I’m sure you’ll all be relieved to know that I didn’t miss the Liverpool game, having managed to pick up the good old BBC World Service on the train to Hat Yai.
And what a bizarre experience it was – cocooned in my sleeper compartment in an old, noisy train dragging it’s way south towards Malaysia whilst listening to Alan Green and Jan Molby talk me through a superb away win, I found myself punching the air in silence as Arshavin scored the winner.
Annika was, of course, extremely happy when she discovered that I’d been awake til 1am listening to football. The previous statement is not true.
It was hard to get any sleep at all, even after the radio had been turned off and despite the relative comfort of the bed, as the train constantly lurched from one side to the other and made some fascinating crunching and grinding noises. Still, £15 each for a night’s accommodation and a 10 hour train ride was not bad.
A bus journey to Pak Bara followed, where we spent a night in a cheap place whose bathroom sink emptied directly onto the floor due to the lack of appropriate pipework, which was amusing.
Next day, a 2 hour boat ride took us to Koh Lipe and what could quite legitimately be described as paradise. We are staying in Castaway Beach Resort in a wooden hut near the sea – which is an incredible deep turquoise blue and laps gently against the shore (the sea, not the wooden hut). There are a few traditional Thai long tail boats anchored nearby and our resort has some lovely areas to relax in the shade as well as some characteristically fantastic food and lovely people.
If we go anywhere in the next 6 months that is as nice as this, I will be amazed – it is simply superb.
Tomorrow is our first dive day of the trip – I am a little apprehensive about this as I always am with diving but I’m sure it will be excellent. A scuba refresher course followed by two dives, split by some lunch.
We have booked in here for an extra day, despite the cost, as we like it so much – it gives us one less day to get to Koh Tao for Christmas but that’s fine by us.
This. Is. Paradise.