Below are some video clips taken during Songkran, the New Year water festival. I had run into some other CIEE teachers on the island so I spent the holiday with them. Videos 1-5 were taken from the back of a motorcycle as the three of us rode through the island, and videos 6 & 7 were taken as we walked along the Sairee beach area. Continue reading

Getting Off the Island

I had the night ferry off Koh Tao on April 15, before I left I had dinner with my instructor friend. We went to a local place for all you can eat hot pot. Hot pot was my favorite food while teaching in China last year. Traditionally, you have a pot of soup, spicy or non-spicy, where you dump meat and veggies; once things are cooked you eat them. This hot pot was set up with a Korean barbecue style middle so you could grill things, and the soup around it to cook things. So delicious. The instructor kept calling my ferry the slave ship because I had the fan boat instead of the air conditioned boat.  Continue reading

Koh Tao, or Turtle Island

I started my Emergency First Responder (EFR) course on April 7. A lot of it was review from what I had learned from being a lifeguard for four years. Basically for me it was just a review course of CPR and first aid. The instructor was impressed how quickly I picked things up, I admitted I had experience but didn’t say anything because I didn’t know if what I would learn was different than my experience. The instructor was also impressed by my test; he said usually it’s people who are students who score higher on the test because they know how to study and retain things. That evening I went out for dinner with the dive instructors I had met the day before. We had mojitos, mango and passion fruit flavored, while watching the sunset in a bar called the Coconut Monkey; then we went to dinner at a Thai/German restaurant. Koh Tao is not the place you would think to find schnitzel but we found it.  Continue reading

Thailand Re-entry 

Originally I planned on leaving Siem Reap on Monday, April 4. I figured three days would be enough to get my fill of temples. After three days I wanted to see more temples but I also wanted to get started on my Thailand adventures so I booked a bus back to Bangkok. I booked the 8am bus to give myself some time to sleep in since I had a lot of early mornings. I was talking with a guy at the hostel and he said the 6am bus was better because it’s easier to get through the border earlier in the day. The last thing I wanted were problems getting back in to Thailand so I switched my bus to the earlier one.  Continue reading