So, on Pats recommendation we visited the Thai Cat Museum on the way home from Hua-Hin. I am not sure how I feel about this museum, there were many cats and they were all in small cages. On the plus side, this man breeds the cats for sale in Thailand and internationally. So he is doing a lot to keep some of the rarer breeds of Thai cats alive and I am hoping the cats in cages are young and will be in homes very soon.
We checked out the vintage market at Hua Hin, VERY cool market. It was mostly full of Thai tourists and is based on an old-style market design and a lot of the stalls are themed appropriately. I bought some vintage (but hopefully fresh) sweets for my colleagues, a little robot (not sure why) and took plenty of photos. At 7pm (or 6pm) the National Anthem played and in respect to the King everyone stopped what they were doing and stood in silence. I’ve been in places before in Thailand where this happens however the atmosphere of the market made it seem even more special.
I spent almost week in Hua Hin with the family before heading to India for my month of yoga therapy. This was good because after the flight from NZ I needed some R&R to give the hip a chance to settle down again.
Dad booked us into a lovely resort which was hard to find but lovely. Several steps up from my usual standard of accommodation! I spent a lot of time reading, lazing by the pool and eating AMAZING thai seafood.
Hua Hin is a lovely wee beach town on the coast south of Bangkok. The beach isn’t as spectacular as some of the islands in southern thailand but its nice enough. I think it took us 3hours to drive from Dad’s place. Hua Hin is MUCH MUCH MUCH nicer than pattya, it has all the resorts and tourist attractions but is a lot less seedy. I really liked it.
Here are some photos and a link to more info about Hua Hin.
So, after a period of non-travelling Travelling Kiwi FINALLY got to go travelling again! Ok, its not that bad, I did actually sneak in a little trip to Thailand before starting my new job in April 2011.
Anyways, after a lot of drama in NZ in Oct/Nov/Dec (incl 10 days in hospital and over a month of bedrest) I locked in my plans to return to India to study yoga with my teacher in Mysore. The purpose of the trip is to try and heal my problematic hip. I figure the mixture of a warm climate, Asian food, fresh coconuts and yoga will do me the world of good. My employer has been VERY understanding and despite me having all that sick leave they are allowing me to take another month off to try and fix my hip and get a good rest. Luckily for me, the cheapest ticket to India was via Bangkok so I get to see my family in Thailand on the way over.
So, I am leaving NZ on crutches and am hoping like hell I don’t need them when I come back!
So, as you know after I finished up being a wannabe yogi in India I headed back to Thailand to stay with my dad. I was pretty broke and needed to sort myself out – so Dad’s seemed to be a very good place to go! Thanks dad. 🙂
After India I couldn’t get over how nice, clean and quiet Bangkok is! I found the infrastructure to be overwhelming; it was like being back in the modern world – fast cars, motorways, mega shopping malls – consumerism everywhere – talk about a direct entry back into the rat race. I noticed an absence of rubbish, an absence of men urinating in the street, and of course… a serious absence of city cows! I guess it is kind of lucky I didn’t go straight back to NZ from India or I would have really had a sensory overload – all things are relative huh?!
While at dads I helped him out with a few projects, soaked up the warmth and enjoyed eating good Thai food and hanging out with family. I washed my clothes using a washing machine for the first time in months (instead of a bucket) and I had the longest nicest longest hot shower (much to the detriment of my Indian tan!) It was good to be back in into civilisation.
So I ended up spending about 8 weeks at Dads all up… during this time I managed to get my old job back in NZ, found a flat (ironically it’s the same flat I lived at before going overseas), had a side trip to Malaysia, went to the beach, had a day trip to Ayutthaya, ate plenty of good food and booked tickets to New Zealand!
Here is a random selection of photos, mostly of family and food!
My brother Mike and his girlfriend Becca are in Thailand. So we all went for a day trip to Ayutthaya. Ayutthaya is the ancient capital of Thailand, itis a neat river town with plenty of things to do…. this time we did a river cruise and visited a random temple that has lots of terracotta buddhas.
I made it to Nepal! Hooray… The journey has begun! To be honest it’s been off to a pretty rough start…
While in Bangkok I thought it would be a good idea to get my eyebrows waxed just before going to the airport. Well… that was a freakn disaster. Seriously, I cried. They are that bad, the woman butchered them and my eyebrow is still sore 24hrs later. I’m going to have to grow them out and deal with a mono brow for a while before finding somewhere good (aka very expensive) in India to get them fixed up.
To make it worse the woman took 40 mins and by the time they got someone else to try and fix them up I was running VERY late for the plane. So late I thought I would miss it. But the gods of Royal Nepal Airlines were shining on me, little did I know that this airline is known for being unreliable… So the flight scheduled for 1.30 was delayed till 4pm, then 6pm… then we left at 7.30pm.
I got the privilege of sitting next to a group of smelly men one of which who took his shoes off to add to the stink and then stared at me the whole way. It was horrible, they told me to bring ear plugs – nose plugs would have been a better idea.
Oh, to make that flight even better – the plane was about 100 years old (ok, slight exaggeration) and I was sitting by the emergency exit door which wasn’t shut properly. I spent the whole flight waiting for it to tear open, suck me out and splatter me on to Mt Everest or something. I really shouldn’t have watched ‘how not to die’ last week.
So I have arrived… spent the day being harassed by trekking guides and wandering around a bit disorientated. AND I have already been scammed – I knew what was going on and when I out witted him the little bugger nicked $10usd from me… Grrr… You live and learn.
I did score a free lunch though from one of the touts wanting me to book an overpriced tour, he took me to a Nepalese place and I had my first meal sans cutlery… I can still smell the curry on my fingers… give me a spoon any day!
So… I’ve got a few days before meeting my tour group, I’m thinking getting out of Katmandu and into the country side is a good idea. Watch this space… I will post photos in the next few days… I just wanted to let you know I got here ok.