Battambang – Friends, more friends, and what more friends

Battambang started off pretty good and only got better as my time here continued.

When I arrived at the bus stop, the hotel sent over a Tuk Tuk to pick me up.  The Tuk Tuk driver brought along Thean, a Cambodian, who speaks excellent English.

Thean is a really nice guy, very friendly and knowledgeable.  He also operates his own tour business, where he takes tourist to the local hot spots.  More on that later.

The hotel I checked into is called First Hotel, and immediately I get a good impression from the staff.  My room is very nice as well.  Comfy bed, hot water, and all this for $6 a night.

Anyways, my first day is spent just wandering around the streets, seeing what all is here.  At first, I think it is the same as Pursat, just bigger.  Not sure if this is where I want to stay very long.

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However, my opinion very quickly changes.

The two hotel staff are so nice, and always say, Hello Rob, and want to chat.  If they have food, they always offer me some.  I very quickly feel like I have been here for weeks, and I have only been here 1 day.

The next morning I see Thean and he asks if I want to go for coffee together. Sure, why not.

This leads into him telling me about his business and all the things to see in Battambang, and one thing I must see.  The Killing Caves!  This will be a separate post, which will NOT be safe for kids to read!

We also talk about his business and I later help him with some technical stuff online.

He arranges for me to get a Tuk Tuk to see the bats that night.  This is going to be cool!

If you are in Cambodia, check out Thean’s website.
https://www.facebook.com/banana.bbtour/

After our coffee, I head back to the hotel but on my walk I see tones of crazy Cambodian things.  They have no fear!

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Around 3:30 pm a Tuk Tuk driver picks me up from the hotel and we drive out to the Killing Caves, where I can see 1 million bats fly out of a cave, at dusk.

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When we arrive I spend 1 hour at the Killing Caves, and watching the monkeys act like assholes.  Yes, they are assholes.  Trust me, but still funny.

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It is almost time for the bats, so I head down the 700 steps.

Again, 700 STEPS!

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I finally make it to the bats, and now just have to wait for them to fly out.

Then all of a sudden I feel someone rubbing my shoulders and telling me I owe $1 for pictures.  It is one of the hotel staff.  He is all happy to see me here, and sits down beside me.  He gives me a history lesson on the bats, and area.  Such a nice guy!

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20 minutes goes by, and then they start flying out.  Wow! truly amazing!  Unfortunately my camera doesn’t do it justice.

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I watch it for about 15 minutes, and love all 15 minutes of it.

When we arrive back at the hotel, Thean is sitting there.  He asks me if I want to come with him to a party.

Hell yes!

We get to this grand opening of a restaurant, where we meet his friends.  Again, they treat me like I am a king or something.  One guy immediately gives up his seat for me.  I say, no, but he doesn’t accept that.

Very quickly we are all chatting and they are offering me food, drinks, and more drinks.  They tell me I am not allowed to pay, this is a grand opening.

You have no idea how amazing I feel being around these guys.

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After dinner we all head over to another bar, where Flower, the girl in the one picture works.

Here the drinks are not free and I buy the first round.  However, I was no longer allowed to buy any more drinks.  They told me it is not allowed, they are paying.

Again, I can’t explain how much this type of hospitality means to me.  It is truly amazing.

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The night doesn’t stop here.  After, Flower takes me to another party.  This one is crazy fun, but I am getting to drunk.

She gives me some blue drink that is almost pure vodka, and after that drink, I am done.   I walk home, which I do not remember, but I think it is 3 am.

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Walking through Battambang at that time of morning was actually very safe. I felt fine and was not worried.

The next day I sleep in, and then eventually get my ass out of bed.  I see Thean and ask him to take me on a tour around Battambang.  He says sure, and we head out.

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During the tour, he stops to say hi and pick up a friend of his named Cher.  Cher is a pretty nice guy, and speaks OK English.

10 minutes into the tour, Cher asks me if I want to go with him tomorrow to his Mango Farm.  I say, Yes.  I don’t even know this guy, and he wants to take me to see his farm.  Pretty cool.

I didn’t get any good pictures that night because, well, it was dark.

The next morning at 8:30 am Cher picks me up and we drive 1.5 hours out to his farm.  On the way, he buys fruit for us, and he is another Cambodian who will not let me pay when I offer.  He tells me, he is lucky to have met me, and this is his honour to treat me.

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I really like Cher!

At this farm I get the full tour, and then they cooked me lunch.  Rice, Coconut, and soup.  I am telling you, they know how to cook!

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Oh yes, the coconut was picks right in front of me!

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After lunch we drive back to Battambang.  On the way, Cher asks me to come back to Cambodia and stay longer next year.  I think this would be amazing, and I really want to do this.

Shortly after we arrive back, Flower sends me a message and asks if I want to come out for a drink with her.  Can you guess?  I say Yes!

She picks me up on her scooter and I ride on the back.  This is the second time I have ridden on the back with her driving and I like it.  I can play on my phone, do my hair, and don’t have to worry about running into someone.  She is a pretty good driver!

This night is the same as the last.  I meet a few new people, but these are expats, and not locals.  However, just as much fun.  Actually too much, as the next day I feel it. haha.

Over the next day, I have coffee with Thean a few times, have many conversations with the hotel staff, and one conversation I won’t forget.  Vany one of the guys I met with Thean gave me a history tour on Cambodia.  He is a really cool guy, and I love our conversations.

 

If are in Cambodia, check out Vany’s website.
http://smilenettour.blogspot.com/

 

I am really glad I do not have those emotional feelings when leaving people, because this would be hard to leave my new friends tomorrow.

On to new adventures, and I hope I see them again someday!

Koh Chang – White Sand Beach

White Sand Beach has been a very fun place, and even better is, I am loving my hotel.  I took a chance on this place, as there were several bad reviews, but I thought, who cares for 1 night.

The reviews were very wrong.  My room was clean, the bed was decent, and it had hot water, which I was not expecting for the price.  Online I paid 600 baht for the night, but after seeing how great it is, I decided to stay an extra few nights, and Freddy the owner, only asks for 500 baht for each additional night.  How cool is that, I got a discount without even asking!

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My first night here, at around 8 pm I heard some music playing and took a look to see what was going on.  On the hillside Freddy setup a TV and cushions for everyone to come relax and watch a movie or listen to music.  Very chill and friendly.

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I ended up becoming friends with Freddy and his girlfriend, and we had some drinks together that night.  Really loving this place.

During the day, I explored the beach and swimming.  Nice clean water, but no real fish to see when snorkeling.  There is other eye-candy though!

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The next day I was sitting eating lunch, when another guest of the hotel asked if he could sit with me, because I had the fan table.  I said yes, of coarse.

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His name is Ville, and he is from Finland.  He has been coming here for years now and everyone knows him.  We have a really good conversation, and start having beers together.  Eventually he leaves to shower before we head out on the town.

As I am waiting for him, I meet another couple from Germany.  Marie and Marco are best friends traveling together.  We all hit it off pretty quickly, and when Ville comes back, we all head out on the town.

Our first stop is Little Red Light district.  I did not know this even existed on White Sand Beach, but it does.  a Mini walking street, with, yes, you guessed it.  Ladyboys, hookers, and dancing.

We have one drink, and decide this is not for us, but Ville wants to stay, so this is where we part with him.

Now Marie, Marco and I are off to continue the shit show.

We went all over checking out different bars, drinking and just having a damn good time.  So much of a good time that next day, I think we all felt it.

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One bar that was pretty cool, was a Rock Bar where we met 2 guys from Austria, who ended up in our gang of drunks that night.  I don’t recall their names though.

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What a night is all I can say!

The next day I spend just relaxing and catching up on email, etc.  However, that night Marie messages and asks what the hell am I doing.  So, I head down the to the beach to meet them relaxing, and having a pint.  What a great place to enjoy a cold one.

This night was a little slower, but still had some great conversations.

Onto the next day, I wake up early, go for a swim and book a taxi / ferry to Koh Mak.  I had not planned on going here, but then I heard it is awesome, quite and a decent price.  So, Yeah, I am going there.

Later in the day, I meet up with Marie and Marco.  We go swimming, suntan, and enjoy our last day in White Sand Beach.  Tomorrow they are also leaving but to go to Cambodia.

That night we eat at the local Night Market.  Marie tries some of the local bug snacks.  I also tried them, and they are not half bad.

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I enjoyed my shell fish!

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Our night was awesome, and I will really miss these two crazy Germans who liked to show me pictures of dicks!  Long story, but they will know what I mean. lol.

Well, Goodbye White Sand Beach on Koh Chang!

Jomtien Beach – Pattaya – Some last fun with my friends

Back in Jomtien Beach and I know this is going to be a good couple of days.  I get to see Anastasia, Olga and Kosta again.

However, before I go visiting, I have to check into my hotel.  I booked this one online, and it had decent reviews, but some were not so decent.  You can see my review here!

How much can you truly complain at 499 Baht a night!

It is evening and I am meeting Anastasia, Olga, and Kosta in Pattaya Park Night Market for some great eats.  One of my favorite places to eat.

During dinner we talk about going to Pattaya walking street, but Olga and Kosta don’t want to go, but that is OK.  It will be a great night, if you know anything about this street.  It is crazy, full of drunks, bars, ladyboys, and just about everything else.  Example below!

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Anastasia and I finish eating and head down to walking street.  Let this shit begin!

We walk all over looking for a bar without prostitutes and ladyboys, when we find a bar with a band playing.  Looks great.  Inside it is not bad, lots of people and the band is awesome.  There is a Thai girl singing rocks songs, which is kind of cool, she is a decent singer.

After a few songs, she is done singing for the night and the other guys in the band take over.  They are pretty funny, and good.

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A few more songs and they are done for the night.  We head over to the 7/11 for some cheaper beers.  Always a good way to advance the night!

The rest of the night we spend walking around, chatting, and just having a great night, with a great friend!

The next day I spend doing some online shit, since I finally have internet.  Get this, they have 1 GB Internet connection and no I do not mean, 1 GB router network connection, I actually mean, Internet connection.  However, the router is wireless N, so you can’t use the full speed.

I did benchmark my connection to the net, and I got over 90 MB/s up and over 40 MB/s down. Explorer.net, why did I only have 5 MB connection in Canada?

My last day in Jomtien Beach, I convinced Anastasia to come to Pattaya Park for swimming and waterslides.

It was awesome!  I think we went down the slides 100 times, and we were laughing and playing like little kids.  What a day to remember!  She even got to try a Snow Cone.  How do Russian’s not have this!  Maybe it is a Canadian thing.

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After the park I headed back to my hotel and Anastasia went to Kosta’s.  I decided not to come back into town for dinner, but later thought I should have, so I could give a proper goodbye to Olga and Kosta.  They gave me many good memories!

Well tomorrow I am off to Koh Chang, where I will start traveling again.  I am really excited for this, I have been in one place way to long.

Goodbye to my Amazing Russian Friends!

 

 

 

 

Koh Larn – The Russians are here!

After last nights crazy Thai adventure, I still have to get up and meet Anastasia at the ferry around 10:30 AM.  She is coming for a night with her sister Olga, and friend Kosta.   This is going to be another 2 days of really awesome fun, with my friends from Jomtien Beach condo.

Right on time, the ferry pulls into Naban Port and just a few minutes later I see the 3 Russians.  We all say hi, and walk back to the hotel, where they will check into their rooms and we will take our motorcycles for the day.

I have no idea what the plans is, but I think I will try and show them all the beaches, and end off the day with a sunset from Monkey Nual Beach.

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Nual Beach, also known as Monkey beach is the furthest away beach.  But come on, we are on an Island, it is only 8 minutes away. 🙂

We spend about 2 hours on Monkey beach swimming, snorkeling, and watching the monkeys fight.

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Selfies don’t always work under water

Onto the next beach.  Only 5 minutes away is Samae which is just around the corner, and over the hill.

As we are going up the big hill, the bike starts to run out of gas, but we make it to the top and easily make it to Samae beach.

Samae Beach is full of people and no real place to sit.  So we decide we want to go to Tien Beach, but before we do, we have to head back over the hill to get gas.  I am not sure if we will make it.

I was right, less than half way up the hill, it runs out of gas.

Within seconds of running out of gas, two Thai girls on a scooter stop and ask what is the problem.  I tell them we ran out of gas, but had hoped to make it over the hill.  I kind of felt like a stupid tourist!

The girls said, “wait 5 minutes, we will be back.”

While we were waiting to told Anastasia to push the bike up the hill.  She gave me a nice look, which I take it as. No, that is not going to happen.

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About 5 minutes later the Thai girls come back with a liter of gas and fill our tank.

I ask them how much I owe them and the girls says, it is 45 baht per liter.  I give her 60 baht, and they refuse to take it.  They give me 20 baht back and tell us to enjoy our holiday.

I am amazed!  This is the second time a Thai person has done a selfless act of kindness and wanted nothing in return.  I am extremely grateful.

Well, the Russians and I are back up and running.  We turn the bikes around and head to Tien beach.

Tien Beach is a lot like Nual Beach, but smaller.  We find a great place to lay our towels down, and we all jump in the water.

Tien beach is really pretty.  There are rocks on each side of the beach, and then the beach itself is soft, yellow sand, with warm water.  Just prefect.

While at Tien beach we also have something to eat, as the prices at this beach are a little more normal.  Unlike Nual (Monkey) Beach.

It is getting closer to sunset, so we head over to Nual beach for our view.

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The sunset was pretty awesome, but it is now time to leave the beaches, and head back to the hotel to get cleaned up, and go for dinner.

For dinner that night, we went to the Koh Larn Weekend Night Market, and guess who I see.  My lady friends from the street.  On weekends they set up here to sell food.  I love it.  They saw me first and yell out, “Friend, Friend, BBQ here” and as normal, are laughing like crazy.

I also see the owner of the hotel.  Wan.  I find out, the one lady is his mom.  This is really cool.  I feel like I am with friends.

Wan gives us, as he calls it, VIP treatment.  We all get discounts on the fish, and Wan also brings it back to our hotel to eat on the patio.

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Anastasia, Olga, Kosta, and the Amazing Rob!

A great meal, with amazing friends.  The best way to end such a fun day!


Day two starts off with Seafood Rice and coffee on the patio, which takes me a few minutes to wake up.  Maybe one to many rums last night. Haha.

After breakfast, we hop back on the motorcycles and head to the view point from near our hotel.  This overlooks Tawaen Beach.

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From here, we go to the next view point that over looks Nual, Tien and Samae Beaches.

This is the view point with 1 billion steps, to reach the top.  The entire way I complain about how many steps there are.  But I make it to the top.

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For whatever reason, I am getting the same heat sickness I got back in Indonesia.  Back them, it was everyday, within 20 minutes of being in the heat I would get feel sick.  I hope it doesn’t last all day.

Anyways, the view from here is awesome!

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After the view point we head over to Nual Beach where Kosta and I drop off the girls and head back to the hotel to give the scooters back.  We only had them for 24 hours.

Kosta and I take a scooter sidecar ride back to the beach, where we have a little fun accident.  As the scooter driver is going down the driveway, he locks the front brake up, and doesn’t release it.  The back of the scooter comes up in the air.  Kosta and I both fall forward, and then the bike stops.  He still doesn’t release the front brake.  So Kosta moves to the back of the sidecar and the back wheel comes back down.  Neither of us got hurt, and I told the driver, this was fun, can we do it again.  He says sorry, and I say, no worries.  All part of the authentic Thailand experience. haha!

We spent the entire day at Nual beach, and the highlight was when Anastasia got the courage to feed the monkeys.  Everything was going great until one of the baby monkey’s decides she wanted to touch Anastasia on the shoulder.  I even said, “here one comes.”  As soon as the little one touches her, she jumps and screams.  Oh My God! it was funny.  I spent the rest of the day teasing her about the little tiny monkey who scared big girl Anastasia.  hahaha!

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After an amazing two days spending with my friends, it is now 5 pm and they are heading back to Jomtien Beach.  The good news is, I will see them again in a few days when I leave the Island.

See you soon friends and thank you for the amazing time!

Video of our 2 days!

Koh Larn – Tawaen Beach – Just another day on the beach

Today is another day for exploring a new area of Koh Larn and I remember reading about a really nice beach, that starts with a T.  I don’t remember the exact name, but I should be able to figure it out from the tourist map downstairs.

On the map, I see Tawaen Beach is not far from me.  Walking distance, maybe 30 minutes.

As I am walking a local pulls up beside me and asks, if I want a ride.  I said, sure, how much.  He says, “Donation”.  I say 20 baht, which is on the low side of the standard amount, but he agrees.

I tell him Tawaen Beach, which is straight ahead, no turns.  This is also the direction he is facing.

I get on and the first thing he does is turn around and starts going the wrong way.  I tap his shoulder and say, no no, and point other way.  He thinks I do not know where I want to go and tells me, he knows where he is going.

After another minute of me trying to explain to him, no, this is not the right way. I live here!  I know there is only one road to this beach.  He finally stops and asks someone to translate.

No one understands, put I manage to explain again, I know where!  He believes me and takes me to the correct beach.  Mind you, the distance we drove the wrong way, is further than the actual distance to the beach from where we started.

We get to the beach, and he says, sorry, he didn’t understand.  It is all good, as he still is happy for 20 only baht.

Just another adventure. 🙂

Walking onto this beach, I see tones, and in Australian, HEAPS of people.  This does not look like the calm, relaxing beach I read about.

So get this, I later realize the beach my confused driver was taking me, was actually the beach I wanted to go to.  I had the wrong beach name and location.  This doesn’t matter though, I want to see all of the beaches.

So onto Tawaen Beach to explorer.

The beach is 99% filled with beach chairs, and I do not want one.  I like to find a free spot to lay my towel down just on the sand.

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At the furthest end of the beach, I finally find a small spot and drop my towel, toss on my mask and run straight into the water.  Awww nice!

The water here looks the same as Monkey Beach, but I little less clear from all of the people and boats stirring up the sand.  Still nice and clean though.

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I swim and explorer the water for about 45 minutes, and then decide to dry off and walk around the beach vendors.  I want to get an idea for what the prices are.  On Monkey beach, the prices are crazy expensive when compared to the town prices.  For example, a beer in town is 55 baht, on Monkey beach, it is 120 baht.  Rice dish 50 baht, on the beach 250 baht and up.

Here on Tawaen Beach I find the prices are much more reasonable.  70 baht for a beer, and rice dishes around 120 – 180 baht.

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I sit down at one of the beach restaurants and have lunch.  I had a chicken burger with fries for 170 baht.  I have been craving westerner food for a few days now.  Mmmm sooooo good!

After my late lunch, I am done with this beach and decide to head back.  It is way to busy here for me anyways.

I was able to catch a Pattaya Bus back to the main street, for 30 baht.

On the way back to my room I see my favorite street food ladies and stop for a little chat.  I will be back later for dinner.

The rest of the day I relaxed on my patio, so nothing really mentioning, except when a Thai guy walked by and I said hi.  I know, nothing exciting, but that changes later.

Around 11 pm, I am laying on my bed, when I hear a knock at my patio door.  I see it is the young Thai guy from earlier.  He asks if I want to come and have a beer.  I say sure.

He introduces me as the Canadian, and I meet his friend, Tap, and the two Thai girls.  I call one Crazy, and the other Funny.  I have no idea how to spell or pronounce their names.  Oh yeah, his name is Man.

2 hours later we are all still drinking.  These 4 are truly power drinkers.  They have well over 30, 700 ml beers already gone, and Man just left to go by more.  I offer to pay for some of the beers and they would not have it.  They also kept giving me another beer before I finished off mine.

One of their favorite sayings, is SahSee, which I am spelling wrong, but means.  Last drink.  So you must chug the entire drink and then they give you another, and say it again.

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Tomorrow is going to be a long day. LOL!

I think around 4 am I decide I am done and need some sleep.  I say goodnight to my new funny friends and head to bed.

The adventures when travelling are always so unexpected!

Koh Larn – Nual Monkey Beach – Unexpected New Friends

Today I woke up after a decent sleep in a full air conditioned room.

My first thought was, what the hell to do today, then I thought.  I might as well as walk towards Monkey (Nual) Beach and explorer how to get around the island without a scooter.

I check the map and it shows about a 40 minute walk from here.

I am only taking my towel, sunglasses and money inside my GoPro stick handle.  That way when I am swimming, I have nothing on the beach worth stealing.  I really don’t know what it is like here.

After about 20 minutes of walking, I know I am about half way, but the sun is taking its toll on me.  If I see a taxi or bus I will jump on.

A few minutes later a Pattaya Truck bus pulls up and I jump on.  I ask the people on it how much they are paying, and they tell me 40 baht to the beach, and 30 baht back.  I will try for 10 since I am a little past half way.

We arrive at the beach and I offer 10, he says 20 baht ($0.75 CAD), and I give it to him.  No haggling!

As I walk alone the beach, I look for a place with no rental beach lounges, and some shade.  At the far left / east side there is ample room like this.  So I lay my towel down and head straight into the water.

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The water is warm, clear, blue, with very light yellow sand.  Soft sand at that.  Not very many rocks or coral.  A very good swimming beach.

Swimming around I do see little fish, that look like barracuda, but only the length of your hand.  I also saw a small crab, and rock fish of some sort.

Sorry, these images are pulled from video and I haven’t been able to find what species of fish they are.

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I swam for maybe 45 minutes and then I saw Monkeys jumping and playing in the trees.  This is so cool, I was hoping to see them today.

I walk over and start watching them.

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There is a Russian girl standing beside me, and I ask her if she speaks English.  She says, “yes, a little.”  So, I start talking to her about the monkeys and maybe feeding them.

She says, “Lets get some food!”

A few minutes later she comes back with her husband, and he says to me, “Come, come, we feed them!”.

We start the climb up the hill.

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We reach the top.

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Right away, one pisses on me.  The joy of monkeys, but they are so cute.

Can you see all 5 in this picture?

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My new friend feeding the daddy.  He was really calm and nice!

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After our little expedition, her husband and I become really good friends, in a very short time.

We end up spending the rest of the day hanging out, and this group of Russians were some of the nicest people I have met.  They gave me food, water, rum, and homemade vodka. Which was damn good!

In their group, there was 3 couples and one single girl.

After our day of swimming, chatting, and laughing, they all invited me several times to come to Russia and stay at their homes.  I am thinking I will have to do this one day.  They even told me they will find me a good Russian girl for my wife, because I need a wife.  I love it!  So much fun.

2 PM and the monkeys came down to the beach where I get a second chance at seeing them, but this time, I am not getting pissed on.  Woot Woot!

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This time the monkeys are a little more aggressive, but on one gets bitten.  If you do get bitten, life will suck!  You have to get a tone of shots/needles, and they are not cheap.  Also, you have a very good chance at getting Herpes Virus B, which is fatal in humans.

So don’t piss off the monkeys.  If they want something, give it to them.

Around 3 PM we all jump on a bus and go back into town, where they catch the ferry back to Pattaya.  I was sad to see them go, but I really do hope I see them again.

6 PM rolls around and I am ready to find some food.  From my balcony, I can see two older Thai women cooking street food.  This is always cheap and yummy.

I walk over and get 3 BBQ Skewers.

The ladies have lots of questions for me, as it is not normal to see a tourist after 6 PM.

They ask if I am alone, and I say yes.  This sets them into uncontrollable laughing and the one says, “You want Thai lady”, and the other one winks at me.  Oh my god, they are funny.  I think they are around 60 years old.

Then they ask where I am staying and I point to my hotel.  The one says, “Ohhh” and they start laughing even more. The one lady says to me, “You need women when you stay there, that’s honey suite.”

Now I get the pink room, and then I notice a sign that says, Love In Resort.  This resort is the honey moon resort for Thai’s when they get married.

Who am I to judge, it is the cheapest place, so I am happy.

Anyways, these ladies are awesome, and I visit them almost every night for food.

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Another end to another great day!  Started off as a 1 hour trip to the beach, and ended up being an all day event with new friends.

Pattaya – Jomtien Beach – Russians?

The last few days have been uneventful, as I am really just waiting to go to Koh Larn on November 8.  I have explored pretty much the entire area here, except for the paid tourist parts and I will say, I do enjoy the area, but it is time to move on.

Another 5 days until I move to Koh Larn and I thought these 5 days were going to be a bit boring, until my ride home from the Market today.

A young Russian girl is sitting across from me in the back of the truck, and out of the blue says, “I think we are neighbours!”  I respond with a smile, “Paradise Condo’s?”, and she says, “Yes!”  This turns into a nice conversation until we reach the elevator where we say goodnight and nice meeting you.

I am really happy, this is the first time I have had a conversation with a Russian.  Normally they will say hi, but that is as far as it goes.  That might be because they don’t all speak English, I am not sure.

Anyways, a day goes by and I didn’t see her around the condo.  I was hoping I would, I really enjoyed our conversation.

The next morning I am a little bored and decide I will walk down the street, catch a truck bus and see how far it goes.  This is a good way to explore a new area.  Basically, get lost, and then find my way home.

As I am walking out of the condo building, I see Anastasia.  She is also walking towards the truck Pattaya bus.  I say hi and ask what she is doing today.  She tells me she is going to a market in Pattaya, one that I have never been too.  She then asks if I want to come with her.  I say yes, of course.

When we get to the market, we first look around to find her sister.  We did not think we would find her in this massive market, but we do.

Her sister Olga I have seen around the condo before, but have never said hi.

Olga seems really nice, but doesn’t speak a lot of English.  However, we do speak a little here and there.

We all spend the morning wandering around the market, while the girls shop for clothes.  I was just enjoying spending time with people again.  I think it has been around 4 weeks since I actually did this.

Shortly after lunch, Olga leaves us to go meet another one of her friends.  Anastasia and I walk around a little more.  She helps me find a few items I have been looking for.  I didn’t buy anything, because she also tells me back in Jomtien, it might be cheaper.

Eventually we decide we have had enough walking around and head back to the condo building.  Before leaving each other, we agree to meet again tonight to go to another Night Market that she knows of, that I have never been too.  I am excited for this, as I am getting tired of eating at the same place.

Around 7 PM we meet up and head to the Pattaya Park Night Market.  It is only another 10 minutes by bus past the Jomtien Beach Night Market.

When we arrive, I am very happy.  It is a lot bigger, nicer, and more seating.  Also tones of different food, including Greek and Russian.

We meet up with her sister Olga, and her sister’s friend, who I have no idea what his name is, but he turns out to be a pretty nice guy and not just because he gave me drinks of Rum. Lol.

We sit in the market until after 10 PM enjoying some drinks and really good food.  I had Greek food, and chicken skewers.  Mmmmm, me so happy!

By the end of the night, Anastasia and I have already made plans to meet again tomorrow night for dinner.

During the next day Anastasia was away on a day trip to one of the Islands, and I spent it swimming, and planning where I am going after Koh Larn.

Around 6 PM I meet her at the Jomtien Night Market where we sat, ate dinner, and had another couple of drinks of Rum.

I have to say, I am really enjoying her company.  She is always smiling and has lots of great advice about traveling in this part of Thailand.  She and her sister have been coming here for the last 3 or 4 years, and not just for a month or two.  They are normally here for the entire winter.  What an amazing life!

After dinner we head back to my condo where I am going to give her some movies I have on my laptop.  Tomorrow she is traveling 12 hours on a bus to Laos, where she will extend her visa for 90 days.  She will definitely need some movies to entertain her.

Unfortunately when she arrives back, I will already be gone to Koh Larn.  But, we make new plans!  She is going to come to Koh Larn during the week for a visit.  This will be awesome!  Now I have so many cool things to look forward too over the next week.

It is getting late and she will have a long day tomorrow.  So she gives me a nice hug, and we say goodnight.

Until we meet again on Koh Larn!

Koh Larn Island – Thailand – Day trip

The last few days I have been wanting to go to Koh Larn Island for two reasons.  1 is to see what the beaches are like, and 2, is to see if I can find a homestay or apartment rental for a reasonable price.  Researching online, this seems not possible, but I am going to try.

When I woke up and I noticed sun in between white clouds.  The forecast is calling for heavy rain, but this is the best I have seen in a few days now.  This is my chance, I am not waiting another day.

I get dressed, which means I put on my shorts and a shirt.  I then toss my GoPro and money into my day bag and start walking towards the beach, where I can catch a Pattaya bus.

I love the Pattaya bus.  All you do is hold your hand out, if they see it, they stop and you jump into the back of the truck.  You never really know exactly where they go, you just know when you get on, they are going in the right direction.

These buses, as they call them, cost 10 baht (38 Cents CAD) per jumping on.

While on the bus/truck I check every few minutes my GPS to see where I am, and to make sure I am going in the general direction of the ferry.

About 20 minutes or so later, the bus is within a 10 minute walk to the ferry and I guess this is as close as it will go.  So I press the buzz button and the bus stops.  They don’t pull over, they just stop, and you jump off and hand 10 baht to the driver.

10 minutes later I am at the peer.

Too reach Koh Larn Island, there are a few ways, but all are by boat.  I can take a speed boat, which is the most expensive option, but fastest.  I think around 1000 Baht ($38 CAD), and a 15 minute ride.  Another option is to take the ferry.  It cost 30 Baht ($1.15 CAD) and takes somewhere around 45 minutes.

The speed boats are geared towards tourist, and the ferry is more how locals travel.  So, if you know me, I am not taking the tourist option.

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You pay as you get on the ferry, and there is no walkway or anything like that.  The boat is tied to the peer, and you just jump from the peer onto the boat.  Simple, and safe. 🙂

Too my surprise the ferry is full of tourist.  🙁 all Russians, which is 90% of the tourist in Thailand.  So, not as authentic as I thought it would be, but that’s OK.

45 minutes later we reach Koh Larn Island.

The first thing I do is grab a scooter for 200 baht ($7.64 CAD) for the day.  This includes a full tank of gas, and detailed instructions on how to ride it.

Instructions: He points to the throttle and says, “go that way!”, and then he pulls the left handle brake and says, “No more going that way!”.

I can see why so many Asian tourist get hurt on scooters every year.  Scooters are the highest cause of tourist deaths in Thailand and this is why.  Anyone can rent one, even people with no concept of how to ride.

Helmets are law in Thailand, but try and find a helmet!

During the day, I see first hand at how bad some people are when riding.  One incident was on a fully open road, which is wide enough for 3 cars, with only myself going one way, and two tourist on a scooter coming towards me.  Oh, one detail, is they drive on the left here!  So, anyways, I am on the left, riding against the shoulder, when I see them coming at me, in the middle of the road.  For some reason, I knew they were going to come right at me, instead of going stright, and they did.  I stop against the shoulder, and wait!  A few seconds later, they come straight at me.  I point to the other side of the road, but nope, they don’t seem to know how to steer.  Luckily they are only going about walking speed as they drive up onto the curb 3 feet in front of me, where they finally stop.

I laugh, shake my head and continue driving on, as I go around them.

This happens more than once, over 3 hours of cruising around.  All you can really do is laugh and be happy the Island has no cars, for there sake.

One cool thing, I got the scooter going 65 KM going down a hill.  I was really proud of myself and was smiling and laughing the entire time.

The first thing I did was drive to the quietest beach, to see if I can find accommodations.

It only takes 8 minutes to get to Nual Beach, and I find there are no hotels, homestay or anything like that at any of the beaches, from what a local tells me.

This is good and bad news. I now know I only have to look in one area, but the bad is, I was hoping for a place on one of the beaches, outside of the little town.

For the next hour I ride around to Monkey Beach, and then onto Samae Beach, just to see what they look like, since I have time.

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Then back to Koh Larn town to start looking for accommodations.

I stop at about 6 places and see the price range is between 1000 and 1500 baht per night.  Way more than I am going to pay, as I am currently paying 400 baht.

My luck panned out, and I find a place for 900 per night, which includes a breakfast and free scooter for my stay.  However, 900 is still more than I am willing to pay.  So I start my negotiations, and tell them I am staying for 7 nights or more.  He then drops it to 800 baht.

I don’t need a scooter or breakfast, so I tell him I will do 500, no scooter, and no breakfast.  he calls his wife, she comes over and says.  Yes!

Perfect!  This place includes unlimited WiFi, with AC, and at 500 baht a night, this comes out to $134 CAD per week.

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So now my plans of going up North Thailand is on hold.  I can come live on an Island, go snorkeling everyday, relax, and be far away from tourist.  I love this.

On November 8, this is this will be my home for 7 days or more.  Who knows!

My next stop is for a smoothie.  Riding a scooter in 34 degrees Celsius heat, makes me thirsty.

I find a nice local street restaurant, that has smoothies for 40 baht ($1.53 CAD). I order a Kiwi smoothie and relax, while watching the local girl entertainment.

From what I can tell, there is a mom, and two daughters running the place.  The one daughter, who I am guessing is in her 20s is a total instigator.  She makes me laugh so much, I love it.  I am coming here more often.

She teases her sister non stop.  She was either flicking water at her, or trying to scare her, and then when she noticed me laughing at her.  She started at me.  I was looking at my phone, and all of a sudden, someone grabs my sides and goes, boo!  Yep, it was her.  This girl was funny as shit.  Just an all around good person.

After my smoothie I decided to drop of the scooter and head back to the ferry.

It was only 3 pm, but I am done with the heat for today.

Getting home was easy.  After the ferry, I walked back to the area where I got off the Pattaya bus and found another bus going the other direction.  I hop on it, and 15 minutes later, I see it does not go back the same way I came, but goes close enough.  I ended up about a 30 minute walk from my condo, but since I started to feel rain.  I jumped on a scooter taxi, for 30 baht ($1.15 CAD).  The guy took me right to my condo, and just in time.  A few minutes later we had a massive storm.

Check out the end of the video below.

Well, that was a pretty cool day, and I cannot wait to move to the Island in 9 days.

Pattaya – Jomtien Beach – Sick!

Since I got 1 in the stink and none in the pink, I have been felling sick.  At first I thought it was the 3 hours a night sleep, but then after a few more days, I realized I was actually a cold.

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The one day I woke up with a sore throat, and felt extremely lazy.  I had plans to go to the local Water Park, and then onto the Night Market, but now I just don’t feel like it.

After coffee, I decided to go anyways.  It is only 100 Baht to get in and the fresh air will help burn off this cold.

All the reviews for this water park are pretty bad, and later I see why.  This is not a tourist park, it is for locals, which means it is very cheap.  Tourist expect way to much!

The park has 6 water slides, but two are closed.  It also has a massive lazy pool going around the entire park, and tones of seating areas with shade.  All of this for $3.80 CAD! It’s clean, so who can complain!

I hit the 4 water slides a few times, and then swim around the lazy river.  I like it here, a great place for families.  Even better, is watching how crazy local people are.  For example, there are no rules on the water slides unlike back home.

The one time I wait for a kid to go all the way down, and I see him swimming away from the slide exit.  I go down, and as I see the end of the slide, I see that kid again, playing and splashing right where I am going to be in another second.  There is no stopping me, “I AM ON A WATER SLIDE!”.  I smash right into the kid.  I ask if he is OK, he is laughing and I look over, his parents are laughing.  No one cares.  It’s OK if you almost killed the kid.

This was not a 1 time accident, almost every time I went down the slide, some kid was playing at the end of it.

After the second time, I no longer care, and laugh when I hit them.

If you can’t beat them, join them!

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Oh, but even here I can not get away from Ladyboys!

While floating in the lazy river, a ladyboy sees me and starts to come over to me.  When it gets about 5 feet from me, I quickly say, “No, go away!”  It still comes towards me, with its stupid smile.  I then just swim faster away from it.  It finally gets the point, but still keeps following me.  I eventually get out of the lazy river and go back to the water slides.

In Thailand, there are so many amazing things to see and do, but being a guy.  There are two very annoying things.

1. You can’t just go to a pub and just have a beer.  You will either get a bar girl/street hookers asking for money and sex, or you get a ladyboy who doesn’t understand, “Fuck off, don’t touch me!”

Also, the bar girls will order drinks and then tell the bartender you said it was OK.  If you tell the truth and deny it, they will get mad, aggressive and try to get more from you.

2. You get harassed for massage, and for money from every local, no matter where you are.  They never take no as an answer.

These two reasons are why I stay away from the tourist areas.  I like Jomtien Beach!  It is locals and some expats.  It might be harder to find food my body likes, but it is much more relaxing.

Anyways, back onto my day.

It’s almost 6 pm and the Night Market will be opening soon, so I start walking that way.

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The night market is a great place to find local food, at reasonable prices. A little busy, but if you get past all of the Russians and Chinese people pushing and shoving, you get a nice place, and some really great food.

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I grabbed some shrimp, a smoothie and of coarse some fried octopus.  Mmmm.  A great meal!

This was really the only day I did anything exciting.  The remaining days since I last blogged have been spent going for walks by the water, swimming in the pool, and drinking smoothies.  Trying to get over this cold.

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As soon as I get over this cold, I will be heading to some of the Islands for snorkeling. 🙂

Video of the day!

Pattaya – Jomtien Beach – I got Raped!

I have been in my condo for a few days now and even though I have been a good boy, not going out and partying, somehow things still happen in Thailand.

The first few days, I spend the majority of my time in the pool, or just walking around Jomtien Beach seeing what all there is.  I haven’t ventured much future out, or into Pattaya yet.  As I said, that didn’t stop me from seeing and having some crazy experiences.

Lets start off with a less crazy and more funny thing that happened.

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The one day I was relaxing in the pool, enjoying the sun.  There was a little girl, maybe 5 years old, not really sure how old, and her mom in the kiddy pool.  Anyways, the mom decided it was time to go and was trying to dry her little girl off and get her changed.   Well, this is where the funny starts.

The little girl was waiting for her chance, and when her mom turned for a split second.  The little girl tossed the towel at her mom, and ran butt naked towards the pool, laughing, and saying, “I am naked, you can’t get me!” and then jumps back into the pool.  Still laughing as loud as can be.

If you know my good friend Dave, this is exactly how I pictured him at that age with his mom.  Oh yes, he is the same now with his soon to be wife when she tries to dry him off, and get him out of the pool.

Thinking of Dave, and watching mom chase the little girl around, I seriously could not stop laughing.

Awwww, I love not being a parent!

Another funny story is, in the building there is a little shop that sells miscellaneous items.  The guy who runs it, is really nice, but doesn’t speak any English.  We always somehow figure out what each other is saying.  Anyways, the one day his daughter is working.  I would guess she is under 10 years old.  She speaks a little English and when I walk in, she takes over from Dad.  Telling me each item in the store and price, and tells me what Ice Cream cone I would like and at 50 cents, I am getting one.  The funny part, is when I am paying, Dad goes to run the cash register, but the girl was not having it.  She takes over and does it for him and says, she is Manager, he is owner.

She has been very funny, and every time she sees me, she calls me Sir.  Okay, that part isn’t funny.

Now onto the real stuff, the stuff most probably wouldn’t tell if it happened to them, but I don’t really have any shame left in me.

Massage in Thailand is really cheap, on average ranging from $6 to $11 dollars CAD and with those long flights, I need it.

I go during the day, knowing that when it gets dark, there is no such thing as a legit massage.  I really didn’t want Mister Pointy to get rubbed today, I just wanted my back and neck to stop hurting.

Anyways, I see a place that looks legit and they offer a deep tissue with oil massage for 300 Bhat ($11 CAD) for 1.5 hours.  Sounds good to me!

The girl giving me the massage was in her 20’s, and dressed professionally, so I think nothing of it.

During the massage, I am nude, but wrapped in a towel.  This again is normal!  I think!

She does a decent job on my neck and back, and then moves onto my legs.  Again, decent pressure, but her hands get way to close to my coin purse, for me.

Next she starts on my gluteus muscle (outside of your ass/leg), which really does help with lower back pain.

Then it happens!  Her hand goes way to close to my inside leg, and the second stroke, her finger goes into my ass hole!  OMG! I jump forward, pulling on the bed sheets.  I think I am tightening my ass muscle so hard, I almost give myself a stomach pain.

She stops and says, “Oh, you no want!”

I replied, “No, No! Only massage!”

She says, “Ok Sir!” and continues for another 15 minutes or so.

After the massage, I give her 300 Bhat, no tip, since I already got the tip!

I now know what a prisoner in the USA feels like the first night.  I have had several massages in Thailand, and never had that happen.

On my walk, or should I say waddle home, every time a ladyboy waves and says hi.  I look down, thinking that they know, somehow they know!  🙁

So much for waiting for marriage!!!

I was going to add more to this blog about the good food, etc, but I think I will stop it here, while I get a beer, and another shower.

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