I'll start with a wee update; July 31st, was my 24th birthday, I went to work and flew to Bangkok overnight, then Aaron and I caught a flight to Koh Samui airport, was collected by the hotel staff (a very nice English man) put our luggage in our room, had a refreshing drink and then had Thai massages on the beach, bliss. The next afternoon we set out the Big Buddha Pier and got a large boat with at least 200 other travellers (it felt like we were all being deported, except you could buy ice creams whilst waiting) and set of for Koh Tao.
The boat journey was at a relaxing pace (I got sea sick), a cute older Thai lady gave us a free map of Koh Tao, we stopped at 2 other islands before getting to Koh Tao (we nearly got off at the wrong port). Asia Divers collected us from the port and took us to our accommodation, where we met our diving instructor (Haylie; blond, in 30's, fit).
Cat came and collected us that evening, we went for a VERY tasty Thai meal, and then onto several bars and drunk buckets. Least to say we were rather drunk by about midnight, and had to go home ready for our first pool session the next morning (8 AM). On the way back, we went to the 7/11 got some water and many other supplies that we "needed"; instant noodles (we didn't have a kettle in our room), a small loaf of brown bread (we didn't have utensils in our room), a small pink microphone which had sweets in (I didn't have the brains to work out how to get the sweets out, and I was singing to Cat on, whilst in the shop about having a threesome) and a pack of peanut cookies (most of which Aaron fed to his "pet" dog he found on the way back). Ahhh Thailand.
Needless to say, after about 10 minutes of lying down after consuming as many cookies as possible and a lovely hot dog (also purchased in 7/11) I got up and threw up, I called to Aaron for some help/water/sympathy and I got a "fuck off" and then he joined me in the bathroom (which, luckily was covered in tiles) we then went to bed.
Upon awaking I administered us both re-hydration tablets and berocca. We then proceeded to the pool where the rest of our group were waiting. Aaron felt sick and cold, we survived, in fact I think I enjoyed it. At lunchtime, we had a break.
Panic set in. We couldn't find our passports or money pouch. Lost, stolen, no where to be found. We checked the room twice, text Cat, asked if maybe she had in her sobriety taken them off us. Nope. Went back to the Lotus bar (where we had last been drinking buckets the night before) and asked them, nope, not there. Aaron cried. I called various places and looked on the internet to get advice. We would have to go back to Bangkok and pay to get new passports printed, it would take at least 10 days, and use up most of our holiday spending money.
We had to report the passports lost to the local police, the station was in the middle of the jungle, very small, dissimilar to the local police stations we are used to in the UK. The police were slightly sympathetic, but 3 other people with British passports had already logged their passports as stolen from the same bar, from the night before. We were obviously targeted.
Solemnly walking back through the forest to the beach and then to our hotel, we had 800 baht on us so had some lunch (our first meal of the day). We spoke to Haylie, who was shocked, one of our other team members had had this done to him when he was travelling last time. We decided we didn't want to do the afternoon session for the diving, started watching TV in our room, in bed, with the curtains drawn.
I thought I should charge my phone for the next day - we would need it. The drawer I had put my nokia charger in was broken, slightly wonky and I had to push it in and pull it back out to get it to open. And there, right at the back of the drawer was the pouch, the pouch with our money and passports.
At first we couldn't believe it, of course we were overjoyed. Life was sweet again.
Drinking in Thailand was no longer an option for us, it was too risky, from then on we carried all our important documents in a hidden pocket in Aaron's bag, which never went out of our sight.
We had 3 days left at Koh Tao, we had our first dive the next afternoon, it was amazing. Of course I was petrified whilst going down, I panicked and signalled to Haylie that I wanted to go to the surface, she wouldn't let me, she held my arm and told me to breath in slowly and breath out. About 2 minutes later I was ready to go down. Diving is amazing, I recommend the experience to everyone, being underwater is peaceful and astoundingly beautiful.
I must add, now, that Koh Tao is probably not the best place to go diving (for lack of underwater life, due, sadly to over fishing and too many tourists) BUT it is the cheapest, Aaron and I paid around £320 to both do a padi diving course over 4 days, with included accommodation. And of course the main reason for going to Koh Tao...to see Cat.
Our next stop was Koh Phangan, we went to small resort called The Sanctuary - a spa resort, with mainly vegetarian food, a private beach, it was wonderful. About 3 coves up from the infamous beach on Koh Phangan where the full moon party takes place.
I booked a private beach hut, which was set back (about 10 minutes from the beach) in lush forest. Our first night at The Sanctuary was also the night of the full moon party, which I didn't end up getting to.
Whilst at the sanctuary, I did a 5 day detox, which meant no food, having pshyillium husk and bentonite clay shakes, lots of green tablets and once a day coffee colonics. I can't say it was the best experience I had, but I also can't deny my slight excitement for getting to check through my colonic outcome everyday. It was enlightening, and I felt AMAZING afterwards.