As we type, we are sitting in the SAS lounge sipping espresso and nibbling on cookies. We are more than half way through the long trip back to the states. Our day began late last night when we were picked up for our 12:55 am flight. At the airport in Bangkok, we were lucky enough to have time for a lovely 30 minute shoulder and back massage that is complimentary at the Thai Airways lounge. Amazing! Now that is how to start a 10 hour flight. Once we were boarded, we ate a second dinner and then we both slept for about 7 hours. Ambien is one hell of a drug! Anyway, the sleeping made the flight fly by and we didn’t even have time to watch a whole movie before we were landing in Oslo. Our layover is about 4 hours so now we wait and snack and blog and read and then back on a plane for another 6 hours or so. We had such a wonderful trip but isn’t it always nice to come home? Speak with everyone soon. Thanks for reading.
Back in Bangkok for about 48 hours to end the trip. We were welcomed at the Mandarin Oriental with a lovely bottle of wine from Courtney and Michael (thanks guys), as well as our personal butler. Not too shabby. We spent our remaining time getting a few gifts and further exploring the city. Donald finally got his chinese food, although not xiao long bo. On a side note, the malls in Asia are out of control. One one floor there were car showrooms for Lamborghini, Maserati, BMW, and Audi. There was an entire wing devoted to Hi-fi stereo equipment, an aquarium, a full gym, an imax, a regular movie theater, a bowling alley, a SUPERmarket (extra stress on super), the list goes on. We were surprised that they did not have residences in the building. Returning to Bangkok to finish our trip was a nice end. We had a blast. Best trip ever.
We figured the best way to experience the island was to go out and explore it ourselves. Renting a car was a good idea. Trying to drive on the streets in Thailand, not a good idea. Cars seem to be on the bottom of the food chain. In this lawless land, where motorbikes and tuk tuks rule, having a “full-size” car is a severe disadvantage. There is no such thing as driving on the right side of the road. I am not referring to their backwards laws about driving on the left. Rather I am merely describing their full on open road policy. No car coming means you go. Car coming means go faster. For a kicker, they throw in a few roundabouts, feral dogs, and elephant crossings.
We drove the entire island in a day while trying to embrace Thai radio. They seem to think that remixing workout video soundtracks makes for good music. Well, it does not. But it does make you dance a bit.
We are sitting in the royal silk lounge in the Phuket airport as we type. About to head back to Bangkok for the night. We have all day tomorrow to wander around the city and then we head home. We leave at 1 am, connect through Oslo for 3 hours and then proceed to Newark. In all it is 23 hours of travel. We arrive at 1pm on the same day that we leave. Ahhhh date lines and time changes. We do believe it will be our longest day to date. Luckily the seats in business are very comfortable and the food is pretty ok so we “should” be fine. For now though, we are off to Bangkok. Will post more from the last couple days later today or tomorrow.
Donald managed to convince Jessica that it was a good idea to train Muay Thai in Thailand. We have both taken a couple classes in NJ, but it did not compare to the gym in Thailand. They take this stuff seriously. Our trainers (we each had one) barely spoke a word of english but they were great teachers none the less. The hour session was outside around 11am so it was hot and humid and sweating was not a problem. Then Donald decided to also train one hour of Jiu Jitsu so Jessica watched and took photos. Donald was not as good at Jessica at taking pictures. We think its because she was taking way more breaks so she had a chance to get some good shots.
After that, we took a cooking class just the two of us in one of the hotel restaurants. It was cool to see all the ingredients that they use and for both of us to make the dishes on our own and then get to enjoy them. We cant wait to get to the Asian market back in NJ and cook up a Thai feast of our own.
After the hustle and bustle of Cambodia, we are thrilled with the idea of relaxing at the beach. No tours, no guides, no plans. Just books, water, and drinks. We think we deserve it.
To get to Phuket we needed to fly through Bangkok, which might we add is a very lovely airport. Anantara is then just a quick 20 minute ride from the Phuket airport but it feels like being miles from civilization. The resort is beautiful and once again we have our own private pool. Honestly though, we tend to hang out at the “main” pool at the resorts because having people bring you drinks is much better than rochembeauing for getting up. Also, the views tend to be nicer away from your room.
The pool at the Anantara is really something special. I’m not sure who designed it but they deserve some kind of award: “it’s such a freaking cool pool” says Jess. The one down side of being in Phuket right now is the monsoon season. The rain isn’t causing any trouble. It is the red flags at every beach and Donald’s love of the ocean that is a minor hiccup. Jess understandably does not want to lose her husband (of less than a month) to the Andaman sea.
After taking the boat tour in Cambodia, we spent the rest of the day doing some interesting things:
- Donald got a Cambodian haircut
- We ate some yummy noodles
- We got stuck in the rain in a tuk-tuk
- We visited an artisan school and bought a sandstone Ganesh
- We ate some delicious Sucki-soup
- Jess got a fish pedicure (Donald laughed and drank the beer the pedicure came with)
- We explored the local night market
Considering we have been enjoying ourselves and neglecting this blog, we have decided to make this one brief…
We went on a boat ride to see the Tonle Sap Lake. If you are interested Wiki it. On the lake there is a constantly shifting floating village, where the fisherpeople move out in to the lake during the dry-season and back in to the river system during the monsoon season. The village consists mostly of Vietnamese immigrants who live off the lake. We took about 300 photos while traveling the waterways. Here are a few: