Life's Cup of Tea

Life's Cup of Tea

Monday, 4 January 2016

Travel: The Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

I dare you to type the Phi Phi Islands into Google images. That my friends is what heaven looks like. Even if you aren't a wander-lusting pinterest-pinner, you have likely seen the Phi Phi's in any magazine / book describing Thailand and probably on the big screen as this was where Leo filmed 'The Beach'. 
As we were staying in Ao Nang, it was relatively easy to book ourselves onto a day tour of Phi Phi for not a bad price at all. as with every tour we went on in Thailand we were promptly picked up and deposited at the speed boat we would be spending the day in. It's about a 90 minute ride to the islands from Ao Nang, make sure you sea sickness up. It gets a little bumpy. Our first port or call was Phi Phi Leh, the seconds largest and uninhabited island of the lot. Have some photos... lots of them! 

We stopped and snorkeled - well they snorkeled. I got out of the boat for 5 minutes, saw fish, felt ill and quickly got back out again while swearing to improve my fish stamina by the Great Barrier Reef. We slowly made our way past The Viking Cave (top picture), a top place for the bird nest industry apparently. 

Our guide then excitedly told us we were heading to Leonardo Cappuccino's The Beach. We had no idea what this beach was supposed to look like, we'd never sen the film (a miracle, I thought I had worked my way through most Leo films!)  In all the hysteria our guide was creating, we peaked over the side of the boat and saw the above beach. It was stunning but tiny. 'How did they fit Leo on there, let alone a camera?' I asked my travel buddy. 'Where did he go to the loo?!' she asked me back. Feeling we'd just seen a piece of Hollywood history, we desperately took hundreds of photos of the tiny strip of sand as we sped past. 
Now this next photo may shatter every dream you had of this dream like beach you may have seen. I am sorry. 

We landed on the real 'The Beach' aka Maya Beach. Imagine the sound of someone repeatedly trying to kick start a grass strimmer, add the sounds of a motorbike revving, a bit of smoke and a chatter of people and that is what you have as you try to shut your eyes and relax in this 'world beauty site'. 

There was no denying that the Phi Phi islands were in part stunning. The sad thing for me was that I could see tourism ruining them, and yes hands up, I was one of those tourists! It is one of those places where you are never going to see it as it is in the tourist and pinterest photos for all the people and polluting boats - unless you do some careful cropping like me. Were I to go back again, I would NOT go on a day trip, instead going by ferry or longboat and planning our day as we wanted, spending more time in the places we wanted and less in the money traps and snorkeling.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

2015: The year that was

And there goes another one. Goodbye year, where on earth did you go?
2015 was the year that:

... I blogged very little. I don't have a desktop at home and I really seem to struggle blogging on a laptop / ipad. When I visit my parents, I am straight on the old computer blogging away.I need to start setting up properly and buying myself a little keyboard and mouse to plug into my laptop. Maybe that will help! I also struggle coming home from a long day at work though I don't really know what I do when I do get home.

... I FINALLY passed my driving test and bought myself an adorable little car called Harold. I literally cannot remember how I even coped without my set of wheels!

... I went mad on holidays. It started off in Dublin, then to Bremen, on to Santa Susanna. Mexico, Belize and Guatemala were backpacked through before a weekend in Prague. I have been a very lucky girl.

... I got lucky. Turns out a very nice bloke had been working 2 floors directly above me all along. The rest they say is history :) (also he's taking me to Oslo in January which is an added bonus!)

... I still couldn't decide what to do with life. All that panic in your GCSE years that there is nothing you want to do and here I am 8 years later still none the wiser.

So 2016, if you could: provide me with a life path that would be perfect; a better method of blogging would be ideal; and hopefully you will be filled with joy, hours on planes and lots of new adventures.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

That end of Summer feeling

Summer is in it's dying days, christmas gifts are already lining the shelves of shops and my car is beginning to get that really annoying condensation in the mornings. That's right, Autumn is on it's way! Here's what I love about this time of the year...

1// Fashion. Autumn fashion is the best, the perfect balance between the practical-yet-ugly depths of winter style and the how-little-can-I-decently-wear hight of summer.  The darker colours, boots, scarves and thick tights. Goodbye shaving everyday, hellloooo an extra 5 minutes a day!

2// Autumn TV. After a Summer drought of television, my evenings and weekends have suddenly become full once again. Between MIC, GBBO, Dr Who, Strictly and X Factor I will hardly be leaving my sofa which is just as well...

3// Snuggles. Getting home into your onesie, cradling a hot chocolate while snuggled up in bed because it is 'just that cold' is the best way to spend the evening. Fairy lights, check. Candles, check. Hot water bottle, check.

4//Dark evenings. Sure it's nice to leave work in broad daylight and STILL have hours to while away in the sunshine. But there is something about dark evenings that are just so much more... snug.

5// Autumn Food. After a summer of lighter foods, I love when my appetite for warmer stodgier foods comes back. Butternut Squash, thick soups and apple-berry crumbles are all back on the menu!

6// Pretty Scenes. The British countryside looks pretty good most times of the year especially at this time of year with the orange leaves, morning mist and the chance of seeing Mr Squirrel with his acorn.

7// Autumn Entertainment. Let's face it, anything that is anything is in Autumn or Winter (apart from Easter or a certain someone's birthday of course!)