Trip Start Apr 20, 2005
5Trip End May 08, 2005
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
sat 23rd april
Stayed up way too late Fri night and thus got up very late on Sat. Had intended to finish shopping but couldn't be arsed so we just sort of hung around drinking pineapple shakes which is always nice. Especially when I think of all of you at work. Ha ha.
Nat decided to go to Koh Tao which is where I was headed after the rescue centre which was handy for me as she could check the place out and book somewhere, saving me a lot of effort!
I got on the incredibly cheap government bus to Cha-am, which NO foreigners take, and which I always get really weird looks for but hey its like half the price. And you get free water
Almost fell asleep on the woman next to me but woke up just before my head dropped - don't think she would've been best pleased to have me drooling on her shoulder!
Got to Cha-am (pretty much middle of nowhere) and got hounded by taxi men as expected asking me where I was going. Told them I was going to Kao Look Chang, which always amuses me as few people know where it is. They give me a look like I'm a bit crazy and I mention the guy's name who runs the place - Edwin - and all of a sudden they look relieved, realise I am not crazy and say "Oh, Edwin - small zoo". Not that anyone at the rescue centre would like it to be called a zoo, but for the sake of hours of translation using my not very good thai dictionary, I go with the zoo thing.
Took ages to get there, I swear the taxi guy was a bit lost cos he did look kinda worried but got there in the end just in time for a BBQ - perfect timing!
Edwin actually remembered my name which is quite surprising, as he didn't seem to remember hardly anyone else I had been there with!
Drunk way too much Mekong whisky and attempted to practice my Thai with one of the mahouts (elephant keepers) who was convinced I could speak better Thai than I was letting on
sun 24th april
Got up at 6am, something I can always do surprisingly easily here but never at home. Strange. Baking hot even at that time, but at least not as muggy as the city.
Spent some time visiting all my animal buddies and looking round the centre which as at least doubled in size in the last 18 months. Also found out a few had died which was sad. But my favourite otter was still there who dived under water and brought up a small mango, so spent ages playing fetch with him. Went to see the new elephant refuge centre in the afternoon which wasn't there before. Consists of 4 elephants with their mahouts and a few volunteers. Walked with the to the river which I didn't realise was so far - half an hour trek in baking hot sun! But got to swim in the river at the end which seemed like a good idea at the time, until when I got back, my blue trousers had dyed my white underwear a strange sort of tie dye effect!
Got to actually sit on the elephant in the river and then ride back on one instead which was cool, and less tiring than walking
Went to the night market in the evening and bumped into Pin, who used to work there, who recently had a baby. She was so shocked to see me and thought I looked really thin which is funny as most Thai people think most foreigners are fat.
Cringed when Edwin put on the documentary which a French TV company filmed last time I was there, which features me in quite a bit - very bad!!
mon 25th april
Pretty much lazed around in the morning, then helped one of the volunteers clean the civet cages (of which there are 2 blocks now to anyone who knows the place), which was fine by me as it meant I got to give the otter a shower, which I love. But also had to first empty his pool, which is a nasty job as it stinks of dead fish and chicken!
Went with the mahouts and elephants in the afternoon to the forest so the elephants could forage for food, which ended up in a childish game of us all throwing sticks at each other so I am now covered in scratches as well as mosquito bites!
Went to the local karaoke bar in the evening, which we got really weird looks for, as I don't think women really go out drinking in the village, so its even weirder when foreign women do it, given that there are no other foreigners there apart from volunteers
Had such a good time, shame we never used to do it when I was there before.
tues 26th april
Sadly had to leave the rescue centre today but...(Mum, don't be too surprised...) decided I will probably go back in a few months time! Oh and have been told by one of the mahouts I have to send him my wages in 2 months so that he can buy a baby elephant. Yeah like that's gonna happen.
Anyway back in Bangkok now, going through my mountains of emails - thanks everyone - I'll reply as soon as I can. Then off to Koh Tao tonight on a nasty overnight journey but then tomorrow get to enjoy nice white sand beaches and crystal clear water!
Jealous anyone? :)