The last week can be summed up in the following 4 photos:
Jetlagged til Friday (Sleeping from 9pm-5am) then didn’t get to bed until 5am on Friday/Saturday so I have once again switched my bodyclock the opposite way.
Still I ate the first onion from the allotment in a wicked curry this evening and there is a beetroot about to the roasted. The sun is still shining (apart from on Saturday at a BBQ/Pool party – God, please be more considerate in future.
Got a nice shiny new digital SLR, the Nikon D50. It is very very nice. Of course a good photo is in the eye of the photographer but flash kit can help a bit I reckon!
Saw the hosts (formerly 2 members of Hoggboy + 2 newbies) at the Washington (Washstock) on Friday night. Was all good but went wrong when I should’ve gone home but ended up at the Interval and then at a club with no name near the old Arches. (The old Printworks). Anyway it was good clean fun as you can see from the above Junglist Alliance photo – it were reight hot!
- [last.fm] (possibly the best site on the planet?!)
- [myspace] (be my friend? I only have 2 and one of them isn’t even real!! Actually I don’t really care about myspace)
(If you’re trying to link the photos with the text. Don’t. I have also failed to find a plausible link between the sunflower and jetlag)
I’m back and very jetlagged –photos on up on flickr. All my flickr sets are here if you might have missed any older photos.
So another week of beach life passed very quickly – time accelerating as the island departure time approached. As John and Viv said on their blog it was nice not to do a huge amount for a long length of time. Really really enjoyed it though. It was a great mix of rest/relaxation with a little bit of strenuous walking and diving thrown in. Thanks for being such good travel companions John and Viv and make sure you all read their post about voluntary work in Madagascar. I will hopefully be helping them out with selling some of the finest artwork known to humanity so watch this space!
We left on Saturday lunchtime with a boat to Chumpon which took a couple of hours. The no alcohol rule was quickly broken after a couple of beers waiting for the boat and then the discovery that Singhas were on sale onboard. Then after a bus ride and possible our collective worst meal of the trip (oops I’m moaning now!) we took the night train to Bangkok which arrived at the ungodly hour of 5.30 am (or even later, but they still woke us up at 4am to put the beds away)..! Probably had an hours sleep anyway.
Sunday was spent doing a bit of shopping at the ridiculous huge MBK centre. Have been there before and the size blows your mind. There are 2,500 shops on 8 floors. It’s pure madness. Anyway bought 4 winter hats for about 6 quid. A pair of “Diesel” (probably fake) Jeans for 11 quid (+ they hemmed em correctly in 30 minutes!) and T-Shirts. Mr Hobson bought a very classy pair of Burberry glasses but I’m sure he just bought it for the case…. (Of course I’m only winding him up)
Had a meal at May Kaidee’s veggy restaurant which wasn’t as good as the last time but I was sad to be leaving and slightly dehydrated. Plus I’ve since discovered from her website that she has a proper posh resturant as well as the temporary one we used. Then I took a taxi to the airport having left John and Viv to spend a couple of days in Thailand before continuing their arduous (wink) travels to Southern Africa.
And finally: Flight/Abu Dhabi airport/Met up with a fellow Koh Tao diver for a coffee which was really nice/Another Flight/No sleep/Gatwick/Coffees at Victoria with Friends/Watching American tourists outside Big Ben/Train to Sheffield/Taxi/Grrrr/Home/Sleep/Wake up at 5am/Jetlagged all day. and another day..
Oh and I took some photos of the new St. Pancras station for John as he is missing what is going on at home. Yes John the day I was there they moved the Midland Mainline bit to it’s new location (Platforms 1-4) and look there are flashy signs saying St. Pancras International!
Well at least it’s virtually as hot in Sheffield as Bangkok and it feels hotter than the beach as there is no breeze. Actually I’m not sure if that is a good thing.
Finally, Fordhall farm survived! My share arrived in the post. Will be keeping an eye on what they are up to anyway. Well done Fordhall.
Right best get back to the summer!
More about the sunburn later. Scroll down now if you can’t wait to find out more about this incredibly interesting piece of news..
Another week of beach-bumming. However, have now done 5 dives so far with Big Blue dive school including my deepest dive ever (24.7 metres) and longest (51 minutes). The first was a refresher as I couldn’t remember my BCD from my weight belt! After that successful dive did a whole day trip with 3 dives. At first the sea was very choppy and that combined with getting up at 6am made me feel a little ropey but the diving was good, met loads of cool people and saw some fantastic coral and fish. Did a night dive last night which was pretty cool especially as it is full moon tomorrow so had a spectacular boat trip to the dive site, sat on the roof of the boat watching the moon rise over the island. Saw a speckled porcupine fish, manta rays and hermit crabs!
Thai Whiskey buckets continue to be drunk despite their brain damaging effects. I have had the strangest dreams ever on this island (as have other people I’ve spoke to) so it’s either something in the drink or possibly the processed cheese. After the World Cup final myself and John managed to find some good music to dance to and once again I ended up getting to bed at 7am and having a “hangover” (although there is no headache more feeling unattached to the world) for the following 24 hours (I still don’t feel quite right now).
Have done a couple of walks across the island to some more isolated beaches and have fed some more fish bananas. Keep getting freaked out by the giant geckos (yes they are huge and they appear to be living in my roof) and various other insects of the night. There are also loads of myna birds flying around (Check out Hobson‘s photos for a few photos of birds 😉 )
So I have been sunburnt quite badly (in true Brits abroad fashion) but it wasn’t my fault! I bought some “coconut” sunscreen from the chemist which was supposed to be factor 15. Having liberally applied it and smelling like a coconut we walked over the island in the 11am sun. After a bit of snorkelling and sunbathing we headed for shade and some lunch. It was then that I realised I was getting red. By the evening I was very red. I bought this stuff cos it didn’t use any chemicals and it was produced on Ko Samui (i.e. 40 miles away). It didn’t work. I have now bought a bottle of Nivea factor 20 which was probably produced in Germany or something. I tried… This photo (left) was taken as I got redder and redder.
So apart from that just been watching the dogs fighting on the beach – they all have names and appear to “live” and defend the territory of their respective guesthouses/restaurants but they aren’t owned by anyone. It’s only the cats that appear to be kept on leads. Jon (Sairee Hut) and Barbeque (Blue Wind Bakery) have quite a few fights each day which is quite good fun to watch, Goldie seems to be brain damaged and spends a lot of time in the sea looking at the fish. Then there is another one which likes chasing sand and frisbees. Yes these are dogs and not people.
I’ve also been teaching John and Viv a bit of French before their trip to Madagascar later in the year. Also ended up chatting to some French people during the World Cup final. One was even amazed that I was English so I can’t be doing too bad with my accent.
Well been in Thailand a week and am just about at the horizontal point of chilling out and not caring about much else in the world apart from where my next milkshake will come from and eating my daily allocation of at least 2 eggs (Current egg count is 16 eggs in a week – is that healthy?)
Arrived in Bangkok last Saturday where John and Viv (read their blog!) met me at the airport and we had a couple of nights getting drunk, watching football and having a look around Bangkok – including a trip on the new metro which was underwhelming! Took a night train and a boat across to Koh Tao on Monday night and have spent the last 5 days doing pretty much nothing.
Most days have been spent swimming in the sea or reading in the shade and having a beer as the sun goes down. The one “big” night out frazzled our brains such that we had 36 hours without alcohol.
On Friday we did a day’s snorkelling visiting 3 bays and the Fish and the Coral were amazing. You only had to be a couple of metres into the water before there were fish swimming around your feet. Lots of different types to. Of course feeding them bananas created a frenzy.
I’ve uploaded a couple of videos to YouTube including Fish Feeding Frenzy.
So that sums it up. Rest of the photos are on the usual Flickr site. Probably going to do some diving in the next few days. John is doing his PADI so hopefully he can help me remember what I learnt 2 years ago in Malaysia at AluAluDivers.