I'm back from a wonderful couple of days at Phuket. It was a short and sweet trip which mainly consisted of the sea's company (ie. didn't get to visit Old Town Phuket or any other inland attraction, apart from a gas station which I will get to later...).
The last time I went to the beach was over a year ago- the sun, sand and salt water were much needed in my life again, and it felt so good to be reunited! I was made for tropical weather (my hair handling it is proof).
Drinking coconut water (and afterwards carving the 'meat' out) is a must for me at the beach.
My hair's at that awkward length where it looks like I'm sporting a moptop...
And remember I said I'd talk about a gas station in 'inland Phuket'?
I don't know about you, but being in Phuket (or even hearing it mentioned by someone), I can't help but think of the horrible and disastrous 2004 tsunami. I'm of a morbid nature... Now, I'm not exactly immune to natural 'disasters'- by that I just mean I'm familiar to them, especially earthquakes (albeit only 'mild' ones- I was not yet born for the big '85 earthquake in Mexico).But being in a place so sensitive to such, a little part of me was a little nervous just being there. "Calm down, Mariana. What are the odds that you'd witness one?" That was me reassuring myself...
The 'rents and I were on our way to a show, taken by the show's transportation in a van with 5 other people. What was supposed to be 45 min. drive was taking 1 hr 30 mins- and the driver seemed to be driving around recklessly, as if he were lost. There was also a lot of traffic once back on the main road.
None of us were told anything; we were just getting restless for being in the car for so long.
We didn't know anything- the driver and the escort didn't say anything to us at all during this drive.
An 8.7 magnitude earthquake had struck Sumatra and we had no news of this.
Finally, the lady (escort/guide) turned around and calmly said, "We have been issued a tsunami warning by the government. We have to stay here [the gas station] until further notice."What I felt then and there, I cannot explain into words. Part of me thought she was joking (a really bad joke, at that) and was waiting for her to say just kidding! The other part was silently panicking and thinking, "I guess the odds weren't entirely in my favour?"
Considering something awful could have happened, it feels a little silly writing about it. Thank goodness nothing did happen, but for that hour or so waiting for something to happen or not was a little nerve-wracking. Granted, we were on safe ground far from the ocean, but "I left my passport in the hotel room" was all I could think of, wondering if said room would be safe from whatever was coming.
*Sigh of relief* It never came. All I got was a pretty big scare and more memories/experiences to date.*
That and, as always, we all bonded over the experience. I even was translator to a French couple who did not speak any English or Thai, and spoke spanish to a Russian lady who also didn't speak English.
We all still went to the show. As you can see in the picture below, many people chose not to go. It was ghost town for the night.
The following morning, I woke up to catch the sunrise.
Thai skies (sunrises and sunsets) are the most beautiful I have ever seen. The pictures don't do them any justice- I know, right?
We were supposed to go on an island tour this day, but due to the aforementioned scare, was cancelled. It's just as great to take it easy on the beach, though.
Above: Wetting the Buddha's head for Songkran and a dog's behind in the sand.
After lounging by the beach, I decided to take a stroll.
As much as I was enchanted (and fell in love) with Phuket, part of me yearned for the beaches back home in Mexico. Thailand is such a wonderful and beautiful place, but it also reminds me how Mexico is equally as exotic in its own way.
Ah, I'm so overwhelmed by the beauty of the world.
Nature, thou art fierce.**
* I feel like Tai from Clueless, recounting her near death experience that never was.
** I wish I had brought along my Planet Earth and Life DVDs - being in foreign lands and 'experiencing' different landscapes makes me all giddy and want to know what else is out there...
ALL PHOTOS TAKEN BY ME.