all smiles

Koh Lipe Travel Blog

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transcribed from my journal...

am sitting on the rim of a beached kayak, a long curve of silken sand stretching in a crescent around lapping, luke warm waves before me.  its about 9:30 pm, and we've been having a sort of chaotic dinner (random people in and out...one of whom i happened to recognize from when i did my open water at his shop two years ago) at the most chill place called beachside bar.  the energy of this place quite reminds me of 'treehouse' bar in koh chang...except without the live music and instead of being a deck on stilts over the ocean it is simply planted next to it.

the ocean.  wow.  what a playground!  went on two dives today...1st was 10 meters, sandy shallows, mostly hard coral, some lionfish and lots of the other usual suspects.  2nd dive was 16 meters...tons of soft coral - fantastic colors...that's the thing thats so nice about doing shallow dives on sunny days - the visibility rocks, your air lasts forever (65 minutes today) and the play of sunlight on the textures and shapes of a reef, not to mention on its inhabitants - its just magical.  magical...i know i use that word quite a bit in my blogs.  but really, "magical" is a lot like the word "fuck"...there just is no proper substitute. 

tomorrow, we will do three dives...the first is a wreck at 35 meters, which will make it my deepest dive yet.  i really hope i dont NARC out.  (for non divers - when you go to 30 meters - or 90 feet deep and beyond, the amount of nitrogen you take in increases, which can cause 'nitrogen narcosis' - a disoriented state not so much unlike mild whippits [ for non drug dabblers - whippits are when you inhale nitrous oxide from a balloon and then see god for the next three minutes { for those who think the last statement was offensively irreverant - you should read someone else's blog...i like the word fuck as much as i like the word magical } ] ).

anyway, Sister Mary Juana paid a visit to my dinner table and, as always with her presence, so many things came into perspective.  i've been living in asia for three years now.  in that time i've traveled to thailand times three, indonesia, the philippines, japan, china and australia.  sure, i've sacrificed being with my family on a regular basis...but the two lengthy trips i've made home have proffered some of the most solid, meaningful family time i've ever had.  i sometimes feel guilty for being in my mid thirties and living so carelessly...for not being further in my writing career.  but then i look around me at scenery like this...at a diner table with companions that represent every corner of the globe, at the opportunity to visit mars (ie dive) five times in two days...i just cant help to think that i'm doing alright for myself. 

i wish everyone would travel.  its so necessary for stirring your TRUE interests.  i mean, people who never travel lmit themselves to the cultural offerings of only ONE culture - when there are thousands of others to rummage through out there.  so far, i have connected the most with thai culture...which i've written about before (see koh chang august 2008 blog - "the thai way"), which is probably why i've been here 3 times in 2 and a half years - why i suppose this will be "my" country that i repeatedly visit for the rest of my life.  ok, gonna put my pom poms down now and go be social.

peace.
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Koh Lipe
photo by: Mezmerized