4/8/18: Must I Leave Don Det?

I woke up at 6:30 to go for a long run.

I crossed the bridge to the big island next to Don Det and just explored the trails there. This is a great place to run— all trails, little to no motorcycles, friendly dogs, and gorgeous scenery. I absolutely loved all 8.5 miles of my run.

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One of the many trails

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Monks entering a temple in the middle of rice fields

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I then had breakfast— muesli with fruit again— and then worked on the blog/podcast for a few hours.

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Around noon, Kevin, and Jonny, and I went to town to get some lunch at Happy Bar— we had heard about an Indian guy who does really fun boat trips from there, so we were hoping to catch him and take the boat out with him.

We sat down, looked around, but didn’t see anyone who looked Indian. We ordered our food, hoping that he’d pop in at some point.

Our food took a long time to arrive. This seems to be the pattern in Don Det. I don’t think the kitchens are big enough to accommodate more than one group at a time.

I got green curry, which came with some really interesting tofu. It was like silken tofu, but in a circular shape. Not my favorite texture for curry, but I was just happy to have some tofu. I’ve learned to go for any source of protein that comes my way during my travels. I never know when the next time will be.

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We finished our food and still didn’t see the Indian guy, so we asked the people at the table next to us. They seemed like they had been staying here for a while and knew what was up.

They told us that the boat tour wasn’t happening today. Disappointed, we tried to come up with a plan B. We decided to just head further into town and see if anything interesting was going on.

After a quick mini-mart run, we walked into Adam’s Bar because they had shisha.

We got so excited when we saw that they had a big TV where we could watch any movie from the dozens that they had on their computer.

We chose 21 Jump Street, which is honestly one of my favorite comedies.

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Dave Franco on the screen <3 I am happy

We sat, smoked some shisha, and watched the movie.

Once the movie was over, we walked back in the direction of our hostel to check out Jungle Bar, which was supposed to have a beach in the backyard. It was just Kevin and I at this point, since Jonny chose to go back to our hostel.

As we approached it, we couldn’t see the beach so we were peaking around. Two guys at the bar yelled over to us,

“The beach is in the back! But you should get a drink here first.”

So we walked into the bar and started talking to them. One was an Israeli, and the other was an Indian guy. He introduced himself as Manny, and that’s when it clicked: It’s Manny! The boat tour guy!

He told us Sundays are his day off.

He then asked me where I’m from. I told him America and Japan.

And he acted like he’d never met a mixed race person before. He was all like, “You can’t be both. You’re not Japanese. Not with eyes like that.” And I was all confused because I couldn’t tell if he was mocking me or complimenting me.

He was one of those guys who makes you feel defensive and intimidated, but you’re not sure why. I really didn’t like how he made me feel.

After a beer, Kevin and I headed down to the beach.

Which was a sad excuse for a beach. The patch of sand was so small, and the swimming area was not that great.

Our hostel’s beach is so much better so we decided to just head back to our place. I didn’t want to walk back to the bar and offend Manny for leaving so quickly, so we started looking for other ways to get back.

We tried to walk back by just walking through the river, but the river got too deep so that was a fail. Then we stepped through some bushes, which led to a clearing, stepped through more bushes and trees, and finally got back to the main path. We ended up in the backyard of The Last Resort, the hotel next to our hostel. We must have looked insane, crawling up through the bushes all sweaty and dirty.

But it was really fun. I love going on random little adventures like that. It’s so much more exciting than just going the normal way.

We got a beer and went down to our beach to wade around and watch the sun go down.

The sunset was BEAUTIFUL— one of the best I’ve seen so far. The clouds were perfectly positioned to reflect all the gorgeous pink and purples. There were some local kids who jumped into the river with their water-bottle floaties, and it was cute but also quite sad. I just wanted to buy them proper floaties.

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Cutie with his floaties
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SO GORG

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There were a bunch of people sitting just behind us watching the sunset too, and some of them captured a few nice pics of us on the water… hehe! A few days after this, I ran into three of them in two different cities, and they told me they had these pics of us and kindly sent them to me. So cute and funny. Below are a few of my faves!

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We were hungry, so we (Kevin, Jonny and I) went to get dinner at the same Indian place we went to a few days before (Datta Banana Leaf)

I got spinach/cauliflower soup with roti. I asked for it to be spicy. The waitress asked me if my last curry was spicy, and I told her I asked for it to be but it wasn’t. She said she’d make sure it was spicy this time— and boy, WAS IT.

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I nearly died eating it, it hurt so good. It took about 15 minutes for my tongue to return to normal once I was finished.

We went to a bar around the corner, Ms. Ning’s, to try lao lao. Lao lao is the Lao rice wine/whiskey. I got a “laojito.” It was disgusting. The other two got normal mojitos, and they were delicious. I really wish I had just ordered a normal one.

We sat, played 16 (a card game that Jonny taught us), and then headed back to the hostel for bed.


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