Christmas Eve, it's the day after I got to Kho Phangnang for the second time, and the day before my last day on this island.. A little confusing? Maybe it is. It can even be confusing for me sometimes too.
After yesterday, and my last blog entry, I ventured towards the north of Kho Phangnang, to find the friends who were possibly still on the beautiful Bottle Beach. I got a cab to Chaloklum, the nearest village to the beach. Then I arrived at our local "cafe" and everybody was waving at me, and delighted that I was back. The locals that is. They all remembered me and made me feel so welcome. Suddenly I didn't care that I might be here alone, if the others had moved on..
I sat and took in the atmosphere, the laid-backness of life, the smiles and the community just going about their daily business in an extremely leisurely manner. It was a joy to watch and made me feel so safe. I couldn't decide whether or not to stay in the village for a night or get a taxi to the beach. Then the cafe owner said that there was another person being collected from the village to go to Bottle Beach, and if I wanted, I could get a ride. Too easy I thought! I had to go for it and get moving. So I did. I got a cab, and ended up having a tour around the island, which lasted an hour and a half before finally arriving at at the bungalow resort.
Again, the owners were delighted to see me, and said it was all so unexpected and nobody told them I was coming back. I told them I was going to surprise the rest.. I was nervous for some strange reason, and just hoped that it was all going to work out as I wanted it to. I went to the bungalow where I had been staying..and you never guess what.. All was still exactly as I left it!! David and the guys were still there, the bungalow still had room for me.. I was over the moon! And everything fell so easily into place.
I was still so hyped though and nervous as well. The whole trip, which had lasted 36 hours, or longer - if I take the time it took for me to come up with some answers into consideration - maybe even 72 hours starting in Penang, had been leading up to this moment. So with all the stress and the commotion of everything and without having slept for 2 days, the pressure that fell from my shoulders was huge and it was only natural that the first beer I had, was also the last one.. It went straight to my head. I was beat, I was done in. But it was fine. Because I was in paradise.. And I was going to be surrounded by great people for Christmas. That's what was most important.
This morning waking up in the bungalow, with the sound of the waves, and the sight of the blue sky through the curtains, was amazing. For that moment alone, making the journey back to Kho Phangnang was worth it. So much peace and quiet after a hectic few days. It was now time to chill out. And that's what we're still doing.
The festive season is also underway here. When I say "underway", I mean..the parties will be starting tonight and finishing the day after Christmas. That's all that's on offer here. There are hardly any decorations or Christmas songs (that's only in the bigger cities). Here on the island Christmas is a reason for the tourists to party hard, and to experience a different kind of Christmas atmosphere and vibe which isn't linked to family gatherings or work dinners or gift-showering. It's party time, for everyone. But not for us.. Haha.. We're not up for that at all.. We'll just be eating fish and drinking beer (or whisky) for the next 2 days. And on Saturday morning I have to leave.. What a shame. Kuala Lumpur is where my flight is leaving from on Sunday night, so I have start making my way down..much to my disappointment.
My days of this Asian trip are running out. They are coming to an end and I'm devastated. It feels wrong for me to be returning to Australia. It almost makes me feel a little queasy. Even though there are special people waiting for me when I get back. But I don't know what it is, this feeling of uneasiness. I don't know why I'm so gutted. But every moment of these next days, is so so precious. They are moments I'll never experience again, and therefore I need to savour each one..
So, what better way to end the trip, than to have Christmas dinner on the beach.. I feel like the luckiest person alive right now, even with the pain in my heart for leaving here within a few days..
I wish you all an extremely Merry Christmas.. May it be as magical as can be and may you be surrounded by those who are near and dear to you.. Missing you all, as I always do, but around this time of year, my heart is allowed to tell you all just how much.. Merry Christmas!!! Signing off for now..