Fire Dancing, Dog Attack and Intense Emotions

10/05

Last night was eventful in that me and Jade had to hunt for a new room with a bed that wasn’t infested with red ants. Finally we found one. And apart from the noisy monkeys, I slept quite well.

My stomach isn’t hideous today, nor is it healthy. It keeps cramping and tricking me that I’m going to poo myself. Poor Anne almost did. “It’s coming out of me like lava! I’m really looking forward to having normal poos again.” Anne-Marie, Koh Sok, 10/05/2016. She has sprinted to the toilets at the harbour several times, and returns glum-faced. “Shouldn’t have eaten that crispy chicken” she adds. “Or that iced coffee. Or those smelly prawns yesterday.”

After almost 2hours on the ferry we arrive at Koh Samui. It’s a big island (51km) and feels more like a city because it’s so busy. It’s no Gili Air, that’s for sure.

Even though we were all tired from the travel day, we still had an ace night out. On the beach, cocktails, half naked Thai men fire dancing. The music was brilliant and my energetic, sober dancing had me fall over from spinning so much. I bruised my arm badly but it was worth it.

11/05

Beach day. 37 degrees but with the humidity it’s 48 apparently. Even with my factor 50 (been using 50 my whole trip) my face got a little pink. Not quite lobster, but an unwelcomed salmon. Not the best look.

Thailand is so uncomfortably hot at this time of year, you find yourself hunting out and loitering in convenience stores, just for some quality air-con.

12/05

Last night Anne went on the back of a scooter with some hippie pirate guy who worked in the reggae bar. She returned at 6am and had, what she describes as, “the best night of her life.” Apparently Thai men with tattoos, piercings and fire dancing skills are “her people” and her soul “belongs on an island.” I’m trying to keep this blog PG, so for the nitty gritty story, please see handwritten diary. I am very glad she is alive.

Bus > Harbour > Boat to Koh Tao. It sure is beautiful. Perfect even. A thousand times better than Koh Samui, but from what I had heard from fellow travellers, I knew it would be.

Had another very spicy green curry. Most of the others couldn’t handle it, but I thought it was delicious. My taste buds are getting stronger and stronger. Who’d have thought that 5 years ago I would have been known as the spice queen? (I’m also known as Big Daddy and Anne is Little Daddy).

I got my hair braided. One electric blue braid and I love it. Anne blessed my braid with some crazy. She looked into my eyes, stroked down the braid and whispered, “f*** shit uuuuup.” I was crying with laughter.

***

It worked. Felt like a new woman and had a fantastic night. We were picked from the crowds to join with performers and try fire-dancing. Felt pretty invincible and it is potentially a new career path…

13/05

Had a very long day out on the boat snorkelling today. Several of us got heat stoke. Monica threw up over the boat. Sian almost passed out.

At one point it turned us crazy. I stuck plastic straws to my teeth, thinking I was a walrus. Anne and Phil were almost in tears from their sunburn and Charles set his mouth on fire. Nobody knows why he did it but he singed his beard in the process and we were all crying with delirious laughter.

14/05

Feeling a bit better this morning. Went for a walk along the beach. Managed about 3k and then got attacked by a dog. It was a mongrel that was Labrador size with wiry, sandy hair and huge testicles. He charged towards me. He was jumping up and barking at me and I was so scared – too scared and panicked to cry. I want to go home. I want my normal life where my life isn’t at risk by wild, vicious dogs the moment I step out of the door.

Finally, he stops jumping up, but is circling my ankles. I try to walk slowly and he continues to circle. I love dogs back at home but these ones are different. They’re not pets. You know what they say about dogs imprinting? I genuinely believe that happened. Right there, right then. For the whole 3k back to the hotel, the scruffy dog would not leave my side. Except when we came across another dog – he would race towards it, attack it and then come straight back to me. He had become my protector. I have never known a dog to be so transfixed on me; not even my dog back at home (who I miss very much!)

I eventually arrived at the hotel resort. Of course, scruffy dog is still glued to my right ankle. How on earth do I get into my room without him!? I went back to reception and explained the situation. They laughed / were shocked and said they had never known that to happen before. In order for me to enter my room, alone, a man who worked at the hotel had to beat him away with a sweeping brush. This was difficult to watch. It was also difficult because he was so close to me and I almost got hit by the broom several times.

Taxi to harbour > some strange place I can’t remember > bus to Surat Thani > sleeper train to Bangkok. It has been an exhausting travelling day.

15/05

Jade has been my hero. I was feeling upset and she comforted me, knowing exactly what to say (maybe it helps that she’s a mental health nurse!?) I’m sad that the amazing friends that I have made in Thailand, fly home today / tomorrow. I’ll be alone and have 4 days to kill in Bangkok (an error with planning on my part). I feel both emotionally and physically drained. My whole body hurts and I feel dizzy from the exhaustion. Me and Jade went for a little walk around Lumphini Park and talked about anything and everything. I feel more confident about the next few days now, I need to rest, re-charge and look after myself. Before I know it, I’ll be flying to Hong Kong.

I felt very choked up saying goodbye to Anne, my hilarious crazy Canadian. And Jade, my Welsh beauty with a heart of gold. The reason we all got so emotional saying goodbye is because for the last 16 days we have been in each other’s pockets, sleeping next to each other every night. Seeing each other at our best and our worst. Last week, I saw Charles have a poo in a hole in the ground. We are family. As the Thais would say, we are “same same, but different.”

Anne: “don’t be sad that it’s over, be happy that it happened.”

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