I’ve had 3 days alone in Koh Chang since Gary left and I’ve found myself isolating myself from other people without even realising I’m doing it. I think after a hectic build up to me leaving and having a lot on my mind I made a decision to give myself some time alone to think and basically do nothing. So that’s exactly what I’ve done, but it’s not like me to avoid social contact as much as I have and it’s something I plan to change in the next week or so.
It’s partly to do with, for several reasons, just not feeling completely safe here. Plus having a bad experience with alcohol a few days ago has made me not want to drink for a while, hence eliminating the chance of making drinking buddies, which would be the best way to make friends. I could do that quite easily if I wanted to but I just haven’t had the desire to make small talk. So I’ve just accepted that I’ll be alone and do what I want to do for a few days, which has basically been nothing.
All I’ve done is get up late, watch stuff on my laptop then alternate my day around walking to the beach (before the sun goes down so I’m not walking alone in the dark) or sitting in the waterfront restaurant watching the sunset (it’s become my local here). Then after I’m done with that I’ve come back to the hotel where my bungalow is and watched a film in their restaurant. I’ve generally been going to my room at around 11pm most nights and just skypeing and going online. It hasn’t been the most productive few days but hey, if I have the freedom to do nothing then why not?
It has been strange sitting in my room while the rest of Koh Chang is partying (a fact that I’m reminded of since my bungalow is at the back of a club and it’s so loud I may as well be sleeping inside it) but to be honest I haven’t had much desire to join them. As a result I don’t think I’ve made the most of Koh Chang. I haven’t hated it here but I also haven’t loved it either. It was what I needed to chill my own for a while and have some thinking time, but I’m happy to leave.
I would recommend a visit to Koh Chang though – it definitely has it’s charms. The beaches are pretty (not as pretty as the Southern Islands but still beautiful) and I love how it’s full of quirky little bars. It’s probably the most chilled place I’ve been in Thailand so it’s perfect for chilling out in the day (it’s full of stoners) and makes for a pretty good night out too. I imagine if you came here with a group of friends (or made a group) then you could have a pretty amazing time. Be prepared for a lot of dogs though, it’s fine for me as I love them but if you have a fear of them then it probably isn’t the best place to visit.
My mindset feels completely different to my trip last year and I think I’m going to try and change that. I’m not as homesick but I am missing people more and struggling with that. I don’t want to become withdrawn and unsociable which is what I became in Koh Chang. I’m excited to go back to Bangkok, where I feel safer and more comfortable, and see Jess again. I will stay at her apartment for a few days and then I think I might check into a hostel. That way I’m guaranteed to meet people and snap out of this desire to isolate myself as that’s not what travelling is about.
So I’ve started up a competition with myself – between last year’s trip and this one, and I’m determined to have just as good a time, if not better, and to do that I need to snap out of it and start making the most of the experience. That starts the day after tomorrow (not tomorrow as that’s a travel day back to Bangkok). For now I have to attempt an early night as I have a lovely 9 hour tuk tuk/ferry/mini bus journey to look forward to tomorrow – they don’t call it travelling for nothing.
(This post is back dated)