Dec 31 2008
The take off from Subang was not smooth, so was the landing in Penang. Capt. Dahlan, if I remember correctly, was the pilot. Firefly still has way a lot of room for improvement, starting with coordination. Instead of having immigration issues settled in Subang, we had to disembark in Penang, get our passports screened (or stamped if you’re old skool) and get on board again. A good exercise you say? Hah.
1.5 hours to Samui Airport. If you didn’t see planes and runways, you might think it was another resort. Even the washroom was like the ones in nice hotels. Even nicer than the one in my Samui hotel. Belum apa-apa dah jakun.
I was told that it was customary for hotels to impose a “new year’s eve party” surcharge, including ours. For RM300 per person, I got dinner, some music and performances (a group of kids appeared at at least three different hotels on the same night!) plus a paper lantern to be lit and sent off for good luck. Mahal.
Being surrounded by mostly gwailos is not very comfortable for me, I must admit. Maybe I’m just not used to it but my travelling partner had time to check out the guys. Heh. There were some beautiful people, European mostly.
After filling our empty stomachs with food, we decided to go out to town to see what’s interesting. Someone gave a flier of a local ‘ladyboy show’ happening later that evening. Since it was just after 8, we then got off the road and crossed over to the beach, where we found 90 per cent of Samui’s population were at. It sure looked that way. Merrymaking. Many lanterns were already lit and the sky was peppered with tiny orange lights which I failed to capture on photo.
The weather was not too kind for us the whole time we were there and by 9pm, it started to rain again that we quit the beach and got back to the hotel. Back to the party, which was getting on a bit. The ladyboys will have to wait. However, we got a lantern to light up so by 11 the hotel staff took those who stuck around to the beach. Lin got ours stuck in the trees at first but it got free. It wouldn’t do to have your good luck lantern stuck!
By that time the fireworks have started in earnest, and our hotel had a 5-minute extravaganza (yes, I’m exaggerating) along with the rest which made the scenery looked like:
By that time, we parked ourselves on a couple of deckchairs and watched quietly. Lin had experienced London-style new year celebration and I imagine it to be similar to the NYE Anderson Cooper hosted in Times Square. This I guess will be the closest I’d let myself to that kind of situation. I’m glad I experienced it, but I guess once is enough.