We woke up to sounds of crackling snaps of lightning, followed by booming thunder, and thundering pounding of torrential rains pelting our resort. It was a full-blown typhoon. When we went out for breakfast, no one was there to brave the rains, everyone just ordered room service. We were supposed to go on an adventure safari today, but given the Noah-level rains, it might not be a good idea to go trekking in the forest, or whatever that tour we got into was all about.
So we resigned ourselves to the fact that our last full day at Koh Samui will be spent locked up in our room, watching TV or maybe surfing the internet. Then eventually, the rain started to weaken, and the tour guide went to our resort to pick us up. Seriously? With Typhoon Endoftheworld upon us, we were going on some adventure in a jeep? They said the rains weren’t so bad (which was true) and that we’d survive, adventurers that we were.
So against our better judgment and instincts of survival, we went. And boy are we glad we did! We got to see a lot of things we never thought we’d see in Koh Samui. We boarded these safari type jeeps (there were 3 jeeps in all) and we rode on the roof, much like these guys in the next vehicle. Sooo much fun!!!
First stop: Grandmother and Grandfather Rocks. Supposedly, an old couple died on these rocky shores and turned their…uhm…private parts into stone. See for yourself. I’m sure you’ll know which is the lolo and which is the lola.
We were like, we drove all this way to see stone representations of geriatric genitals? But the shore was nice. Next stop, another bizarre tourist stop, the mummified monk. The revered monk was not decaying after his death so his followers decided to encase him in glass. It’s not bizarre to mummify a revered person. What’s bizarre to me is the decision to put what looks like “Risky Business”-type shades on him. It seems a bit incongruous with his Buddhist robes. A bit jeprox for such a solemn temple. I’m sure they very good reasons, like maybe the eye sockets are already caved in or something, it just looks odd to me.
Next stop was the Na Muang animal thingy. They had these close encounters with animals, some animals shows, and photo ops with some of the animals which in the wild you wouldn’t usually approach.
But of course inasmuch as I was excited like a kid to have such close encounters with wild animals, I was still saddened since zoos and circuses are bittersweet for me. I love seeing the animals, but of course these animals should be running free in their natural habitat, not caged and chained. And with rumored cruelty in some circuses, I can’t help but feel bad for them. So after the high of seeing them up close and even touching them, I felt a bit depressed and guilty for having done so. But I won’t lie, guilt aside, it was an exhilarating experience.
After a nice lunch on a mountain top looking over the forest, we got up close and personal to this sticky white liquid that is often associated with condoms:
What is it? The sap from the rubber tree, of course! What were you thinking? It’s weird, after a while, once it dries out, it really becomes rubbery, like Elmer’s glue when it dries out. After that we hopped onto our jeeps again and drove to a creepy place called Secret Garden, where they had grotesque statues of people and gods and monsters and animals, hidden away in a wooded area with a river and lots of trees. I don’t know, but it really creeped me out.
After that, our last stop, Koh Samui’s Giant Buddha. I don’t know what it is about the place, but it really touched something inside of me. Nothing special really, I’ve seen many temples in Thailand, especially during my last visit, but something happened there. I can’t explain it, but something happened. For fear of being mocked, let’s just leave it at that.
So there ended our adventure for the day. What started out as a stormy morning, turned out to be an action-packed day. I’m really glad the weather cooperated, I’ve never done anything quite like this, and I’m grateful we were able to do it.
Tomorrow: we leave for Bangkok.