Saturday, July 30, 2005

S.E.Asia Travel log 4-5

Subject: Travel log 5?
Hello all. We are safe on dry land again. We have just spent four days on a liveaboard (a diving boat in which you "live a board" instead of going out and back into land). It was called "The Junk". Not because it was an ugly ship or anything, it was a chinese junk that had been restored and is now used as a diving boat. It was awesome. I am like a graceful manatee under the ocean surface. It is like watching an amazing ballet show when I dive. We rented an underwater camera, so later I will have to send around some photos of my underwater majesty. I am seriously considering a run at the 2008 Olympics as a syncrhonized swimmer. We had a pretty serious routine while aboard the boat. Wake up at 7 am, eat a piece of toast and coffee during the dive briefing, gear up and be in the water by 8am. We would dive for about 30 to 60 minutes, return to the boat, eat breakfast, then take about an hour nap. We would then wake up for the next dive briefing and quickly gear up and be back in the water. This would be ended after about 30 to 60 minutes and return to the boat for lunch, followed by an hour nap. Wake up, dive briefing, gear up, in water, eat dinner, go to bed. Diving can really wear you out. It does not seem like you are doing much but floating in the current, but we slept a lot. It was very relaxing and an amazing experience. We saw a sea turtle! I could have just left it at that, but we did see many moray eels, a small octopus, loads of clown fish (nemo), a few sea snakes, and even several leopard sharks. Luckily the leopard sharks are very docile and only cause problems if you startle them or get too close. Luckily for Chad that is. My plan was to thrust Chad into the sharks mouth so I could make a quick get a way. After the first few days we started diving with some irritating people from Scotland, so the pressure was off Chad and onto their annoying son. He was almost shark food even without a shark attack. I would have done it, but I heard it is not good for shark diets to eat humans. I always think of myself as an environmentalist, so I refrained.
I will have to report, before Chad can, I vomitted quite proficiently the first night on the boat. We did not have to meet the boat until 7pm, so Chad and myself killed time by sitting in an Irish pub and drinking beer and watching bad music videos. Excessive alcohol + Land lover + choppy waters = vomit. I think that equation should be emblazoned on posters and tshirts with the likes of E=mc2. Einstein had to get his first big discovery somewhere, and this one is mine. The only thing worse than the first night on choppy waters in a boat, is apparently the first night OFF choppy water on land. I can't take a step without trying to over compensate for a shift in the land under me. I feel like the landscape should keep rocking back and forth. I have not had a single beer since that first night we ventured onto the sea, but with practice and Chad's love and support, I should be back to my usual self in no time.
We are spending a few more nights in Phuket just enjoying the night life and having nothing planned for the rest of our remaining five weeks. We are heading south towards Malaysia and Singapore next, but we have no plans as to getting there or that sort of thing. That is how we like it, and I find it makes the trip more exciting. Hopefully the next email will come from some small village in Malaysia, but if we just decide to keep lazy, it might just all come from this same internet cafe in Phuket. KEEPING IT REAL!
Certified Scuba Diver
Future Olympic Gold Medalist

Thursday, July 21, 2005

S.E.Asia Travel log 3

Hello all. We have arrived in Laos. We flew into Luang Prabang a few days ago. It is my kind of place. Very relaxed and laid back. No little kids trying to sell me crappy bracelets, or adults trying to take me for illicit massages, or even just the ominous sounding, "you want boom-boom?" This last one has an added since of dread since it is mostly asked by old guys. The beer here is cheap and they have a wide selection. They have big bottles of "Beer lao" and little bottles of "Beer Lao". Apparently when the government makes the beer, they have a upper hand in limiting their competition. Luckily Beer Lao is some of the best beer I have tried so far. Our hotel room is a staggering five dollars a night and that is with a tv and air conditioning. I know to most of you American only travelers, that sounds like an understood, but believe me, when travelling the cheap way around the world you definitely look at the room BEFORE you agree to rent it. So far we have spent our entire time here in Laos walking around and exploring this small village, it is pretty cool. Almost every corner has a Vat (which is a Buddhist temple). All the monks are about an average of 15 years old and love to try out their English. They all the ask the same questions, and usually in the same order. "Where are you coming from? How long are you being here in Luang Prabang? How are you liking the city? How long are you going to be here? Do you have a wife? Do you have a girlfriend? What is your name?" After all those questions are finished it usually is followed by a long and awkward silence. Some have managed to say, "You are fat?" I usually just respond, "yes". Then I go on a rampage and knock over every statue of Budha within a ten foot radius. Actually I just say, yes, and smile and then walk away. I don't think they intend their question to be mean, I just think they really have not encountered overweight people very often. I am going to start a foundation when I get back stateside to search out overweight people and send them to Southeast Asia on group tours in order to enrich the lives of the local peoples. Considering the way the locals are excited every time I sit down in one of their cheap plastic restaurant chairs, and it doesn't break, I think they would start cheering if a whole group were to do this at once.
I will keep you all informed of this future business plan, and I fully expect you all to send all your obese friends to me for customers. And Bam, I will give you a discount.
Michael Williams
President and Founder
Tubby Tours International

Thursday, July 14, 2005

S.E.Asia travel log 2

Hello from Cambodia. We caught a flight from Bangkok into Siem Reap (where all the temples are located). It is great. Everything is old and decrepit, a lot like the patients on a med surg floor. I only have a few minutes to type, I am about to catch a flight out back to Bangkok. I am a huge celebrity here in Cambodia, They are mesmerized by my size. They are continuously calling me "Big Show", apparently he is a popular US wrestler. Wrestling is apparently the number one past time here. I am not exagerating when I say that everyone stops what they are doing and gawks at me when we walk down the street. It gets pretty irritating after a few days. We spent some time on the beach in Sihanoukville, it was sandy and I am sunburned. I am much more of a mountain person than a beach person. I must go now, if I stay on the computer much longer it will cost me more money. I will leave you with my favorite question to date. "when big like you sleep all the time?"
See you all later.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

S.E. Asia Travel log 1

Howdy all, we are officially in Thailand. We spent a massive 24+ hours travelling here. The plane was very uncomfortable and I wanted to jump out of the window, but the stewardess on Korean Airlines are very nice and very eager to keep everyone happy. We arrived in Bangkok and at first it seemed like I was still in america. Except, that all the cab drivers where touching my arms as I walked by and making comments about me being so large. I could easily crush them all and be the new king of Thailand. That is my back up plan if I get bored. Our hotel is very expensive. It is 450 baht a night. That is about ten american dollars. We decided to splurge. There actually are rooms for around 3 american dollars, but then you are pretty much sleeping in a barracks style room with a bunch of people. Apparently you can also just sleep on the street. I am having a suit custom tailored. They have a tailor shop about every fifteen feet. It is costing me about 125 american dollars. It would be less, but apparently they think it would take a lot of fabric to cover my ass. Everything has been great so far. The people are incredibly nice and all stare at me. It doesnt help matters that I shaved my head into a mohawk because I was bored. You can get a barber shop here to shave your head and face for about 75 cents. It is the good life and I might never come home.
I will try and send some pictures when I have more time. We are about to catch a flight into Cambodia to see the temples at Ankgor Wat.
Talk at you more later