Before you get all worked up about Thailand let me first tell you all about my trip from Penang in Malaysia to the border, then to Hat Yai and then on to Phuket.
It only took me 11,5 hours in a cramped converted Toyota Highace stuffed with 11 people plus the driver...
When I left Penang it was 5 am and when I finally got to Phuket it was 5.30 pm and getting dark, since Thailand is GMT+7 and Malaysia is GMT+8 hours.
I found a nice guesthouse but no rooms available with air condition. Great, so I did not sleep very well if at all.
Next day I tried to recover slightly by treating myself to some nice food (read: not any form of rice) and afterwards found another cheap hotel further away from the center of town.
By the way, Phuket town is not by the water.. So today I've just trotted around taking a few photos and tomorrow I'll go to the beach somewhere and soak up the coral reef.
After I had shot some photos it started to rain as it always does in the afternoon. It's not as precise as in the real monsoon season, so you can't set your watch by it, you just have to be prepared for anything.
That night I met a guy from USA, Leaf's his name, and we hooked up and decided to go to the beach together the next day. And so we did.
Patong beach was our choice. After a mildly disappointment from Phuket Town we thought it would be nice with some sunshine and a warm ocean to soak it all up in.
However, I found Patong Beach to be the most un-Thai place in Thailand I have ever been. The locals never even "wai"* you, at all. And most of them are only there for your dirty money. Some are even willing to do ... you know, anything, to get it. Not nice, not nice at all.
So after a few days trying to convince myself that this was a nice place, I got extremely home-sick and almost chose to dump everything and leave this god-forsaken place asap. Fortunately I didn't. I came back to my senses and made another, better, decision to book a flight out of Phuket to Bangkok. Then from Bangkok I would go straight on to Chiang Mai the next day.
That's what I did, so right now I'm writing to you from the northern part of Thailand. More on that in the next entry :)
*"Wai" is a Thai greeting where you have both palms together in front of your nose, and give a slight nod at the same time.