As I write I am sitting on the darkened beach of Tanote Bay on the east coast of Koh Tao. The sun went down two hours ago, and the beach is now a collection of small groups of deck chairs, lit by small, flickering candles. The waves are breaking on the beach 10 feet in front of me and I’m sipping a Tiger Beer and trying not the drop my iPad in the sand. I’m a lucky bitch.

I’m here to learn to dive so I’ll be beginning my PADI open water training tomorrow at 9am, which will be in a busy class of….. One. me, just me. So, the teaching will be intensive, can’t argue with a teacher to pupil ratio like that, but I had been hoping to make some temporary friends on the course, which now seems preeeeeetty unlikely.

in shock news, it turns out an almost 30 year old woman and her 60 year old mother can’t share a room for 3 weeks without tensions arising, and since mum has no interest in diving, she elected to stay on Koh Samui by herself for the next 5 days and do a scary, expensive yoga retreat. SO, she’s probably there right now, sitting in the lotus position and eschewing fun and booze….. Yeah right.

So, the islands. We arrived on Koh samui on Wednesday after a very stress free two-leg flight from Bangkok with Bangkok airways, which is posh and expensive, but the best thing was that from bangkok to samui we had a twin prop plane. It was all very Castaway. Except with an inflight meal.

Koh samui airport is so pretty! I know, it’s weird to say that, but it really is, all dark wood and plants, and blessed, blessed air conditioning. from there we took a taxi to our hotel, Baan Haad Ngam, which was pure luxury. The kind of hotel where they give you a cool drink and cold washcloth on arrival and give you an unnecessary flower bracelet. The kind of place I really couldn’t afford, you know, that kind of place. The pool was lovely and it was a few shirt steps to the sea, which was warmer than some baths I have had. I was wandering through the surf grinning like a happy little retard.

We visited chaweng and Lamai in the couple of days I was there, had some nice food, worked on our tans and I got a nice dose of sunstroke which necessitated a long cold bath and quite a lot of sleeping and then today I got the ferry from Koh Samui to Koh Tao and arrived, with a healthy dose of mild sunburn, at about 3pm.

The hotel picked me up in their jeep at the pier and it was a fun, bumpy, treacherous and mountainous ride to Montalay Beach resort where I’ve been checking in and bumming around ever since.

My room is a TINY little cottage with space for little more than a big double bed, a fridge and presumably quite a few geckos later, but it has air con, so I’m happy enough for now. this evening I passed a few hours watching the PADI videos to prepare for the course starting tomorrow and now I am blogging on the beach, trying to look peaceful rather than sad, pathetic and friendless. There’s a lot of couples and families and…. Me. However, tomorrow is a new day and maybe I will succeed in making an acquaintance or two, but even if not, I’m very, very happy to be sitting on this tropical island, drinking this beer and listening to the waves.