With our wonderful Swede friends away the beach was a little lonely. Definately time to shake it up a bit, and Klaus and Carola had just the side trip in mind. They were headed up to Ko Samui to meet other friends from Germany and welcomed us along on their journey. It was wonderful to have a small itinerary planned out for us, and we certainly enjoy their company as well - great people and friends, from Frankfurt. Klaus owns a security firm (he is a gentle giant of a man, who played NFL football and works for the NFL Europe league when not guarding high level diplomats and movie/rock stars) and his wife Carola is super-sweet, and clearly adores him. And highly organized, too!
Our explore took us north away from the Indian ocean to the other side of the Thailand elephants trunk, where the Gulf of Thailand is situated, I think in the Pacific ocean... technically. They have a slightly different wet/dry season so it was still "wet" though pleasant enough. Our hotel in Lamai was beachfront but though the postcards showed a bathtub, the ocean was more like a washing machine, with strong undertow.... we didnt swim there (in the rain....) We did enjoy some fabulous food at the recommended German/Austrian restaurant, and met more wonderful travellers, friends from Frankfurt Malou and Buschel. Malou being a chef, knew just where the best eats were, and she did not steer us wrong.
At Ko Samui we swam in the waterfalls and fed the elephants, watched the monkeys pick coconuts from the tall trees on command, and enjoyed great massage - hard to pass a Thai oil massage when it is one hour for $10..... ahhhhh, kop koon kaaaaahhh.