Wednesday, November 23, 2011

thailand: don't you rock my boat

as we mentioned several weeks ago, we've learned a few things while on the road.

longtail boats, koh lanta, thailand
newest lesson? having a beach within 30 seconds of your thailand bungalow causes a severe drop in interest in a computer screen. and we mean severe

that's just one of the many reasons we'll probably never make it big as travel bloggers, not that it was ever our intent. the laziness and slow pace here starts to creep in, slowly at first, until you realize about a week later that even pressing the power button on your laptop would require too much thought and energy. 

another lesson? when the weather's gray and a little choppy in the morning, and you're stepping on to a boat for an hour's journey to a remote island, and the snorkeling guide says "oh, when it's like this in the morning, it always calms down in the afternoon," run... run far away until the sun shines again. 

hey, it rains a lot. who has time for a rain coat?
koh lanta, thailand

we'd like to think we're no pansies as travelers but, holy freaking cow, that ride back was NOT through calm waters! as we left the protected bay of our snorkeling spot later in the afternoon and headed around the island into the teeth of the wind and rain towards home, we hit a cross sea (too many jack aubrey novels were running through my head at this point) and all of us were being thrown around the cabin, our speedboat was SMACK-smack-SMACKing against the next wave, a little kid was puking into a bag, the french couple across from us stopped their playful banter and took on a wan, pale, stare-into-the-distance kind of a look, and everyone else just went quiet.

one could barely talk above the din yet the on-board british photographer that came along announced, no SCREAMED, above all of the noise "ok everyone, i have all of the photos imported on to my laptop, LET'S ALL HAVE A LOOK!" i laughed out loud, it was so comical, yet everyone gamely turned his way and gave it a shot. however, as we smacked into the next wave we could only focus for a few seconds, then it was back to the million-mile-stare. lesson learned. 

included in the price of the trip was a ride back to our resort from the pier. while shivering in the pouring rain up pulled a pickup truck with an open-air bed and benches in the back. someone from the dive shop stepped out and waved their hand toward it suggesting "here you go, your limo, as a thank you from us."

back in the safety of some free wifi now, where we found the energy to turn on our laptops, it all seems suddenly comical. we love it that over the course of a day we can now count as new friends some danes, some french, a few swedes and a brit. again confirming for us that the best thing so far about travel is the people.

see? this is what we're talking about! it's hard to step away. koh lanta, thailand.

moving on: we've already extended our intended stay here at relax bay, about half way down the island, but we'd like to stay even longer. sadly, staying here would kill the budget so we're moving to a simpler place with very simple bungalows set back from the beach. they quoted us $12.50 a night but suggested that we could also haggle a little "for a better price." a better price! i don't think either of us have ever stayed in something that cost $12.50. it seems our walk to the beach will now be a full minute.

we'll report back.


  1. Good one, Rusty! Exceptionally good capture of the "frightened tourists in a small uncomfortable boat" scene.

  2. Hey Guys!

    We've just read your recent blog entry and it sounds amazing. It reminds us of our dodgy water-related experience in Laos...
    What did you think of Istanbul?! Will you be heading up to Chiang Mai?

    We hope you're both well and we are looking forward to reading about your future adventures!

    From Bristol, with love

    Pascale and Em x