[Pause for reaction.. or am I the only one who’s freaking out about it?]
Where did those eight weeks go? In some ways it feels like yesterday I stepped off the Lomprayah boat.
It took me quite a while to decide whether to leave early and spend a few days in Bangkok but I ended up booking a ticket for the afternoon departure on thursday which is the absolute latest I can leave the island and still make it to my flight friday morning. And now that my leaving is so close I can’t believe that I could even consider leaving earlier.
I never really fell in love with Koh Tao but lately I’ve had so much fun with the other DMT’s that it has totally made up for it. And I do love the island life!
I know I shouldn’t be comparing with Sri Lanka (since it holds a special place in my heart that I’m not sure anything will be able to compete with ever) but I’ve done it in my head over and over again anyway so I might as well share it with you.
One of the main things I love about Sri Lanka is the luxuriant nature that is so unlike what I grew up with. I haven’t been nearly as impressed here on Koh Tao – it’s not that everything looks like back home but it just hasn’t left me with the same feeling.
The huge western influence on the island combined with the number of expats living here definitely gives it a special atmosphere – and not really one I’ve been very fond of. Even though I’ve loved having a 7/11 and also quite like that I’m able to speak with most people (as almost everybody speaks English) it has also made the island seem less exotic. I find it hard to describe how it has actually left me feeling I can just conclude that I never really fell for Koh Tao the same way I did for Sri Lanka.
Even though the sun is actually shining while I’m writing this I have to say that the weather definitely let me down here in Thailand. I honestly think the sun has been shining way more in Denmark while I’ve been gone which isn’t really what you expect from a tropical paradise. We’ve had so many cloudy and rainy days that it would be easier to count the number of times I’ve actually seen the sun. My six weeks in Sri Lanka also gave me a lot more rain than one would wish for but I was definitely more impressed with the weather there!
And now to one point where Koh Tao beats Sri Lanka: the diving. However much I wish I could say that the diving in Sri Lanka is in the same league as here on Koh Tao it’s not the case from what I remember. Even though we’ve also had quite a lot of days with crappy visibility I have generally been impressed with the viz and the aquatic life. When this is said I have to remind myself that I’ve done more than four times as many dives here than in Sri Lanka so it might not be completely fair to compare. The number of dive sites around here is definitely a big plus – although we’ve been limited quite a lot lately because of the weather!
Maybe the biggest difference between diving here and in Sri Lanka is the way it works when you go diving. In Sri Lanka I’ve been used to setting up my gear at the diveshop and then carry it the 30 meters out to the boat. When I first arrived here it was quite a radical change to pack up my gear in a bag, go to the pier on the back of a truck and then set up the equipment on the boat. The size of the boats also makes for quite a difference. In the beginning I was not happy with the ginormous boats around here but I’ve grown to quite like it. Mostly because they allow one to move around while driving to and from the dive sites and they come with an upper area where it’s possible to sit and relax. Plus they have a toilet which was something I often missed in Sri Lanka. I’m still not really a fan of having to carry my divebag back and forth because mine is ridiculously heavy but I guess you can’t win ’em all.
When it comes to food I also have to say that Thailand wins! As I’ve mentioned earlier I have fallen completely for the Thai cuisine. It beats everything!!
I never thought I’d be going back but I’m no longer so sure that I won’t return some time. It is difficult though since a lot of the people that I’ve had an amazing time with will have left before I’m able to come back.
So only time will be able to tell if I do make it back some day. For now I’ll concentrate on enjoying the last few days in paradise!