Rai Ley/Ton Sai [Day Two]: Relaxation
Lunch was good – Jill and I facilitated communication since the guys didn’t speak Thai. We also attempted to teach a few useful phrases. They were pretty hilarious to hear with British/Australian/Washington accents.
About mid-meal, the clouds started to roll in and the coming storm was pretty evident, so we moved under shelter just in time. Our long lunch was relaxing and fun. The guys were great conversationalists. Coupled with Jill & my crazy travel stories, we had plenty of randomness to fill the time waiting for the rain to be over. Out of curiousity (Ian and I are way too observant of food walking by), we ended up trying some banana fritters – they looked a bit like lady fingers – which were absolutely fantastic.
Once the rain subsided, they led us to a quieter beach surrounded by more of the ghostly-looking rock. There we hung out, listened to the waves crash in, and talked about life and more travels. Tino and Jimmy attempted to climb the upside-down, cave-like route in the belly of one of the rocks. Although there were several other people on the beach, the sound of the waves echoing off of the close rocks created a nice white noise that made us feel like the only ones there.
One interesting feature of the beach was a set of two caves filled with certain phallic-shaped objects. In the past, sailors would come to the caves and contribute these “gifts” to the princess, hoping for good luck and safe travels. Many tourists took pictures near the caves/next to the carved objects, and it was pretty clear that many of them did not understand what the object were shaped as. Quality people watching ensued and we remained there at the beach, perfectly content, until the sun started to set.
Did I mention James carved his own present for the princess? He is quite a skilled carpenter, though the end result was a bit inappropriate for photographic documentation.
We spent several hours at the secluded beach until sunset – probably one of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. We all stared in awe at the sunset and took some fantastic silhouette pictures. Of course, watching the sun set meant that we had to make it back to Ton Sai in complete darkness! Bad planning on our end, but the sun set was worth it.
Since the tide was high, we took a sketchy land route back to our home. This involved some scary rock scrambling lit by a few headlamps. Although it took awhile and was a seriously nerveracking trek, we made it out unscathed.
We split up to shower, then met back up for dinner and drinks. This night was very lively! One of the bars had a stellar playlist of reggae and vintage latin music – we couldn’t help but dance. Sipping again on Chai and Chang, we watched more mindblowing performances and laughed uncontrollably at one of the bartender’s attempts to sing along to songs he clearly didn’t know the lyrics to. So many hilarious characters were in attendance – an obscenely tall, self-proclaimed slacklining expert, an older, goofy looking man clearly having the time of his life (possibly with the assistance of some substances), hula-hooping natives, and of course, us. It flew by – we danced, chuckled, and slacklined the night away. Eventually we parted ways, exchanging some bittersweet goodbye-unless-I-see-you-at-breakfast hugs.
I passed out in my mosquito-netted bungalow bed- preparing for the next day of transit.