I had a fabulous time in Thailand. They say it’s the ‘Land of Smiles’ and for the most part, I’d say they were right. I smiled a lot while I was there and the local people were always cracking jokes and laughing, albeit at our expense most of the time. It’s taken me quite some time to get around to writing this recap, with my computer troubles and winding down from the vacay and all. Sorry peeps. So, understandably, things fade from memory and all of the witty and great things I planned to write about have kind of disappeared from my mind. Still, it seems like this entry is going to be a two-parter.
March 14th, Depart Tokyo/Arrive in Bangkok: My 3 travel buddies and I met up at Narita Airport in Japan to catch our flight to Bangkok. The flight was long, about 7 hours as I recall, but I had the opportunity to watch some movies I had missed (Secret Life of Bees and Australia). The good thing about international flights is that they give you booze just like they’d give you water, ya know. None of that pay to play bullshit like they have on US domestic flights. So
you know being the lush I am, I had to take part. I had about 4 mini bottles of red wine.
Mini is kind of a misstatement, because you could get a few glasses out of ’em. I think we were approaching our limit though because one of the lovely ANA (All Niipon Airways) flight attendants asked us if we could ‘hold our alcohol’ before bringing us our last bottle. Don’t judge me lady!
Finally, we landed in Bangkok and waited at baggage claim forever. Suvarnabhumi Airport is not very expeditious, FYI. I think it was somewhere around 11pm. Anyway, we head straight to our hotel, the Fraser Suites which we booked at the corporate rate thanks to my boy Matt. Matt has a popular bar in Bangkok called QBar. Check it out if you get a chance. Also check out the Fraser because it was BEAUTIFUL! We had a connecting suite that we only got to enjoy for one night because of our hectic schedule. While in the city that evening, we stopped by QBar of course for some drinks. Then we met up with a couple of girlfriends from school and headed over to Khao San Road. Um, don’t go to Khoa San Rd. It’s full of dirty backpacker people and if you’re reading this, chances are you’re too bourgie for all of that. Then again, I’m
kind of glad we went just to say we did. We basically rolled down the street then rolled back up, stopping for some Thai street food. Now, everyone tells you NOT to eat the street food because you could be signing up for some hellish diarrhea or worse, but we were hungry and the lady looked nice! Street pad thai isn’t so bad and no one had the runs! BONUS!
Eventually, we retired back to our sweet room at the Fraser, after trying some crab flavored Lays and guzzling bottled water.
March 15th, More BKK and trip to Samui: The next morning, we enjoyed breakfast next to the pool and then laid out for a while. The group split and a couple of us headed to Mah Boon Kron (MBK), a HUGE shopping center in the city. The cool thing about Thailand is that you can bargain for almost anything. Things were cheap to begin with, but we never accepted the first offer and haggled to get the best price, making things even cheaper. SCORE!
Eventually, we packed all of our shit up out of the Fraser and embarked on this weird journey that would put us in Ko Samui. Originally, the group had planned on taking an overnight train and a ferry to the island. That way, we’d have the whole day to spend at the beach and we wouldn’t have to pay for a hotel the night before. Smart, right? True, but we didn’t expect the train to be sold out. No flights were leaving until the next day so we had to take a bus. Read any travel guide and they’ll tell you not to take the buses. If you must, they caution to take the gov’t buses and not private ones. Well, it just so happens we ended up on a private bus. Theft is supposed to be pretty rampant on those things but we actually had a good trip and came away with all of our valuables. The bus ride was like 10 hours, so it was a doozy. Watched a couple of movies and passed out until we ended up in Surat
Thani at some weird little bus depot where we sweated, swatted mosquitoes and watched Borat. After like 2 hours there, we got on the back of a truck fitted with seats (a very Thai way to travel) and got escorted to a pier. We thought this is where we’d get our boat to Samui but instead we were put on another bus to another pier! Finally we were floating over to Samui. No…wait, there was another taxi we had to take to get to the other side of Samui where our bungalow was, on Chaweng Beach. Whew. By the time we got to Samui, all we wanted to do was rush into the water and start the island part of our vacay. Little did I know what that first day of Samui waters held for me!