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The final post. Day 13, or 14, or something like that… It makes me sad! And I’m not kidding, either. After two weeks of traveling with a like-minded group of people, you bond so incredibly fast. It’s like a year of knowing someone in the real world. A sort of “third level dream speed inception” type of thing… Okay, that might be a bit much :) Let’s get to it…
Nearly all boat charters pick you up 9am. This means you hit all the good spots with hundreds of other people doing the same thing. One thing we do is leave a bit earlier (thanks to Geoff), getting to each spot hours before everyone else. We got picked up at like 6am, so we caught the sun rising over Phi Phi on the way out.
This is Maya Bay. Where The Beach (Leonardo DiCaprio) was filmed. It’s normally a tourist trap — but when you get there early enough, it’s one of the most beautiful islands in the world. We were the only speedboat there — with a small handful of local longtail boats. When I went on a normal island tour (only made that mistake once), there were literally speedboats spanning the shoreline. We had to wait in the bay in a line for our turn to “park”. This is way, way better. When we left, the first speed boats from Phuket just started pulling up :)
Our first snorkel stop. Amazing.
Cruising around the islands checking out the old viking caves. This is now a place where local Thais harvest bird nest soup.
We parked here and all had an amazing swim. The water temperature is unreal here. Especially coming from SoCal where the water is FREEZING!
Courtney quickly realized that holding coconuts like this around a group of guys was not going to go unnoticed :)
I absolutely loved this trip. I hated saying goodbye to the amazing group that let me lead them around my favorite region of the world. I truly feel like every time that I leave Thailand and Cambodia, I return a better person. Completely inspired by a more simple life. Given a perspective that is hard to find in the west. If the people that came on this trip, that I now consider my friends, feel even slightly the same way, then that’s all I could ask for.
To the crew that came, thanks so much for trusting me enough to come on what was the trip of a lifetime. After last year’s group, I thought that I could never have as much fun with another group. How wrong I was. Each one of you is so dear to me now — I can’t be sincere enough in saying how much I wish we were all hanging out of a tuk tuk while Mr. Don tries to scare one of us :) Thank you so much for opening up and letting me share with you a part of the world I genuinely adore.
I’m already soooooooooo excited about next year’s RPTE! It will either be December of 2011 or January of 2012. If you want to come on next year’s RPTE, email email@example.com with the subject “RPTE” and I’ll get you on the list. And remember, there’s always a million reasons not to do something like this. And the reasons that are there for this year will most likely be there next year (and the year after that). Stuff like this doesn’t happen on it’s own. Make it happen or it will forever pass you by ;)
p.s. if you want to come on next year’s RPTE, email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “RPTE” and I’ll get you on the list f
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