Our last day with Mary and John and it’s back to the routine of packing backs, checking out and heading off to airports.
We do have a bit of time post packing and pre airport so we head to the pool to avoid the quite simply blistering heat. It’s that hot that walking barefooted across the side of the pool is painful and I spend most of the time cowering under a brolly to protect my pale Lancastrian skin!
At the airport it’s time to say goodbye as we head to domestic and Nik’s parents international departure gates and suddenly it’s back to being the two of us. It feels like the end of a holiday and we are now back into the routine of normal life again. A routine of a new place every 3 days, living out of a suitcase, new languages and currencies and not knowing where you will be in a weeks time. I think we could fall in love with this lifestyle…
Under the waterfall in the shade was about the only cool place
Enjoying our last day of luxury
Airport warning for those wearing fay bans
Pretty in Pink – loving the Bangkok taxis
And yet again it is airport time, yay!
By the end of this trip I think we could make a good start on a Rough Guide to Airports. If we do, KL airport is not likely to score that highly. Basic (though obviously not by Bolivian standards – though the bus shelter at the end of the road would compare well to a Bolivian airport) and relatively lacking in very much to do, but post card writing and looking at watches I cannot afford pass the time until we board the plane.
For the second time on the trip (but unlikely to be the last) we fly Air Asia. This is the SE Asia equivalent of the European low cost airlines such as Ryan Air, Jet2 and Easyjet, and we read in their brochure that they have recently introduced ‘compression clothing’ for their cabin staff to help reduce the impacts of flying on the body. From what we can see it is currently only being issued to young attractive female cabin staff.
We agree that Air Asia are probably a bit better than any of the European low cost airlines and this is backed up by the fact that today we are informed that they have just won the “World’s Best Low Cost Airline Award” for the 5th year running. What makes this more memorable is that one of the cabin crew celebrates this fact by singing “Unchained Melody” live and unaccompanied over the intercom. Based on his ability to hit the high notes he might want to request some compression clothing before trying again.
A mild panic at the airport over our visa application forms and desperate looking for some random flight information on the internet to fill in the card before we managed to safely get into Thailand . A crazy taxi cost battle follows before the the longest ‘airport to hotel’ journey of the trip so far through Patong, the Blackpool of Thailand (home to lady boy and ping pong shows…) and then arrival at the hotel for a relaxing afternoon and evening.
The cabin crew singing is an inflight first on this trip
The view on the way to Phuket airport is amazing
Initial panic as we don’t see the UK on the list..
Another day of traveling involving 3 flights in a day (hurrah!) – we really need to start planning our trip a bit more I think.
Our plans require an early departure from our hotel that ordinarily would mean missing breakfast, but in an amazing piece of customer service they provide a high quality ‘packed lunch’ which is consumed in the taxi to the airport (omlette, fresh orange and a selection of pastries!).
Destination today is Borneo (the 3rd largest island in the world), and some rather dull facts of the day include that our second flight is probably the shortest flight either of us has ever taken, with about 15 minutes of total time in the air, and that Malaysia Airlines have the nicest dressed stewardesses of our trip so far.
The flights today are a mixture of ones we booked as part of the RTW ticket and one that we added ourselves recently. A consequence of this is a 6 hour stay in Kota Kinabalu airport. It is fair to say it is not the most glamorous of airports (far from it), and we spend a rather uninspired 6 hours at a table in KFC eking out two drinks of Pepsi and failing to get any real use out the intermittent and slow WiFi connection they provide.
Sandakan Airport – making KK airport look good
Drinking full fat Pepsi (Borneo seems to have a ban on diet drinks) at 0.5 litre per hour
Scoring a record breaking 6 goals in a League Cup tie earns you the prestigous accolade of having a vegatable bread product named after you