Begins with 7 am Toronto Blue Jays game on Katy's MacBook Air. The wifi is dubious and intermittent here, but we feel lucky to have it at all in this jungle land where it seems more likely to see Tarzan than Trump. But that is part of the cultural adjustment we have had to make.
Today was packed with adventure starting with ziplining over the jungle. First thing they do after taking your money is plop a hairnet over your head before the helmet. Looked like an audition for cooking show! Then the harness that was sturdy enough to lift a rhino, two legs in, now two arms, there you go, now you wook wike pwofeshunel!
First of 14 stations, Katy said I should go first since I had never zipped before. Don't worry dear, Dad'll show you. It was exhillerating, yet the three guides with us just made the pfft sound in the universal language meaning, that was nothing.
Four zips later, standing on a 70 ft platform overlooking a running river gorge, rice paddies on one side, bamboo and banana trees on the other, I'm thinking, who gets to do this? If I die today, my bucket list is nearly full!
Next stop was Tiger Kingdom with all size and breeds of tigers born in captivity and amazingly tolerant of photo seekers like us. Katy gambolled with the babies and together we flounced about the giant male. It was special to be up close and personal with a huge Bengal, but we couldn't escape the touristy feeling of the wild beast in captivity. Worth the visit nevertheless.
Nearby was the longneck woman tribe that Katy had to see. Big sign said "Karen" so we thought we'd go find her. Here's where the wierdness began. $25 each in Canadian, very expensive by Thai standards, then 47 market stalls ALL selling the same frigging trinkets, beaded pouches, scarves, bracelets, and carved long neck women. And I do mean the SAME! I didn't buy anything. The marketing genius who came up with this business model must have thought charge admission to the store and we don't even need to sell any of that shit. Katy got a photo with Stretch-Spine woman and we were happy to just give her 50 bhat, just don't gimme any of that cheap crap on your table!
Back at the "hotel", we move into our third different treehouse, this the coolest looking since it is 30 feet up a Tamarind tree. (Tamarind is the secret flavour in Worcestershire sauce, Pad Thai, Sloppy Joes, marinades, chutneys, Bloody Mary's, etc.) Not that we are sipping a red one in a rimmed glass tonight, but if we were, we could reach out the window and grab a tamarind pod. Just saying.
Heading south tomorrow, taxi, boat, bus, plane, to the most mispronounced place in the world: Phuket (Poo-ket, just so you know).