Friday, 6 February 2009

The Art of Doing Nothing

For the last seven days in Karon Beach, Phuket, we've worked on perfecting the art of doing nothing. Or as close to nothing as possible. We've spent a lot of time relaxing on the beach (read: snoring away while letting the tan build up). Karon Beach has silky white sand and the water gets deep enough quickly for excellent swimming.

On a more active day, we took the girls out for a snorkel at the southern end of the beach. We saw a lot of fish, some more colourful than others. Jen and Emmi also went for a pedicure and a massage. After three pedicures in the last two months, Jen's feet have just about recovered from trekking in Nepal.

Whilst the girls were having a great time at the Hilton, we were facing an accommodation crisis. The previous guest house developed a rotten egg smell that made us gag and retch. Searching for another room was difficult, as Karon Beach has a limited supply of budget accommodation. The best budget hotel was full, and the receptionist there had the sour face and customer service skills of Carol Beer from Little Britain: “The computer says no...”

We finally found a guest house with no name or proper sign outside. The pregnant lady running it was having a stand-off with her Grandma to see who could be the laziest. Even though they offered laundry facilities, the crusty bedsheets hadn't been cleaned for a long time; the room needed a clean. Getting no help from the lady or the gran, we stole a broom from the cupboard and swept the room ourselves.

In need of some luxury after a sharp decline in our standard of living, we treated ourselves by joining Sanni and Emmi for a Hilton breakfast. We arrived late and only had 1 hour and 15 minutes to eat as much as we liked/could. Following a first course of top quality bacon, eggs and sausage, we moved onto pastries and cheeses, before finishing off with a plate of fresh fruit. The bottomless coffee pot aided digestion. Afterwards, Andy felt like a Komodo dragon that had eaten a whole pig. Indeed, it was a full 12 hours before he ate again.

Claire and Massimo stopped over at Karon one night on their way back to Bangkok. We had a tasty Thai meal followed by some take away beers on the beach. After being thrown off the beach, we moved on to a bar in town. The “bar” was three tables and some more chairs in a open air parking lot, with a one-man-band performing. Not quite what we'd expected, but it didn't stop us. Andy and Emmi even performed a couple of songs to a hysterical audience.

The small portions in one restaurant lead us to the pancake man. His stall was a hotplate on wheels (a scooter), and we became regular customers. The nutella and banana pancake was a real hit. We also introduced the girls to mango with sticky rice which they loved.


Anonymous said...

Lovely blog. We had a similar experience in the Prague Hilton with the extended breakfast.

Doing nothing looks really exhausting !!

Mum & Dad

David said...

Hi Andy and Jen,

You may be having all the fun but look what you've missed

1) Woolworths going bust
2) Massive banking crisis
3) Worst snow for 18 years
4) Interest Rates down to 1%

You're not going to recognise this country when you get back.

Anonymous said...

We´ll try to fly to Karon Beach as soon as possible, to get those panncakes. If not earlier, then after retiring. Hope the panncake man/lady is still there...
Jenni, kiitos onnitteluista!
Arja Tero

Emmi said...

Who's the Hannibal Lecter behind us in the pannkaka queue????

Emmi & Sanni from snowy UK (not getting to the Air Crash Investigations, yet. Read: we got home safe and sound although the flight was deadly booooooring!)