After building my eighth and ninth houses with VBC, the Journo and I headed off to Thailand – Phuket to be exact – for a short stay and to catch up with our good friends Jeff and Gaynor and their family and friends.
The trip got off to a shaky start when our taxi, booked for 4am, arrived at 5.15am. Lucky for us his exhaust pipe was broken so we could hear him coming down the road. We loaded our bags in the boot and we were off at the speed of light. The taxi had a lovely vibration in it when cruising at 70 miles an hour, which the driver managed to exceed for most of the trip to Poipet, where we crossed the border to Thailand.
We arrived at the border at 6.45am and were met by a “transit assistant” for want of a better term, who informed us because we were late we needed to go through the “fast lane” at the border crossing (normal transit can take anywhere up to one and a half hours, so we were told) or we wouldn’t get to the airport in Bangkok in time for our flight to Phuket.
So we paid our money and were on our way again. The trip to Bangkok was a piece of cake and we arrived with no other incidents. By the time we checked in it was about 11am and we were starting to feel a bit hungry so we went to the food area to discover Bangkok airport is like any other airport and all food is a rip-off. We were in a hurry so we got a meal deal at big fast food chain, which included a burger, coke and chips. It cost about A$16!
Finally we were on a plane to Phuket, thinking we would have a quick taxi trip to our accommodation and could get into some cheap grog and all would be good. What a shock after four months in Cambodia having to pay almost the equivalent of Aussie prices for everything.
Luckily we were catching up with good friends, which made for a very pleasant few days in Thailand. We did a day out on a boat – it was pretty good to be on the water after spending so long inland – on and around Phi Phi Island, which was very spectacular and worth every cent (just over A$100 each). We snorkelled on some small reefs and swam at beaches with beautiful clear water, including the spot where the movie Beaches was filmed. Sadly for the Journo Leonardo was nowhere to be seen. Thankfully Jeff was there to fill the void.
At the end of the day we were a bit disappointed when the tour operators almost demanded tips, handing a tip box around.
We had some fun days and laughs with friends before leaving early one morning (in another taxi that turned up late). The A$40 trip from our hotel at Karom Beach to the airport seemed expensive but it is a fair distance. If you ever think of going try to get a complimentary hotel transfer when you book.
It was time to hop on a plane and head back to Cambodia where I could hear the chicken beer calling me (cheap, cheap).
Have you had any adventures, or made it out on a boat somewhere recently?