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Johannes Holmberg

UI developer & designer

The last days have been turbulent to say at least. Since my 30 days allotment to stay in Thailand was about to tick out I had in mind to move on this Friday.

Unfortunately, a tenacious fever rendered me unable to travel. I extended my stay at the hotel for 2 days in hope of some recuperation. That Sunday was my absolute last day before the fees would start to pile up with each day that passed.

After some days in sickbed I finally managed to get out for some fresh air and went to book my ticket for the next destination. Everything seemed to go well at first until after around 15 minutes, the clerk told me that the bus I'd intended to take was full for the 5 next days ahead. Jeez.

I quickly arranged another trip in my head to instead go to Phuket and fly out from there. I asked if I could borrow a computer to check prices for flight tickets. But for reasons unknown there was an internet outage on the whole island for the day, so I was thereby trapped and unable to do anything about the situation at the moment. Great.

Settling with the thought that the fortune gods were probably not on my side today, I was about to head back to the hotel when the phone rang on the clerks desk. It was her agent who in some way had found another bus company that had a seat over on Sunday. It was slightly more expensive but I laughed, thanked her and gladly accepted.

So as you're reading this I'm probably bumping around on a bus somewhere in the southern regions of Thailand. I'm now heading for Malaysia. It's been a very joyful time and I'm glad to have experienced the contrasts between the hectic Bangkok, the touristy and loud Hua Hin, the tropical but crowded Ao Nang and the very tranquil and peaceful Ko Lanta. It gives perspective over the immense amount of possibilities this land has to offer.

The majority of the people here are exceptionally helpful and friendly, though plenty have been the times when many are just after but one simple thing; the money in my pocket. It's a fun dichotomy when come to think of it, everywhere I go people call me their friend, still, they usually end up trying to squeeze as much money out of me as they possibly can. It's a peculiar way of looking at friendship, isn't it?

But I'll remember it as a place where the chef invites you for a game of table tennis after lunch. There's something genuinely sincere about that.

The beaches of Ko Lanta are probably the most beautiful ones I've had the pleasure to experience so far. And that is neither for any exceptional quality of the sand nor for the inviting emerald-looking water. It's rather for the atmosphere that swallows the scene. The diversity created by the tide is of a uniqueness I haven't seen before. One day you can see the rocky landscape of coral reefs stretching a hundred meters out in the ocean. The next day it has vanished and it's enough to take but three light steps to be out swimming. This unpredictable variety dresses the landscape in ever-changing clothes. You never know what form it will take the next day.

Also, walking this beach on a dark evening, noticing the shoreline getting defined by some mixed colors emitting from a few bungalows along the coast, with a row of palm trees drooping their crowns over the water as if to take a bath, and hearing some faint and randomly scattered voices from behind; the peaceful scene gives the impression that you're feet is at the edge of the world. It's soothing yet exhilarating at the same time.

I don't know very much about Malaysia as I'm about to enter but I'm sure ready to find out. I prefer the unknown as a preference, things are more exciting, more open that way. The only thing I know is that I don't need a visa to get in and that's the only vital information I need to have at this point.

The trip is said to take 21 hours. I'll see when I get there.