I’ve been planning a few days in a warmer sunny locale.
You know the kind of place, somewhere immune from grey and damp days, where the sun sets a little later (and you can actually see it) which would warm the soul and lift the spirits in a way that only sunshine can do. Fireworks lift my spirits (as does alcohol) but you can’t beat massive thermo-nuclear combustion to crease your face with a satisfying smile during the Winter months.
The Pacific Islands were in the running (somewhat slowly), as was Thailand even though it is early rainy season. Thailand has many delightful destinations such as; Koh Samui, Bang Saphan Yai, Ko Tao and of course the evocatively named Phuket. Now I know how it is pronounced but like many Thai names it’s one of those names that looks rather different to how it is actually pronounced and I confess a childish amusement creeps over me whenever I see Phuket in print and the travel press also seems to enjoy the double entendre. (The late Kenneth Williams used to say that whenever he saw a Double Entendre in a script he’d whip it out).
Where was I? Oh yes I remember I was about to say the Press enjoy a bit of a Double Entendre like this recent headline in The Independent: “BA links up with Bangkok Airways for access to Phuket.” And I was chortling when I read there is a Thai newspaper called: Phuket Post. Sadly my sides gave way completely when I received an email urging me to: “Phuket and stay 8 nights”. Tempting as Thailand is, I’d like to go somewhere where there aren’t hordes of people for a bit of peace and quiet so when I read that last year Hawaii had 9.5m visitors but this year was only expecting 8.4m I figured that if there would be minus 1.1m people there it must be positively deserted and so I made tracks to see our travel agent. The sign in the window said: “Go Away” but despite feeling deeply unloved by this rejection I booked some flights on-line and in a week or so I’m off to Waikiki where I fully expect to have the beach, bars and restaurants all to myself.
In the meantime I’m amusing myself with some other great Thai names. The well-known “sak” brothers are good; Choosak, Damrongsak and Terdsak. Kejmanee Pichaironnarongsongkram and Pwonphakdee Thamronglak aren’t funny (as far as I know), they’re just long and difficult for non-Thais to pronounce. In any event I’m really rather pleased they shortened Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit, to “Bangkok”.
Finally, here’s a selection from the top names for Girls and Boys in Thailand.
Girls:- Ploy, Mint, Mild, Muk, Ben, Beer, Fang.
Boys:- Man, Ice, Ex, Ball, Porrmate, Best, Nice, Nut, Boom, Pond.