06 February 2009 | Thailand
You'll note that the "PH" in Thailand is pronounced "P", most unlike the "PH" in Philadelphia..... hum, now that's fortunate!! The differences abound: We're enjoying balmy (30 C.) breezes and dry weather, hasn't rained in over a month, while America suffers one of the coldest winters yet. Fresh delicious food is so expertly prepared and inexpensive that we must eat in restaurants or hawker stalls (small native stands offering fare comparable to 5 star restaurants for 80 cents to $6) because it's cheaper than eating on the boat.
This picture describes the Thai psyche perfectly. They are compact, beautiful people with a radiance of gentleness and interest that immediately makes us feel comfortable. As in Indonesia and Malaysia, Thai's are very interested in where you're from, where you're going, and what is your name? They honor family above all else, often many generations living together. They're a hardworking lot and seem to be neat and tidy while we're sweltering in the noon day heat. For the first time in many months, they raise happy healthy dogs which equates to good character in my book!
We spent our first 3 weeks here anchored in Nai Harn and developed a marvelously indulgent schedule - on our rented scooter we first had breakfast, internet, 2 hours in the gym which necessitated the afternoon massage, just in time for Happy Hour at the Aussie Islander bar where the Australian Open Tennis tourney was in full force, then back to our Jungle Beach dinghy landing restaurant before dark (the scooter situation here in Thailand is much like a very slow Indy 500). The entire day's tab less than $25.
What more could we ask? Well, I'll tell you - a sail to some of the world's most pristine, unusual beaches that boast clear water full of fish and corals surrounding islands of dramatic karst cliffs, jagged limestone peaks, lush rainforests, and tumbledown fishing villages.
Cheers to another good adventure! KK