Published: April 30th 2012April 30th 2012
Haad Rin is a bit of a maze of foot path streets with no vehicle traffic permitted (at least for the most part during the full moon party). Niki and a few others told me that your first stop at Haad Rin pretty much has to be Chicken Corner. What's Chicken Corner you say? Now, I know what you may be thinking; at first you're probably picturing all manner of chickens bolting left and right as half drunk back packers chase them down the streets, hands out-stretched as if pursuing a hat blown off their head in a sudden breeze. Instead it is two restaurants across from one another that specialize in, you guessed it - chicken sandwiches.
We decided the fist one we'd hit was the shop that made chicken schnitzels. They were cranking these out, fresh, at a rate that I can only imagine endangers the very existence of the local island chicken population. And its reputation certainly preceded it for good reason. I had what was possibly the best chicken schnitzel sandwhich I'd ever had; the buns were fresh, the chicken moist and delicious and it was cooked and ready in about 3 minutes. What's more they brought about 8 different sauces to your table, all for about $2.50.
Content and well fed we walked around the streets of Haad Rin, grabbed a few beers and got ourselves situated.
The full moon party sports an excessive amount of black and UV lights, so neon clothing and UV body paint is the dress code for the night. Niki had herself sorted out way ahead of time with a sweet little outfit but as I dont own an item of neon clothing (despite having survived the 80's) I settled for body paint. We grabbed a jar of orange and a jar of blue and proceeded to paint little designs on our legs, arms and shoulders. I painted some blue stars and vines on Niki, she painted orange swirls on my shoulders and shoulder blades.
Ready to go, we hit the beach just as it was getting dark. The party was in full swing, with about 12 thousand people drinking over-sized cocktails out of buckets and watching the local Thai guys perform amazing fire shows in the sand.
We wandered around, had a couple buckets and some beers and decided to climb the steps up to Mellow Mountain, a bar at the end of the beach that overlooks the vast stretch of beach that is covered in neon colors, fire, lights and a massive crowd of people in various stages of wasted.
Mellow Mountain is known for its 'happy shakes'; smoothies made up of ice, fruits and most importantly - magic mushrooms. Never one to turn down a local custom I ordered myself one. Niki did the same and we found ourselves a decent seat where we could dangle our feet over the edge of the balcony and watch the party unfold below us as we raised our shakes and toasted ourselves to a fun evening. We finished our magical beverages and were watching the party below as we realized that perhaps this wasnt exactly where we wanted to be when the effects of our mystical smoothies took effect. We collected ourselves and descended onto the beach and made our way up into the now party overflowed streets to find a cab. It had been sometime since we'd eaten, and since we'd enjoyed our chicken sandwhiches so much before, we decided to quickly get a couple more to eat for when we arrived back at our bungalow.
Chicken sandwhiches in hand, we realized everything was now quickly becoming hilarious as the mushrooms we'd drank in our shake were taking effect. As we wandered the streets, we easily became lost. Walking in circles desperately trying to find someone holding a sign for a cab. 20 minutes later Niki spotted a guy and he lead us on a long walk through the crowd, past what felt to me like two military checkpoints and out into a sea of trucks, cabs and motorcycles. We were ushered into the back of a truck and told to wait a moment while they found a few more people. While we were waiting, two grumpy german girls climbed into the back. They had been telling people they were Canadian and were having what they said was an absolutely terrible time. Now since basically everything was completely hilarious to me at this point, the general distress of these two girls just made our evening that much better as we set off on the most fun cab ride of my life. Careerning down palm tree laden streets in the moonlight, the warm air blowing through our hair, we laughed all the way back to our bungalows, clutching our chicken sandwhiches that had now become some sort of tasty trophy.
When we arrived at Had Yao beach, we quickly noticed that it was deserted - everyone was on the other side of the island partying away, leaving this beautiful moonlit beach all to ourselves. We made friends with a beach dog (or rather he made friends with one of our sandwhiches), sat in the sand and watched a distant lightning storm light up the clouds way out over the ocean.
A fun eventful evening, finished up with a little lightshow was all we could have asked for as we called it a night and crashed out in our bungalow.