|Kate skillfully managed to negotiate 2 days off work, so we headed up to Phuket for a couple of days tanning at the beach and super amounts of catching up on gossip!!
Staying at Kamala Beach, one of the areas on Phuket Island to be very badly effected by the tsunami, we landed very early and enjoyed the whole day around the hotel, yes HOTEL, swimming pool!! Particularly enjoyed the pool-side bar where we could sit in the shade and drink until the sun came down! We popped into Kamala town to have a look around and chatted to a tailor who promptly produced photos of drowned bodies, which wasn't highly effective in getting Kate to get a dress made...Now they are building fast to recover and get the tourists back in so the beach was a bit of a building site but beautiful views from our posh sea-view room! That night we headed into Patong, a miniature Bangkok with a bustling of market stalls, drinkers, Thai boxing and ping-pong shows!! Fascinating watching all the lady-boys and business touting....Kate very kindly treated me to a gorgeous diner in a restaurant on the sea-edge, so the sound of crashing waves could be heard when the piano was quiet.
Next day we had another early rise to make our way via taxi and ferry to Ko Phi Phi Don. Probably the island to have been hit the worse by the tsunami with a 3m wave from one side sending everyone to the other side where a 5m wave hit. The island however is beautiful with a great buzz. We took a longboat over for a visit to Ko Phi Phi Lai, where some of The Beach was shot. Once the big tourist ferries removed the hoards of people we had a lovely swim and boat ride back. That evening, feeling the lack of sleep catching up with us we ate in the hotel restaurant and made our way to bed pretty early. As I came out of the bathroom, Kate being in PJ's in bed at this time, she asked how my energy levels were because her friend was in Patong so we upped and made our way in to find a very classy bar.....
Next day Kate had to return to Singapore to go to a wedding, so I downgraded back into a hostel, which turned out to be brand new and very empty with great beds so was very happy.
Now I don't even make a little sound when a rat walks infront of me down the street - there are so many here!!