Monday, 1 March 2010

Phuket Fulfilment

Well it’s our final day in Old Phuket; things are all coming together. Ron, our friend from the Netherlands is on Koh Phi Phi for the day and will be off to Australia tomorrow (oh, did we mention that he’s cycled here all the way from his home near Amsterdam?!); we’re almost ready to fly down to Malaysia and plan our visit to the world’s oldest virgin rainforest; Terri has been waiting for her son Michael to fly in from Saigon, and now he’s made it; Ollie from Pembrokeshire (a Sports Scientist from the University of Glamorgan working for the time being in Vietnam) has found us at the oasis of calm that is the Old Town Hostel and has joined our little group.

The day has no programme, and sometimes these can be the most enjoyable type of day, which just seems to evolve organically of its own accord. If you’re wondering what we’ve been doing all week, then the answer must partly be found in the fact that twelve days in Burma can take its toll, and recovery time is a healthy and necessary respite. This morning we sat around and chatted whilst Terri went on a mission of mercy: the chocolate run. She returned from the mall armed with Belgium chocolate buttons: dark for Simon, milk for Ollie and Mikey and white for Jon. Terri is a real, intrepid traveller, and is introducing her son to the glories of exploring the world. None of this ‘resort’ malarkey, just moving around meeting real people, eating real food and experiencing the ‘real world’. Talking of keeping it real, we went for lunch:

Just a short stroll from the hostel and off on a narrow street, there it was! It was a small Chinese fast food restaurant displaying a hearty welcome with its soothing air-con and smiling faces behind tossing woks. The remnant smell of tempura drifted through the air and we just knew that this was the place to go for lunch. Good call Terri! This place had become famous for dishing up the best “Hong Kong style won-tons” in town.

Together, we all sampled some sweet and sour pork with notorious egg noodles, deep-fried wontons and wonton noodle soup. The sweet and sour pork was infused with a pungent frutas-do-mar flavour that had leached out from tiny, but feisty, prawns.

Simon couldn’t stop with spoonfuls of fiery chilli chutney that must have come straight from Dantes Inferno, though I think he’s building up a type of stamina as the sweat quotient is decreasing and the time lag between dinner and a toilet stop is increasing. After lunch it was a perfect opportunity to get together for a group shot! Here we are!

At this stage of the game, we are about to go to the book exchange and swap our old travel guide for one that may be useful to us in our next stop. Let’s see if we get lucky!

Stop press: we got lucky. We are now the proud owners of two vintage guide books from the 1980s. Namely a Lonely Planet survival guide to Sri Lanka, and also a Fodor’s guide to Central America. Do you think we will make it to Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua in August September? Who knows what may happen after Greenland!
Dinner was also great; perhaps the most enjoyable evening we’ve had on this trip, purely for the cammeraderie and bon hommie. All of the newly made friends from the Old Town Hostel went out on the town for a really great evening of food and good company. Here’s the evidence:

1 comment:

  1. You both look as if you are having so much fun on your trip. I bet you won't want to come home. What a fantastic experience, you are both very lucky