Today has been a very long day. We did watch the rugby last night but that was the extent of our energy expenditure. As my arse has been welded to what must be the worlds worst bed for the last 24 hours you would think I would be up and raring to go but no, I’m still knackered and the cold shower and Starbucks coffee take a long time to kick in.
We have packed most things and after a quick breakfast of watermelon, banana and yogurt we wander up the road to get me a book and Simon some t-shirts.
At 11.30 we’re finally ready for the off and catch a taxi to Hualamphong train station. We buy tickets to Sukothai in the north of Thailand for the 21st March. We are meeting the kids back in Bangkok on the 20th and plan to visit Sukothai on our way to Chiang Mai, Thailands 2nd largest city. That sorted we make our way across town to The Eastern bus terminal where we board a bus to Trat.
Trat is a smallish town near the Thai/Cambodia border and we are planning to catch the ferry from Trat to the island of Ko Chang. The bus rides are ok and this bus is good, air conditioned with very comfortable seats. Still 6 hours is a long time and by the end of it I’m very fidgety. I read my new book on the way, and listen to my MP3 but still am glad when we finally arrive. In between the cities Thailand is quite industrial and not very pretty in places but I still enjoy staring out of the window and watching the world go by.
As we haven’t got Ali and Maisie with us we can be more flexible and less organised which isn’t hard for us at the moment as neither of us are too fussed about where we stay tonight. We were going to stay in Trat overnight but decide to head straight for Ko Chang instead. The ferry takes an hour and when we arrive the sawngthaew driver packs us in like sardines with an entertaining French fella called Jean Sebastian and a Swedish family who are travelling for 5 months with their 3 daughters aged 12, 9 and 3. They have been to Cambodia and the eldest girl tells us about eating spiders (Can’t wait to tell Maisie that!)
We ask to go to The White Sands Beach, it is the busiest resort on Ko Chang and even though it’s completely dark before we even board the ferry as soon as we arrive I can see its not going to be for us. We wander along the busy street, lined with shops, daytrip agents and restaurants and quickly realise our idea of saving some money by staying in a cheap place isn’t going to happen tonight. After trying few places we settle on a grungy little beach hut (Not on the beach) for 400 baht. (5 quid). We especially like the homely little touches it has to offer, for example all the gaps in the walls are stuffed with toilet paper and the only place to clean your teeth is over the toilet. Nice.
We have some ok Thai food on the beach and return to our little palace, there is hardly room to swing a rat in here and we’re both distinctly underwhelmed, looking forward to moving to the southwest coast of the island tomorrow I’m sure Ko Chang will look a bit more inviting in the sunshine.