|Mae Nam Neighborhood Temple|
|Sidewalks w/Carved IN Storm Grates|
I suppose at one time or other when traveling, we might need to take a walk to find a pharmacy. For me, I developed a little infection on one of my ear piercings (not a new one) a few days ago. I asked around for directions, took a walk to the pharmacy, picked up some rubbing alcohol. I think that's what it is. It's aqua, smells like rubbing alcohol, only a bit sweeter. The infection is ebbing. I don't know, maybe I should taste it? Anyway. It was a nice walk, ended up being a couple miles, just because it felt good
to walk around the neighborhood and explore.
Nice lady in the office. Very helpful. She began to explain, in English, the tour to Angthon National Marine Park, which I was interested in, having read of it in my www.lonelyplanet.com Thailand Travel Guide.
By this time, I was nice and comfy in the sturdy little teak chair parked at her desk. In walks the fellow who runs the internet cafe with an adjoining entrance to the travel office. He pulls a Singha Beer out of a cooler in the corner while he glances over at me. Well, of course, I asked him, jokingly, "Where's mine?" He laughs, makes some comment and says to me, "You from Russia?"
"No, not Russia..."
"No...not Italy, America! California" (That usually gets a good response...)
"AHHH, America! B a r a c k O b a m a !!!" He goes on to say, "I'm not so good with language." And off he walks, laughing, chattering, by which time we're all laughing.
|All Aboard to Boat #7 via the Long Boat|
|Angthong National Marine Park|
When all 35 or so of us first landed on the boat taking us to the Park, of course we didn't really know each other, we were all a bunch of strangers, a bit quiet, just looking around for a friendly face. An English speaking conversation would be a bonus.
A young couple, turned out to be not a couple at all, but brother and sister, were close to me on one of the several large wooden bench/tables placed on the deck, under a large canvas covered tied down to provide shade. We began talking, had a couple Chang beers, and by the end of the trip, were good friends. They're on a 2-week holiday to visit friends who live here on Samui.
Lisa and her brother, Matt from Gatwick, England. Matt works as a baggage handler at the Gatwick airport, has a grand fascination with all things wild - crocodiles, tigers, elephants, great whites and Thai boxing. Young guy, already planning the millions of Euros he will make in Real Estate, leaving a fortune to his children. I think he told me his dad is in Real Estate at this time.
|Lisa and Matt from Gatwick|
Lisa studies at University in Manchester to be a Social Worker. She told me with a little frown, saying some of her friends think it's a 'bad' thing to be a SW. "'taking away people's children and all." She wants to work with youth, with young people, to help them. Good on her. When not in school, she lives at home in Gatwick, close enough, she says, to see all the air traffic coming and going. She has the travel bug bad, has had incredible adventures. She totally cracked me up.
All in all, we sailed the high seas, hiked the hills, laughed and laughed and told stories like we'd known each other for a lot more than a few hours.
|Luncheon is Served|
|Over the Emerald Lagoon (see it??)|
As I reached the shore, a young Japanese couple were bending down looking into the water with their snorkle masks, near the shore, where everything is stirred up. I asked them, "Do you swim?" "No, no" they replied. Happy helper, me, I showed them with few words and many hand gestures that if they just walk out a bit, they will see some beautiful fish. So they turned and walked out that direction. I turned around, put my mask on for a last look beneath the waves, and OMG!! There were dozens of striped yellow, blue and white, black striped fishes just in front of me. And I just sent those fine people away!! I felt bad. When I looked out, they were having a good time, though, looking at something down there.
|The Three Amigos|
At this same island, Matt took the big climb of the day, 400 meters. Lisa and I did 80 on the first island stop of the day, that was enough for us. We did a short kayaking around about at the first island, too. Fred would have been proud. My brother, big time rafter/kayaker who's taken me on at least one long rafting trip. I paddled and steered with the best of them, the front-'man' in a 2 person kayak.
The guy sharing the kayak with me was on his own for the tour. We laughed, shared a few directional tips; he was a strong paddle man. Not bad looking, either. We managed paddling beneath some rock outcroppings without just a few crashes into them. Slight crashes. Tiny ones.
|View from our Boat #7: Fishin for a Livin|
After we boarded for the trip home, about and hour and a half I think, we were waiting for a bit to get started. One of the tour guides opened up the side rail and let us know if anyone wanted to dive or jump in and swim around, it was okay to do so. A 20 yard jump into the sea! YES!! Matt was the first one in and I wasn't far behind him. There was the cutest little 6 year old German kid, Michael. He and his dad would jump in one after the other, he was just the cutest little froggie-boy!! I think Lisa got video of me jumping my last time. We'll see when we catch up later; hopefully we'll see each other again when I'm in their neck of the woods in just a couple months time.
Good times, good food, cold beer, cool water and a hot sun made for a beautiful day with lots of great pictures. Lots of different boats on the sea to see, islands everywhere we looked, shifting cloud formations, the sea the color of so many shades of blue and green. The waves, the foamy drifts off the boat. The sea air. Ahhh.
Lisa told me, 'You ARE going to get a picture of that, don't you know."
Just about when I'd given up, the little thing landed at a post right where we were sitting. It was a BEETLE! Right then and there, he was named Sir Paul.
|Our Tour Guide, Alis, with the End of the Trip Tip Basket|
With all this fun and such, I did manage to get my first (minor) sunburn on this current 'holiday'. Just enough to stay indoors for a bit.
I'll get back out when the sun is a bit cooler in the late afternoon. Happy Hour time at the Pool and the Beach Bars. That's one thing about Hutcha Resort. Three different bars within one small space. Iced tea or coffee, Chang, fresh drinkable water, breakfast, lunch and dinner. Pina Coladas.....
.You can find discounts.
. Just about anywhere.
Just Hop Aboard.