Wednesday, May 10

Whew, we're back!

Last weekend was opening day in Seattle. Boating opening day, that is. So that means it's boat blogging opening day too!

It's going to be a big summer this year. Jessi isn't going up to the San Juan Islands for the whole summer (for the first time since we started dating!!! YAY!), and I'm planning to put some more elbow grease into the boat.

As the weather gets nicer, I'm dying to take our tarp down, correct the leaking windows, finish the bathroom I started ages ago, repair a little rotten wood I recently found and do some serious touch up paint. In addition it's time to re-organize the engine room, maybe varnish the outside wood trim. Oooh, I'm getting exciting just writing about it! Hopefully we will be able to take a few little trips this year too. Maybe visit some local islands for an overnight, and definitely do some afternoon anchoring, grilling and swimming!

Anyway, I just wanted to post a quick note to say we are gearing up for the boating season, and wake up, the vacations photos are done.


Saturday, May 6

Last stop

Finally. We are finally on the last travel post. We promise to return to being a boat blog after this...

We returned to Bangkok for the last few days of our trip. Since we had a taste of the good life in Koh Chang, we were in no mood to hostel it any more. So we stayed in the Asia Hotel, a real live hotel near the Skytrain so we could tour the city easily.

Bangkok is a city like many US cities. It's big, lots of shops, businesses, malls, towering buildings... so honestly we didn't take a lot of pictures. But we do have a few...

Lots of traffic... Still with lots of bikes... See the red number 79 on the left? That's the coolest thing. It counts down to the grren light, so you know just how impatient you have to be. And the big concrete elevated structures are the sky train "rails" that go all over the city.

This is the mall where we did some shopping... and saw The Chonicles of Narnia with Thai subtitles.

One of the things we did was take a water taxi up the river... just to see what there was to see.

Where's Waldo? Errr... I mean Tom... Where's Tom? (one hint: He's the white guy) It turns out lots of people commute by Water Taxi, so we weren't alone.

That's a pretty nice commute!

Lastly, we went to a few markets for some last minute souvenir shopping... I love markets.

This was my favorite souvenir. Unfortunately I had to return it before we left because it wouldn't fit in my backpack... oh well.

Trust me, I tried to get it in there...

Nope, she didn't have room either. It's OK though, we were just happy to be heading home. I mean honestly, after lugging those bags around for a month, wouldn't you be ready to go home?


Friday, May 5

Beautiful Koh Chang

OK folks. We are winding down. There's only one stop left after Koh Chang, so here's our picture dump... Have Fun!

We decided to break the bank and spend a few days at a resort (instead of our usual backpacker's hostel). It was amazing!

This is where we ate breakfast every morning... not too shabby huh?

We'd go play out in the water...

Here's Sweetie enjoying a little shade...

I "drove" the princess around...

This was our bungalow. Oh my god there's a ghost on our porch!!

In the evenings we'd sit and have drinks...

This is where we had our New's Year Eve dinner... no that's not a typo.

See, that's how it goes in Thailand. They celebrate New's Year Eve with karaoke bands...

...And sad clowns...

...And they launch these really cool burning paper lanterns into the air, convincing naive tipsy foreigners that they are seeing aliens. SEE, ALIENS!! (Click to enlarge)

... And FIREWORKS!! Only they accidentally start setting them off at about 10 minutes before midnight... which leads to a group sing-a-long of Auld Lang Syne at about 5 minutes til midnight. Ah well...

...We just rolled with it!

It was really perfect. Exactly what we wanted. A little pampering, a little relaxing, a little celebrating... And the sunsets!! I still dream of these scenes.

So gorgeous!

Sweet dreams!!


Wednesday, May 3

Planes Trains and Automobiles - Siem Reap to Koh Chang in 24 hours

After touring Angkor Wat, we woke up the next morning and took a flight - yes, a flight! on a plane! it was a huge splurge! - to Bangkok. From the Bangkok airport we caught a taxi to the Skytrain. We hopped on the Skytrain and got off at the bus station. Then we took a 6 hour bus ride to a ferry terminal. Tired yet? Yeah, so were we. By that point it was 8 pm, so we crashed for the night at a cheap hostel near the ferry port. The next morning at 6 a.m. we caught another taxi from the hostel to the ferry terminal, and then finally we got on the ferry to Koh Chang. It was a long 24 hours, but imagine how long it would've taken us if we hadn't flown from Siem Reap to Bangkok. Or if we'd simply flown direct from Siem Reap all the way to Koh Chang. Actually, let's not imagine that last option.

Pictures of Koh Chang coming soon!

- Jessi

Monday, May 1

Anchor What?

So that's not that clever. It's on a lot of T-shirts in Cambodia. But I like it.

Angkor Wat was gorgeous. It turns out when you say you are going to see Angkor Wat, you aren't going to see just one temple. There are tons of temples spread across the countryside. The largest and most restored is Angkor Wat. But, honestly, it wasn't the most gorgeous.

Anyway, we walked/tuk-tuked around the grounds and saw many many many temples. Here are some pictures. Enjoy.

The first evening we decided to see the sunset from one of the temples...

We weren't the only ones with that idea.

Not exactly a romantic sunset.

There were SO MANY people it kind of ruined the whole "mystical" feel we were hoping for. So we decided to get up really early the next morning to beat the crowds...

We got up "headlamp" early. But it worked, no crowds...

It was amazing. So quiet and peaceful. This is the Bayon Temple.

As the sun came up, the faces carved into the temple emerged from the mist.

From there we started hopping from temple to temple soaking in as much as we could.

Whoa!! Watch out Sweetie! These temples' gigantic steps weren't made for touring...

But tour we did... Even though the temples were gigantic, they were decorated all over with the most intricate deatil work.

Nature was fighting hard to reclaim her place...

But the temples fought back even harder. They stayed pretty well intact over the last 700 years.

Well, not all of them... The sun streaming down over the ruins was amazing.

And of course we had to visit the actual Ankgor Wat. There it is behind us.

It was by far the largest of the temples. JESSI!! WAIT FOR ME!!!!

We wrapped up the evening chillin' by a lake in the temple complex, watching the sun go down. A perfect end to the day.