The Hidden Hitch-hiker

25 02 2012

Sometimes when you’re travelling you have days where you think, why do crappy things always happen to me?  Days when you are dead set certain that nobody has gone through what you have, and that the universe has taken offence to something you’ve done and is seeking payback.  These are the days when you wish you were that friend sitting in their cosy office back home, with their colourful stationary and hot mochachino reading your travel blog.  Ironically, the one wishing they were in your shoes.

Today was one of those the-universe-hates-me days and it started when we awoke to discover unpleasant and mountainous mosquito bites dotted all over our bodies…and damn did they itch!  For an hour we clambered around our room trying to spot the miniscule culprit, but to no avail, and in the end we zipped up our backpacks and left our room to the pesky insect.

Petrol Drive Through - not for human consumption, for your scooter!

When we arrived at the airport, the universe had decided that no matter which queue we chose, it would be the wrong one.  First it was the long queue into Bangkok Airport which had been moving smoothly, until the bloke in front of us blocked our turnstile for five minutes while he discussed his faulty token with the train guard.  Next it was at the Air Asia counter where we waited for twenty minutes while the dufus up front argued insistently with the air hostess about the size of his hand luggage.  By the time he and his family of eight had moved on, we were the very last passengers to check in.

We strode quickly to gate B4, pointing and sniggering at travellers sprinting past us who were heading in the other direction, obviously late for their flight.  We arrived at our gate just in the nick of time to board, only to discover the lounge empty.  Huh?  On the door, an electronic signboard was flashing “Gate Change – Go to A6.”  It was only the gate at the bloody other end of the fourth largest airport terminal in the world!

And so now we were the passengers running for their gate.  We sprinted along the travelators, cursing groups of tourists and happy families who were leaning casually in our path, chatting about their travels and how early they were for their flight.  We burst with gusto into the A6 lounge with minutes to spare…only to hear the announcement that our flight had been delayed by twenty minutes.  We were the last to board the plane, and in another stroke of bad fortune someone had purposely sat in Roger’s window seat.  Never take the window seat of a man who is obsessed with aeroplanes, and after much grunting, flared nostrils and muttered swear words, he got the quick heave-ho back into his aisle seat.

Patong Beach, Phuket

As quickly as the plane was up it was down again and we had arrived in Phuket airport.  We felt like Posh and Becks as we sauntered through the arrivals foyer while touts, taxi drivers and tour guides clambered over each other, shouting and waving at us in an effort to siphon our Thai baht from our wallets.

Owly lapping up the Thai ladies in Phuket.

Finally we were welcomed at our hotel with a cool glass of pineapple juice and shown to our room, where we more than impressed with the towel arranging abilities of the room attendants.  And as we dropped our backpacks and flung them open, what should zip out right under our noses?  The bloody mosquito from Bangkok!  Unwilling to be a tasty meal two nights in a row, we spent twenty minutes staring into vacant spaces trying to spot it flying by.  Finally, Roger successfully smeared it across the bathroom mirror.

The towelling swans

We headed out into the heat and the streets of Patong Beach, and we had no sooner crossed the road when it struck – an uncomfortable, unnerving churning and gurgling sound coming deep from within the recesses of my stomach that was causing my face to pucker.  I paused on the other side of the road, unwilling to go any further.  And suddenly everything became quite urgent.  With aching belly and clenched butt cheeks I hobbled, staggered, cross-legged shuffled quickly back to our hotel, Roger one step behind me acting as a shield in case I didn’t make it.  But I did, just in the nick of time.  And as I knocked back my first dia-stop pill of the trip, Roger sat smug-faced on the bed happily slurping from his can of tuna.  Given his delicate and selective constitution, I never thought for a minute that it would be me needing the pills!

Enjoying a coconut milk outside our hostel - fresh from the shell!

But within the hour, I noticed Roger standing quietly next to the fridge – eyes bulging, lips pursed, legs buckled and his butt cheeks tightly pinching the back of his cargo shorts.  It seemed I wasn’t to suffer alone this evening!  He bolted for the bathroom, returning twenty minutes later, face a light shade of green and completely spent.  Of course I made him beg for his dia-stop pill.  Nobody laughs at me in my hour of need and doesn’t suffer some sort of punishment!

Even Rog tried some...could this be the culprit?

So the party lights of Patong Beach would have to wait another day.  And then we noticed three fresh mosquito bites.  It seemed that we had not one, but two stowaways with us.

Like I said earlier, some days when you’re travelling you just wonder “Does this shit only happen to me?”  I can wholeheartedly say no.  I think every traveller at some point on their journey has a day just like this.



4 responses

26 02 2012
Stephanie Angus

Poor tummies – I am lucky – whenever I have been to Asia I have never had a bad tummy and I eat pretty much anything but avoid the water. Must have a cast iron gut!! Glad to hear you are having fun though and it was great to see your Mum last week xo

8 03 2012

We think it was the ice cubes at a restaurant where we ate – it was the only thing we both had! So pleased mum could make it. She said you were very strong and amazing, as usual. 🙂

26 02 2012

mate that sux’s bout the shits… bloody funny bout the running for the plane, now you just got a train, ferry and a bus to go.. lmao.. travel safe beautiful people.. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

8 03 2012

LOL I don’t know what you mean Shaz *cough* Er-hem *clears throat*

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