Koh Pha Ngan Part 2
Wowzers the surprise for Lorry worked a treat! So, we were sat relaxing in the scorching hot sunshine in our deckchairs outside our bungalow when a taxi pulled up and out jumped Hannah and Mel. Lorry's face was a picture - it took a while for her to actually understand what was going on, and her face was one of pure shock and confusion. What is amazing is that everyone in Swindon knew they were coming yet no-one gave the game away on facebook!!
Once the initial shock had subsided we got a drink to calm down and then decided to walk from our bungalow in Ban Kai, to Hannah and Mel's place in Ban Tai, which we were told would take about 15 minutes. After walking for about an hour, and being shouted at and surrounded by a group of scary dogs, we finally made it. We rewarded ourselves by swimming in their pool and drinking Chang (beer), before spending the evening playing cards.
On Hannah and Mel's second day we all went to Haad Rin for a beach day, where the girls could start to get rid of their whiteness and we could have fun in the sea. By about 5:30pm we had had enough sun so went for an early cocktail, then proceeded to carry on drinking until 4:30am! Once cocktails, dinner and beers were done we decided to get a Sangsam bucket and drink on the beach listening to the tunes… but there were none!! We later found out that there was a royal funeral / day of mourning thing so that is why a lot of the bars were closed. That didn't deter us though - one bucket turned into another, then another, then Hickey and Hannah went to the shop and came back with a ridiculously big bucket!!
We went up to Magic Mountain as they had music and a dance floor but left after Hannah started challenging locals to a wrestling match! So we all went down to the beach and carried on drinking and played in the sea. It was a brilliant night and we had such a giggle - at Hannah thinking she was Bridget Jones and then looking like a gay cowboy and Mel who laughed so much she couldn't stand up.
The next day was a recovery day. The great thing about Hannah and Mel being here on holiday rather than travelling with us is that their accommodation is always way better than ours, and has a swimming pool we can relax in! That night we ate so much food at an awesome Thai restaurant that we didn't have any spare space for alcohol!!
On our last day we were going to go to Haad Yao in the north of the island, but it was too expensive to get there so we just stayed on Ban Tai beach the whole day, alternating between getting in the sea and in the pool. In the evening we went to a local market for some super spicy food, then went to a massive fair where Hickey bought… yep, you guessed it, some more sunglasses!!
It is a shame that we didn't get to explore Koh Pah Ngan a bit more as it is supposed to be a beautiful island - we will definitely go on a few more trips if we come back.
After a short 2 hour ferry from Koh Pha Ngan we arrived in Koh Tao, and as soon as we stepped off the ferry we had people shouting "taxi car";"taxi boat";"accommodation". We normally walked straight past these people but a sweet but bossy old lady called Jan or Dan or something managed to hustle us into her pick up trick with the words "300 baht"!
We ended up staying at her accommodation, which was called Happy Bungalows. It really showed how our standards have dropped now we are traveling rather than on holiday - we thought the room was really good as it was big, clean, had its own bathroom and only cost 6 quid, but Hannah and Mel moved out asap!!
That afternoon we took a walk along Sairee beach, and fell in love with it. There are loads of beach front bars each playing different types of music to suit everyone's taste. Plus the sunset was awesome. In the evening we went for some Thai food at a beach front restaurant. The waiter was really funny and friendly and kept coming over saying English phrases like "lovely jubbly";"easy peasey lemon squeezy"; "see you later alligator". The Thai people are so friendly and love to say phrases that they know from your country.
The next day was Songkran - Thai New Year, which is celebrated by everyone soaking everyone else with water. It is to signify cleansing, and is loads of fun!
We went snorkeling that day on an island just off Koh Tao called Nangyuan, and on the way to the ferry port we got buckets of water thrown at us, pelted by water pistols, and were even targets of a drive-by soaking! It was awesome, especially in this heat! We promised ourselves that we would by water pistols when we got back from our trip, but promptly forgot!
Snorkeling was amazing. When the boat arrived at Nangyuan there was a huge dark cloud over the island and we thought it was going to be a rubbish day, but it turned out to be absolutely boiling. The snorkeling itself was fab - we saw absolutely loads of different types of fish, and it was a lot cheaper doing it ourselves than going on an organised snorkeling trip. Plus it meant we had as much or as little time in the water as we wanted.
On the way back we could see loads of beach parties already underway from our boat, so quickly went home to get changed before joining in with the Songkran evening festivities. We went to a party at Maya beach bar, which had some amazing DJ's and a great atmosphere. Even after half an hour we agreed it was one of our best nights since we have been travelling. We decided to save money and make our own buckets, so bought vodka, fanta, and our special ingredient M-150, which is this mental Thai redbull stuff. It was a brilliant night, Lorry had to be taken home by Hannah at 11:30, Mel went fishing and Hickey lost his 6th pair of flip flops in the space of a month! Unfortunately another camera and phone got broken during the festivities, which brings the tally of things missing / broken to 2 camera's, 3 phones, 2 watches, and ipod touch and 6 pairs of flip flops so far!
The next day we all felt a bit rough but getting in the pool early doors sorted that out. We spent the day eating stodgy food and basically being very lazy, which we have discovered is a by-product of being on islands for so long. At night we watched Liverpool make it to the FA Cup final and Blackburn head towards relegation!
Our original plan was to leave for Bangkok the next day (Sunday), but true to form we extended out stay for another 2 days! Sunday morning started… at the pool (for a change!!), then in the afternoon we went to play crazy golf which was a-ma-zing! Not only was the course itself ace but you got the option of playing "goofy golf", where you spin the wheel before your first go and find out your task for the game, such as "play the first shot with your eyes closed" or "play the whole round on one leg".
In the evening we went for our last night out together (boo hoo) and set ourselves a limit of one bucket. The night started pretty chilled sat on the beach listening to an awesome acoustic set, which then developed into drinking games inside, then a good old boogie on the dance floor to the tunes of DJ Jack!
I think we were still drunk the next day as we had many stupid conversations when we were sat on the beach and in the pool, with Hannah being the main instigator asking where dogs come from, specifically which breeds are native to where, and saying that the name Lionel could be a new insult in some countries! We had planned to end our time on the island with us all getting a massage, but we went for some food at a place we have now named Bacteria Alley and instead ended with us doing toilet relay for about half an hour as we all came away with dodgy stomachs! We decided to sack off the massage and made a quick exit home. Not a great ending to a great week!
Next stop Bangkok, really sad to see the girls go home and to be leaving island life after spending 44 days living on 8 different islands. Bring on the Bangkok madness though!