After two glorious days and three nights in our Koh Samui resort adjusting to the jet lag it was time to burst out of our lux bubble and ferry over to Koh Phangan to find a more reasonable place to stay for the next while. We have fully embraced not making too many plans and are now essentially winging it. We booked three nights at a cheap little beach resort next to the kite surfing school. In theory I was super happy to give up this next leg of the journey to kite surfing and the whims of the wind. But when we arrive at our “resort” the two dinky double rooms they offer us reek of toilet bowl pucks and contain a bed barely wider than a single – the banquet couch meant to be a single bed is comically short and narrow and covered with fabric best suited to a turn of the century bordello. They then led us to a larger room containing a slightly larger bed but thankfully no smell of toilet pucks so we agree to stay and pay double the original price along with an extra charge for a “cot” which turns out to be a single mattress on the floor. Chris was optimistic- “it’s only a few nights, we’ll find something better” and I echoed his sentiments to the kids but deep down I know that it’s never going to be as good as Samui Buri was. Ahhh Samui Buri resort with it’s exquisite infinity pool, endless breakfasts and someone bringing you a beach umbrella and blanket as soon as you step foot on the beach. I know I know – it’s like being on an island on an island and we only met other tourists (most with aubergine hair and speedos) and we didn’t really see any culture aside from the monastery – but we weren’t even sure it was a monastery because we couldn’t read the signs – although we did see a monk. But truthfully we didn’t really see much aside from the beach and our giant room with two huge king sized beds and perfect pillows it was still nice to be surrounded by luxury.
So we settled into our humble new digs – the kids fighting bitterly over who was going to get the single mattress on the floor although I know it’s going to end up being either Chris or I who flee there in the middle of the night to escape the windmill legs and arms of children. Then we hit the beach, which, as it turns out we can see from our room and is a stones throw down from our front door. Right away we find a volleyball net – big plus and a wide long beach. A few steps further there is the restaurant and then a little beach tiki bar beside that. Further on down is the kite surfing school where we meet Peter who is the owner and instructor. Then we turn back to hit the pool – urg – it’s small, house music is pumping over the sound system and it’s packed with what seems to be the last remaining guests from the full moon party two days ago. Oh well – positive thoughts positive thoughts – my mind wanders to the ridiculous music at the last resort – slowed down contemporary hits lazily sung with German accented English. We had spent our last lunch seeing who could guess the song first – they had ranged the gamut from “Simply the best” by Tina Turner to “ You’re Beautiful” by that anemic British guy. At least here there is not a speedo to be seen as far as the eye stretches but there are a damn load of tattoos – in fact – I can’t spy a single body unadorned. A guy with a man bun helps his daughter adjust her snorkel and as she hops into the pool he lights a roll yer own and drags deeply. We skip past the pool and hit the restaurant. A sadness descends as I read the menu – Tuna Pizza!?? – garlic bread? – chicken fingerssssss???? Thankfully the next page has a few Thai items – I order the Tom Yum soup and it’s delicious – because – I’m convinced that ALL THAI FOOD IS ALWAYS GOOD. Back at the pool we end up befriending man bun, his wife Annamai and their two delightful children Noah age 8 (amazing) and Isla age 6. They are from the UK and have the kids enrolled at the International school. They are renting a house up the road and cheeky into the resort pool a few days a week. They give us a couple of names to help us find a rental and we make plans to hang out again in a few days. Things are looking up at the low rent “resort” although the music isn’t getting any better.