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Published: April 23rd 2022
Throughout the course of human history free men have always resisted the authoritarian dictates of overbearing rulers. To be honest, dear reader, the last few years have collectively taught us a great deal about human nature, with almost none of it being good. Nevertheless, I believe mankind must continue the eternal quest to emerge from the darkness and head towards the light. The ideals we have cherished for a lifetime cannot be frivolously cast aside, regardless of any health emergency. Of course I bear witness to the struggle for freedom, for liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I hold as a lifelong dream the ideals of peace and love, and the search for our better angels; to acknowledge on a daily basis the inherent good that resides in our fellow global citizens, no matter where they come from. Life is short, and there is much to see and do as we slowly emerge from the worst of times. My hope is for every reader to strive to live their best life, and not to be cowed by fear or envy as we work together to reach for our dreams. Anyways, that's enough moralising to last a lifetime from your humble travel
correspondent, let's get on with the travel adventures shall we? Yes indeed, it's certainly way past time to recommence...
My lifelong passion has been travel and the chance to see the world. I thrive on meeting fellow travellers who also live life with a spirt of adventure. and to immerse myself in the local culture of the world's friendly and welcoming citizens. So what to do with the borders finally opening up in Australia, well I was immediately drawn back to Thailand, one of the world's great travel destinations. The country is close to Australia, and I had a fare in the bank for the last few years after a cancelled trip to Europe due to the pandemic. I never thought in my wildest dreams a flight to Thailand would equate in price to a European flight from a few years back, but these are the times we live in as the travel industry slowly comes back to life. Qantas had me sorted on credit for a flight to Koh Samui with a stop off in Singapore, and I can't begin to describe the feeling of joy, excitement, and anticipation as we jetted out of Sydney - heading north
above the great expanses of the Australian continent on our way to enjoy new experiences, new adventures, even a new life if just for a short period of time.
The Thais have always been the masters of tourism in my opinion, everything in the country runs smoothly and without fuss to ensure visitors have the best of times. There were extra hoops to jump through in order to gain entry to the country, in this there is no doubt; however after the plane touched down the locals had us through immigration in the blink of any eye, even including the mandatory PCR test. I was in the hotel before you know it, and only had to wait till early morning and the registering of a negative test result before I was free as a bird, with the slight inconvenience of not having my check in bag for a few days. It's an incredible bit of trivia that in all my travels this is the first time my check in baggage has not arrived at the destination. The snafu was due to extensive delays out of Sydney as the travel industry slowly gets back on it's feet, but at least
the flight from Singapore to Samui was not delayed.
How wonderful it is to be back in Samui after a twenty plus year absence. Despite the passage of time everything feels so familiar! The Thais are nothing short of brilliant, always there for you with a sunny smile and a positive attitude, working their darnedest to ensure everything runs smoothly. The worries and negativity that almost consumed me at times during the course of the last two years began to gradually wash away, as if I had been cleansed in a born again experience. I felt the familiar energy, the positivity, the faith in mankind come rushing back to fill me with a new lease of life, while acknowledging the immensity of the gratitude I feel to live this privileged existence. I have been determined from the outset to try and make every post a winner on this trip, and in doing so to rediscover my true self.
An urgent priority was to get some clothes sorted, as my missing backpack was sorely missed given the weather! Where better to shop than with the lovely locals in Samui, who sorted me out for tropical gear in the blink
of an eye. The first day walking around in jeans, runners, and a dress shirt was the first (and hopefully the last) time I will ever be so overdressed in such an environment! The airport staff dropped my bag off as promised at the hotel after a couple of days, and the friendly hotel staff have done all in their power to ensure my visit has been as enjoyable as any traveller could possibly wish for. It's just an honour and a privilege to be here, so what to do I wonder?
My days have been filled with endless sunshine, tropical waters as warm as a bath, superb food at incredibly cheap prices, and friendly smiling locals who have done so much to warm my wounded heart. I have a new passion to pursue as a drone pilot, and have been practicing every day to improve my skill levels. It's a challenging but rewarding craft to pursue, and I hope the occasional aerial photo can add to the travel adventures on my blog. Of course I organised a motorbike for the princely sum of ten Aussie dollars a day, and have been scooting around with an incredible sense of
freedom for the last ten days.
I organised a ticket on a boat trip to Ang Thong National Marine Park at an affordable price. The price includes transportation to the ferry terminal, and so began an enjoyable boat tour. The vessel was crammed with foreigners, I don't think there was any real spare capacity on board. It's difficult to describe the feeling of camaraderie being surrounded by foreigners who are intent on seeing the wonders of the region just as the world was before the pandemic, and rest assured the scenery on the day is magnificent. We had two stop offs at beautiful little islands, and both happened to coincide with torrential downpours. I guess I can be a bit of an odd fish at times, but have always loved swimming in the rain, on the proviso the water is warm of course. During the stop off at the first island a full boatload of tourists scurried to take shelter in a hut, with little old me heading straight in to the water. It was interesting to note at a second island stopover later in the day there was another torrential downpour, but on this occasion almost half the
tourists dove in to the water for a swim.
The tour was wonderful, a very full day including transportation to and from the hotel, all at an affordable price. The Thais handled everything with grace and effortless efficiency, and I was back in the hotel by 6:00pm. My hotel is on Chaweng beach, but for at least half the days I have jumped on the bike to ride five kilometres south to Lamai beach. I would say they are equally beautiful, but the granite rocks at the end of Lamai beach are a wonderful addition to the natural beauty of Samui, and it is a little quieter for flying the drone. Things are going swimmingly, and I await further island hopping adventures still to come. As a matter of fact I just got to thinking, basically all of you should be here now!
"Do it now. Sometimes "later" becomes "never". Anonymous
As I continue my travels, until next time it's signing off for now.
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