always keep an eye open when you're asleep!
And always take a wee sitting down! That goes for you too Amanda!
Lets see them combat this foolproof plan!

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