Friday, October 17, 2008

Oct.17 Party in chaWAENG!

Cabaret show and discos on Samui's party beach
We waited until our last night on Samui to hit the party town of Chaweng for a lady-boy cabaret show & some partying at the many open air discos. We had our bungalow host as our guide to show us the best spots to hit and to point out with skill which were the Thai lady-boys (i.e. guys dressed like ladies trying to get with tourist men) and which were indeed ladies. Either way, the sex trade is alive & in your face here.
The Cabaret show was extravagant with lady boys dressed in impressive costumes (picture sequins here) dancing and lip-syncing to all the popular show tunes you can imagine. We didn't take the front row seats which were occupied by the real drunk tourists who were right into it, stuffing bills into the performers' costumes which somehow amazingly hid whatever there was to hide very well. Now the most unfortunate part was that we didn't bring our camera out for the evening, so your imagination will need to fill in the blanks ;) [well, you can sort of see the show in this photo]
Following the show, the party in the streets between clubs complete with drinking red bull & vodka out of beach buckets, resembled a cross between Mexican resort town nightlife & the full moon party we experienced earlier in the week. This night was definitely an experience we will remember. Good thing we're heading north to the cool & peaceful mountains of Chiang Mai.
-Julie and Andrew

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Island life in Thailand

Okay, now we're going to make you jealous. As I type this I am sitting on the beach outside our bungalow watching an elderly Thai couple trying to catch their meals for the day. We've been here for nearly a week now and quite frankly it will be hard to leave.
We arrived in Koh Samui almost by accident since my mom warned us of the political turmoil in Bangkok and thus we sat in Bangkok's airport debating our next move. Finally we decided to head south to catch the party and rest. A last minute ticket and off we went!
One night in a tiny resort room left us wanting more, and we found it a short stroll down the beach. See Daeng bungalows appeared and we soon found ourselves as characters in what would appear to be some sort of 80's sitcom or an episode of Big Brother. Marie, an ex-pat Swede, creates a friendly atmosphere and we are feeling at home in our bungalow a few feet from the beach. Also in the mix are her Swedish friend and his Thai girlfriend, a big German Reudiger and a multi-year traveling English couple. David (the Swede) is as entertaining a character as you can get! Regaling us with stories of having lunch with Mats Sundin (his friend was Mats' boyhood coach) or how he's about to produce a record with the ABBA keyboardist Ben. With the international group, we've all taken turns preparing a meal from our homeland so we've had a German casserole that Rudi slaved away at for 6 hours even making the noodles from scratch, famous Swedish meatballs and mashed potatoes, Thai bbq on the beach, Canadian breakfast (pancakes and bacon was all we could think of and source ingredients for), British tea and sandwiches, tonight Japanese and tomorrow Irish stew.
We haven't done much touring of the island. Rented scooters one day and did the loop around the island, making some notes of where to go back to (swim in a waterfall and such). Then went on a boat tour to Angthong Marine Park which was less than spectacular, but interestingly it is the location described in the novel "The Beach". I guess we'll have to see that movie sometime...

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Full Moon Party!

we came, we saw, we partied under the full moon.An eclectic group (Canucks, Brits, Germans, Thais) of us from the bungalows ventured across the strait to the other island of Koh Phangan to see just what all the fuss is about regarding this famous full moon party. Well, really, not much. The Brit(Ed) and I agreed that besides the fact that it's on a beach and it's the full moon, there are big parties like this back home (i.e. Commerce or Corn & Apple socials) that seem even more out of control.
Good times though. Drinks are mickeys dumped into a plastic bucket with a can of mix, ice and the ever-optional Red Bull. The beach is lined with restaurants and bars, each with their own massive sound system pounding the beats out onto the beach. And yes, one of them played typical social music, complete with Brian Adams' "Summer of 69". All places charge around 10-20baht to use the toilet and some got pretty gross; thus there could often be a row of guys with their pants hiked up peeing in the ocean but tough luck for the girls.

The bulk of our crew left early but Julie and I stayed a bit later. We found a balcony overlooking the party and just took in the action. For some reason we were not content with the drink selection so we figured we could make our own for cheaper. So we bought a bottle of booze, some mix, a big bag of ice and a bucket and a nice cashier gave us some straws. Are we cheap Winnipeggers or what??

Around 3am we'd had enough and queued up for the boat ride home.