Published: October 11th 2007October 10th 2007
What are you hungry for?
This market in Ranong had it all. Not that we knew what it all was.
Last time we checked in with all of you, we were on our way to Myanmar to become sea gypsies...and we went....for a whole day! I'll give you the short version of what happened: In order to get to Myanmar from the south you have to cross a huge waterway (Bay? River? We're not sure what it was.) Upon arriving our passports were taken by a disgruntled immigration officer that just happened to be reading a book with Hitler's face on the front and swastikas all over the binding. Normally this would raise too much awareness, but just before leaving Thailand we received word that the Myanmar Govt. had just massacred a few thousand monks so we were already a bit on edge. The short of the story is that we were not allowed to pass further than 5 kilometers in to the country unless we went back to Bangkok for our visas...or else! We weren't exactly sure what that meant but didn't want to test it. To add to matters we assigned about 5 "guides", which consisted of a group of young pickpockets designated to harass us and watch where we went. We left the very next morning for Bangkok,
Street Food: Pad Thai
The best cart on Khao San Rd. Good poeple, good food.
back across that waterway on a boat that broke and almost sunk when we were hit by a massive storm. Ryan and I seriously looked at each other and started discussing whether we could swim it if necessary. Luckily someone stopped and gave us a tow!
Once arriving in Bangkok we ran in to Russ and Sippy once again....I know, small world! They were on their way to somewhere up north, train tickets purchased, bags packed, etc......but after some convincing (And by convincing I think that Ryan said, "Hey we should get a beer together before you catch your train.") they decided to postpone their train ride for one more day so that we could hit the town for the sake of old times. Note to selves, any time someone says "for the sake of old times" you're in for a heap of trouble and definitely some good times as well! Russ and Sippy, you guys are a hell of a lot of fun and I hope that we get a chance to meet up again before this trip's over.
Our hopes of actually going back to Myanmar with visas disappeared with word of more political troubles taking
place over there. We'd be lying if we said that the demonstrators outside of the embassy didn't make things look too favorable as well. So we decided to re-route our trip to the Andaman Islands instead. These islands off the coast of India look as though they may be paradise. The fishing and diving look amazing and there's surf there as well! Oh, on a side note we purchased Russ and Sippy's boards (7'0" and 6'6") before they left so now we've got the proper instruments necessary for 3-4 weeks of good island L-I-V-I-N'.
The only bad thing about going to the Andaman's is the fact that they're part of India and we've had to endure the Indian visa process while waiting in Bangkok. We've been stuck here for 8 days waiting for our paperwork to go through and we're going stir crazy. We've exhausted the bar scene, toured the city like crazy, almost bought a monkey, bargained with souvenir salesmen until they know us by name, argued with taxi & tuk-tuk drivers, looked at temples, and eaten every type of Thai food that this city has to offer...except for the grasshoppers and worms because they look as though
they've sat out in the sun too long. I can honestly say that both of us would be happy not to eat another Thai meal for a year. One of our biggest treats has been eating at the local McDonald's because it's the only place that offers a touch of home.
In order to pass the time we've also taken up fishing at one of the local lakes. They have Giant Mekong Catfish here that are absolutely huge! We haven't exactly been knocking them dead but we caught a few solid ones.
Today's Wednesday and tomorrow we go to pick our visas up. We've booked a trip to Calcutta, India on Friday and from there we'll catch a transfer to the Andaman Islands, India on Saturday. We can't wait!
There are more photos below