Friday, January 20, 2012

The Whisky Diaries - day 1

Hello and welcome to Phuket! Koh Yao Noi island, to be precise. It takes a damn long time to get here but it would be worth an even longer trip. Seriously man, this place is like The Jungle Book meets Gilligan's Island meets nirvana. It is fair to say that the mosquitos are the size of small dogs, and that there is more moisture in the air than actual oxygen, but geckos are my friends and I do believe that humans were designed for this climate. At least I know I am. My hair coils itself into a bun, I have perfected the loose-shirt-over-tight-singlet combo, and with all this sun eventually I will have so many freckles that they will connect and (perhaps, if I'm lucky enough) resemble a tan. This is the tropics, dude, and you can't be afraid. 

We're staying at one of the coolest places in the universe - Sabai Corner - in our own private hilltop bungalow amongst the forest trees about 300m from the beachfront. We have a hammock on the bamboo balcony, a cold shower with a stone floor, a lit mosquito coil whose scent reminds you of all of your best holidays, and a growing collection of cool things found on the beach sitting on top of the table I'm at right now. I can't see into the dark forest night in front of me, but I can see the lamps from the little bar down below that we'll soon be frequenting, and I can hear the intermittent rumbling of the motorbikes speeding along the narrow island roads with their pinprick headlights flashing through the small gaps in the trees. We're listening to the best kinds of music and we've been eating the best kinds of foods and we're watching the best kinds of movies and we're reading the best kinds of books. Beginning tonight, we're also going to start trying to write our best ever words. 
I'm still a little bit woozy from the massive change in locations, not to mention mindset, but what I can honestly say right now is that my bones are beginning to thaw from the long China winter (that's also a metaphor, by the way) and my mind is beginning to recuperate. I have several recent newspapers to delve into and through, a constant and free (both politically and fiscally) internet connection and a location that could heal even Hamlet's wounds. And I have almost two weeks of it all. Yeah I know, I know, it's awesome.
Our general plan for the days ahead is early to bed early to rise - because we want to be healthy wealthy and wise. I hope to write every day and I also have a bit of an overhaul planned for poise that I'll be working through provided my laptop chugs its way through this wet heat. I hope to shed a few of the "dumpling kilos" (thats what I call the weight that expats gain when they live in China) so that I can actually wear the clothes I packed away from back home. I also have to teach my friend and current travel companion Phuong how to ride a bicycle (LOL, PHUONG HOW ARE YOU 20 AND STILL DON'T KNOW HOW TO RIDE A BIKE?!?!?) and I think I'm gonna try and play my clarinet a little more. Big plans, I know, but I'm feeling good.

We have embarked upon a serious Star Wars marathon (going in the story's chronological order instead of order of release, which we know is rather controversial, but bitches that's just how we roll) and we have already drunk from coconuts and already wet our hair in the wide pacific ocean. Phuong is reading 'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins and I'm going to start on 'The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle' by Haruki Murakami while I lay under my mosquito net tonight.
At the risk of sounding like a total douche and once again taking this metaphor too far, I feel like my house is way too open plan right now. Like people are sleeping in the laundry and pissing in the kitchen. I think two weeks is just enought time to sort my head/house out and rebuild the walls to re-define and organise my thoughts. I have absolute faith in the right concentrations of island hibiscus and vanilla cigars and ripe pawpaw and good company. 
Feel free to stick around for the next two weeks.

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