Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Pleasant Pranburi

Songkran was over and the streets were back to normal, you would think it had never had happened but for the last remaining traces of powder on the streets and cars. Ben was heading back to Bangkok and I had a couple of days left to recover from the wild celebrations although this wasn't quite the case. A couple of days after Songkran I woke up in excruciating pain which I knew full well was an ear infection, I've had many before in my life but this one was something else, I knew Songkran was the culprit and thought that it might be quite bad as Thailand's water is pretty dirty so that mixed in my ear along with the powder was not good. I managed to ride it out till 7.30AM when I had no choice but to call Fai as I needed to see a doctor, I already have severe hearing loss so I have to be especially careful with my ears. She finally woke up after many calls and came to the guesthouse to take my to the hospital, I was dizzy and was not looking forward to this visit at all. I told her I need to go to a government hospital because my insurance would only cover this but she strongly advised against it and told me it would not cost me very much to go to a private hospital and would be well under my excess of £50. From the moment we arrived I was very impressed with the way I was dealt with, they first asked if I had my passport but told them I only had my driving license on me which was ok, they took my weight and blood pressure and I was only waiting for a short time maybe 20 minutes before an ear nose and throat specialist saw to me. He checked both ears and asked me if I had "played Songkran", he told me I had a middle ear infection and what I was slightly concerned about (and it also bloody hurt) was that he syringed my left ear where the infection was and pulled out a load of gunk, he checked my right ear and told me it was ok then gave me a prescription for antibiotics, painkillers, and decongestants and a nurse took me to have an antibiotic injection in my bum (yeh, not had that one before). The bill came to 1250 baht (just over 20 quid) and I was on my way. Instead of going back to my small hot room at the guesthouse Fai said I could rest it up at her house where I started watching a film and fell asleep, her mum (who doesnt speak English) came in at 6PM to remind me to take my medication and then I waited for Fai to return as she had gone out somewhere, she then took me back to the guesthouse where I spent the next day recovering more before we were due to head to Pranburi.

After a bit more resting the pain had gone down considerably and it was now time for me, Fai, her sister Fah and her close family friends Beer and Nook to head south to Pranburi, a place I had never heard of before. It was around a 5 hour drive and we arrived to "Pranburi Delight" which certainly lived up to its name, it was a beautiful resort just across the road from the beach and it had a pool too. In the evening we headed to the night market in Hua Hin about a half hour/hour drive away from our resort where they had some amazingly handcrafted items, I'd not seen a market like it before in Thailand. On our way back we grabbed a bottle of Hong Thong from the 7-11 and headed back to drink it, even though Fah, Beer and Nook spoke little English I was still able to teach them some easy drinking games and it was a funny funny night.

After surfacing out of bed the next morning we headed to "Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park" to visit the "Phraya Nakhon Cave", now after visiting Laos with Fai I know she hates caves but this one we read was not a deep dark cave and it was also very famous as it was visited by three of the kings of Thailand including the current Rama IX (who also has a house in Pranburi). It was a great day albeit exhausting and extremely hot, we had a significant walk and climb up before we reached the opening and when we did it was magnificent, it had a lot of green life and plants inside due to a big opening where it had collapsed in and in the middle there was a hand built pavilion put there by order of Rama V. After our decent back down the rocky pathway we got our breath back and cooled down with an ice lolly before heading back to resort, though not before we bought some freshly caught crabs from a restaurant in the car park. On the way back we stopped in at Tesco Lotus to buy some other ingredients for a BBQ, the resort had a BBQ area we could use and we were the only people in the whole resort now which was kinda cool. To my surprise (well kind of) there was no beef products (steak/burgers etc) in the whole supermarket, the Thai people rarely eat beef but I did fancy me a nice steak, instead we got a selection of other tasty meats and headed back to the guesthouse to fire it up. What a night it was, we all again got very drunk and finished our night by splashing about in the pool.

The following morning it was time for the others to go as they only planned two nights where Fai and I planned to stay longer. There was a small problem which we didn't fully think through and that was that Beer was the one driving and he would be of course taking his car leaving us with no transport basically in the middle of nowhere. We said our goodbyes and off they went leaving just us two having the whole resort to ourselves it was very peaceful although kinda weird also. We didnt really have any plans for our remianing time here so we hired a motobike from the resort and headed off on a drive back to Hua Hin which was extremely sketchy, I think being in the pool the night before didn't help my ear and it was hurting again and made me a little dizzy which didnt help me maneuver and interpret the motorway but we made it there alive and went for some cake at a quaint little establishment before heading back to the resort again. It was a fairly early night for us as my head really wasn't feeling too good from the infection.

The following day we debated how long we would stay and whether or not we should hire a car due to the vast distances we needed to travel to see the various sights,we worked out though that hiring a car would be too expensive and the cost of the resort was fairly high too so we decided we would spend one last night and then head back to Ayutthaya, perhaps planning another little getaway somewhere else before I had to leave to go back to England. We spent our last day lazing around on the beach playing with the dogs who lived at the resort, the domestic husky called Vodka and the stray I dubbed "Sparky" it was funny watching them dig for crabs, I never thought they would actually get one but low and behold Sparky did but neither of them then quite knew what to do with it which was hilarious. In the evening the resort let us borrow the motobike this time for no charge so we could go and get some dinner then we headed back to get ready for checkout the next morning. We organised a mini bus that picked up us up directly from the resort taking us to Bangkok then we took another minibus to Ayutthaya.

Our time in Pranburi on the whole was great, my ear infection didn't help the situation as it did make me feel a bit groggy at times but even so I got to see yet another beautiful part of Thailand I would not have otherwise seen. It was also a great bonus getting to meet Fai's family, although Fah was the only blood relation they all consider each other brothers and sisters and it was a pleasure to be able to get on with them so well, they must have liked me too as they now keep asking "when is the next holiday with Chris?"

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