Sunday, April 29, 2007

After Bangkok, Greg and I headed down South to the island and after a very bumpy and load bus, ferry and long boat taxi ride we arrived in Koh Tao where we spent the next five days. Koh Tao was amazingly beautiful, great snorkeling, peace and quiet and although hot very relaxing. Greg did a diving course and got his open water while I must admit that I did not very much except lie on the beach, swim and explored the town.

After Koh Tao we moved on to Koh Pangang which after Koh Tao was a great disappointment - too many Israelis, farang food (though to be fair we did have very good falafel for shabas...), bad music and too many tattoo parlours. Oi va voi! Time to head south again and after another long journey via Krabi we crossed the mainland and headed to Koh Lanta. Here we trekked though the jungle ( while being eaten my mozzies) and went exploring some underground caves with a local guide. While the cave is totally unspoilt and unlit, you still get a rush when you are balancing over a bamboo pole on the edge of a cliff in the darkness, clambering down ladders into the unknown and crawling out in the mud. After lunch we explored the old town, situated on a mangrove swamp and ate amazing prawn fritters and lunch on the water.

Then it was back to Bangkok for two days of viewing temples, Jim Thompson's house and making plans to head North. We honestly were very please to leave as the constant totes, scammers, noise and being constantly ripped off were starting to get to us and when Greg's sunglasses were stolen is was the final straw. We have spent the last two days in Kanchanaburi exploring the town which is situated on the River Kwai with the famous bridge just north of the town. Yesterday we took the train to Hell Fire Pass and explored the museums which detailed the use of Allied POWs as slave labour in building the railway in WW2 - unfortunately little mention is made of the thousands of Thais and Burmese who also died building it.

We arrived in Auytayya this afternoon, which is the ancient capital of Thailand and will rent bikes tomorrow to explore the temples around the old city. After that we are heading further North to Sukothai and Chaing Mai.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

From Tasmania to Thailand...

Well it has been a hectic two weeks in some sense as I have done a lot of travelling, but I can't honestly say that life is very stressful when your main priorities are choosing which bikini to wear and which beach to lie on! I did write a long blog post this week detailing my journey over the last two weeks, but then the Internet connection died and i lost it all, so now that i am older and wiser I shall attempt to fill you in via smaller posts! Also Greg is posting on Jou Ma Se Blog and being more successful so most of you know whats up anyway.

Tamsmania was amazingly beautiful, cold and autumnal. I rented a car in Hobart and drove around for five days, singing alone to lots of music, (thanks to Ram!) mostly floks etc, going on scenic walks, breathing fresh air and exploring the wild western side of the island and its National Parks - Russel Falls, Lake St Claire, theFranklin River, Cradle Mountain - stopping in small towns, eating great food and drinking the local wine to stay warm and met some great fellow travellers. A bit f peace and quiet over Easter to sit back, relax, eat and Easter egg and get my head into holiday mode.Before I knew it is was over and I flew back to Melbourne for less than 18 hours, were I replaced my winter woolies with my bikini and filled my backpack ready to hit South East Asia and arrived in Bangkok in the middle of Songkran. Songkran is a festival celebrating the Buddist New Year - an intergral part of the festival is to clense yourself with water and the whole city turns into a water fight for four days, and while it is good fun, we decided to head down to the islands after 2 days as not much else was accessable in the city.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Happily Unemployed Again...

Well, I have just completed my last day of work, and paid employment, for potentially the next 18 months which is exciting but very daunting financially! I must say that I will miss Peter Mac, my little grannies, all the staff at the Foundation, my morning latte and my new Aussie friends but it is time for the next adventure.

A quick catch up is that I moved back to Bennett Street last weekend and it is great to be back here, despite missing Ram and Tal as they are off on their travels, but Lieu, Marta, Adam and I have been cooking up a storm. The Melbourne International Garden Show was on last weekend and the gardening fanatic in me came out (it has been hidden in awhile) to play. Some amazing flower exhibits, rumoured to be judged by Prince Charles, though he would have been accosted by a million old ladies and gay flower arrangers, and lots of garden displays. Needless to say I couldn't resist and I am breaking the Biodiversity Act posting some exotic bulbs home to my mum, but they will be kept in pots and out of the forest....

But the most exciting thing that I have done this week is going to the Best of the V Festival last night where I saw the Pixies live!!! They were fantastic and Gina (who also spent some of her formative years jumping around to the them at the Fringe) and I jumped up and down like mad things with some crazy Irish people (Fek, be-jesus!). Wish you guys had been there. Phoenix was also great, but Jarvis Cocker not so much... Lots of Jagermeister, vodka and a fantastic concert over looking the city from the Myer music bowl. I did take three video clips of the concern but I still am figuring out You Tube.

I'm off to Tassie tomorrow for 6 days and I'm looking forward to eating oysters and sea food, driving round in my car and exploring the wild west coast. Happy Easter to all of you and I hope the bunny finds you where ever you may be.