Issue 7 / 2009 – Thailand

ok, ok, ok, I know I am officially the world’s worst blogger!!!
I just checked my last entry and it was on 22 March! That’s dispicable!!!
But, I have a few very valid reasons for that…. losing my job; mom & James coming out; Granny passing; Kim coming out; going to Thailand. All within a month! Extremely crazy…However, I am back… and you’d better be ready for it – this blog entry is just going to focus around Thailand as there is just too much else to write about.
The photo’s are all saved in albums on Facebook and I will put links below where you can see them (regardless of whether or not you’re on Facebook) as it will take too much space on here for them all… as usual I too hundreds of photos and have chosen nearly 300 to show you all.
So, my blog is going to be a day by day account of what we got up to. Enjoy!Day 1 – 26 April
We flew out of Dubai at 9am, and arrived in Bangkok at 6pm. We had a few hours to kill at the airport so walked around a bit, and had our first Thai meal… yum!
9pm we then caught another flight to Chiang Mai and that’s where the fun starts.
After collecting our bags, we walked out the arrivals lounge and saw a tour operator kiosk so decided we go see if we could book a few tours so that we could have some plans to our lives.
After booking things, we walked out and Natasha notices we are the ONLY people in the airport…. so the guy who booked our tours walks up behind us and says “No taxis” and proceeds to pick up our bags and take them to HIS car…. and drops us off at our hotel πŸ™‚

Day 2 – 27 April
We decided to do our thing today and hired a taxi driver for the day.
We first headed off to the elephant camp where we got to watch them have a “shower” in the stream, play soccer, play darts, paint pictures and a couple other things.
It was really cool watching them paint… I ended up buying of the pictures that I saw an ele paint as it was just too amazing for words!
From there we headed off to a temple (we saw many, many, many temples so I’m at a loss for names on most of them…) and I walked up 306 stairs to get up to the temple!! Quite hard work…
We then eventually got back to the hotel where we had checked out and needed to get our things to the next hotel we were staying in, but were running out of time. It was 6pm and our next hotel was probably about a 40 minute drive away, and we still needed to get to dinner by 7pm.
Anyway, we called the guy who had helped us out the previous night at the airport, and he came to our rescue! He took us to dinner, waited for us (with bags in his car etc!) and then took us up to our hotel in his own car again.
Along the way his cra broke down (one adventure after the next hehehe) and we had to wait for his friends to come fetch us!
We eventually got to the hotel close to midnight and passed out.

Day 3 – 28 April
Today we set off on a tour along with a minibus full of people… made up mostly of Aussies!
We headed out to Chiang Rai where they have the natural hot springs and man oh man, were they hot!!! And smelled terribly of rotten egg… plugh!
From there was off to a(nother) temple but this one was pretty cool…. it’s made entirely out of white cement, and tiles and they are putting small mirrors between the tiles to make it ‘sparkle’… they even have white fish in the fish pond!
From there we headed off to the golden triangle where 3 countries meet – Thailand; Burma (aka Myanmar); and Laos.
Those of us with our passports with us were lucky enough to get a stamp showing we had been into Laos πŸ™‚
We got out the boat along the shore of Laos and visited their “port”. Here they make all sorts of whiskey including snake; tiger penis; scorpion and some other creature that has no English name. I was a sucker and tasted the snake whiskey… not bad at all, just VERY strong.
I ended up buying a snake and scorpion bottle as souvenirs – never to be opened!

We got back to Chiang Mai very late at night (around 9pm) and decided to go walking around the markets and have a drink with the Aussies we’d met.
Another very late night for us!

Day 4 – 29 April
Off we go to south to Koh Samui….
We arrived at our hotel and they said to us that we’d book the standard room (which we did) however they were having a promotional special upgrade to a pool villa for only AED200 per person extra. We decided to take a look at the villa, and before we’d even left there decided that we’ll take it. WOW!
The first day was spent pretty much relaxing by the ppol / on the beach / sleeping etc and that evening we went into town – Chaweng Beach – to let our hair down a bit. What an amazing place… there are just little market stalls along the road everywhere, selling anything and everything you can imagine. All fake goods, of course, but hey… why not?! I succumbed and bought a few t-shirts, a bikini etc… mostly clothes.

Day 5 – 30 April
A day of tours in Koh Samui…. we headed off really early to have a look at more temples, and then down to another elephant show where they also had a snake, maccauw, crocodile and monkey show.
From there we were taken up into the mountains where we got to swim in the little stream underneath a waterfall – was VERY refreshing!!!
We ended the day by being dropped off again along Chaweng Beach and spent the evening walking the streets, drinking cheap cocktails πŸ™‚

Day 6 – 1 May
Another early start (are you starting to see the pattern? Late nights, and early starts… needless to say that I slept on all flights!) and we head off to Phuket.
We had booked ourselves into on of Phuket’s (in fact Thailand’s) most prestigious resorts (within our budget) so were really looking forward to this….
We arrived at Banyan Tree and were blown away. They had everything waiting for us, including an upgraded room that we didn’t ask for, nor had to pay any extra for! A pool villa…. WOW!
The first day there was spent with Natasha in the spa, and I walked along the beach, lay by the pool, swam in the pool and just caught up on some sleep.
That evening we headed over to the other side of the island where we had some food and did a bit of shopping.
We got caught in our first “Thailand rainstorm” which was an experience… Natasha felt a drop of rain and a short while later I did…. during this time though we see people hurriedly moving inside and we can’t understand why… well, within a few seconds the heaven’s opened! We ran for cover and just happened to stop at another little (cheap) cocktail bar where cocktails were only AED10 each!
We met another couple there on holiday and they said that we should try Bang La road – apparently famous in Patong for ‘she boys’… use your imagination!
We walked the streets for a while and then headed on back.

Day 6 – 2 May
Today was another day of tours…. once again picked up pretty early and a long drive (1.5 hours) out to coast. Here we got onto big (50 seater) speedboats and headed off on an island-hopping tour.
This was quite fun spending the day zooting around on a speedboat.
When we eventually got back late evening we once again headed off to Patong Beach and found some more cheap cocktails at only AED8 each!!!!

Day 7 – 3 May
We were able to have a slight lie in today and headed off for our 10am flight to Bangkok.
On arrival in Bangkok we got straight into the shopping and headed on over to Chutachuk weekend market which is only open on weekends. What a market!!! Amazing things there…. and plenty to eat on the side of the roads.
We had intended to head off to Chinatown that night but were too exhausted so decided to stop at the Banyan Tree Bangkok (right next to our hotel) and had a bit more of an expensive cocktail there on the 63rd floor (AED40 each!)

Day 8 – 4 May
Tours tours tours…. we were lucky enough today to have a private tour so we headed off to some more temples and the Grand Palace where they were busy preparing for the coronation of the King.
From there we went off to the reclining Buddha and then pretty much back home.
We decided to try Chinatown this evening, but were disappointed that there were no food stalls on the side of the road – it was Monday and apparently in Bangkok on Mondays the government does a clean up and the road stalls need to move off the side of the road and into actual shops. We did however find a nice place to have a decent meal, and a HUGE beer! (AED18!!!!!)

Day 9 – 5 May
Today was a public holiday in Bangkok as it was the coronation of the king, but luckily we were still able to do the floating market as planned.
We also visited the “Rose garden” where we didn’t see any roses, but did get to enjoy a traditional Thai show of all the different dances they do, and another ele show…
With it being our last night, we then decided to head off to another bar we’d been told about on the 62nd floor of a hotel… but they wouldn’t let me in coz I had slops on 😦
So we decided to have one last massage in Thailand (we’d had them pretty much every day!) and then headed off to our hotel for our last night.

Day 10 – 6 May
Natasha was up fairly early to pack and head off for her Thai cooking class, and I got to sleep in! After waking, I checked us out and finally got to just go lay in the sun!!! Unfortunately it ended up being so hot that I could only lay there for a short while before telling them to put the umbrella up for me!
When Natasha got back, we headed off to Jim Thompson’s house – he’s the guy who is pretty famous in Thailand for Thai silk and he went missing a few years ago and no one knows what happened to him.
From there we headed on to the airport for our last little bit of travelling home.

What an absolute adventure!!
I will definitely be back in Thailand and next time I want to go to one place (probably Koh Samui or similar) and lay on the beach!!!!

Just a quick update on my life here – I still am jobless, but the search continues! I have moved in with some friends too so that I can save money on rent. So, we’ll just see what the next month or so has to offer me. I still plan on staying here so am doing my best to find a job!

Chat to you all soon!
Love Hazy

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