Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wedding Trip: Update

I know, I know... I am behind on my Thailand posts, hey I am on vacation.  I am logging in right now (while I am sure I have internet access) to let you all know we made it to New Zealand.   We arrived in Wellington last night and had an amazing dinner and zonked out.   We are currently on a ferry in between the islands.   I am hoping to locate a NZ sim card once we hit land again... keep your fingers crossed... I am worried because I think NZ is ruled by Vodafone.... ugh.    

Monday, November 15, 2010

Wedding Trip: Day 9

Today was the day of our wedding ceremony... and not only did it rain... but it POURED.   Jungle, mud-slide rains came down but we had a great time.   Took some ok photos and had a great dinner.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Wedding Trip: Day 8

Today we had planned on visiting the Wat Tham Seua (Tiger Cave Temple).   We told everyone at breakfast where we were headed and they all seemed shocked and told us that it was 1200 steps to the top.   I thought that wouldn't be a problem... I didn't realize that those steps lead up a Karst that was 300 m high and that some of the steps were almost vertical, much like a ladder leaning up against your house.

There were tons of monkees all around the Wat.    Some of the monks had them on leashes... weird

Anyone up for BBQ monkee

Then we started to climb.   and climb.   and climb.   About step 400 is when they got really steep and I didn't think I could go on... Mac told me I was being a puss and that I had to keep going.

Mac also thought it was funny to take photos of me in varying stages of MISERY.

Finally we make it to the top.   The view was well worth it.   They say that it requires strength and courage to visit the golden stupa.

photos of the top

Monitor vs. Iguana

Kaylee: I am not sure of the difference between a monitor and iguana and to be perfectly honest with you I haven't really been motivated to do any research on the subject.   I believe that an iguana is a desert animal, although we did see them in Costa Rica.     Mac and I had a discussion while kayaking that he thought they were the same... I disagreed and yesterday I saw a 70 pound one saunter out of the jungle and into the ocean and I am pretty sure that a) an iguana has a totally different head and cannot swim; and b) an iguana doesn't get as big as a monitor.

Here is the video.... ok I am having trouble uploading video.   I will try to post it on facebook.   Until then here is a photo.

Update: Facebook is a wash... couldn't load it and had to go through some "security" check because I was logging in from an unknown location.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wedding Trip: Day 6

Today we went kayaking thru the mangroves of Ao Thalane.   I was beautiful.  Mac and I have visited so many mangrove forests in the world that we are practially experts on them and their importance to the ecological systems, most importantly they are vital to the survival of the reefs (just ask Australia) and we love the reefs..   One thing we didn't know, but learned on this trip is: a) they secrete an oil which plankton love to eat; and b) they injest 70% of salt they intake through the water.

Some information on mangroves here and here.

Southern Thailand is covered with Limestone hills, not quite hills they are cliffs that spring up everywhere... on land and sea.   These "hills" are constantly erroded by ground or sea water creating fantastic caves (or hong in Thai), this type of topography is called Karst, so sometimes they are referred to Karst cliffs.   Never the less they are stunning.   These limestone Karst are everywhere which is why rock climbing is huge here.

Limestone Karst in Southern Thailand

The question of the day was... what is the difference between a Iguana and a Monitor?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Wedding trip - Day 4

view from bed

Today Mac and I woke up at 4 am... I opened the curtains hoping the sun would come up so I could enjoy the view... I read for a bit and dozed off until 8.   We showered and lounged around our hotel room, then went to breakfast.   Breakfast... sweet mother of all meals... was a buffet that included fresh squeezed juices, bircher muselix, homemade granola, yogurt and jams.   I died.

We spent the rest of the day deciding where our wedding ceremony would be held and lounging by the pool.   We ended the day meeting a baby elephant and eating thai food... I was in bed by 9.  

P.S. don't tell the Mox I am in love with a baby elephant.   Mac even made out with her, the whole time all I kept thinking about was that woman on the east coast who owned the chimpanzee who ripped off her friends face... ugh.

pool at our hotel

Pool area ato our hotel 

Location of where our wedding ceremony will be held. (Wedding will be on 11/11)  Hoping it will clear off.   Haze is from the Indonesian volcanic eruption.

Wedding trip - Day 3

We had a bit of sleep... but either jet lag or excitement had us both up by 6:30.   We watched an hour or so of Aljazeera TV... which was an eye opener.   It is so surprising how "washed" our news is, which is both good and bad as I am not sure I could start everyday watching a man being smothered to death on TV but I would appreciate my news a bit less filtered. 

At 9 am we went and had breakfast and then toured the hotel to get a bit of exercise.  

Then back to the airport... the thought of getting on another airplane acutally made me sick to my stomach.  ugh.   Only for an hour (I keep telling myself).    They served a wonderful drink on the plane made with lemon and butterfly pea, no not butterfly pee... it is a flower, much like the hybiscus but this one makes a amethyst colored tea.   I loved it.    I have to remind myself to ask a Thai person what exactly butterfly pea is.

We rode the airplane to Krabi with a Thai woman who's leopard collared suit was accessorized with a leopard belt, purse, shoes, suitcase and dog carrier.   Her entourage of men carried all her luggage on board and buckeled her pomeranian into its own first class seat!   She had old lady hair... you know set in curlers, then picked our until it resembles a helment and finally shellaced with VO5.   She was cute.

We were quickly picked up by the hotel and escorted through the welcome platform.   (For those of you who want to see where we are staying it is here.)    We were welcomed with lemongrass iced tea and a symbolic thai welcome flower arrangement and there we met our butler, Joy.   I think both Mac and I were in shock.   This place is unusual... no front desk... everything you do is run through your butler.   We were given a tour of the facilities and then to our room.   The hotel and the grounds are stunning.  

Hotel pictures here

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Wedding Trip Day 1 & 2 aka the longest day ever

Denver to Chicago to Tokyo to Bangkok...22 hours total flight time heading west, chasing the sun... we never saw darkness, until we left Tokyo and by that time we only had 6 hours left of traveling.    We spent these first two days eating our way thru every first class lounge and flight from Denver to Bangkok.   Thank GOD for Mac and his points... I had never flown first class oustide of the US or Central America... woah that is an eye opening experience.   We had our own cubicles, complete with toiletry bags and a full selection of movies and games at our fingertips.   Above is a photo of Mac in his cubbie.   I am so thankful... I don't know how I would have survived without it.

Once we landed in Bangkok we were suprisingly full of energy.   Customs was a breeze, or shall I say wasn't even open?   Yes we walked through.   We found a few Thai Sim card dealers found the best rate and bought one... 3 cents a minute to the US... AT&T, Verizon can suck it.   Our stop over (hotel) was across the airport parking lot.    We spent the night at a Novotel which was beautiful... staff was around every corner just sitting there waiting to help.    The Thai people have been so nice.   We managed to call our families to tell them we arrived and fell asleep.