I know I am the only person who enjoys that title, but hey, I'm the only person who reads this blog anyway. Festina lente, Latin for "make haste slowly." And that's what I've been doing here on Ko Lanta ... going nowhere fast, cramming my days to the gills with nothing in particular.
Yesterday I went snorkeling. Good stuff. Not the most professional setup, the word shitshow was tossed around a few times as our boat's captain hopelessly maneuvered the boat like he was parallel parking on the ocean, and the boat vomited oil and smoke, but it got us to where we needed to be. We snorkeled around giant stone atolls, hilltops jutting out of the water, and the coral and the sea life was superb.
Atolls like this.
We then went on to an atoll that had an underwater cave that, during low tide, you could swim through to a hidden ravine in the middle of the island. Inside was your own private paradise, beach and water and green wild jungle. The underwater cave was used, supposedly, to hide pirate treasure, and then for the movie The Beach. Truly an illustrious heritage.
Ate lunch on the shore, and found some starfish in the water around the boat. Then it was one more stop and then a long "sightseeing" ride home.
During the course of the day I met an American couple, Emily and Marc. You don't meet many Americans traveling in Southeast Asia, which is a shame. Anyway, we ended up having drinks, which turned into a superb Thai dinner, which ended in beers and a hookah/shisha/water pipe. Smoking and drinking, a world-weary Frenchman who has been "traveling" for over four years came into the bar, and proceeded to give us an impromptu fire baton show. We talked about traveling and life in Ko Lanta with long cool hits of apple tobacco. It was a mellow end to a great day.
And let me assure you at home, yes, that's tobacco, and only tobacco.
And now I am sunburned like crispy bacon. And I'm thinking, enough with the beach. I'm going off to the interior of Thailand, to hike around Khao Sok National Park, and hopefully see a blooming Rafflesia, also known as the corpse flower.
Cheers, Ko Lanta. I'm outta here.