The Last Post

Well, here we are. Our final internet cafe at Delhi Airport. 19 out of 30 hours completed. Just a quick note to say thank you to everyone that has been reading our blog and keeping in touch. It has helped with the drudgery of coming back to reality. One last story, ten minutes ago we were walking the long path of the gates when an airport man offered us a lift on his electric travel car. We refused, joking that “we need the exercise”, he looked us up and down, nodded his head and responded, “yes, you do” and drove off.

Can’t wait to get back to English sensibilities where if you bump into someone they say sorry.

See you at the weekends!

Sleeping with the fishes

Everything is fine, just fine.

fishy fishes

Big wavey thing.

stuff in water


Was it something he said?



A magic eye or a scorpion fish?

more things in the sea

having a lovely time... with eels that come out of the ground

Nemo, and that one what is in the fish tank at the dentist.


two fish

Darling, it’s better, down where it’s wetter.

So, today we went diving. Deep sea diving. It was incredible. We are hooked. We are coming to Bali again. We are going diving again. Just like looking at monkeys and whatnot, our expectations were low. Noony didn’t think she would enjoy it. She was wrong.

We went to the dive centre that John, the guy we met randomly on a boat in Malaysia, owned. Lonely planet called Eco-Dive, “the best place for beginner divers.” We had two dives, the first being an introduction to sucking air through a hosepipe. Andrea mentioned her asthma and they suggested she sees how the intro dive goes. Her chest tightened, panic ensued and she resurfaced. I had no idea she had left as I was far too busy thinking how bloody amazing everything was. Noony said she was about to panic and leave but our guide, Antoine, our amazing guide, held her hand and she calmed down. I had no idea she was about to panic as I was far too busy thinking how bloody amazing everything was.

The first dive was fabulous. We swam to the sea shelf and there was a huge drop and followed the coral along the sea bed where thousands of fish swam. Think the start scene of Finding Nemo and you are not even close. This dive doesn’t matter though. The second dive was to the wrecked World War Two cargo ship turned artificial reef. As Andrea couldn’t do the dive they said they wouldn’t charge her and gave her snorkelling gear and said she could see the ship from the surface. We slowly sunk towards the vessel and swam through the broken hull. Legally, as beginners, we were allowed to go down 12metres. Antoine thought we did really well so took us to the wreck floor at 17 metres although he only told us after. Good lad. I cannot begin to describe what we saw. We had a Balinese instructor with us who took underwater photos. He burnt them to CD to give to us so as we are iPad-bound we can’t upload them. He did email us the first photo of us just under the water.

Five days to go…


Bali – the last frontier

Well, our trip has 13 days left out of about 165. The thought of coming home causes flames of fear to rip through us. I’m sure they will fade to smoky embers on our horrendous 30 hour trip back to Heathrow. Having to both find jobs and accommodation should work out but our contingency plan of winning the lottery is what we are really pinning our hopes on.

For now though we are in our final new destination, Bali. We have been shacked up in a two bedroom suite in the south of Bali for seven days enjoying the pool, DVDs, and horrific midday sun. We thought that as the pool was surrounded by a high courtyard, the two hours of sun the pool gets is safe enough not to use suncream. The cool water also deceived us as to the intensity of the sun. In the evening, steam was rising off our skin and nearby lobsters were jealous that we were redder than them. I faired better than Noony, who woke up the next morning in agony, unable to perform basic human functions like moving. She forgets the fair nature of her hair and has been chastising the sun ever since.

We are moving places tomorrow where internet doesn’t exist so let me tell you about our firm and strict schedule day by day. There is a waterpark nearby that has a ride called climax (insert inappropriate joke here). You step onto a manhole cover that flips open, you fall vertically so fast that the ride loop the loops and ejaculates you over the pool. (too much?) Andrea is convinced she will go on it. Noony has discussed in detail that a suitcase of substantial money presented to her in advance for her to count isn’t enough for her to step onto that trapdoor.

A few days after that we are travelling to the north-east tip of Bali to what is considered the best dive site ever: the wreck of a World War Two cargo ship turned coral/1000 species masterpiece. When we clean the saltwater from the camera circuit board and have found a spot of Internet we will endeavour to let you know that it was pleasant.

We were planning to travel to Komodo Island, or one of the smaller uninhabited dragon islands, but the small danger factor of having to cross one of the strongest water currants by a rickerty boat, being the only people on an island of bloody terrible lizards that hunt in packs and watching Jurassic Park only confirms my fears that I will die.

Anyhoo, I need to get back to sitting down and enjoying doing nothing. In two weeks this dream will end and we will have to do normal things like getting up at 7am, putting on a shirt and moaning obscenities into a bowl of coco pops. That said, I am yearning tragically for a glass of milk. True story.


We have decided not to say too much about Borneo. With Japan an’ all that happening it doesn’t feel right to splurge hyperbole (as hyperbole is the antichrist) so we will keep it brief and tease you with a few snappy snaps instead.

Without a shadow of doubt, going to Borneo has been our greatest experience ever. Ever. We knew it would be good, but didn’t expect to leave feeling a little devastated that we may never go back. Conversation then turned to when we’d go back.

We sailed through the jungle on our wooden houseboat by day, dragonflies following us like dolphins. By night, fireflies lit up our path like trees on Christmas Eve. We slept under a canopy of stars and showered with river water. We were fed four times a day and doused in coffee and water.

We saw our first wild orang-utan after 30 minutes into our 4 hour ride up to camp. Our guide, Jenie, said this was an excellent omen. He was not wrong. We saw crocodiles, gibbons, proboscis monkeys, macaques, kingfishers, birds of paradise, hornbills, flying foxes, snakes, ants the size of thumbs, cuckoos, 10 inch butterflies and a wild cat.

Oh, and some orangutans. We were incredibly lucky as we read the guest book and saw some disappointing entries saying they only saw 1 primate in 3 days. We saw over 30 orangutans. Our guide had spent his whole life with the orangutans so his knowledge was encyclopaedic.

Universal Studios

Singapore – Jakarta – Borneo. Part I

We left Kuala Lumpur after a long wait for the 11pm night train. It was similar to our first one in Thailand; clean, but 2 inches too short to be completely comfortable. Again, we didn’t sleep but we saved on a night’s accommodation and that’s all that matters in life. We arrived in Singapore at 7am to a row of soldiers with sniffer dogs. The sign behind them had a skull and crossbones and said, ‘Death to drug traffickers’. Even though that didn’t apply to us, you couldn’t help but feel you became a drugs mule as you were sleeping and that you would pay for someone else’s sneaky crime. We passed with flying colours, (Noony got given a ‘I’m drug free and loving it’ badge to wear.)

The transport system in Singapore is undoubtedly the best we have ever been on. To start, it is driven by robots. Any secondary reason like horrific punctuality, air con and lightning speed to destination is moot. Not one person tried to sell us a taxi ride, accommodation or their sister’s womb. This is a first. Well done Singapore. We arrived at our budget hotel which, to our surprise, was very comfortable. Our first adventure was to find our own way all the way across the city to the museum. 5 minutes later, we arrived. We were given yet another robot with headphones that spoke to us and told us about all the things in the museum. The robot asked us to call it our ‘companion’. It even made a move on Noony, but she is very loyal. Explaining how good the museum is to you is like trying attach tyres to a tomato – a bit useless. So we shall move swiftly on to other topics.

The malls made for a good place to hang out. Those Americans did have it right. Prices were completely western so no token purchases were made. There were 7 malls, all connected by long underground tunnels, which you have to walk, escalate, hover or crawl to. Richard O’Brian would sometime pop round the corner and play the harmonica.

After a day of window shopping, we thought it best to go to Universal Studios, Singapore. To those that don’t know, it is a film based theme park. Our particular themes were Madagascar, Shrek, Jurassic Park, Waterworld, The Mummy as well as obvious places like Hollywood and 1930s New York. It was bloody fantastic. The best ride was the mummy ride where you plummeted underground and took the entire ride in complete darkness apart from moving images of Imotept SCREAMING at you,”You’re going to die!” Noony wouldn’t have seen it as she had her eyes closed from just before joining the queue. I had to force myself to laugh as I went round to stop myself from being scared and mainly from vomiting onto Noony’s eyelids. I still don’t feel quite right.

The next day, we an exciting opportunity to visit the airport. We planned to get there early to warm up the brass band but as we didn’t realise that Singapore airport is so big it has its own metro system, Andrea arrived before us with a direct flight from Heathrow. She came here as a child and so wasn’t as shocked by the lack of white people and Asian mannerisms like were on our entry to Bangkok, although I still profess to this day that Bangkok is mental.

As her time was short in Singapore we gave Andrea a choice of what she wanted to do. We couldn’t in our wildest dreams have guessed what she wanted to do. She wanted to go to the Zoo. And to the Zoo we went. Considering that we are going to Borneo in a few days, all I will say about the Zoo is that at the animal show called “The Rainforest Fights Back”, the tribes people walked around the packed arena with their shields and spears eyeballing the crowd. I smiled at one of the actors which I still regret. He handed me the spear and I became the SOLE audience member dragged on stage. They then pointed at my t-shirt and pointed at their naked, toned, perfect torsos, then looked at me. Feeling the ‘naked’ dream crash through the crowd into reality. I suddenly felt incredibly body conscious, wanting to explain in native tongue that I didn’t normally look like this and that 5 months of not eating much causes me to be two stone lighter than normal. After a lot of subtle persuasion from the hunter/gatherers I took off my top and continued to tense my torso for the duration of what they made me do. They wanted me to copy their exaggerated war chants, tribal moves and sexy dances. Noony filmed it all and whether we leak it onto the Internet or not is a matter for the future. I look bloody skinny.

The next day we headed to Jakarta, Indonesia.

The only cheap hostel we could find online for three people was in the south of the city. We touched down at 5pm, on a Friday, in rush hour, on one of the biggest cities on the planet to find a taxi driver who didn’t know where he was going. Over three hours later the taxi found its way to our most unusual guesthouse yet. The 15 foot metal gates swung open to reveal a mansion set amongst tropical gardens. There were antiques donning every table, there was a well in the hall, a stuffed tiger opposite the gold stitched chez long and three 60″ TVs in the lounge. They had a power cut in the evening so we sat by the pool by candlelight and caught up with friend news from back home.

The next day we flew to Borneo, home of the orangutans…

Singapore Slingers

Hello Children,
We are in Singapore and glad to leave Kuala Lumpur behind. Singapore is one funky town. Everything is a superlative. The best underground we have been on, the best museum we have been to and tomorrow we go to Universal Studios, hopefully the best theme park we will have ever been to!

No wireless internet at the moment so we shall write more when we can.

Sri Lanka: an ode to cleanliness

Hello sailors. Sorry for the week off, we were in Sri Lanka. A tropical paradise, kind of. We had to be at the airport bound for Colombo at 4am. So, up at 2.15 was the plan. With a bedtime of 10pm, that’s a solid 4 hours sleep. Perfect. The little problem, (there’s always a little problem in our lives, as big problems won’t reach us until touchdown on April 1st and we need something to gripe about to give us joy) in the twin bedroom next door were a family of five and a child whose choice of communication is the scream that from 2 miles away, dogs don’t understand why they’ve just weed themselves. 15 minutes of sleep pulled us down to the taxi, we dragged our knuckles behind us across the jagged concrete. We shared the lift with a chap from the hostel who had the same tired look in his eyes.

The flight itself was uneventful. The ryanair of Asia, or Air Asia as they call it squashes you into a leather seat, my hips barley squeezing past the arm rests. But yes, yaddayadda fourhourslater we arrive in Colombo airport. Our plan: to head down the coast to Hikkaduwa. We attempted the free shuttle bus but the shiny boot AK47 squadron pushed past the 40 or so people and half filled the bus. They politely pointed at us, then waved a patronising no-no finger at us. You already know that I won’t put up with that sort of crap, so I walked straight up the army man and I said, “Excuse me, where is the taxi rank?”

30 minutes later and sharing with yet another person, an older German lady who only had eyes for designer shopping malls, got dropped off there a little before us at the train station. The 3 hour train was 160 rupees or about 90p. Brilliant. What wasn’t brilliant? Getting on the train. I completely forgot that the British rules of queueing, saying I’m sorry when someone pushes into you, giving up your seat to less fortunate souls do not exist in any form of this society. I’ll hold off on this point for a bit longer.

Before boarding the train, we spotted a man hunting for something in a nearby bin. He pulled out some scraps of paper and started rubbing his hands over them. I decided to walk over and offer him some squirty antibacterial hand wash. He kindly accepted and rubbed his hands before drawing them to his mouth. He smelt the alcohol, clean smell, gave a funny look and put his hands back in the bin to find something to scrape it off with. Does this story give you an idea of how filthy we found certain areas?

This train is exactly what you think it will be, overcrowded and dirty. There weren’t any people on the roof, but many were clinging on to the steps and hand rails and drifting along. Waiting for the torrent of maniacs who would use their own mother as a ramp if they could get on the train first to finish their business, obviously, we had no seats but we set up camp in the corridor opposite the open poo hole and the open carriage door. It was remarkably comfy and suited our needs perfectly. We trundled along the coast and all was well.

Many people came up to us to ask where we were from, how we were, how long we were staying in Sri Lanka for, did we have a guest house already, because they kno… Oh, we do have a guest house… Oh, fine then. Good day to you sir! Every ten minutes for 3 hours. Sadly, in our entire trip in Sri Lanka not one person wasn’t trying to hustle us. It made for very paranoid and shaky greetings from then on. Our tuktuk driver asked if we had any English money as his children collect coins from around the world. We said we didn’t but a 5000 Vietnamese dong note might alley their worries for lack of queens heads. Only when three more people asked us for English money, and watching people pay with English money did it click that when we told him it was worth about 15p his face turned to both utter disappointment and slight resentment. Cheekyhustlemanfatface.

Our first three days were nothing days. Just laying about in boiling heat, sweating in the fan room as air con was just too expensive at our place. Good fun though. We caught the train a few days later up to Negombo, where i thought the school was. I rang the project manager who said that it was on the other side of the island, and that his dad was in hospital with a transplant so he can no longer take me. Bit of a bummer, but that’s life. The train up to Negombo was easier as we had seats but when the train stopped 30 people were doing the usual trick of trying to get on a train whilst people, single file, were trying to get off. They stopped at nothing. I hauled myself off, but Noony was completely trapped at the foot of the door high up off the platform, as now both sides of the 30cm wide step ladder were overrun with incoming passengers. Think Lord of the Rings, battle of Rohan. I was fuming at this point because with a huge backpack on she was just being dragged back onto the train. For the first time this holiday I shouted. Screamed.


Not only did the ten or so remaining people clambering on stop, turn around and look at me, they part like the red sea and helped Noony off the train. But as Judy Watts, old classroom sidekick and the only person reading this who has seen me shout when angry, she often reminds me that I “go all posh” when I shout. Don’t know what she means.

We arrive in Negombo with bashed shins and turn up at our second accommodation. We had paid for two nights A/C and one night fan. What we weren’t expecting was to be woken up at 7am on the second morning by an old lady, who thinks she is speaking English, and told that we had to moved rooms NOW. Too tired to know what just happened we started packing, telling each other that surely checking out of a room is usually done when you not asleep. That’s all I want to say about that place. It was crap.

On a final note, having travelled extensively on all modes of transport in Asia I have now developed an unhealthy fear of flying. The slightest wisp of turbulence and I am fantasising about the wing dropping off, the pilot screaming through the speaker “oh my god, how is that goose flying so high it’s going to hit th…”, or turning to Noony and telling her that over the past four years I’ve come to regard her as someone I’ve met. I actually feel travel sick writing this now. For comfort I now stare at the cabin crew like a pest that lives in park bushes. During particularly bad bouts of turbulence, of which there was an hour’s worth on today’s flight, I look to see if they are still getting on with their job smiling. As soon as you see them give each other ‘the look’ you know it’s game over. God has yanked the joystick from his Amiga and thrown away the floppy disk.

I love ending on such positive notes.

Here are some photos.

From the highest “twin level” bridge in the world. They might as well have boasted “the highest green painted bridge in the world” for all its worth!

Before Noony jumped up and down violently to, “See what would happen.”

Pez inspecting a diagram of what a bridge looks like from the inside.

A Sri Lankan sun on a Sri Lankan beach.

Men showing off their appendages.

Hikkaduwa, Feb 2011. Spending time here was exactly like this.

Thunder and lightning a’plenty. True story.

We found a rooftop pool to mooch around.

Stone the crows! They’re conjoined!!

What is this please? I think its a lesser-known poo-tit.

Charming boats and birds.

Typical Sri Lankan Road. Add Bangkokian reckless death driving and its a moving horror flick.

More optik joy in colonial centre.

Here are some more photos of Kuala Lumpur from us doing the tourist thing and the wildlife I forgot to post yesterday.

Guinea pigs.

Looks really small in the tree, but it wasn’t.

There it is!

There was nothing little in Little India.

Muslim architect uses pretty shapes.

Kuala Lumpur Kuala Lumpur. So good they named it twice.

Today was our first day in hot hot hot Kuala Lumpur. I don’t know why people rave about the heat of Bangkok (which was bloody hot) because KL is ridonkulous. I definitely melted a little bit. We went for a wander about into 3 of the millions of huge malls sprawling the city. It was very boring as everything is the same price as it would be in London. I think Pez was secretly hoping for some cheap technology.

Then, we took the monorail to the Lake Gardens where we spotted a huge lizard (over 3 feet long) and accidentally scared it up a tree; we also saw some lesser mouse deer. They are teeny weeny and look a bit like a skinny guinea pig with long stick legs.
Finally, we visited the planetarium which was awesome. We had some fun in an antigravity room and watched a couple of films on the massive dome.

View of Georgetown, Penang.

I don’t know if this is aimed at either girls or racists.

Indoor roller-coaster. Standard.

KFC is miniature in Malaysia.

This robber took my hat clean off my head and walked off with it.

Did you know Kuala Lumpur used to be a think jungle? Yeah, true story.

Our only water supply.

If you look very closely, you can see Noony melting.

I’m not too far behind.

Pez shows off his Achilles tendons.

Dome face.

Random photos on my iPhone lol

Noony doesn’t realise there’s a bloody great snake next to her.

Leonardo was so impressed with our sand drawing of his face, he gave us his own personal map.


They sat patiently waiting for their husband to finish swimming.

We climbed this hill.

For some reason, this is called Turtle Pagoda.

In this photo, you can’t see the other 24,950 lights.

So many lights.

“My master, is everything alright?”. “Matey, everything’s A-OK”

Something people would buy on their Gap Yah.

The three stages of awesomeness.

Try and work out how big she is. (It’s like throwing a hotdog down a hallway)

Nice mixture of religious iconography there.

We thought taking a photo of the best photo there is apt.

Bring me my bow of burning gold! Bring me my arrows of desire!

So, where were we? Yes. We sat outside our Inn after reporting about Andrea’s ridiculous spontaneity thinking we had only a few weeks until our tranquil lifestyle is transformed by the arrival of another person! Andrea is easy-going, passive, fun and shares exactly the same gripes as us.

I think we’re going to fall out.

We headed over to a Hard. Rock. Cafe? to celebrate. It was a 2km walk down the coast, past one of the longest line of stall vendors in Malaysia (go on, guess how long…). We were greeted by Elton’s suit, Motley Crew’s Drums and Tiny Tim’s ukulele. However, ‘turns out the hard rock prices don’t differ in any country and the bill smacked us in the side of the head like a…?

Oh yes. gōng xǐ fā cái!! (pronounced ‘hap-ee nyoo yeer’ to those not versed with simplified Chinese.) Everywhere in Malaysia was fully booked, especially on the islands. Our Halong Bay and ‘beach’ beach buddies, Jean and Val, got stuck in Langkawi as there were no boats and ended up sleeping on the floor of an elderly French couple’s room, polite enough to help them out. The beach was absolutely ram-a-jam packed with public holiday folk. Just off the shore were 20 jet skis, 10 banana boats and 12 parachute-boat jobs. Some chap hurt his leg on one of the propellers and hobbled round the beach and the large number of jellyfish warning signs told us to move on into the main city.

Georgetown was built by the British, and shall be demolished by the British, by Jove! There is a stark difference between Brit architecture and that of the poor countries last visited. Not being racist, like, but yeah, it’s like totally better? We stayed in Chinatown, in midst of their biggest celebration. Everything shut for 15 days. With empty streets, we walked through the old town; quaint, picturesque and dirtier than a French prison latrine. We spotted six rats rummaging through broken Chinese lanterns. One had a hat on. It might have been some chicken, I didn’t have my glasses that day. We bumped, randomly, into Jean and Val for the 3rd time in Asia and spent some time with them, but as they will be in South Malaysia when we are, there’s more to do and share and fun-it-up together. We will throw some more photos at the Blog at some point, as the highlight was Kek Lok Si Temple. A hilltop temple that shows off over 25,000 lights, but only for Chinese New Year. We caught a local bus there at Sundown, got completely lost but made it there and back again unscathed. Needless to say, it was very bright and lit up the side of the mountain. It was a bit like a religious theme park, but all the rides occur at the end of your life.

I will write but one sentence about Ipoh as that is all it deserves.

Ipoh is so boring, destitute and lacking in any charm we damned the day that we let Lonely Planet convince us that three nights was perfectly acceptable.

(Anyone deciding to travel, don’t buy a guide-book. The mis-information (or lies) they spread can send you on a wild goose chase round a city you thought was on the other side of the river. It took us three days to find a restaurant. I. kid. you. not.)

Today we caught an amazing train, (seats and everything) to Kuala Lumpur. So far the Malaysians win in terms of transportation. I’m sure that’s something to do again with the British. Rah rah rah Hurrah!

Tinkerty Tonk
The Hon. Andrew.

A New Recruit

Andrea Marie Tsarbos is wonderful. On an inspired whim she has bought tickets to come and join us for a whole month in Singapore and Indonesia. She is mental.
We are shocked and amazed and oh so excited. Yay for Andrea!

Borneo Adventure

We have just discovered something that we thought we would not do, but now we have found it, consider it a trip of a life time, above and beyond anything we have seen so far. It is an amazing trip to Indonesian Borneo to visit an Orang-utan Conservation Centre.
The trip includes flights, a private boat, English guide, cook, captain, etc. and takes you deep into the jungle for 3 days. At night, you sleep under the stars on the top deck of the boat with no one else around apart from gibbons and orang-utans.

To those in Bristol, those in London and those somewhere in-between, we promise you signed photos of the orang-utans. We can’t promise these will be signed in ink.

To lovely family members, the same applies as above, but we will also send you all the photos of our adventure.

If any of you want to make a donation to the sanctuary, let us know and we will pass on the money.

Good deed.

We have been staying in Langkawi for 4 days and are still at the resort in the middle of nowhere. It has been really nice to laze by a pool for a few days. We have been to Kuah town and to Cenang beach around the island. There are plenty of things to do here but nothing that has really caught our eye so we have been happy relaxing at the resort.

However, we have noticed a beautiful white cat who hangs around here who is very sick. On the first day he looked like he was just losing a little fur on one side but after 4 days it has turned into horrible gaping wounds with ants crawling all over him. I asked at reception if they would take him to a vet, and when she didn’t understand I asked for “a hospital for animals”. She said there is no such thing in Langkawi and laughed at me. Pez found an animal sanctuary in about 3 seconds on the Internet and we have emailed them and they say they will treat the cat for free but cannot pick him up. So, we then asked at reception for a box, so we could take him there ourselves. Again, the lady laughed and said she had no boxes. We found a box ourselves and lined it with paper and cut little holes to make him more comfortable. I wanted to use the hotel towels but Pez says we shouldn’t. I think we should as they are cruel and evil.

Finally, after asking if they could help us with getting a taxi that would allow the cat in the car, the manager came to speak to us and said he will let us use the resort driver to take us to the vet, but he couldn’t take us for a few hours. So we nursed, fed and watered the cat and put him inside the box to let him get used to it before the journey. He is so friendly and so sweet, I can’t believe all these people at the resort and the staff have just been watching him deteriorate for days and not do anything about it, especially when we had explained that the vet is free.
The journey in the van with Gandalf the white was quite uneventful. He behaved really well and seemed fairly happy in his box. At the vet, she told us that he was probably burned with hot oil or with acid and that his skin had become infected. Poor little bugger. But on the plus side, she said when he is better and goes to the shelter for rehoming he will be very popular as white cats always are for some reason.
Good deed done for the day, Pez and I feel happy that he will be cared for, but sad that we won’t see little Gandalf again. The adventure continues…

Eleven pictures paint eleven thousand words

Sunset by the sea.

Night time camera fun à la Nick Howes.

Koh Phi Phi Ley (or “The” Beach “island”)

You have a woman’s legs, m’Lord!

View from the “beach” beach.

The Japanese really know how to party.

What we really didn’t want to show you. The other tourists.

The only swimmer in the shark bay. Idiot.

In a bay for the day.

Krabi photos

Our stone hut, a Noony and a kitten.

Our very own street prostitute.

Sleeping off a heavy, dirty night.


The pier to see-a the sea.

Beach trees.

Excellent for high fives.

Full of disco biscuits.

Patrick, good things come to those who tell us what the hell this is.

View, lol.

Exit Thailand, Enter Banter?

Just a very short note to say what we have been up to whilst you guys have been pushing through New Year blues. Boo.

We went back to Bangkok for four days after Chiang Mai and stayed at the beloved Atlanta Hotel once more. For those not familiar with this from our previous rambles, it is Bangkok’s oldest hotel and swimming pool and hasn’t changed in 60 years. The little black kitten we left in October has now grown into a slightly larger black kitten and is still as ruthlessly cheeky chasing shadows and ankles. They also have a new recruit; a little puppy who liked to sleep on the sun loungers with you. His tag said “rabies free”, it’s a really crap name for a dog.

We spent a day in the commercial district and ploughed through about 6 malls, ranging from top end (there was a Ferrari in the window of the 10th floor) to absolute bottom knock-off tat (the fake iPhone 4s looked too good to be true). We bought more things for our house, which technically hasn’t been bought yet, and our backpacks are now brimming with paper umbrellas, lanterns, lights and other horrifically flammable objects.

We had a little run in with the police that day and taken to their police hut, but that is another story for home. Parents reading this, don’t fret, police love bribes and we are free again.

We took a sleeper train for the first time as we encountered tourists with horror stories of the night buses and have vowed not to travel that way again. We forgot how train stations and airports differed, so after getting there two hours early to ‘check in?’ we boarded the train and made our way to the bar as there was more room… and drink. We met an American couple who are making their way to Seoul to teach English. They were only 23 and already had been married for six months. We spent a good few hours chatting with them before making our way back to our bunks. It was surprisingly clean and comfortable, even though we had the top bunks. Neither of us slept much but I think that had something to do with the beers, rather than the train.
We got into Surat Thani early in the morning and then took a bus for 3 hours across Thailand to Krabi. When we arrived the bus dropped us miles out of town and the taxi driver insisted our hostel was 60 Km away. We were not fooled and instead called the owner to come pick us up, it was only about a 20 minute drive.
Our hostel was really lovely, we had booked a fan room but the owner (a very gay German guy called Olli, who stood on one leg, waved one hand while the other sat on his hip, and in a high pitched tone exclaimed “Alles Clar!” [sic.]) upgraded us from the bamboo bungalow to a stone one with air con for no extra charge. We also had a deck and a pier over a private beach where you can swim only when the tide is in. When the tide goes out the area is covered with wildlife and millions of different crabs. We even saw a strange creature that featured on the Guinness adverts a little while back, it looks like a cross between a frog, a lizard, a snake and a fish. Patrick, I insist you tell me what this thing is called (not so great photo to follow).
Krabi is a beautiful province of Thailand, we were out in the middle of nowhere but took a motorbike to town and the very popular Ao Nang beach. It was strange to see a Burger King, MacDonalds and a Starbucks amongst all the locals stalls selling beach tat.
Back at the hostel, Olli made a huge communal dinner both nights we stayed which was really delicious and a nice way to hang out with everyone there. Pez loved the food and had 3 helpings of chicken curry and rice. Although I realise most of our posts feature cats in some way, we must tell you about the kitten at this hostel. Olli had rescued her from the side of the road, where she was lying with her sibling who had been killed by a car. He doesn’t like the cat one bit but had to take her in anyway. He called her the Thai word for a female prostitute as she loves everyone and is a big flirt. Pez fell in love with her instantly and we both wanted to put her in our back pack. Olli said we could, but somehow I think travelling with a cat isn’t the best idea.

Koh phi phi
Early in the morning we took a ferry to Koh Phi Phi from Krabi port, and we knew that we may see Jean and Val, 2 people we had met at Halong Bay in Vietnam. Strangely enough we were picked up by the same tuk-tuk and travelled together on the boat. We spent 3 awesome days with them on Koh Phi Phi, despite it being the most expensive place we have been so far. There are no roads, so you have to catch taxi boats around the island and we were really lucky to find somewhere to stay for £25 a night, which is the most we have spent on a room so far. For over double that price you can get air con, so we just settled for a fan. We hired a private long boat with Jean and Val and ventured to the smaller uninhabited island of Koh Phi Phi Ley where you can visit “The Beach”, Maya Bay and some other empty bays for snorkelling and swimming. At the snorkelling bay we were happily spotting some small fish when the boat driver said, “Hey! Swim over there, there is a small shark you can see!”. His idea of small was 5 feet and I promptly sprang out of the water back onto the boat! This island was absolutely stunning, but instead of me rambling on about it we will just post the photos.

Koh Lanta
We then moved onto to Koh Lanta which is further south than Koh Phi Phi and about 50 times larger. The beaches are no where near as spectacular but there is a lot more to see around the island. We hired a bike again and spent one day travelling around the whole island. We stayed in a bamboo bungalow, and were frequently visited by amphibious friends. A huge lizard (without its tail it was a foot long) lived in the bathroom, which Pez didn’t believe, until he was about to take a shower and it ran across the wall. He yelped at the size of it and I spent the afternoon gloating, “I told you so!”. Each morning we were also visited by a frog in the bathroom. He must have been annoyed to be shunted out each day just to sneak his way back again during the night. Even though there were huge gaps for the creatures to venture in, there were no bugs and we had a mosquito net so neither of us were bothered. In fact, lizards are my new friends as they eat Mosquitos and moths!

Yesterday we arrived at Langkawi, an island off of Malaysia, and said our goodbyes to Thailand. Our resort is again a bungalow but we have air con and a swimming pool so it is much nicer. Already, we have noticed a big difference between Thailand and Malaysia. The language and food is heavily influenced by India and it feels less backpacker orientated, more a place for rich people to come on holiday. We do have free wifi here which we haven’t had for weeks so we can do the blog and upload photos again – hoorah!!

Bye Bye Tye-land

So, tonight is our last night in Thailand, we have decided to enter Malaysia tomorrow via boat to the island of Langkawi.

We have been rubbish with writing on the blog as internet on the islands has been rubbish and expensive, but we will write lots and put up plenty of photos to make you jealous when we find some wifi.


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