Oh, how beauty can be a burden.
Upon entering Phi Phi I knew immediately I was not going to be happy here. Way to set myself up for success going into it with that mindset right? Oops. I was hungover, overheating and I had 45 Thai Phi Phi locals in my face trying to sell me ANYTHING and EVERYTHING. Key chains, water, mushrooms, accommodation, the rat they fried up to eat. I had experienced this type of bombarding while traveling the islands in the Caribbean, and truly hated it. The island wasn’t very large in size to walk, but I could not for the life of me find a place to sleep! It’s like the hostels were all hidden. Sigh.
Finally, I had had enough and settled on this overpriced room for the night. And man, was it gross. Mold covered the walls, there were no windows or air con. But I needed to change into my bathing suit and get into the ocean, ASAP; so I settled. It’s safe to say I am not recommending that hotel to you!
The beaches were small and dirty, the locals were ill-mannered. All they cared about was the money you’d spend on their scams and if you weren’t spending they wouldn’t even make eye contact with you. I had left paradise and came to hell.
I had become excessively tired around 8pm, and curled up into bed. The next 36 hours were absolute hell. I woke up at 7am, with the worst stomach cramps I have ever experienced. I couldn’t stop vomiting, I couldn’t function. I knew there was absolutely no way I could stay in the disgusting room I was in while enduring this. So I slowly moved to a couple expensive places in the area to scope out what would be more comfortable and finally settled on this room that was triple what I normally paid, but was impeccable. I am still not sure to this day how I did it, but I packed up all my belongings and carried my pack to the next hotel. I had such a high fever and my body was shutting down. There is no way to truly describe the immense vulnerability I felt being that sick alone in a third world country.
“Traveling is a brutality. It forces you to trust strangers and to lose sight of all that familiar comfort of home and friends.
You are constantly off balance. Nothing is yours except the essential things: air, sleep, dreams, sea, the sky – all things tending towards the eternal or what we imagine of it.”― Cesare Pavese
I slept for 36 hours straight in that room. Talk about my body needing a reboot. But when I woke up, I felt 60% normal. But I could work with that. I knew I needed to get OUT of Phi Phi! I hoped on a ferry to Koh Lanta, an island that many recommended to me. It was much smaller, and laid back. I booked my bungalow in advance and made my way there. It was a three hour ferry ride, and it cost me $6.00. This ferry ride was very uncomfortable, but I made it safely and without vomiting, and at this point that was all that mattered. If you take a ferry to Koh Lanta, I do recommend booking accommodation and taxis with the men that work on the boat and are selling packages. I hardly ever go through that outlet, but many I’ve spoke to have and it is legit and effortless.
What I really learned from Phi Phi was the importance of taking care of yourself. I am not the type of person that can go on multiple day benders, did that on my month Europe trip and my body is forever a diva now. My body gives me a nice swift kick to the butt every time, and brings me back to reality of the importance of balance. So often I feel heavily it’s a curse, but ultimately it isn’t. Its for the absolute best.
Stay up all night and dance, go for a walk in the fresh air and relax the next day.
Eat that donut and homemade pizza, eat fruit smoothies the next day.
Drink one too many margaritas, drink a gallon of water the next day.
Our bodies are precious temple, treat them even better than they deserve.
get out there and live.
party hard, but balance harder.