09.04.2012 - 13.07.2012 34 °C
After our stay in Phuket we agreed we could have stayed there the entire time and were sad to be leaving, but that morning we booked some accommodation and headed to the Ferry dock. Upon arrival Kat quickly took in the situation we were getting ourselves into and calculated the fact that we were going to be on an over crowded boat with around a hundred other party goers for the next couple of hours; most of you will know that Kat does not handle anyone being unwell at all and this was the point where the panic attack kicked in, so quickly she arranged herself under her scarf in a corner with george's headphones on blaring some tunes and trying very hard to concentrate on her book and nothing happening around her. Half way through the boat trip a cute little 2 year German Girl took a big interest in the 2 of us and hung out with us for the remainder of the trip; being a great distraction to Kat thankfully. We finally pulled up and loaded off the boat with everyone else onto the amazing Island, immediately we were happy with the decision of coming to Phi Phi. We found a representative for our Hotel who lead us to a man with a buggy and told us to chuck our bags in and follow him. Along with the group we walked down the pathway with one side lined with the markets, the tour shops, shisha bars, treehouse, the small police station and the restaurants with fresh seafood laying out on ice ready for the choosing and the other side the blue beach.
After checking in all we wanted to do was go and explore and as George had been their before tour guide mode quickly stepped in and we were off checking everything out and eventually reaching the other side of the Island where the main beach was located. We passed by the clubs already pumping and Hotels that looked like they were out of video clips with music blasting and everyone dancing, drinking and bombing into the pool, we knew it was going to be hard to leave this place in 3 days.
While there we relaxed, drunk and ate a lot (just for a bit of a change) and we went on a day boat tour taking us around to all the beaches near by. They would pull up to the beach and we would all jump off the boat and hop into the Kayaks and cruise around or pop the snorkels on and check out the sights in the sea. It was truly stunning and we were addicted and loved the moment we spotted a shy turtle hiding in the rocks and swimming around. As the other tour boats headed back to the mainland our guide took us to the most famous beach, Maya bay, where the film 'The Beach' was filmed, we were told we had a while to wander around and check out the sights and when we heard the guides whistle to Kayak back to the boat for some food and to watch the sun set. We definitely could not have asked for a better day!
On our final day we agreed we would relax by the beach and pool till the afternoon where we would do all of our souvenir shopping and dine out at the restaurant with the fresh seafood we had been eyeing up. So after a swim at the beach we went back to the pool (3 mts away) to relax in the shallow waters and read our books. Minutes later we heard sirens in the distant and suddenly noticed a commotion of people running either way and past us, suddenly the drama escalated and people began screaming and we finally realised that there was a Tsunami alert and everyone was heading to higher ground. We quickly jumped up in our swimmers and with only our books in hand we began running. At this point our minds were definitely jumping to the worst circumstance both of us thinking we were not going to be able to out run this wave, just as we had seen with the tourists from the 2004 Tsunami. Everyone was screaming for their loved ones and pushing one another out of the way, Kat still says all she remembers thinking was "Why the hell am I still carrying my book". Finally we reached a flat point on the hill and while all the local families kept running all the tourist began to slow down and settle in this area trying to figure out how high we must be as the hill was just getting steeper and steeper.
We started chatting with a couple of groups of people and someone generously handed over one of their sarongs to Kat and a beer to George these came as a nice relief and the beer was quickly downed. After a bit of a discussion it was decided we weren't high enough and a group of us went further to explore. This was quickly copied and we found ourselves standing further back with more and more people arriving but the power line hanging above us quickly turned us back around to the beginning spot. With a moment to think we both realised that our bag with all of our money passports, phones and IDs was sitting back on our pool chair metres from the beach. Kat tried to convince George that there was nothing we could do and we would just have to deal with that situation as it came however Kat realised this obviously did little good as George began running back down to the beach, Kat stood in the same place staring out to the water and swearing under her breath for the sea to stay as it was, minutes later but was seemed like far to many George arrived back with our bag. Hours went by with no updates and once we heard couples and families discuss their emergency plans if the wave did reach us it quickly hit George and I just how insane the situation we were in was. As the sun set different Thai families came by to drop off water, rice and boiled eggs for everyone which was a big relief at this point. Finally a local came up and announced it was safe to go back to lower land, we all assessed the man and decided since he was holding a walkie talkie surely he must have some sort of an idea. So off we went and the first thing we did was head straight to the restaurant we had been eyeing up and order a massive plate of all different types of seafood and plenty of big drinks. Following that we went to the Shisha bar to really calm us down and with a couple of buckets full of red bull and vodka we watched the fire show on the beach. It was a truly great night and we sure did appreciate every bite, taste and sight! We eventually made it back to the Hotel for a bit of sleep and then woke up early and so sad to be leaving. The last day of our holiday had arrived and we were definitely not ready for the time to end.
We once again boarded the crowded boat and this time chose a spot on the boat deck to read and relax in the sun while we could, after arriving back on the mainland we took a tuk tuk to a beach near the airport and relaxed before heading off for our flight covered in sand. With a few dramas at the airport and a man in immigration trying to con Kat into handing over money and threatening that otherwise she wouldn't be released from the country we finally boarded our plane very sad to be leaving. Thankfully we were exhausted and managed to sleep the entire trip, only to arrive just back in Brisbane just in time for Kat to head to work.