November 24th, 2005


Nai Yang Thailand Update

Greetings from Nai Yang National Park. This is the place you may have seen on national Geographic where the giant sea turtles come up onto the beach at night to lay eggs. The theory is this is the season they do that, so I'm staying at a bungalow resort inside the park and hoping it stops raining long enough.

To bring things somewhat up to date, this is my last 2 days of vacation, the weekend is the official start of being on the company expense account.

Last time I typed anything here it was just after my birthday, 8 days ago. Since then, here's what's been happening:

On the 16th, Loi Krathong Day, after dark I took the skytrain to Taksin Bridge, which is a big long span across one of the wider points in the Chao Prya River. The Chao Prya is to Bangkok what the Sacramento River is to Sacto valley. Or more like the Willamette in Portland, OR. Lots of bridges to the other side, because the other side is for all intents and purposes also Bangkok. There was quite a crowd at the ends of the bridge, but I found a nice spot near the center to watch the lit-up river boats. Hope some of my photos come out.

The 17th was escape Bangkok day. I started by picking up a Thai silk suit & shirts at the tailor, then went to the PO to mail that home. Then it was an easy walk to the skytrain, and a few stops to the Eastern Bus Terminal. I caught a tour bus to Chanthaburi. About 4 hours later I was there. So, going to my bullets:

  • Bought lots of sapphires
  • Found an excellent food market, had the best food of my trip so far
  • Back to Bangkok
  • Boarded the night train to Haad Yai, southern Thailand
  • 5 hours into the trip, they stopped.
    • Flood at Hua Hin
    • No way for train to continue
    • No way to bus around - the road is washed out too
    • Put engine on other side of train and returned to Bangkok
  • 3 am went to tour bus station
  • Took bus to Phuket (won't see Haad Yai this trip)
  • Called Scuba place, they scrubbed my Nov 21 dive, postponed to 22
  • Went on 3-dive trip with instructor and boatload of people
    • Choppy water
    • Bad visibility
    • The mask they gave me was horrible, wouldn't clear
    • Back to dive shop, cancelled Nov 23 dive

  • Met another former Peace Corps Volunteer for dinner. He offered me a job.

    • Very tempting, train Thai teachers to maintain school computer labs
    • But only for 6 months

  • Ordered 2 pants and 6 shirts (cotton) at tailor. $200. Had them delivered to hotel
  • Finally got Cingular to remove the block from my cell phone voicemail so people can leave messages
  • Soaked up some sun & swam in clear waters of Karon Beach
  • Admired topless Scandinavian sunbathers. Photographed some.
  • Hit the girlie bars. Was proposed to almost as many times as I was propositioned
  • Took taxi north to Nai Yang where I am now
The plan for today is to lay back, write postcards, and if it stops raining go for a swim. Tomorrow will hire a car & driver and go out to Pang Nga and see the Batik project which the former volunteer helped get started. Also will see some of the harder hit tsunami areas away from the tourist traps.

Fly back to Bangkok on the 26th, spend the weekend there, then Monday it's China for a week of training engineers on Internet Video.
  • Current Music
    Hunka Burning Love By Thai Elvis impersonator
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