Monday, 31 March 2008

Green Season

I never thought the day would come when I'd switch on the air-condition voluntarily. Trust me: it gets warm down here. Really warm. Scandinavia had snow at Easter - well, here green season (much nicer and more tourist-friendly term for rainy season) seems to have started two months early this year.

Temperatures are around 36 (yes, celsius) and I believe the device still remains to be invented that can actually measure this level of humidity. All good.

Apart from the thunderstorm last night, which was the loudest and longest-lasting I have ever experienced. Following the storm, the surge was so bad today that our diveboat (and all other speedboats) had to turn around after 10 minutes and go back to the harbour. The guests were not exstatic - but would have been less so, if they'd been stuck on a 26 ft speedboat for three hours in 2 meter waves. Trust me on that one too.

Easter was peak season here and again business went far better than expected for us. Which meant another three weeks without a day off. Supposedly it's really quiet this week, but we still have full boats both for diving and snorkeling. Maybe next week.

The plan is to close the operation here end of next week. My first action will be going to Phuket for two days of shopping with one of my friends. Khao Lak has absolutely nothing in terms of shopping - unless you're looking for a tailor or an optician. After that, I'll be going on a liveaboard or two for some diving. NOT working, just diving. I can go practically for free, so it's not as decadent as it sounds.

Then I'll be packing all the equipment and office stuff here and get it to our office on Phuket.

Beginning May I'm likely to go to Koh Tao to visit Debbie and Beto. One of our friends from Saba comes to Thailand on holiday, so it would be nice to catch up and do some diving together.

After Koh Tao it's decision time........what am I going to do this green season, what am I going to do next high season (why is it not called brown season?). I have several options....Right now I'm extremely tired of working these ridiculous hours in the office. Sick & tired & frustrated actually. Which is why I am not making any important decisions right now - not the right state of mind. Right now I'd go for any job that involves diving.

Even life in Paradise is not always perfect ;)

The friend and Goddess who named me "qow" asked me whether people in general know, what the origin of that is. I'm sure some of you do. For all the rest of you, I'll give the explanation in my next blog update (now THAT's a cliffhanger).....

Take care lovely people
xxx from the QoW

Monday, 10 March 2008

Life in Khao Lak

So, what's it like to be an office worker in Thailand? Pretty much the same as in Europe, just a lot warmer. And possibly a bit more challenging logistically. One must never forget that time is even more relative in Thailand - tomorrow in Thai time is probably/possibly sometime this week. Or next. But not more than two weeks; generally.

Apart from that, the issues are the same: trying to get customers to sign and then making and keeping them happy, trying to motivate colleagues, trying not to throw the desktop out of the window, when it's painfully slow, trying to cope with the fact that the day only has 24 hours. And in between all of that it's a matter of being flexible and improvising as we go along.

Today, I've finally managed to take a day off. Well, obviously not an entire day - but 3-4 hours of time for myself. Went to the gym and then decided that it's about time I update you.

My life these days consists mainly of work, no fun. I do go out from time to time, but it's a bit tricky, cause I'm the office every day from 9:00-21:00 (just decided that we're closing at 21 "already"). That doesn't leave much time for social activities - especially since restaurants here close at 22. But yeah, we do manage to create a bit of a want-to-be-vortex feeling on a weekly basis ;))

In the meantime, Beto (former colleague from Saba and Debs' boyfriend) has arrived in Khaolak - and has had work pretty much every day since. Sarah has left for Malaysia, where she's working for the company I was supposed to work for. She does not sound overwhelmingly happy, but suggests that I go there as well in low season.

That's not the plan though: I'm supposed to work for Scandinavian Divers in Patong (Phuket). My job description there seems to have changed a bit though - from being on the boats every day (which I really want) to being part-time office as well. We'll see about that...

Last Monday I actually went diving! First time in about 5 weeks. And it was almost perfect: gentle current, fantastic visibility, ok divers. The "almost" bit refers to the only underwater creature I actually hate: Titan Triggerfish! Nondivers among you will not appreciate how horrible they are. First of all, nesting season has obviously started and secondly I obviously must have come a bit too close to a this huge, mean-looking trigger decided to attack me, coming up from behind and biting my upper arm! Interestingly enough, the (quite painful) bite didn't go through my wetsuit (another reason not to wear shorties), but I now have a very impressive purple-yellow-black bruise. The bastard continued his attempts to kill me - but was unsuccessful as you may have guessed. My fins show the scars including a 3 cm long hole, where he managed to bite all the way through. Damn, I hate Titan Trigger!

Enough for now, I'll go back to enjoying my day off (still have an hour until I have to work)

Lotsa xxx