Monday, October 5, 2009

Thailand: A Retrospective - Day 7

Tour #2 - Elephant Trekking & White Water Rafting!

Early breakfast before hopping the minivan...

Sunburn was still very tender, so I decided that my best bet was to wear jeans to keep it covered up and protected from the sun, and if I ended up saturated after rafting, they would be like a wearable cold compress!

First up was white water rafting - exhilarating despite the easy level and the relatively short course. And yes, we both ended up soaked through! No photos of course, given the activity. But the next part of the day certainly left plenty of opportunity for happy snaps, courtesy of the guide:

It's hard to look lithe and beautiful when wearing a baseball cap, wet jeans, and clinging to the hand rails attached to the highest point of an elephant!

We fed the elephant some bananas and sugar cane, and then it was back to basecamp for lunch. Another accurate prediction, and again I had to bend my rules to prevent starvation! I picked the seafood out of the soup, as well as eating scrambled eggs (fingers crossed there wasn't anything dodgy in there!) and picking some unadulterated fish from under the sweetness-soaked parts.

Managed to get just enough nutrition to get me through the rest of the tiring day - the weather turned nasty after our elephant trek, but we were still shipped out to the waterfall for a 'swim' - the tiny area was packed with tourists, including Scandinavians in skimpy orange bikinis, so most of us were stuck hovering around the edge of the water, getting drenched by the rain and annoyed by the crowd! Finally it was time to go back to the resort, where it was Seafood BBQ buffet night! It was past dusk by the time we sat down at our outside table, so apologies for the awful photos:

Mmmm, so much BBQ squid, some seafood kebabs, and some "deep fried crab meat and chicken in mussel shells" - yowzah! Special buffet nights at the Merlin Beach Resorts help make up for all the ills of their usual a la carte menu, oh yes! If only they served up squid every night - they would have made me a very happy little carnivore!


Donna said...

Awesome! Thanks for all of the beautiful pictures. You look fantastic! Very inspirational. I love reading your blog on a daily basis. I was amazed at your all meat experiment. You seem like a very disciplined person.

Deanna said...

I'm not jealous about the constant eggs and bacon for breakfast but I'll admit I'm pretty jealous about some of the amazing seafood pictures. Once upon a time I would have never eaten squid like that, but your plate looked so delicious that I'm totally reconsidering!

GiGi said...

Oh my goodness - Seafood Buffet is HEAVEN ON EARTH! I would DIE of happiness if there was a seafood buffet near me but unfortunately all the buffet places don't exist near me :(

Jezwyn said...

Thanks Donna! You're so sweet! And I guess I am very disciplined, although it probably helps that I adore meat of all kinds, and have access to the world's most succulent grass-fed lamb and beef. In Australia, everything is grass-fed - there are some specialty farms that grain-finish their meat to sell to fancy restaurants, it's so backward! I love that grass-fed is cheaper. I missed it so much in Thailand.

Deanna -squid is certainly an acquired, er, 'texture appreciation', but when it's done well (i.e. not so fried that it's hard and rubbery), it's delicious. I was actually expecting a lot more access to all sorts of seafood over there, but the resort served very little (they had Norwegian salmon on the menu, but no local seafood options? Weirdness). When we first haded into Patong, I found the seafood - loads of restaurants had crayfish and fresh fish sitting on huge display tables with dry ice... A bit suspicious, but I was glad my preconceptions were not that incorrect! I didn't have a chance to try any of them though! :(

Hi GiGi! There are a few good seafood places in Melbourne - there's one called Ink not too far from home that I am dying to try - but the boy doesn't like seafood beyond the way I prepare salmon! At Christmas he is completely lost when the rest of the family sits down in front of huge platters of prawns! And when we go to visit my parents, Dad always fills the fridge with prawns, if not massive crayfish.

Phwoar, all this talk is making me so hungry! But I'm not eating today - I pigged out on pork stew last night, so I'm fasting to make up for the caloric excess! Now, all I can think about is nipping off to the supermarket to buy up their entire seafood deli section! :)