May 30, 2011


The same day back from Koh Tao, I bussed over to Phuket to meet up with two friends that were on a perfectly timed holiday. We hung out in Patong for a little bit, a cesspool of grimy tourism at its finest: lots of bars, lots of bar girls, lots old fat white men, lots of massage parlors. Some of the best people watching ensued.

We went and did the touristy thing, a packaged deal elephant ride, monkey show, and trip up to the big buddha. It was really cool to see & touch these huge elephants. One of the guides tied a bandana around my head and dubbed me The Elephant Queen. I lead the pack down the trail from the neck of my sweaty beast named Naaataaalieee (that's me yelling to get her to bray or pay attention). It was all in all a fun day but the dark side of the large tourism industry was present. The elephants had constant waves of tourists to carry in the crazy heat, seemed tired and some had wounds. We were told the elephants were females and thus didn't have tusks, but I saw some things that I'm pretty sure were male parts... then the guides tried to sell us ivory knick-knacks to "help buy food for the elephants".

The monkey show was depressing, a pig-tailed macaque on a leash dancing to Lil Jon. We really wanted to free the little guy. I wondered if the packaged tour purposely ended at the big Buddha so you could repent and feel a little better about the enslaved animals you just saw.

(Later I read about this elephant/monkey place in my bible, the Lonely Planet guide, and they described it to a T. There are supposed to be others that are more of a sanctuary for these animals and much better!)
The view from my throne: big sweaty hairy elephant head.

Forced to volunteer. It's a ironic that he's untying me when he's the prisoner!
Great view of the lush greenery. There was a picture of this view after the 2004 tsunami destruction, pretty scary.
Buddha in purple.
Can you find the classic Asian typo? They provide a lot of laughs, in one restaurant they were serving "Steamed Crap". 
Kids playing at low-tide.
Lays chip variety: Hot Chili Squid, Pork, Seaweed, Sweet Basil. Yum.  

I didn't get to see enough of old Phuket Town or much of less touristy places, so further trips coming up soon...

May 18, 2011

Koh Tao

My first few days in Thailand were spent on relaxing in Koh Tao with fellow teachers. Lots of lazing on the beach, reading in hammocks, good food & beer on the beach. Not at all a bad way to start off the year!

We took the night boat there from Suratthani, 9 hours squished like sardines in the humidity with nothing but a fan and the rough & bumpy ocean. But then I woke up to this little fella in a sailor shirt!

April 27, 2011


Up at 3:45 with one hour of sleep, April 27 ->
Boston Logan ->
1 hour nap on flight to JFK ->
6 hour layover ->
14 hours flight to Narita Airport, Tokyo ->
2 hour lay over ->
5 hour flight to Bangkok ->
Sleep like baby ->
1 hour flight to Surat in AM April 29

So I'm not sure how long this will last but let's give it a go.

I'm not really sure if I can/will commit to a blog.  I'm not much of a writer and it freaks me out to 'publish' posts that I don't feel satisfied with, for some internet public to read, just to publish a post... But then again, I am new at this so maybe after a few posts I'll feel differently, and who knows, I may end up loving it.

It's also an awesome way to (b)log everything that's going on over the year, look into aspects of Thai life & traveling, and to make you guys jealous of my adventures, of course. I'm trying out lots of new things this year, so this is just another one for the list.