If Carlsberg did dorm rooms...
27.05.2011 - 02.06.2011 32 °C
The faint smell of piss lingers in the dimly lit dorm. There were bedbugs on my sheet the first night there. I couldn't sleep due to the stifling heat.
Its name is The Rock and it's undoubtedly the greatest place I've ever stayed. Sound strange? I guess it does, but I had an absolute ball at this amazing place. The reason I'm raving about The Rock is because of the people I met there. It's the first dorm I've stayed in of that size. I've stayed in one or two in other places along the way, but none had anywhere near 16 people in. It was impossible not to meet people, especially as a solo traveller.
The first night started rather timidly. Even so, a gathering of 25+ people descended upon The Rock to pre-drink before heading down to the infamous Slinky, a beach bar playing club music with people everywhere downing their obligatory buckets.
On my second day, the real fun began with the arrival of Cameron, Christian(!), Jen, Jess and Milly. I immediately clicked with all of them and I'm currently writing this in Phuket wishing I was back there with them, out in force in fancy dress.
Every night on Ko Phi Phi followed a similar pattern. Go out for food, pop back to The Rock with a bucket and head down to the beach for, you guessed it, yet more buckets and dancing. Once the music stops at 2am, everyone staggers down to Stones to chill out (or in my case snooze) on the beach.
I have done other things aside from drinking and strutting my stuff under the strobe lighting though, I promise. Having come to Ko Phi Phi, I had to visit Maya Bay, where 'The Beach' was filmed. Having completed the book and watched the film on the eve of my trip, I was incredibly excited. The relentless downpour on the boat there did dampen spirits, but at least I was better at snorkelling here than I was in Zanzibar! I never realised, however, that the film has photoshopped Maya Bay, so it was a little bit of a letdown in real life. Nonetheless, it is a sensational place and I'm glad I went. The short walk back to the boat was more eventful than the trip itself though. Waves knocked me into the rocks and we had to turn back down miniscule caves due to the sudden arrival of a poisonous sea snake. Yes, I squealed like a little girl and I'm not ashamed to admit it!
You'd think that was enough excitement for one day, wouldn't you? But oh no. All seven of us lads (some may even say 'trueLADs') on the boat decided to accept the 'Burger Challenge' at Reggae Bar. 800g of meat seperated into three burgers, sandwiched between four buns, accompanied by four jacket potatoes' worth of wedges and the same quantity of onion rings. Did I mention the huge bowl of coleslaw, too? Quite why I even contemplated it, I do not know. The look on my face after the poor attempt says it all, "I feel ill, bloated and a bit of a fool."
The Thai boxing provided much entertainment, even in my sickly state. I watched awestruck as professionals tore into each other and drunk tourists swayed around the boxing ring throwing aimless, heavy punches.
On my last night there, Cameron, Christian, Jen, Jess and Milly went off to Maya Bay for a camping trip, leaving me on the island. Not to worry, though, as I asked the guys in the next bed where they were eating and off I went with them. Firstly, we watched The Hangover 2 on a rooftop bar as the heavens opened and decided not to close again for the rest of the film. Soaked through, I didn't really feel like drinking. I lay in bed wide awake all night, but I knew that I'd caused my liver enough damage from five continuous nights of Sangsom rum. It needed a well earned rest. Besides, it was funny watching all the party-goers return in their drunken state at 5am in the morning.
I had such a good time in Phi Phi that I scrapped the idea of going to Railay, purely because I met so many cool people on the tiny island I like to call paradise. I also felt far more than a tinge of sadness as I left on the ferry for Phuket, where I'm currently twiddling my thumbs idly killing time before my flight at 6:45am local time. It really is a strange place - 40 year old men prowling the streets for the inevitable prostitues that are around.
Don't worry Mum and Dad, I'm staying put in this internet cafe until my pre-arranged taxi comes to take me directly to the airport! This time tomorrow, I'll be looking forward to surfing on the beaches of Bali.
But my last shout out of the blog has to go out, once again, to the people of The Rock. Thanks for making it the time of my life.
Peace out x