New years eve.
The Gala dinner (Compulsory) was due too start at 2000hrs but we could hear the music start up well before that.
There had been teams of Guys setting up the stage and lighting on the beach all day. It wasn’t the Pyramid stage but it looked pretty impressive.
Behind the ‘Happy New Year’ back drop were the Pyrotechnic’s ready for midnight and then the Sea which was still crashing in as angrily as ever. The roar is quite intense and its a relief when you leave the beach and find a bit of solitude.
The entrance to the pool area has been nicely decorated with Balloons and the whole area looked great. They had worked hard, especially as there had been a few heavy rain showers during the afternoon.
We were shown to our table and offered a drinks menu which we declined having instead filled our water bottles with G&T.
Then the eating began.
There was a great deal of choice but the complaints we had about Christmas Eve remained in that a lot of the food was allowed to get cold as there was no means of keeping it warm. But there was still plenty of good food to be had and we tried a whole range of things including Cheese. More on that later.
The Brian May Duo were playing away quite nicely without really engaging with the audience and they didn’t expend too much energy trying.
There was some traditional Thai dancing which was far more interesting than the modern dance of the other night. The Hotel next door also had a gala dinner and they too had Thai dancers so the lane up the side of the Hotel was being used as the dressing room and was full of props, naked dancers and their teams. In the dim light this was a very surreal area of Dragons and Golden Temples. Of white Faces and Frightening mannequins.
Then the highlight of the evening.
Our notorious Compare Lady got on stage and gave the same riveting drivel she delivered a week ago.
“Glad we were here at Thai House Blah Blah, were all one family, Blah Blah and were gonna be having a prize raffle. Yay.”
She dramatically drew a piece of paper from a barrel and announced this room was on the second floor.
At this point i smelt a Rat and announced to Jaki i was going to get some Cheese (which was available at the farthest point from the stage) and as i disappeared behind the dining room wall i heard my Name.
“Mr Hendy, room 205. Yay”. She yelled almost unable to contain her excitement.
“Fix” shouted everyone else.
So Jaki went on stage and received a voucher for a free meal for two in the Restaurant.
The Compare asked if we’d been here before, Yay. Why had we chosen this Hotel, Yay, without realising we were the same people she had given a prize to a week ago. So much for us all being one big family.
By 2115hrs we were bored so decided to slip out onto the street and see what was happening there.
We got talking to Frank an Serena a couple from Germany and they were happy to step out for a break.
We walked up the lane through the Thai dancers and past the Reflexology shop where the Boss and several of the girls who work as Masseurs were cooking BBQ on a small Charcoal Grill.
They called me over and it wasn’t long before i was tucking into grilled Bacon (really very good) Sausages and a huge mountain of Prawns that were just too hard for me to skin (so one of the girls did it for me) and a big box of red wine.
As expected, this food and this little party was as good if not better than the Grand Gala Dinner we had just left and i would have preferred to spend the night here.
I caught up with Jaki and the gang in the Mariners where they too had laid on free food.
Frank and i decided to see how much Sang Song (Local whiskey or rum I’m never quite sure) we could demolish before we went back to the beach for New Year.
On the way back i dropped some chocolates off as a thank you to the team outside the shop and had to eat more food and drink yet more wine before i was allowed to proceed.
This was then repeated by the team from the scooter rental shop who were cooking huge meat Kebabs on Skewers.
I was about to burst.
Back at the Hotel we were given a glass of Champagne and we watched with amusement as all the waiting staff polished off the left overs.
The count down seemed to be some what arbitrary as each section of the beach seemed to be working to a different time zone. It was midnight anywhere up and down the beach within a 15 minute window but this just made the fireworks far more fun as they went on longer.
There were an awful lot of fire Lanterns being lit and an awful lot of them were blowing back in land rather than out to sea. We watched one drift right into the dining room of our Hotel and the staff very bravely grabbed it and put it out before it could do any damage.
We led on the beach for an hour watching the fun and soaking up the atmosphere before Frank suggested go back to the Mariner Bar for a night Cap.
This seemed like a good plan but i luckily decided to take the camera back to our room first as i was now in no fit state to use it correctly, as the photos testified, all out of focus and only good for the trash.
But when i got to my room, my bed looked so inviting i decided id stay here rather than go out again.
Jaki didn’t need much persuading to do the same.
Our early night was interrupted slightly by the Russian couple next door who were having a Domestic, but that soon passed.
So this morning when i went for breakfast at 0930 and found Frank was still in bed with a hangover, i was glad i too didn’t stay on the whiskey till 3 am on the 1st January 2016.
Happy New Year to you all.