Jan 172008

Hmmm, I have too much Thai currency left over this morning. This is a dangerous town in which to have this problem. But before indulging in any splurges, I need to solve the packing problem and arrange for transport to the airport. I dropped by a cafe for a tea and to get on the free wi-fi to check my flight schedule and the maximum allowed box size. Then back to the Boathouse to assess what I have and cool down for the next phase.

I went box-hunting under overcast skies and a fellow at the local bookstore dug one out for me. I thanked him, and he got a very concerned look and told me “Not for free.” With 20 baht to the bookseller, plenty of tape and a few slices of the Swiss army knife, I’ve created enough space for pretty much all of my loot. According to its web site, United only accepts the original boxes for their contents, so I’ve got my fingers crossed that they’ll look the other way on this one. (What’s the point of upgrading to business class if you can’t break a few rules?)

For lunch I found a lady with a little charcoal grill and a plate of four raw squids. As she grilled them for me on the sidewalk, other tourists stopped to look and snap photos. Now why didn’t I think of that? I took my nicely charred and conveniently sliced squid pieces and dipping sauce across the street to Jomtien beach, where drink vendors have set up large dining rooms of lounge chairs under umbrellas. It is very awkward to lounge and eat at the same time, but if the point is to sell drinks, it makes sense. I got a young coconut and chowed down. I turned away all the other beach vendors passing by, except for one with pomelo (not bad, but not as sweet as the ones Kasma had picked out for us).

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