I just want to start off by saying, Aaron, the shoes we decided were going to be good travel sandals were a bad decision. They have been quite good up until this point with a comfortable strap and foamy bottom, but I've come to find out maybe they shouldn't get wet. We've boarded an eight hour bus ride to Bangkok and I noticed a interesting smell coming from somewhere and realized it was wafting up from my feet/sandals. Needless to say I definitely trashed those as soon as we made our first pit stop, no need to punish innocent people for another six hours.
For the past week we have been island hopping on the east coast of Thailand. Our first stop was Koh Samui. Samui is a large island maybe a little bit smaller than Phuket. We weren't really sure what to do on the island so we thought renting some motor bikes and touring the island is always a safe idea (well kind of.) We started off the day though with a nice morning beach run. With a little enticing I was convinced to join Whitney and Mike even though running is one of my least favorite things ever....right behind bowling.
* slight interruption* I am going to get up and literally b*!ch slap this screaming child sitting behind me.
I'm glad to report I didn't die but I did have a case of extremely sore calf muscles from the beach incline that made it rough to walk for a couple of days. Navigating around Samui we had a hitlist of things to see and check off. Our first stop was to see a mummified monk but in route we became sidetracked when we saw a guy levitating like ironman out in the water. We ran down to get the story of this contraption. It's called the Jetlev and its essentially a jet ski engine that reroutes the water downward into the ocean and propels its passenger into the air. Being a girl on a budget I unfortunately had to sit this one out, but Whitney was able to experience it and said its not as easy as it looks!
From there we visited grandfather and grandmother rock, that I will just let you decide what they are :)
After stopping at a couple Wats (temples) and realizing they weren't the right ones we finally found Wat Kunaram where there is a mummified monk from over thirty years ago. Coincidentally he died while meditating and also had requested in his will that he be sat upright to inspire future generations of Buddhist teachings. While there we also were blessed by a monk when he said a prayer and tied a bracelet to our right hands. I'm unsure of the significance of the knot in the bracelet or the way we had to turn our hands, so something for me to research.
Going further into the island we stopped to visit waterfall 1 and waterfall 2. We made it up all the way to the first waterfall that had a nice swimming lagoon at the bottom of it, which felt amazing for how hot the day was. Did I mention it's hot season here right now? It's like being in a state of constant sweat. We didn't actually make it up to waterfall 2, they charged and we figured it's just another waterfall. Before we walked there though I did get to make friends with a two month old elephant. He was super cute and his hair was a lot more coarse than I had imagined. This made me excited for the upcoming weeks and my soon to be volunteer elephant program we are participating in :)
Visiting two last wats were the last things to cross off our list. I'm almost positive by the end of this trip I will have seen enough temples to last me a lifetime. One was just another type of big Buddha and the other was a temple that was over 100 years old.
Tuckered out we still had to come back to our hotel and figure out our gameplan for the next couple of days. Before doing that though we decided on having a pancake making contest. These pancake stands are all over the streets and remind me of crepes. There are many options to fill such as bananas, pineapple, peanut butter, Nutella, egg, honey etc. And if anyone knows me then you know I would be all over this everyday. I Love Nutella. Anyways, we have been loyal customers to one Thai man and he said yes when we asked if we could make our own. With Whitney going first she had to scrap her whole first dough. The wrist movement to flatten the dough definitely takes some skill that we found out none of us had. Either way with a little help all our pancakes came out tasting amazing and I don't think we ever came up with a winner.
With a last minute decision and a couple extra days to spare we decided to scoot up to Koh Tao to complete our Open Water diving course. This is something I have been wanting to do, so I'm pretty pumped I get to complete it in an amazing country like Thailand.
Teaser: Tune in next blog to read about scuba, fishees and the infamous Full Moon Party!
I <3 Thai children