Escape to Expensive Ocean

Day 5: Bangkok to Ko Samet

After a rare beast of an eight hour sleep, I spend two hours in the coffee shop downstairs planning my next move. Ko Samet isn’t too far, and looks like a cool island to chill out at. It is east of Bangkok just off the coast (obviously) and will get me that much closer to Cambodia. Trying all the new oddball foods, amping up my wardrobe of comfort and petting tigers has surely put me over my daily budget the last few days. So sitting on the beach for a while is definitely a good call for the wallet.
Pop, the hostel owner, sorts out a moto taxi for me while I pack up my room. I’ve already ditched a couple sweaters and my bag is still bursting at the seams. Maybe I should’ve gone for the bigger bag?
Downstairs I eat a curry that makes my eyes water and snot drip out of my nose but I do some breathing exercises and shovel the last spoonful into my reddening face. I CAN HANDLE THE HEAT.
Then the moto taxi arrives, and drops me at the bus station with an hour and a half to spare. I cruise the streets for a while, eat a catfish while I wait.
Through the bus window I gaze at a black, pregnant cloud in the distance, looking like it wants to shed some weight. When it can hold back no more, the road becomes flooded in a foot deep of water. The river pouring down the windows makes the world outside melt into abstraction. Monsooooooooon, baby.
We reach the ferry dock just after 6pm, missing the last ferry to the island by fifteen minutes. Instead they have a speedboat for three times the price, plus they make me book my accommodation right there, which is four times the price of a room in Bangkok. Sometimes, ‘winging it’ can cost ya.
Ko Samet…wait, isn’t Thailand supposed to be cheap?! Amongst the many foreigners, this is where the Bangkokians go for a weekend party vacation, and so the prices are suited to match.  As the speedboat cruises close to shore and pulls into the island, the rave lights pollute the beaches like a bad EDM show and kaibosch the idea of the cheap, tranquil island getaway I’d weaved in my head. But as I walked towards the darker side of the island, warm water tickling my feet along the bleached shore, the fist pumping fades to the back of my mind. Ocean! Beach! You can’t put a price on that.

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So I sat with myself on a big rock, half in the ocean, watching a lighting storm across the sky as the salty sea rapidly rose around me. Nature!
And then I ate some seafood and went to an EDM party.


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