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Koh Tao

October 2, 2010

A few things:
One) It’s very difficult to keep up with editting an uploading pictures then writing about one’s adventures while having them, especially when internet is not something you can count on.

Two) It’s especially difficult to do so when a good number of one’s keys have up and quit, and one must copy and paste the missing letters after the fact in order for the first points to not look like this:

A fw thing:
On) It’ vry iicult to kp up with itting an uploaing pictur, thn writing about on’ avntur whil having thm, pcially whn intrnt i not omthing you can count on.

Two) It’ pcially ifficult to o o whn a goo numbr of on’ ky hav up an quit, an on mut copy an pat th miing lttr aftr th fact in orr for th firt point to not look lik thi:

Anyway, so yet again I’m forced to use my words sparingly, which, again, is probably not a terrible thing. Stop two in the great journey was Koh Tao, a former penal colony-turned scuba haven. (Cheapest certiiction spot in the world, apparently). And scuba was our primary reason for heading that way, since Laura had decided to take the plunge. And lucky me, since accomodation is consideraby reduced i you’re diving, or in my case, if the person you’re rooming with is.
As much as we enjoyed Koh Phangan (the island just south of Koh Tao on that map) we were looking forward to what we were expecting to be a more laid back, cheaper, less touristy spot. We were right on the first prediction, but it was a bit silly to expect the other two on a resort island ull of divers. Still, the island was paradise, and “not cheap” in Thailand is still pretty cheap.

I didn’t go scuba diving, but I i tagged along on the boat for Laura’s first dive and went snorkeling instead. No pictures of any of this, unfortunately, but it was really amazing! I wasn’t really sure what to expect but I saw so many fascinating fish and corals, and even a moray eel and a giant clam. It really is another world down there and I can’t wait to have a go at some real diving next year.

I did commit a few faux pas with the whole snorkel thing though… they were all very nice and welcoming, but at times I i felt like I was a bit in the way, and I wasn’t really given any instructions other than “You’ll see good fish over there, keep an eye on the number of oxygen tanks on the boat because when we’re getting ready to leave they’ll all be back.” So o course I lost track of time chatting to another guy during the second dive (AND we couldn’t see the boat/tanks very well from where we were), and we ended up having to be called in, holding up all the real divers. And as we approached I heard someone say, “Oh Chanchan! The snorkler took your mask!”

I mean, they all look practically the same, but I guess I’d accidentally taken another girl’s (really expensive) mask after the first dive. Luckily she was our bungalow neighbor, originally from Beijing, and we all became pals for the rest of our time on the island. Then I tried to climb on the boat with my flippers still on, which I guess is also a no-no, and I got a bit of a reprimanding for that as well. Oops.

While Laura was scubaing the other days I spent my time getting myself into sticky situations on motorbikes (a story for another post) and reading The Girl Who Played with Fire on the beach. Not a bad life. Other than Chanchan we also made friends with Tu, the owner of the local reggae bar who was proud to say he was “happy every day, every night,” and who was helpful in giving me motorbike advice (unortunately there was no “don’t drive up that steep mountain”). There was live music at a lot of places every night (granted, all carbon copies of each other playing acoustic covers of Oasis and Jason Mraz, though one did a cool cover of “Kids” by MGMT, and after a year without I’ll take any live music) and some nice beachside dinners. Nope, not a bad life at all.

gorgeous sunset the first night

our buddy tu

and his bar, ‘tu thai bar’

so electic!

always leave your shoes outside in thailand

it is technically rainy season…

but not for long

at the pier in chumphon, from where we caught a bus to bangkok on september 30



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