Haad Rin Beach
white sand, palm tress and sea as warm as bath water...
I booked an overnight air conditioned bus to Ko Phanagn through a fixer called Jimmy (as he kept proudly exclaiming like 'Jimmellfixit' - and yes he had a sign with it spelt like that!) at the Veng Thai Hotel bless him he was very enthusiastic and sorted out all the arrangements, 800bht for coach and boat. I even got walked to the check in point and then onto the bus! Was slightly dubious about an 8 hour coach ride overnight with a load of strangers - still very green to the traveling thing and still over suspicious of everyone!
Got my pac-safe on my bag.... only person with one on ... clever or a geek?? got several people saying that was an awesome idea though and did i get it in bangkok... unfortunately not, (thanks Tad it has finally come in handy after all these years and gives me a little peace of mind on long journeys where my bags are whisked away and not seen for hours!) departed at around 9pm and settled in for a nights kip...
... i was far too naive to expect that that would happen on the eve of a full moon party
Mai Tai's on the beach!
with my beautiful boys Art and Stan
on a coach full of exciteable school leavers on their way to to the legendary beach party island!
...arrived in Chumphorn port at 4am having had pretty much no sleep (4 very drunk and rowdy asian guys from birmingham right behind me drinking Sangserm whisky and treating the coach to barely distinguishable renditions of various bad pop and R&B songs at regular intervals throughout the journey ensured that no-one on the coach got very much sleep). Left on the Lomprayah catermeran at around 7am and got to Ko Phanagn around 10am. When got off boat bumped into four lads from manchester i had met in Bangkok before boarding the coach, we shared a taxi to Haad Rin and i went to Tommys Resort to meet up with Art and Stan. Art had booked me a room in the resort right next door to theirs, amazing hut, right on the beach, a bit pricey but perfect location, nice pool, internet etc - about 800bht per night. Had shower and got into my bikini and joined the boys for Chang by the pool before heading to the beach for some sun baking!!
Absolutely stunning beach ... sat there for about
the view from my hut
hammock, sand, sea...
20 mins unable to speak, just grinning... wide, long white sandy beach lined with palm trees edged with mountains and looking out to azure sea and clear blue skies... Paradise!
...and then Art delivered Mai Tai's on the beach and we chilled in the sea and caught up on all the news and spent a lot of time analysing the various qualities each of the bronzed, toned bodies surrounding us. Fun way to get a tan!! (although desperately in need of catching up on the tanned and toned front!! i stood out like a white beacon!!)
Preparations were already being made and the suggestion of antics that lay ahead starting to become apparent. Giant structures being erected along the beach of scafolding and stages, soundsystems and giant speakers being carried tentatively along the sand, bright neon banners being suspended between trees outside the resorts along the beach front.... the biggest beach party in the world was being created around us.
I popped back to beach hut for a bit of a kip and then got showered and into my party dress ready for the evening! Art and Stan took me out to an amazing thai restaurant for
dinner (lining the stomachs and re-hydrating before the infamous buckets!). By the time we headed back to the beach it was already starting to throng with hundreds of people covered in florescent body paint, wearing a lot of neon and stumbling around with multi-coloured beach buckets on their arms..... better join in!!
Full moon is a bit like global gathering (dance festival in UK for those of you that don't know), on a beach, with pretty much every british private school leaver fresh from doing their A'levels getting completely trollied and dancing to (mostly) pretty bad music.... but it is fascinating! The calibre of People watching that can be done here is world class and superbly entertaining! met lots of travellers my age chilling on mats on the beach observing the carnage and several conversations along the lines of '... too old to do this anymore... i remember when we could party for 3 days solid and still be up for another party... etc etc..' it did make me feel quite old. The fire shows are amazing though and at times very funny - drunk lads trying to jump over a firey skipping rope? or through a flaming hoop,
or under a flaming limbo pole ... buckets obviously make you think these things are all good ideas!! We did find a place dropping some very dirty techno and after 4 buckets dancing was definately on the cards, and so we all started throwing some seriously funky shapes and had a riot! crawled in at some un-godly hour and slept in til 1pm next day - very lazy!!
Recovery was aided quite nicely by chilling poolside in glorious sunshine... and more chang (hair of the dog is obviously the best cure!). Art and Stan had headed back to Bangkok on the monday morning so i hung out with the lads from manchester (who had managed to get the beach hut right next to mine) - headed out that evening for dinner etc but had fairly early night after the hectic one night before!
Headed to Ko Tao with them following day just overnight on way back up to Bangkok - amazing island - ccouldn't wait to get back there with Caroline, George, Dom and Scott!!
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