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Ohh Samui, rich island style

THAILAND | Friday, 10 December 2010 | Views [485]

Koh Samui is a place I am glad I came to see, and I’m very glad I have a friend here to introduce me to the real side of the island life here. Rachel has been here since August, working and living and loving the life here. I arrived on the ferry after being in transit for over 24 hours, bus and boat and waiting around until I finally get onto the island known for mad parties and extreme tourist influenced life.

Straight away I seemed to find myself in a muddled situation, feeling scammed by the unhelpful locals, trying to find my way to where Rachel might be. For an hour I was walking along one of the most developed strips of the island, lugging heavy pack and frustrated by the rain and near floods filling the streets. I finally got hold of Rachel, she came and saved me. She had organized for me to sleep on her friends couch at his tattoo studio, so I was immediately in a situation where I was getting to know locals, kind and funny guys, all happy to help, making sure I always have water and making sure I’m never hungry. While Rachel went to work, I wandered around a bit, and just sat around talking with people coming to sit around outside the shop. That night we went out to see a live reggae band, then for a quick look into Green Mango Street, where the biggest, loudest and ugliest clubs are, all a dream for those young and old with too much money in search of a drunken party night. It was relatively hilarious, but not a place for me. We  munched on early morning chicken sandwiches, very good, before getting to sleep, not on a bus so it was deep and long.

Around lunchtime day 2 on the island, Rachel drove me on her motorbike up a small hill with good views of Samui, and then to a big Buddha for some taste of some basic Thai tourist attractions. After she went to  work, with Lek and Lee from the shop, we motored off to La Mai, another part of the island. There we sat with Lee’s sister who works at one of the many many massage shops catering for rich old men, I watched on as a witness to how funny and harmless these girls and lady boys are, they’re completely happy in their lives, who am I to judge whether they have a dirty living as it seemed they enjoyed it and have as many laughs and jokes as anyone.

Then we had some beers at a friends bar, where we sat amongst three families, one foreign couple and their youngsters mixing into the local kids, playing and running about, the adults watching after them collectively while enjoying a few drinks, such a relaxed and communal atmosphere to a bar I have never seen. A six year old and nine year old kid started playing pool, both much better than I even though the younger could barely reach for many of the shots, a six year old pool shark is an amazing sight to come across, I was in awe of theis cute little guy.

We shared a meal with the family, spicy thai food with rice, I had a few tears trying to manage the papaya salad, delicious, but unfortunately my tolerance for chilli is extremely low, and the locals got a kick out of watching me struggle. We went to meet Rachel at a friends reggae bar, playing dominoes and chatting away with friends, local and expat, before heading to another bar on the beach, made up of comfy chairs on the beach, and a shack with fairy lights and stereo. One of Rachel’s mates here is a master of fire dancing, and teaches his talent to some local kids, so we enjoyed watching a sixteen year old hotty flex his muscles swinging fire poi and staff at such a speed, all you could see was the circular blur of light spinning in circles. Very nice times and very nice people to share them with.

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