Yesterday I scootered over to Karon beach to join a pick up volleyball game I’d heard about. I got there to find that it was a group of all Russians and Thais. Phuket is a typical vacation spot for Russians. Some Thais even know their language.
I joined the game and came to find out that, despite being the tallest and most fit, volleyball is tricky. I literally ate sand but that is due to my tendency to be overly enthused about sports where I can dramatically dive for a ball and save the day. That did happen twice… so the night was a win in my book.
After two hours of sunset volleyball, I swam in the ocean, swam the waves, stared at the moon a bit, then headed to my scooter. Which was chained to three other scooters.
I didn’t even know Thailand had parking police. The idea of enforcing parking laws had never occurred to me. I think it’s a beach thing. It’s certainly not a Thailand thing.
I scan the ticket, which was wrapped to my mirror with a rubber band. It’s entirely in Thai. I had a waitress translate for me and she pointed me towards the police station.
It was a twenty minute jog along the road and I did it barefoot. I had sandals but they are brand new and my feet were a mess. It’s hard to explain why I love these sandals so much, but I do. The colors rock, they’re super comfy, and have no toe thong.
One twenty minute, barefoot jog later and I am sitting in the police station with sweaty, sandy feet. I give the officer 500 baht ($17 USD).
He tells me “they will be there in ten minute, go”.
I ask him “in ten minutes?”, to confirm.
“Yes, ten minute they be at scooter, go now.”
Now I am a half hour ride from home, and I just paid two days budget for a ticket… and a Tuk Tuk would cost an arm and a leg to get home, so I feel pressure to be at my scooter in ten minutes. I take off running, needing to cut my twenty minute jog to ten minutes. I arrive on time and find my scooter unchained and no police in sight. Figures.
Still not the end of my night. I drive back over the hill (Google Patong hill, I am sure someone was dumb enough to pause on this steep, bending road to take a picture). It’s a fun hill that scares the crap out of me because people literally die on it, but usually drunk. Then I am on the home stretch. I am on my road, five minutes from home, and I notice two bikes are stopped ahead. I stop too.
What is that, a stick? Nope.
That would be a python. My conservative guess is seven or eight feet in length. My actual guess is ten to twelve and very thick. I am twenty feet away but I realize that, when observing a ten foot snake in the wild, twenty feet feels pretty close.
I considered going around it but I felt as though that put me in striking distance. Instead, we sat and waited. So did it. Then one of the Thai guys disappeared into the brush. I’m thinking “right… because there’s no snakes in there?” He comes back out with a huge stick and proceeds to poke the snake. Who first figured out that this was a solution to getting rid of ten foot pythons, I don’t know. He poked it some more.
It actually worked and the snake slithered into the woods. I drove my remaining five minutes to our $450 a month palace.
Anyhow, no real point to the story, just a good night in Thailand.