29 March 2011

The Lord said to Noah there's gonna be a floody floody

The Lord said to Noah:
There's gonna be a floody, floody
The Lord said to Noah:
There's gonna be a floody, floody
Get those kids out of the muddy, muddy
Children of the Lord


This is one annoying verse from one very annoying song. I know this song because when I was a kid any time I spent the night at my friend Brad’s house his Dad would wake us up at 6:00am singing this song at the top of his lungs…over and over and over. He sang not because of religious zeal or morning cheer, he sang because he knew we had stayed up until 5am whacked out on Jolt Cola and Nerds. He wanted to hurt us. He wanted to hurt us bad.

This song has been stuck in my head for days because it has not stopped raining for days. This is the middle of the Thai summer. The heat is supposed to be oppressive. The humidity is supposed to be suffocating. The sweat is supposed to be constant. Instead Thai men with nets are fishing where the roads are supposed to be. Houses are flooded. Knee deep puddles are everywhere. The roar of the rain won’t go away.

The flooding is so bad water filled my room and cascaded down the stairs while I was in Koh Samui. (Thank you to my roommates for mopping up).

The flooding is so bad car carrier semi-trucks are parking on the side of the road, loading up cars and driving them through the worst areas.

The flooding is so bad I had to leave my scooter in Koh Samui and hitch a ride with a friend. She has a car. We thought it wouldn’t be bad. You know when they show flood footage on the news and cars are being swept off the road and you think “what dumbass was out in that?” This dumbass was out in that. In certain sections of the road the water was above the tires. People on scooters had no choice but to push through the rapids. One group tried to weigh a bike down with coconuts to keep it from drifting away.


There is a sense of adventure with all this rain. The little boy in me likes stomping through puddles and getting drenched. But, the adult in me sees the damage, and the people being put out of their homes, and wants the rain to please, pretty please, go away.

Note to self: Teach students that electricity and water don’t mix
Every time I see a news report about the flood damage the reporter is interviewing someone with at least 6 inches of standing water in their house and the TV still on.

Dream a little dream come true

Before the deluge I was living the high life on Koh Samui. My three week dream gig was indeed dreamy. I read books on the beach, swam in the pool, rode my scooter through the jungle, ate and ate, and worked for two hours a day.

I liked teaching adults. It's just like teaching kids with less reprimanding. All the motivational techniques, teams, points, candy…same same.

Guilt was a factor. I didn’t start work until 3pm. I wasn’t about to stay in my room all day so I did what guests do, I enjoyed the resort; the pool, the food, the lounge chairs in the sand beneath the palms.  And I felt like a special kind of asshole every time one of my students brought me a delicious fruit shake. I carried on of course. I’m just saying.


Chewang Beach is weird. That’s where I stayed. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Thailand. On the street side it’s all McDonald’s and Starbucks and dudes selling suits and girls in tiny dresses yelling, “Welcome! Massage!! Where you go?” On the beach side it is a quiet stretch of white sand and azure waters where you can dine romantically or walk peacefully. I don’t know if it ended up that way on purpose or on accident but I like it. It’s like being two places at once.


On the road again. Just can’t wait to get on the road again.

I am done working on Thursday. I don’t work again until May 18th. When I left home I needed to travel, it was gnawing at me. This time I am just happy about it. It doesn’t feel life changing. It doesn’t feel like something that may never happen again. It just feels exciting. This trip I will be visiting some familiar places Phi Phi Island, Railay Beach and some unfamiliar places, Hanoi, Halong Bay. I am not bringing my laptop. I’m traveling light. But, I will try to update the blog as often as I can. I will have my journal and I will have long bus rides with nothing but time.

Until then….