Burn. Baby. Burn
its the day i started to feel burnout.
i was passed my 10-plus-days on the road- of sleeping in some randomn bunk or train or bus terminal, endless walks and bikes, cheese burger-free diet, loss of my wallet, leaving new-found buddies, flu, all these stressors are , finally, taking its toll in my head and body( specially the burger thing).
moreover, i guess its the daily constraints of having to be on guard whether with yourself(health) or your valuables particularly money and travel documents. the value of these possessions multiply ten folds when you are in a foreign land. the need to be mindful of these belongings at all times, most specially, when you’re drunk, or sleeping, heck, even when you’re going in the toilet; 24/7 of this is, ohmy, exhausting.
oh the deprivations of solo backpacking!
yeah, certainly, i was in my “Judy Ann+Gloria Arroyo” element that day. drama much. effects of growing up in a country where soap-operas are dinner staples.
Birth of the Dream
Phi Phi is the reason why i wanted to check out Andaman coast,
reason why i desired to go to Thailand,
actually, its the whole point of pursuing this dream backpacking trip.
i am a big fan of Alex Garland’s novel and so is the film adaptation crafted by Danny Boyle- THE BEACH.
after watching the flick, which starred DiCaprio, i instantly knew back then that one day i will visit the setting of the film, Phi Phi, Maya Bay no matter what.
my curiosity for backpacking and the world was enkidled.
Going for the Dream
after leaving my good dutch buddy in Krabi, i continued my travel to “The Dream Destination: Phi Phi” with low spirits and dismal expectations.
while in the ferry, the scene was like watching american-pie-high-school-kids line up for the party in the cool kid’s house. jampacked. not that im complaining, ey bikinis!
but the unspoilt and virgin piece of floating land showcased in the film a decade ago and the scene of the partyphiles just does not seem to add up.
my, then, 5-day-old torned pants felt out-of-placed in the boat. plus, the fact that i was flashing that 1-week-no-bathe-look i perceived the cool way to go as sported by Leonardo and those backpackers in the film did not help either. jeez. lol. (siguro magwwork pa kung kamukha ka ni Leo… pero kung kamukha ng Capre… tsk)
low spirits. low expectations. now, low self esteem, kidding. coudn’t care less.
i sat on the floor, with my dark-tint-sunglasses on, in a corner with a premium view of those passing bums. heck, i needed to lift my spirits up, you know( and i think it wasnt the only thing that got lifted up. lol)
as the ferry boat docked on Phi Phi Don’s shore, i noticed that the whole plain of land at the foot of the towering cliffs are already dotted with concrete structures.
it was hard to navigate around since buildings pretty much occupy the better chunk of the area. there were no organized streets, only shallow alleys.
it was difficult to find available accomodation despite the hundreds of inns and hotels. it was December . most are fully booked. thats how crowded and commercialized it has become. i found one at the foot of the hill zillion miles away from the pier after walking around for a good 45mins.
i got tired from the walk, and travel, in general, with all the stresses in the past days. i opted for a room. a much-needed personal space even for a night might just bring back the excitement of backpacking that was then, lowly and diminishing. it was a costly splurge at 700bahts.
never did i shed an amount higher than 180bahts for accomodation per night in the length of this trip. yeah, i am that cheap. hehe.
quickly i crashed into the room and left my backpack. i explored the THE ISLAND immediately. this was, after all, the dream.
well, honestly, to my surprise, the best thing about these famed islands… is not the beach. its those sexy-caucasian-bikini-clad-bodies on the beach. hey, thats, just my 2 cents (or 2 bahts… whatever).
to soothe my backpacking-battered soul, i secured a spot on the beach. front and center. infront of all those bikini-cladded creatures. the only time i was grateful for the commercialization of this used-to-be virgin island. lol.
ice-cold,mega-sized Chang beer on my right hand and pizza on my left and of course a CHEESEBURGER in tow!
what budget-backpacking? a tourist for once.haha
the Phi Phi viewpoint 3(or 2)is definitely one of the best views i have ever seen.
i enjoyed the rest of my stay in Phi Phi. though, it was not as grand as i first saw(movie)/imagined it to be. it is, nonetheless, a lovely place to experience.
one important lesson i learned is that the only way to know, is to try… first hand.
learning from books/websites will not suffice, not even through a trusted friend.
its something personal. travel is always personal.
so, just go.