Chillax, Check It Out, Chow Down

Trip Start Nov 19, 2012
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13
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Trip End Ongoing


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Where I stayed
Sunset Mansion

Flag of Thailand  , Phuket,
Friday, January 11, 2013

Made it back to Patong on Xmas day. The best part about being in Thailand during this part of the year is almost the complete absence of the Xmas music and commercialization of it. Few buying the latest and greatest for their kids only to have them get sick of it a couple weeks later and in the landfill during the next amnesty week. To all those families who bought a goat, rabbits, clean drinking water, sponsored a child, adopted an animal on behalf of their families as a Christmas gift, THANK YOU. I heard Xmas music once and that was at the mall going to the theatre to see The Life of Pi - awesome movie, highly recommend it! Both Val and I went.

I have met so many people, but seldom have my camera with me so haven't taken many photos. I have met folks from: of course Thailand, Canada, US, Finland, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Australia, Sri Lanka, Denmark, Ireland (hmmmm that was a good one), Britain, Scotland, Wales, Italy, France, Holland, Spain, Luxemburg, Poland and Norway. So it has not been boring. It's cheap to buy DVDs here, so when one is tired of socializing, sit back and relax and watch a movie or a few episodes of a series.

I have read 2 full books and am 1/3 of the way thru another. I read on the beach when I'm not meeting, nor visiting with folks and I go to the beach pretty much every day unless it's raining out and tuck away under the umbrella cuz the sun is friggin strong! The beach got really, really busy after Xmas and some folks were also saying it was a bit slower due to the whole 'end of the world' nonsense.

Have tried to walk 4km's a day to keep moving cause this whole beach thing is just too comfortable and really flippin enjoyable. I have eaten thai food 98% of my meals and using the street vendors with carts or the small little local restaurants - you know only a few tables kind. Cheap, cheap, cheap and so good. Best thing is....the flavour remains in your mouth for at least 20 min's after you've eaten (unless your a smoker - then it's gone shortly after lighting up). My favorite curry's in this order are: thai yellow, thai red, thai green, masaman.

Observations thus far:  hardly Any Thai women smoke, but too many Thai men do. Smart women! There are a LOT of Russians in Patong area and they are NOT respected, but are tolerated, by the Thai people. I've been here over a month and only met 1 young russian woman who showed any sign of kindness or decency. Sad indeed and one has to bite their lip. That has completely surprised me as I wasn't expecting it at all. There were waaaay fewer uber loaded people compared to previous visits. There are a lot less street dogs so the work of Soi Dog is working beyond their expectations. Those that are around look to be in decent shape.

Most real Thai people don't kill things just because they are annoying, even cockroaches. Every creature has a purpose on the planet. Unless it's for food, they are left to live which helps to ensure harmony and a balance. The same cannot be said about Muslim Thai people. They (not all, just a select few) find dogs to be annoying and will poison them and party around the animal who is clearly suffering and in pain....heard that story several times from folks who witnessed it.

There are several tourists who volunteer to be tourist police with the thai tourist police and walk Bangla road each night. You know when they are coming down the road because the handlers with the drugged up monkeys suddenly dissappear for 30+ min's. But they resurface all too quickly.

Bangla Road - whoa, this road is busy, busy, busy!!! I'm guessing 10,000+ people walk this road every night. Their are bars lined up one after the other and all have Thai girls and lady boys in them trying to vie for your attention and company of course! Every walk of life is on this road. the women are dancing openly around the poles in each of the bars. Each night the lady boys come out in their full outfits - which are amazing - and entertain the crowds.

About every 30 seconds you are asked if you want to see a Ping Pong show...it may be even every 20 seconds. They ask Everybody, except children of course, but will show the parents the sign (menu) they are holding.

As much as I would love to compare lakes around home to some of the beaches in Thailand, I can't cause it's just not a fair comparison. My neck of the woods doesn't even make the charts and I LOVE my YK and Prelude, so that does say something. Some of the coastal areas in Canada come close as do the glacier lakes/rockies in terms of beauty and amazement.

Things are locked up here, but nobody steals crap. A simple sheet of metal that is not affixed to anything is the security system. The violent crime rate (according to a local nick named Charlie and what I was able to surmise based on #'s he threw at me) is less than the violent crime rate in Yellowknife. Did I mention there are 700,000 people living on Phuket Island and 1,000,000 during peek season.

So when people say "gawd, be safe over there"....really, it should be me saying "stay safe back home, lock your doors and watch each others backs". I feel so much more safe here than I do back home. I have had scary/or questionable incidents in Vancouver, Edmonton, Montreal, Victoria and even back in YK.

Now motorbike accidents on the other hand....rampant here. Unfortunately most of them involve drunk tourists, or those who forget that you must drive on the opposite side of the road.

So, next blag a blog is from Koh Samui
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