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Sunday 26 December 2010

Xmas 2010 @ Hat Yai Day 3

Its Xmas day! For some reason I love waking up to Xmas morning in Thailand.

I woke up pretty early today, excited at the prospect of meeting the bronze mermaid again. While Cat and Brendan were dolling up and getting ready, I went down to the street to see if anything's stirring at this hour (Malaysian time 7:00AM is Thailand's 6:00AM).

I was not disappointed as there already was a hive of activity what with the street vendors and all.

Street vendors

More street vendors

Kids getting ready for school?

Our hotel

Sanehasuhorn (did I get it right?) street, south of our hotel

It that Pan I see perched atop the streetlight?

A favourite alley where Cat usually gets her tid-bits

500 meters south of our hotel is the Odean

The Grand Plaza, sitting pretty beside the towering Lee Gardens

This shot will be viewed many times while I day dream at work, for sure!

Caged birds.. aren't we all in one way or another?

Cat and Brendan eventually emerged from the hotel and we headed out for Breakfast at.. guess where? A short walk next door at McDonalds!

Since we were making a trip some 40+km north to Songkhla we thought it wise for us (and Brendan in particular) to have a hearty breakfast.

Bacon & egg burgers with hash browns

And a stiff cup of coffee!

All smiles on Xmas morn

Nothing warms a parent's heart more than the sight of your child stuffing himself

Breakfast out of the way, we took a tuk tuk to:

Hat Yai Bus Terminal
Coordinates: 6.994578, 100.481986

We felt like old pros now, able to find our way around. Caught a minibus and off we went to Songkhla.

Plenty of things to see on the way to Songkhla

Brendan had his sunglasses ready

This ad on the side of a wall caught my eye, Honda scooters in Thailand are called 'Scoopyi's

Our minibus to Songkhla

Nothing to look at, but pretty comfy

Managed to shoot this while the minibus sped by. The statue is not tilting, my camera was

Arriving in Songkhla, we then took another tuk tuk to:

Samila Beach 
Coordinates: 7.215518, 100.595781

We did manage to visit last year as our trip was cut short, so we were eager to see the bronze mermaid again.

The sky was so blue that day

Brendan's all psyched up

Shot of the beach

The weather was glorious, providing this postcard perfect shot

Ooo.. me tummy's taking on a life of its own

Brendan buying a pendant from this peddler

We came across this mobile vendor who claims to have the best coconut ice cream in all of Thailand (or so he says).  We read comments on other blogs and forums singing praises for his ice cream, so we gave it a try.

Sukij ice cream

It was alright (the ice cream), but is it worth the hype?

Proof that this is the best in the whole kingdom?

Further down the beach we re-acquainted ourselves with the Cat and the Mouse.

Cat saying hi to Cat (sorry, I couldn't resist!)

The bronzed Cat and Mouse getting a little too tanned

Gorgeous as the weather was, it was getting a bit too warm for our liking. We initially planned to have lunch at one of the seafood stalls along Samila Beach. We decided against it when we checked out the exorbitant prices on the menu, based on what we've paid so far in terms of sea food the prices here were just short of highway robbery. Best to stay away, its a definite tourist trap!

We took a tuk tuk to Songkhla walked around for a while. The sun was getting pretty hot and we and hopped on another minibus backto Hat Yai , disembarked right across the street from the Plaza market.

Beside an overhead pedestrian crossing we found this little shop selling delicious mee hoon soup.

Give this a try, 35Bt per bowl

We got back to the hotel and rested for an hour. I decided we all needed some pampering so we went to Lee Gardens Plaza to look for a hair salon.

A nice scalp scrubbing

Cat got a wash and blow

While Brendan got a wash, cut and blow

Almost done

The result..

I actually got a wash, cut and blow as well

Brendan and I got a wash, cut and blow while Cat got a wash and blow. The damage? only 600Bt! We'll be sure to come here again.

Later Brendan found a stall in front of the hotel selling trinkets to his liking.

Colourful trinkets

We didn't bother asking how much for these big ones

He took a long while admiring the handwork

His cousin came during the off peak season and got one for 100Bt

When we asked, the same item cost 250Bt

As always, Xmas night meant an Xmas feast. We could only think of one place to celebrate Xmas night, as we did on previous trips.. Sizzler!


Homer and Bart?

Brendan snapped me fiddling with my camera settings

This was the other camera we used

The drinks came first, the mojitos were divine

Then came Brendan's smiley faced steak

The steak won't be smiling for long

In search of the yum? We found it!

I had the single rack of ribs this year (learned my lesson from last year)

Cat had the rice and steak (I think)

Time to put away the camera and eat

Hit the hay pretty early, big day tomorrow. Plenty of senseless shopping in store.

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