I woke up with the confusion of thinking I had slept once again in a treehouse. Loosely fitted planks and thatch let light, breeze, footstep vibrations, and sounds seep in around my little pad on the floor. Some sounds more pleasant than others—waves crashing, kids calling, techno thumping, cue ball bouncing until 3am. Guess when you pay $2, you don’t complain and happily tote your toiletries through the bar to the squatter/shower the next morning.
It’s nice to be back at the beach though. “Serendipity Beach” officially begins at the edge of the restaurant, platforms keeping you above the spill of the waves. A colorful array of visitors walk by: sellers of shrimp-on-a-stick, lobster, bracelets, sarongs, pineapple. A man without legs pulls himself through the sand, collecting bills in his hat. A teeny girl uses a bamboo pole to lead her blind father who follows singing Khmer tunes in vibrating tenor. A woman walks up, touches my toenails, palm on my thigh and reports: “You have hair.” Before I can defend, she’s sprinkled my leg with powder, wrapped a string between her fingers and —YANK!–a row of little hairs scream in terror.
A nice crowd mingles here too. An interesting evening of talking holidays, war, and national pride with a couple people from Israel, a Canadian, and another American while eating french fries with banana chocolate shakes. Unfortunately the kind of conversation that ends a night rather than begins one (and puts you restlessly trying to sleep above the growing din of the drunk below). Maybe I should take the “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” advice tonight. ; )
No signs of Christmas though. Down to 3 cookies in the tin. Sunburn and sarong make my body more Christmas-colored than anything else around. Am very grateful for the cheery emails, always appreciated, but especially as I fight pangs of homesickness for those Christmas-like things taken for granted.
Tomorrow I begin the multi-transport trek back to Bangkok. Hope that your pre-Christmas days are filled with things that feel good in your head, heart and body. Missing you all and sending merries your way…. : )