Published: March 8th 2009March 8th 2009
Okay, cue the music! (think King Kong inspired jungle beat…)
Yesterday Jian and I ventured via foot, bus and boat to Koh Phi Phi and surrounding Islands off the coast of Phuket. This was an organised tour, so I went into it with the philosophy of friend-making. But alas, all we got were snobby Sweedes, two ultra-cutesy Asian girls and a small spattering of other closed off and generally unfriendly people, who adamantly refuse to look you in the eye. This can be said about Thailand in general, the locals are wonderful but all the tourists are generally rude and disrespectful of the beautiful culture.
Our boat ride to Koh Phi Phi was interesting- we broke down half way there and were stuck in the middle of the ocean as our ‘crew’, consisting of three men and an eleven year old boy fixed the engine by banging it with a screwdriver. But we got there! Our first stop was Maya Bay; where ‘The Beach’ was filmed. Oh my god! The sand was like raw sugar and the water was an almost fictional blue. Stunning. Next stop, snorkelling. I was reluctant at first as my ears have been playing up
on me of late (ouch), but I did it anyway. Was lovely, but don’t think for a second I wasn’t keeping my eye out for hungry sharks. Next stop: Monkey Beach … Now this Jian and I took issue with. These monkeys have been mistreated, as much of the wildlife here has been. Although kept on their native island, they have been trained to take food only from people (making it difficult for them to survive in the wild), to drink water from bottles (obviously detrimental) and to drink supplied fizzy drinks from the tour guides (these pour creatures were so high on sugar it was cruel). Yes, they were cute- but it is only a matter of time before these beautiful creatures literally snap, as evidenced when three separate monkey attacks happened to the people on our tour alone (one woman seriously needs to check that bite out, these little creatures can have a litany of diseases, including HIV).
The rest of the day we spent swimming, snorkelling and sunbathing- before heading back to our bus (with the serenity broken only on our return boat trip, where we all fell asleep only to be woken by a bikini
clad, German tourist who had a spider land on her shoulder (lol)).
Later that night Jian and I ventured into Patong to check out what kind of a gay scene this place has- and turns out it’s flourishing. There is little conservatism here, which is surprising. We didn’t stay out long, but had a good laugh at it all, especially an elaborate hour long drag show lip-synced entirely in Chinese, a couple of drinks (that Long Island Ice tea was a kick to the head) and Tuk-Tuked it home safely (400 Baht).
Today was another slow day, which was nice. My left ear is playing up severely and I can’t hear anything- so I am going to see a doctor within the next 24 hours (unsightly wax build up plus trapped water). We are in the process of planning the rest of our trip. Tonight’s our last night here and we plan on enjoying the creature comforts whilst we can; fare-thee-well air conditioning and functional toilet facilities!
There are more photos below