Where the heck are we?

Beaches, skinny cats and food poisoning.

Hot tip…avoid tuna pizza.

We spent 4 days on Railay Beach off the coast of Ao nang in the province of Krabi. Its a little quiet paradise. A sleepy beach village with a Rasta/hippie vibe. Lots of Rastas selling shakes and teas and Im pretty sure joints for about $5 Canadian. Not that I’d know…but I am traveling with a 16 year old and she may or may not pay attention to a thing like this.

Railay is paradise. Aside from some arrogant monkeys, warnings for jelly fish called “man of war jellyfish”, and those hideous water monitors…it felt very safe. Rasta bars, a monkey drinking a sprite on our porch, hoards of kittens, jungle rain, diamond bat caves and the most breathtaking sunset ever at Phrang cave beach. Usually crawling with tourists but..low season or timing I dont know, but we had the place almost to ourselves. The kids got to roam free and I got a little alone time myself.

We also got food poisoning. Oh the memories;)

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After Railay we headed to Krabi town and I have to say Im glad we did. Quirky, weird and kinda arty…we really liked this place. We went to the night market that was hot and delicious and gross all at the same time. It was super crowded and loud and you had the feeling when you started to walk through that you may never get out of there. This was the fist time I noticed that Sol was feeling a bit overwhelmed. Checking in with him he said, “I just feel home sick”. Yikes, 9 days in to a 3.5 month trip? I had a sleepless night that night wondering if I had been crazy to think that we could do this. Will we be crying for home in another 2 weeks? Will the kids be begging me to change our tickets? Will I want to leave? This is the same stuff that kept me up in the few weeks before we left. Its pure fear of knowing that we will continue to feel and to be foreign, uncomfortable, even scared sometimes. Vulnerability. Did I choose this?!

After a short but exciting 3 hour mini bus ride with no seat belts, too many passengers and a vat of toxic chemicals sealed with an ill fitting lid and some scotch tape…we made it the absolutely stunning island of Koh Lanta. Its the end of  low season here so a lot of things are closed.  We were almost the only tourists here yesterday but more are arriving by the hour. All our socializing and night life has been with the locals. The kids and I feel so lucky to be here now and to be welcomed into peoples homes, their little social night life which has been sitting around their places sharing Thai rum and soda, helping little ones with bed times, talking with more expression and hand signs than words. Phoenix makes meeting people easy with her confidence and natural ability to connect with everyone. Sol too has made a friend and he basically has no time for me since 😉 Off slamming into the waves together, playing soccer, and helping the boy and his family with work on their property. Im a little jealous actually.

It’s hard to not feel like a tourist in Thailand…everything is packaged to serve and assist. It’s a bit uncomfortable at times being so confronted with our privilege. We get to enjoy the ocean, the food, and call our challenging experiences “adventure.”. We return to our rooms with clean sheets and hot water showers while the people we meet literally work around the clock and would never be able to relate to our gripes about sand in the bed or sore shoulders from our back packs. Kids have been amazing and have made bridging that gap between cultures easier. I feel some pride watching them approach everyone we meet with respectful curiosity and I don’t think I would have the same opportunities for connecting with locals if I was travelling alone. I’m so grateful that we doing this together.

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Sol and his friend have been inseparable for days even though they can’t communicate at all with words. Breathtakingly beautiful here . Long Bech or Pra-Ae Beach

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