Saturday 1st January
Excelsior Tours is back and Mark very
successfully arranged for all the Blue Water Rally boats in the anchorage to eat
together. We had thought that it would be a nightmare trying to organise for
about 30 people to eat together but the restaurant handled it really well and
the food was absolutely delicious, some said the best they've eaten in the whole
After dinner everyone went their
separate ways and we went to a ping-pong show with Blue Magic - it had to be
done! We all found ourselves laughing out loud at the acts that the Thai women
were performing. I'll spare you the details but just inform you that these acts
involved birds, a mouse, fish, razor blades, bananas, ping-pongs, a trumpet,
darts and balloons. Quite a bizarre experience!
Paul was determined to get his
£40's worth (4 compulsory drinks at 500 Bhat) so we were late leaving to make
our way back to the boats to watch the fireworks. We were rushing through the
streets being attacked with silly string when we stopped and questionned why it
was so important to get back to the boats, we were just following someone elses
suggestion. Instead we decided to find a drink and stay ashore to celebrate with
the crowds of people as the atmosphere was fantastic! The beach bars had run out
of beer so Amy ran into a restaurant to buy 6 beers for us to drink over on the
beach where we planned on watching the fireworks. We made it back over to the
other side just in time for midnight!
Lanterns filling the
Happy New Year!
We definitely made the right
decision to stay ashore, there was no firework display as such, they were just
going off in all directions around us at any time and it was absolutely
brilliant. As I said before, the atmosphere was fantastic and we wouldn't have
had the same experience on the boat. We'd even purchased some lanterns from a
young girl for us to let off on the beach. We decided to light one when we were
stood just at the edge of the beach, a couple of lads were helping us and we
didn't wait for long enough so it wasn't quite ready to float away and it came
back down. We held it a bit longer and someone came and pushed it up into the
air, again it floated back down to the crowds. We caught it and held it ready to
let it go when it filled with the hot air but a big security man came along,
snatched it out of our hands and stamped on it on the floor - oops! We moved
down closer to the sea and out of the crowds to light the next two, one for Blue
Magic and one for us. These two worked brilliantly and we watched them floating
up into the sky until we could no longer see them. Unfortunately it was all so
manic and rushed I'm not sure anyone actually made a wish!
We found a barrier which was
obviously meant to control the crowds, no one took a blind bit of notice but it
gave us something to lean up! It was from here that the big security man
appeared again when he slapped a young lad around the face for carrying a
firework. It was incredibly mean and horrible to watch as he kept slapping him
and eventually pulling his legs from under him so that the young lad smacked his
back onto the hard sand. Why he chose to pick on him I'm not sure. Yes there is
sign on the beach saying you will be arrested for letting off lanterns and
fireworks but everyone was doing it!
We had a few more drinks and then
decided to call it a night and head back to the boats. We saw life on board
Enchantress and made our way over, stopping off on Jackamy for champagne and
more lanterns. We spent a few hours talking at the bow with David and
Susan and celebrated spending 15 months in one anothers company
as we've made our way around the world, with the fireworks still exploding from
the beach. We also successfully let off a couple more lanterns now that we know
how to do it!
Once back on board Jackamy, Amy
and Jack decided to let one more lantern off from the bow. They didn't quite
manage it as the wind had picked up and Amy struggled to hold the lantern in
four places with only two hands. Instead it was dumped over board to put the
fire out and allowed to drift away with all the other lanterns floating by.
Thinking about it, it was a miracle that no boats were actually damaged by any
of the hundreds of lanterns that were let off from the beach as eventually they
would collapse and they were all floating in amongst the boats.
A superb evening with great
friends............Happy New Year everyone!!!!!!!!!!!!!