I’ve always been something of a tropical fish geek. As a young child in Ireland, I would regularly trek down to a place outside town called Cobh Aquatics where I would spend hours looking at the fishes in all their multi-coloured variety from all over the world. I never had my own tropical fish tank—I could never afford all the peripherals—so it was goldfish all the way for me (not that there’s anything inferior about the wonderful world of shubunkin and fantails).
I mention this because during my time in Thailand I discovered the joy of snorkeling. On the island of Koh Tao, that joy was somewhat like sticking your head in a tropical fish tank. The water was filled, filled I tell you, with an incredible abundance of brightly-coloured fish that I had previously only seen from behind the glass of a fish tank or aquarium. Also, the water was lovely and warm—something of a novelty for someone from the British Isles. Snorkeling, then, consists of floating around in lovely warm water looking at beautiful animals: exactly the kind of lazy non-strenuous activity that suits my temperament.
When I wasn’t snorkeling, I could generally be found enjoying the wonderful Thai cuisine or perhaps enjoying the blissed-out feeling that follows a really good massage. It was all very relaxing. That relaxed mood extended to Scott and Cheryl’s wedding which was one of the loveliest ceremonies I’ve ever attended; a truly happy event.
My time in Thailand was bookended with one night in Bangkok at the start and the end. Like the song says, I get my kicks above the waistline, sunshine. Specifically, I got a real kick out of the multi-faceted food offerings on every street. By far the finest food I had during my week away was from highly skilled street vendors. I intend to write about that in more detail on Principia Gastronomica.
All in all, it was a relaxing, interesting and fun: the perfect holiday really.
The only downside is that, because of the island rendezvous, it looks like the Oz Squad won’t be in attendance at South by Southwest. Ah well, at least I got a chance to catch up with my Aussie geek friends at least once this year.
Much pictorial evidence of my trip to the orient can be found in a Flickr photoset. Its 272 photos are a subset of the 1099 pictures I took in total. Thailand is a very photogenic place.