Led astray on Koh Tao?

Written by Kenneth Karl Nielsen on . Posted in Article

It is in the middle of the night on Koh Tao and I am sitting on the beach at the water’s edge writing this blog post. Nothing is normal this night. You ought to think that the Sairee-beach at this time of the day would be nice and quiet, which is also the case in 90% of the long beach.

But at this very spot it is not the case, as two different night clubs are competing for the attention of different dressed backpackers wandering back and forth on the beach. Right now, Wind Beach Resort and the band Eagles with the song “Hotel California” are competing against CanCun Bar and a modern techno song that I do not know. The techno rhythms seem to attract the backpackers the most, and the beach in front of CanCun Club is crowded with dancing backpackers.

I am sitting at Wind Beach Resort, at which Eagles’ music is played. I am smiling heavily on the inside, as I become aware that the difference between me back then and now all comes back to the music, as I used to attend these dance clubs during my long colourful backpacker trip in Asia many years ago.

But why am I here? Well, I am here because I have made a mistake and gone astray. I have booked a supposedly lovely bungalow all the way almost at the water’s edge – a perfect and romantic cheap little place among beautiful tropic plants and butterflies.

The only problem is that the bungalow is placed in front of Wind Beach Resort and on the back of the CanCun Bar. If I had been in the bungalow right now, the sound level would be almost the same, as it is here on the beach. So, instead of laying in my bed feeling angry, I have chosen to join of the party, which has gradually reached its highlight right next to me at CanCun Bar.

Some 15 or 20 years ago, I would have found myself like a fish in the sea, and even though my body is partly tempted by the techno rhythms, my brain tells me that I am astray.

Finally, the people at Wind Beach Resort realise that they have lost the battle and they start to turn off the music and my focus is drawn towards the beach party next door. It reminds me of one of the popular Full Moon Parties on the neighbour Island Koh Phangan, which I attended many years ago and I cannot help thinking, if I have changed a lot since then.

A team of fire dancers has arrived, and they put on an impressing show, and as the final show, they put up a limbo stick, which they ignite, and afterwards it is time to do the limbo rock under the dancing flames.

The firedancers are dancing confidently under the flaming stick and a few brave backpackers follow, while the flames are still at a safe distance. However, as the limbo stick and the flames are lowered, the backpackers must give up on the flames, but the fire dancers follow the limbo stick all the way down beneath one meters height. The whole show is very impressing.

The rain starts slowly and as the rain increases, the beach party comes to a natural end. My wife has silently joined me and is now touching my arm, which awakes me from my thoughts – it is time to go to bed and sleep in the wonderful silent night.

As I lay in my bed, I cannot help wondering if beach parties, techno rhythms and dancing at the water’s edge have ever been my kind of thing?

I know the answer to that question and the answer is no. Therefore, I am not more astray now, than I was before.

The difference is that today I know that it is actually okay not to participate in the dance. Therefore, I am totally relaxed and comfortable just to sit as an observing spectator.

I actually don not think that I am astray. On the contrary, I am more likely to have found myself.

For all danes having read this article – you can compare prices for trips to Thailand here.

Photo: Maria Erica Jensen

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Kenneth Karl Nielsen

I am one of the founders of Backpacker Planet - I left on my first backpacking trip in 1994 and have kept backpacking around the world ever since.

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