Ko Phangan, Thailand
Happy New Year everyone!
We slept in a little this morning but made it just in time for breakfast - banana pancakes with condensed milk (what is the obsession with condensed milk in this country?). After stuffing ourselves full we made our way into the main town and hired a scooter for the day. Danny assured me he knew what he was doing, but the fact that the speedometer didn't work, it was raining, many of the roads were dirt, there were almost no road rules and we only had one helmet between us meant that I was freaking out a little. I can't believe I'm admitting this but by the end, I was actually enjoying it.
With our transport freedom we visited a waterfall (which involved a long, humid trek), passed a Chinese temple, tasted Phangnan homemade ice cream and drove randomly through the jungle that is Ko Phangan. In the afternoon we wandered through a street market that sold all sorts of tacky trinkets and greasy food for almost no money. I am loving the cheapness of Thailand.
After this it was time for my scooter lesson, provided by the expert Danny. We found a flat, straight, quiet street and my goal was just to not fall off. After a few minutes I was cruising that street like I owned it. It was fantastic and great adrenaline rush (I'm always searching out the next adrenaline rush). I even managed to summon up the nerve to drive on roads with hundreds of other motorbikes and taxis. The lack of road rules meant it didn't matter that I was drifting all over the street, not indicating and cutting people off - I fit in pretty well with the Thai drivers. I think it was the highlight of the trip so far.
We (regretfully) returned the bike and grabbed some dinner from a street stall ($2 for a whole meal - can't beat that). A wander through a 7-Eleven was amusing: packaged sandwiches with the crusts cut off, spicy lobster Pringles, extra nori seaweed Pringles, sweet basil chips (they didn't taste like basil), rice crackers with pork or shrimp floss, pigs in a blanket and, of course, beer. Every outlet, big and small, sells beer. Danny is in heaven. Not many places sell wine but we did manage to stumble into a bottle shop and bought a Sauvignon Blanc, plus some cheese and biscuits, to consume back at the resort. A nice little nightcap before turning in relatively early.