Buckets of vodka and breasts like weapons

Grocery shopping in Ko Phi Phi

Grocery shopping in Ko Phi Phi

I was young until I went to Ko Phi Phi. I was young with cups of čai on Turkish wharves, and the same when I danced in Lithuanian discotheques. But faced with buckets of vodka and twerking on Phi Phi’s shores, I felt old. I wanted to go to bed, if only those darn kids would turn their music down. You kids need condoms, I need ear plugs.


Once it was late enough not to feel like a complete loser, I went back to my room, where a book waited for me, thinking again “I should have started traveling 10 years earlier.” And “As long as I didn’t get spiderwebs tattooed on my elbows.”

I hope this fella never sees this blog. We're all young, bro, but self-congratulatory tattoos? Joder.

I hope this fella never sees this blog. We’re all young, bro, but self-congratulatory tattoos? Joder.


But Thai blue water is Thai blue water and karst cliffs are undeniable, so I stayed another grandfatherly day to hike around the island. The first few minutes had “Dude, bro…” and “OMG, I was like, so shitfaced last night!” but soon I heard only leaves and patient wind, birds and insects. Jungles have a way of filling the world, barricading you from everything outside, capable of blocking even the most insipid house music.


In the green alleys I felt removed from that party-soaked island, which itself seemed distant from SE Asia. I wanted to escape the former, and return to the latter. I’d catch a boat tomorrow, but for now, was I still even in Thailand? As far as I could tell, this island was about as Asian as Cancun is Mexican.


Ko Phi Phi jungle clearingThe verdancy relaxed into something like a clearing, where a woman was waiting for me. She had excellent posture, and the dark red cloth of her top was pushed into a shelf by mythic breasts with nipples like missiles. Realization that it was a statue came with a side order of relief, followed by a pause. Recalled from my whining dissatisfaction with the beach party scene, with its excess, superficiality, and inaccessibility, I stood and looked at her as raindrops began to fall on my warm shoulders, her cold ones, and the gifts and offerings spread around her.


Incense drifted among the orchids, a candle burned safely under glass, and a pair of luscious apples stood close at her hand, beside a glass of clear water and a can of ubiquitous coke. Not exactly Shwedagon Pagoda, she was still a moment of calm, a gesture towards the supernatural/spiritual, and I decided with a smile that I was still in Asia after all, as the monsoon began in earnest.



Ko Phi Phi beach in the morningKo Phi Phi remains in my mind as a great destination…for youngsters. But even in that place of mechanical bulls and automatic bullshit, beautiful moments popped up: like the open-sided hut of hammocks where I waited out the rain, and the abandoned beach at morning tide that showed no ill will toward past or future festivities. If I came away fond of Ko Phi Phi, I can’t wait to see what happens in Cambodia.


Cambodia was the winner of my last poll and my lady and I will be there in less than three weeks. We don’t have as much time as I’d like (shocking), but if y’all have any Cambodian recommendations, I’d love to hear them.


(And just in case you thought I was exaggerating? These things? Weapons.)Yeah, those are weapons