Well, well, well- we are back on the main land, back to a more normal life ( if a normal life exists...)
We had booked a combined ticket, incl taxi, 3.5h ferry, 3.5h bus for 650 baht (~14€) from Koh Phangan to Krabi and had no idea what to expect!
It was very well organized, the coach was actually very comfortable and even showed 2 movies on 2 big screens ( ok, one of them was a horror movie called " Piranhas" which is another story...)
Another minivan drive later and we arrive in paradise! In our mind, this hotel looked like a palace - after having stayed in the more alternative hippy-style Sanctuary for the last 10 nights.
First day we strolled through the Main Street, along the beach and even did some shopping - that was needed after 3 weeks abstinence :)
Most shops would sell cloth, bracelets, scarfs or fake handbags and sunglasses! If you enter the shops the salesman always walks straight behind you and even tries to go into the changing room ( which is a curtain hanging down from the ceiling at the end of the shop) with you!
If you ask for the price, no matter what they say, your response has to be: " and your best price?" And guaranteed-you get it at the end for half the price! It's crazy to think how cheep the stuff is, ESP for me, knowing how much the cost of garments is, it's terrible to know how little the people or even kids get , who worked on it!
The second day was a trip to Railey! I have stayed here before for almost a week, so I thought I know what to expect!
I was wrong! In less than 2 year, this little half island has completely changed! There are little shops, massage places, Thai boxing rings, bars and on every empty spot are building works going on.
Speaking to some locals, a lot of rich foreigners came, bought the land, the beach, the mountain and are now building new resorts, and not re- build what the Tsunami once took!
The place is still stunning with its massive rocks, a climbers paradise! Wished I had my Mizza here and we could have gone for a climb!
The next place was gonna be Koh Lanta! We found this absolutely beautiful resort, directly on the beach, offering spa and yoga! Perfect for us!!!
So we went to the travel agency close by the hotel, and booked the trip from this friendly lady-boy. He/ she made a few phone calls- very " old school" and the trip was booked. It all sounded great, and for 350 baht incl bus and ferry, we didn't complain!
The next morning, we got picked up in a rather old van, with 6 other people already in it! We drove to a thai palace, where the driver took his time to pick up some tickets. 20 minutes later, we drove to a bus station, where lots of other people waited! We had a private guide, who took us through our booked trip and sold us at the same time the tickets for the way back! Clever :) At that time, we wondered how well organized and very nice everything is!
Finally we were allowed to get into the old scruffy van again and off we drove! Not sure how long the drive was, but for me- far too long! Might have been an hour, hour if horror and I often thought this was my last hour! The driver, not sure if he ever had to do a license, drove like a " gesenkte Sau or a maniac". He overtook, when cars where coming and didn't slow down in corners. Awful! On top of that, the driver kept shouting "PGF", which meant he urgently needed patrol. Filling up the van took another 15 min, I guess it went in drop by drop!
Arrived at the car ferry- a monster concrete floating thing- got stuck and didn't move at all when we wanted to leave. It just blew out black smoke! So we had to get pulled off from another ferry! Crazy!
The bus also never dropped us off as agreed and paid for at hotel, no - it stopped in the middle of no- where and the driver told us this is it!? What? This is it? 8 little western faces looked with disbelieve at him, and we all had to get a tuktuk to get to our hotels! Nothing we could do about it, apart from paying extra 150baht each!
Well, at least we arrived in paradise....
Take away: it is amazing how simple and easy things work out here! Best example is the trip! The agent made some calls, almost like 20 years ago at home when we booked a summer holiday at the travel agency! We stress and get nervous, because we are not used to handle simplicity! Everything is over complicated - so we have to actually re-learn what simple and easy means! In the end everything works out fine here! So why stress and get paranoid? Can't change it anyway