Published: February 4th 2009February 4th 2009
Well after another hideous 12 hour journey, we arrive in Phuket, the largest island on the west coast of Thailand. We are dumped in the middle of Phuket Town at nearly Midnight and have to try and negotiate our way to the hostel. Within minutes we realise that booking 2 nights stay in Phuket town was a mistake. We were expecting a smaller scale Bangkok; but were we mistaken. It is filthy- cockroaches, rats and stray dogs everywhere. Everything is shut down- even though this is alledgedly this is the peak season!! We were starving but the hostel didnt do any food, and the only place we could eat was at a tiny street cafe 2 blocks away who only did fried chicken and noodle soup, and on the way Han was very nearly bitten by a rabid dog!!! We asked for 'mild' noodle soup and when it came it was pretty bland so we put some Chilli flakes in. BIG mistake!! we were coughing, spluttering, crying and all the locals obviously found it very amusing!! so we admitted defeat and headed back to the hostel, rented a DVD (The Notebook with Ryan Gosling- yummy!! and a real tearjerker) and went
to Bedfordshire. The next day we got chatting to some people at the hostel; again a real mixed bag of people; and discovered there was a festival on celebrating the Chinese New Year (still!) so we headed down there and it was pretty cool- about 3 of the only 10 Westerners there but it was ok and we listened to some live music doing cover songs which THEY LOVE in Thailand. Another thing to mention is the continual scams Thai's are trying to pull on you. Especially taxi scams- this happened in Bangkok and Phuket Town. They coax you into their cab/Tuk Tuk and agree a very good price, then the insist they have to take you to their traditional Thai factories- Clothes and Jewelery and such like, as they are given petrol tokens by the Government and a commission from the store owners- and once you are there you cannot get away!!! No matter how much you try to say "We are backpackers, have no money and arent going home for another 5 months" They just pester pester pester so thats just a pre warning for anyone thinking of travelling here!!!!
The next day we decide we cannot
stand another day in Phuket Town so we decide to head over to the notourious Patong Beach. Basically we had been warned "It is only a place for Western men" but we thought anything was basically better than P T. We got there and after driving round in a Tuk Tuk for 40 mins, with a very lost driver we eventually find our nice guest house with a big room and gigantic emperor sized bed. We have a snooze and then decide to take a wonder into town. Contrary to the "men only' name tag we found a huge mix of people- families, groups of girls, old couples, really old couples (grey hair brigade), and of course groups of lads. TBH it was just really nice to see a beach again (a really nice beach too) and a load of Western people!! We went for dinner and then had a stroll around, and then stumbled on the Bangla Road, which is like Benidorm on steriods. This is where you go for a Ping Pong Show, strippers and Thai prostitutes. We kept on being co-erced to go and see one of these infamous Ping Pong shows and eventually we relented; when
Maya Bay AKA "The Beach"
in Thailand....... So it was free to get in, and you immediately walk into a strip club full of about 20 Thai girls all in various states of undress attempting to pole dance, but TBH they were terrible!! no rhythm at all to be honest I think if I sucked my stomach in I could have done a better job!!! And then it dawned on us is was basically a glorified knocking shop. One very young girl was gestering to a man next to us (who was old enough to be her grandfather) That she wanted to have sex with him for money up stairs. I mean these girls barely looked legal. The all looked so pre-pubecsant, it gave the impression it was a paedophile's (wet) dream. So we thought we would have one quick drink then scarper. We ordered 2 Pina Coladers (or Penis Enlargers!!). The bar man came back with them and the bill. 2000 BAHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thats 40 pounds!!! For 2 drinks!!!! Now I understand how they can get away with not charging entry!! So we thought there's no way we are paying all that for them; we gave him the contents of out purse (540 BHT- about
11 pounds) and managed to escape unscathed, and not before downing 3/4's of the drinks!!We legged it down the road before they could get any form of security (although it would probably take about 5 Thai's to disarm one Harrild) But then we realise we've legged it down a dead end and end up in someone's back garden with their livestock amongst our feet; so we then have to turn back and run past the girly bars again; trying to be inconspicuous when all you can see are skinny Thai girls half the height of us and a splattering of Western men.
Well we did make it out in one peice but it did leave a bad taste in our mouths. I was expecting it to be fun, entertaining, but all we experienced was sleaze, smut and perverse men. And believe me we're no prudes. Patong is full I mean FULL of white men and Thai girls, everywhere. It's quite sad really. How these women can find these men attractive I dont know. They're ugly overweight ancient perverts. These girls must be so desperately poor; quite sad really. But then again these stupid old men are fooled by these
women that they really love them, when in fact all they are really interested in are their wallets. Our friend Jim's friend fell for a Thai and she shafted him left right and centre. There was always a sick relative who needed hostipal treatment, her mother needed a fridge- and get this; his father needed a new cow!! And he stumped up. More fool him.
So yesterday we sunbathed on Patong Beach and ate a Chinese meal- in all truth, we are getting pretty sick of the Thai cuisine- it's getting pretty samey. We then have a Thai oil massage which was 5 pounds each for an hour, which is a real bargain. But quite surreal!! At one stage these masseuses had actually mounted our backs with their knees on our legs and elbows on our backs!! they only weigh about 5 stone so it wasnt too traumatic. But then they get you completely naked and start massaging your bum cheeks and boobs!!!!! It was all Han and I could do to not burst out laughing. Today we took a boat trip to Koh Phi Phi- a very small beautiful island south of Phuket. This is where "The Beach"
Thailand's infamous sparky skills!!
was filmed with Leo DiCaprio and it's just breathtaking. Although the book which the film was based on was actually based in Koh Tao, which is the island next to Koh Phangan, right on the other side of Thailand. We went snorkelling in Maya Bay where the film was set, and it was amazing- the water was so deep but so clear with very pretty fishes. we felt like we had entered the world of Finding Nemo, although I discovered fish didnt like to be stroked which was a let down :0( Oh and no Great White Sharks swam into the bay to bite our legs like the did the Swedes on the film you'll be pleased to know.
The Andaman Coast was very hard hit by the 2004 boxing day Tsunami which claimed 225,000 lives in total. The Thai Government has now put in place stringent barriers against anything like this happening again. The plans were actually in pace to build the barriers way before the Tsunami but the Government "never got round to it".......
So its our last day in Thailand today after nearly 3 weeks here and what seems like 50,000 miles covered. Things we
have learnt about Thailand are:
1. They are obsessed with their Royal family. The King's image is everywhere; every half mile down a motor way, every shop, and if you pubically insult the Royal family you can get send to Jail for a minimum of 10 years!!!
2. They loooove their scooters. Everyone has a scooter, and if they dont they have a pick up truck; either Toyota or Isuzu. The most we've seen on a scooter is 4 people- babies the lot- with no crash helmets- although we did see a dog on a scooter with a helmet on!!?? Go figure.
3. If you want sex abroad or have the intentions of Gary Glitter- come to Patong; you are welcomed with open arms.
4. Dont order a drink in a Ping Pong show!! Even beer was 16 pounds!!
5. Remember even though Thailand is dubbed "The Land of the Smiles" remember that 99% of the time there is an alterior motive behind that smile. Poverty breeds crime and scams.
6. If you are on a budget drink Chang beer; it's cheap as chips and 6.4% Vol but beware of the Changover the next day!!
7. Alot of Thai
men dont treat their wives nicely and many have mistresses
8. Their language is BLOODY ANNOYING AFTER 3 WEEKS!! But their grasp of English is highly amusing. We got called "Sir" a couple of times!!
9. Dont use blonde Thai hair dye. We now both look albino.
10. I dont think they do eat dogs and cats; They do keep alot as pets. Although I have no evidence to prove this; but no evidence to prove not.
So that's my verbal diarrhea for tonight (and not the only kind I'm sure- well 'Thai Tummy' has to catch up with you sooner or later!!) Off to bed as have to be up at 6am for travelling down to Malaysia which will be another 12 hours plus on a stupid coach!!! As always much love and miss you guys loads. Enjoy the snow!!!!
Lots of love B and H xxx
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