So I’ve been back from my two week Asian adventure for about a week now, but I’ve been so busy preparing things to leave Korea in a few weeks that I haven’t had a chance to write about my trip. I’ve also been in an emotion slump, but I’m hoping to distract myself by reflecting on my experiences in Thailand and China.
The trip didn’t start off well. I’d heard horror stories about China Eastern Airlines, but I guess you don’t really know until you experience it for yourself. The actual flights weren’t bad (I had 4), and you really can’t beat the low prices, but was it worth the headache? I’m not sure. The only good thing about it was the food. I just can’t get over how even the budget airlines in Asia give full meals for just an hour long flight. In the States you can barely get a drink!
So I left Korea in the early evening on a Saturday. My flight was delayed over an hour, and I had to change planes in Shanghai. The line to transfer took ridiculously long, and I barely made it to my next flight to Phuket. It took about five hours to get to Phuket and it was an overnight flight. The woman sitting in my row was trying to get her daughter to sleep and let her stretch her legs out over the whole row so she kept kicking me the entire flight. I felt really bad because I know the little girl was tired and having her “sleep” was a little better than listening to her cry the whole flight, but the whole experience was just awful.
When I finally got to Phuket and out of the plane I was already in a bad mood. It was about 2:30am and it took over an hour to get through immigration. I was looking forward to getting my bag and finding a quiet place to rest until morning. But, I couldn’t find my bag! The baggage claim attendant said it most likely got held up in Shanghai and would come in about 24 hours. So I had only the clothes on my back and my winter coat. The airport was crazy busy all night long so I couldn’t really rest. When the sun finally came up I set out to find a bus to get to my hostel, and I was looking forward to meeting up with my friends. As soon as I walked out of the airport I was swarmed by guys trying to get me to pay 1000baht (About $35) to take me to my hostel. I decided to try to wait for the 200baht minibus, but they told me I would have to wait a long time until they had enough people to fill it up. While I was waiting I chatted with some really nice ladies from Australia, and it was refreshing to feel warm air after leaving freezing cold Korea.
I waited and waited and waited….It seemed like I’d been at the airport for ages and I was just getting angrier as each minute passed. Finally I just decided I needed to get to my hostel, eat, take a shower, and meet my friends so I just paid for the private taxi. I got to my hostel in just under an hour, checked in, and set off to find the hostel my friends were staying in. I’m not even going to talk about the hostel situation. Let’s just say the room was less than $10, and I was happy it was only for one night. The weather and scenery were gorgeous as I walked down the main road near Karon beach. When I finally saw familiar faces my mood started to improve a lot! After eating some delicious cheap Thai food, bargaining for clothes, and having a relaxing afternoon on beautiful Karon beach, I was feeling much better.