Natalie Goes to Japan

40 year old very married blonde woman having a midlife crisis who heads to Japan alone to follow her dreams. Be careful what you wish for ... you just may get it.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Not Exactly a Day in Paradise

So my plan was to take in the Thai village and the Butterfly Garden today. Phuket isn't very easy to get around on. So I took one of the two scheduled shuttles into Phuket Town and planned to do a little shopping around there first. I walked a couple of blocks in the melting heat and found squat for shopping. I was run off the sidewalk by a particularly territorial stray dog. This ain't Kansas, Toto. This ain't even Japan. Stray dogs, scraggily looking cats and threadbare roosters everywhere. Including the middle of fourlane busy roads. So I got tired of walking and accepted the next Tuk-Tuk to yell at me. He agreed to take me to Thai Village for a very cheap price. When I got there it looked very quiet. There was a reason. It was closed. The Tuk-Tuk driver talked to the outdoor restaurant owner next door and confirmed it. I said "It's closed today?" and he answered "No, everyday". What? Seems like the folks at the hotel should have known this when I asked them for directions on how to get here. Okay Tuk-Tuk, take me to the Butterfly Garden. Okay. He said he'd wait for me while I went in. That should have tipped me off. It was sweltering in there. And more than a little run down. There were about 6 types of butterflies and there were hundreds of them flitting about like butterflies do. One even decided to land and hang upside down from my nose. Butterfly legs tickling the inside of your nose is a very strange sensation and I had to try very hard not to sneeze. I'm not a hit and run sort of tourist. When I go somewhere I like to see every inch of a place and sit and absorb the ambiance. Well I completed all that in 30 minutes. So I hopped back in the Tuk-Tuk and allowed the driver to take me to a store. He gets paid for just having me go in, whether I buy anything or not. So, since my whole day adventure had turned into about an hour and a half, I agreed. It wasn't bad. Mainly they sold jewelery at price more than I was willing to pay. But they also had some interesting porcelain. So I bought a bunch as souveniers for the folks back in Japan. It'll be interesting getting it all on the plane, but what the heck! I got back to the hotel and took me a bath and a nap. I then wandered down to the beach had lunch and a blue drink and then had another massage. The cheese sandwich was pretty bad and the massage took place in the garden where they were doing construction. So instead of listening to birds, I listened to an electric saw. But it was still a nice massage. After my massage I sat at the beach bar and watched the water and ordered another blue drink. 20 minutes later they come back and say sorry, they are out of Blue Curacao, would I like to change my order. No thank you, I think I'll go for a swim instead. But as the tide had gone out and you can't swim at the beach then I went up to the pool to swim. I had waited till the sun went down behind the building so I wouldn't have to oil up. The pool was out of towels and didn't seem to care. They told all newcomers just to grab a towel out of the used bin. Now, this pissed me off. I'm not paying $100 a night to be towelling off with used, wet towels. Oh, and the internet hadn't worked for over 24 hours. I thought I had handled the days disappointments fairly well, but this just made me crazy. After my swim I shivered all the way back to my room, dripping water everywhere. I was not using a used towell! I took another nap and took the shuttle over the hill to eat dinner at the other half of the hotel complex. But I wasn't hungry. I haven't been hungry since I got here. So I just ordered soup and a salad. I didn't even order myself a cocktail, I just wanted water! I hate water! The staff was nice if slightly inept and the restaurant was delightfully cool. Afterwards I walked to the minimart and bought some sodas and some M&Ms. And then I walked over to another massage place and got myself a foot massage. It was nice, but as they use cinnamon oil on you it deadens your skin a little. I took the shuttle back and turned in for the night. I'm not gonna get down. I had a less than perfect day. I'm sure tommorow will be different.


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