Saturday, 11 August 2012

Day 15 - Ko Samui (Thailand) -August 9th

No rush to get up early even though this was a shore day. The ship didn’t dock this time as it dropped anchor instead and the first we know was the whine of the electric motors that power the gantries to move the lifeboats out over the water instead of in their hidey holes, tucked away above deck 7.  We watched as they splashed down into the water and noted how choppy it was.  This could be fun we thought...

After a light breakfast (you don’t go on a tender boat with a full stomach – ever), we returned to the cabin, got our things together, went to the bathroom and Paula heard the sound of water.  On re-opening the bathroom door, she noted that the toilet hadn’t stopped filling and water was running all over the floor!  I hit the button again and thankfully, this time, the water shut off and the water never went above the floor lip, so we handed the issue over to Marcos, wary of flushing the toilet again and just walking away.

As many will know, as tender ports, you go and grab a ticket and wait for your number or group to be called. Then came the tannoy announcement.  “Due to the choppy seas, we have had an issue with one of the tenders and it has been taken out of service.”  (This was the sanitized version of ‘Someone has vomited all over the tender and we now have to clean it.’   The announcement continued; “Motion discomfort devices are available if required.” Translation, ‘we have the barf bags – please try and use them instead of spraying your fellow passengers.’

This of course delayed the whole process and even though we took our time,  they were calling group 12 and our ticket was for group 24!  We spied Mal & Megan, who had tickets for 19 and had gone down well before us.  We faced a long wait, though a couple of large local ferries were also being used.  Someone on group 14 decided that their breakfast of cereal, fruit, fried eggs, bacon and beans, juice and milky tea may not have been a good choice so they passed on their tickets to M & M who in turn passed theirs on to us.  It took 30 minutes from boarding the tender to tying up securely at the wharf, but 10 of that was waiting for a space and the actual tying up, meanwhile, there was no sea breeze getting into the tender so we were steaming.

A short walk of the pier to down town and we turned right along the sea front area first.  Let’s just say that although Ko Samui is getting to be a popular holiday destination, this part of the island seems to have little to recommend it, unless staying in a resort. We cut through to the parallel street and then back, buying nothing on the way, before heading back to the ship. It may seem to be a bit of a waste but we’d had a good island tour last time and there was nothing much else that appealed, and the shops are basic.  Passing the market, we had to hurry as the smell was a bit much.

Now we all know that our own knowledge of other languages may be a bit restricted, but I would hope that if we were in business, we would at least get someone to check the spelling of any notice we might publish in any language we weren’t too good at.  Take a careful look at the massage list to see what I mean.

Some passengers were keen to do an elephant ride whilst at Ko Samui.  M& M returned having done just that.  Mal is now called Mahout.

A bit of blog catch up after a light lunch, (mainly soup), though I couldn’t resist a carved slice of very tender belly pork. The soup was something like lima bean, onion and rum.  I am not much of a bean fan, but liquidised into a soup, it is amazing what you can eat and can enjoy.  The pic shows Paula passing on a hug to Neil, this time from Ros...

It was just two of us for the quiz and we managed a respectable but unspectacular 11/20.

We also understand that Bogdan and assistant cruise director Eric are leaving tomorrow, to be replaced by Matt Thompson & Kim (Hooray!)   They were on Sydney to Auckland and we are happy with that.  Matt who is English, will be a much better co-host with Warren than Eric, who is Canadian and the Wake Show has not been as much fun as last year, without Dave.  Matt though, gels with Warren much better.  Bogdan who is Rumanian has an Australian girlfriend and has just been granted a visa to stay in Australia so he’ll be happy, though sorry to leave the ship.

The usual Kiwi gathering on the sailaway was joined once again by Drea, the Canadian videographer.

Dinner was another good one and the cherries Jubilee are a favourite of mine but I asked for whipped cream rather than ice cream.  Look at what I got. (pic) 

Morgan Kent did another Rod Stewart show with a bit of Joe Cocker thrown in too.  The theatre was not very full, probably as is usual on port days, people retire early.  To his credit, he never once referred to the small numbers.

We didn’t dance but returned to the atrium anyway until close down and had a chat afterwards with Daryll & Sue and also Alan & Alana, so bed was 12:25!

Another Thai port day tomorrow – Laem Chabang.  Another repeat stop for us and an 8am meet for our tour, but I have no idea what we are doing!   All I know is we are not going into Bangkok itself.        

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