|Wow, what a beautiful place this is! Fricken hot though. April is Thailand's hottest month of the year, but somehow that fades away when you're sitting on the white sand beaches sipping a soda and going into the water whenever you feel like cooling off. It's a perfect follow up for India. It's nice too to be hanging out with a few people from home just taking it easy; we're going to spend 4 days here which will be long compared to the pace we've been keeping up until now.
The change in food is also very welcomed with all the great Thai curries and the better availability of vegetables and decent fruits. We're staying in a nice hotel, really 5 star compared to where we have been staying, but hey, ya gotta re-charge sometime!
The other thing that is noticeable over the last few days is just how nice the Thai people are - they are not pushy like in India or Indonesia, trying to sell you everything on earth, and when you say no thank you just once, that's it, there is no more hassle. Makes it a lot more enjoyable. Things are always readily available though (ice cream, drinks, snacks, etc.) from people walking up and down the beach. The water here is warm - maybe in the 23 degree range, so it's almost like a hot tub!
We had a little "incident" at the airport in Bangkok though, as both Sandy and I left our Swiss army knives in our carry on bags and we were both "apprehended" at security. I guess the 4 am wake up for the flight made us miss it. Fantastically though, we were able to keep our knives, unlike in North America. What happened is we were taken over to a counter where we were given a chit and our knives would be put in the hold of the aircraft and we could collect them at the other end. Great! Although we felt like criminals as they sat us down at the desk beside all the posters that highlight the dangerous items that cannot be brought on board. People must have thought we were criminals. We flew Bangkok airways, which turned out to be a great little airline with a lounge that had free drinks, cinnamon rolls, popcorn, coffee, juice, and internet. They even had a free breakfast on board a 1 hour flight. All for less than 80 bucks from Bangkok to Samui. Pretty good deal. Things are generally more expensive here than other places though, because the infrastructure for tourism is very well developed. Pretty much western (7-11's everywhere; all the taxis are pretty new cars, etc.)
We might do some snorkelling over at one of the other islands, and then our plan is to boat and bus down to Krabi where we can see the other coast, which is supposed to have even whiter sand! But for now, it's just lay back and chill out. Which I think is what Thailand is all about...