Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Koh Chang Vacation Part 2 (Songkran)

Sunday April 13th was the departure date of our trip.  It was also the first official day of Songkran, Thailand's 3-day nation wide water fight festival.  Since the airport is about 30 minutes from our house, and we live in a secluded hard to describe area, we scheduled a taxi to pick us up at school to take us to the airport.  That meant we had to drive on our motorbike with all our belongings to school.  By the time we drove the 5 minutes to school Moe was soaked!  I was completely fine because he was blocking me, what a good husband!  Our bags were fairly fine too.

We flew down to Bangkok and spent a night there with our friends.  It was great.  We drove passed LOTS of people standing in the street shooting, throwing, dumping, spraying water at each other, at cars, at motorbikes, at trucks and people in the backs of trucks.  It was fun... to watch! However, it was not fun that it slowed traffic.

The next morning at 5:30AM we headed for the bus station to begin our 5 hour bus ride to our almost destination.  We rode a big tour bus so it was quite comfortable.  But again traffic, due to Songkran and people standing in the road stopping and dousing people, slowed us down.  So it turned into a 6.5 hour bus ride.  We then got to ride a ferry across part of the Gulf of Thailand to get to our island, which was rather enojyable.
View from the ferry, arriving to the island

Welcome sign!

Next up was a taxi ride to our hotel.  But remember in Thailand most "taxis" are songthaows which are trucks with 2 covered benches in the back, and some have plastic covering the sides.  Also remember that it is Songkran.  So 8 of us vacationers pile into the truck with all our luggage and embark on the trek to our various hotels.  What I didnt realize was two things: 1) Koh Chang is VERY mountainy (thats a word right!) and steep and curvy, so the drive on a normal day is adventurous, meaning you have to hold on not to fall out of the back of the truck!. 2) Our hotel was FAR away from the ferry port.  We traveled not far and entered a small village like area with bars on both sides of the street and people all over, remember again its a Thailand, which means drinking...all day.  People and drunk people, are throwing water at us the whole time.  We realize that we have plastic rolled up at the top of the truck and roll it down when people are throwing water at us.  But again remember, its Thailand and 100 degrees, so we cant leave the plastic rolled down the entire time, only when we must use it to protect against the water.  We drove through many small villages like this.  A few times people were "smart" and pulled up the plastic and drenched us.  Moe and some others in the truck were drenched by the time we reached our hotel, almost an hour later.  Some peoples bags were drenched as well.  There is more to the story but it is complicated to type out....  Plus it sorta makes my blood pressure rise remembering the many emotions.

Our hotel pictures
our hotel: Siam Beach Resort
our hotel was at Lonely Beach.... and it was quite lonely, which was nice. It was very quiet and secluded

View from our room - beautiful!! 
Later when we were actually prepared, we went back out to explore the Songkran festivities.  We wore clothes we could get wet and wallets that were waterproof and carried no electronics.  And we enjoyed ourselves.  Moe loved sticking his head out the side of the truck begging people to douse us.  And they did!  We were again soaked.  But this time happy about it.  I guess the holiday isn't really too bad... when you're prepared for it!

Sorry for the limited pictures, but its kinda hard to take pictures when you are worried about being covered with water! One more post to go

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