Still in Phuket…
I saw this sign while strolling along Kata Beach just a few metres away from the Kata Thani Beach Resort.
The resort was at the very end of a semi-secluded area with few hotels around; fewer still were the visitors at that time. The white, sandy beach was very inviting even though it was the onset of the rainy season in Thailand when I went there. What ruined a quiet walkabout, aka, beach-bumming, were the obnoxious touts that wouldn’t just leave you alone.
Still in an arm-chair travel mode, I have another sign here taken in Phuket. Please bear with me as I think there are more posts about Phuket in the coming days, lol.
I love this sign… a traditional way to advertise movies way back when the world was younger. I was pleasantly surprised to find this in Phuket in 2008.
Back in the 80s I grew up in a small city in the Philippines where movie houses rent vehicles (that carry huge movie posters) and loud speaker systems to announce to the general public what movies are currently showing and will be shown next.
It was a source of glee for most of us children, especially during summers when we’re out of school and on the look out for fun things to do. At the sound of the megaphones, we would ran out of our houses to see the passing vehicle and curious about the drawings on the poster. Then, as the sound faded, we girls excitedly chattered away dreaming about the movie stars (girl stuff!) while the boys mimicked what they saw on the poster. Oh what a joy. Such a simple life way back then.
While Hollywood spends massive amounts of money in promoting and advertising their films, most Asian countries like the Philippines and Thailand utilise traditional methods that doesn’t require lots of money spent. Only requires a bit of creativity and perseverance to go around the town.
Since I am tied down to where am I right now and in the throes of a consultancy work, my husband and I have actually never gone away for holidays recently. Not that we don’t want to, it’s just that there’s always some reason that keeps us from going away at the very last minute.
So for now, while waiting (again) for the right time, let me just indulge in an armchair travel. So let’s continue with the sign from Phuket, Thailand… in Patong Beach.
Patong Beach is the busiest, most crowded, most popular beach in Phuket. I know, I’ve been there in 2008.
There is something to do for everyone that guarantees fun and excitement – food, spa, various recreational activities and shopping! The sign below grabbed my attention. It is just one of the many that I saw that are set into the footpath on the streets of Patong. To me, it evokes beach, sun, sand and a whole lot of fun. Don’t you think so?
At night, the atmosphere is vibrant, pulsating, mesmerising. The kind that draws you in. However, in some parts of Patong, is another story. There’s another brand of fun (read: seedy) that goes on there. It actually puts off many tourists.
Last April 13th, I celebrated the Thai New Year at my friends’ (Keefe and Hiroko) Bangkok apartment. The year here now is 2547, that is 2,547 years since the enlightenment of the Lord Buddha when He reached the state of nirvana.
Songkran is the term for the Thai New Year even in which the sun moves from one zodiac sign into the other. When the sun leaves Pisces to be in Aries the occasion is described as Maha Songkran, or the Grand Songkran. Traditionally, the Thais use this heavenly phenomena to mark the beginning of the New Year. Anyway, what this means now is a big fuss and a one-week holiday for the Thais. For most of them, they use this opportunity to travel to be with their families in the provinces, as many people work in Bangkok but come from the other provinces in Thailand.
While my travel buddy, Bernadette, a friend of mine who is a VSO Volunteer, decided to go up north, to Chiang Mai, I stayed in Bangkok where the New Year is celebrated with a three-day water-fight. As early as 6am to midnight or later, everyone throws water on everyone. I did my best to avoid the dirty canal water as I didn’t fancy dead rats (or the ‘essence’ of dead rats!) thrown on me — a big eeeeeeeeew! It was lots of fun and with it being a big tourist attraction, turns out to be a water-throwing competition between tourists and Thais. People spend all day for three days driving around with a pick-up truck/tuktuk- loads of people with big rubbish bins full of iced water. Thankfully it was very, very hot that day (it averages 40C for three days straight0 that being drenched with water is a big relief.
Everyone is a target during Songkran — you cannot simply stay dry if you are not QUICK enough to escape. You soon learn that if you can’t beat them, might as well join them. But it’s so much fun so why wouldn’t you want to?
All in all, it was a lovely week of water, sun and Songkran… I am now back in Cambodia, shuffling papers in the office.