A nice relaxing massage

After making my way across the island of Java in Indonesia I ended up in Bali for a couple of days of being a normal holiday maker, eating western junk food and recharging the batteries.

I had made up my mind that I would be a big girl and get myself a pampering. I wanted a haircut, shave, back waxing and a massage so I took to the streets to pick a nice looking spa where I could get in touch with my feminine side and be de-trampified. I was stopped on my walk by a ridiculously camp man who asked if I wanted a haircut. Being on autopilot from brushing away the pushy shop owners of Bali I declined and walked on but then I remembered that a haircut was exactly what I was looking for so I turned back and negotiated a price of about ten quid for all four treatments.

The camp man's name was Johann, probably still is. Johann was very friendly to the point of flirting which I quite enjoyed and he had an amusing way of pronouncing my name.
'You very handsome Gleeen'
'Thanks very much Johann, not so bad yourself' I stopped short of the cheeky wink though.

Haircut: Not a disaster, too much off the sideburns if I'm being fussy
Shave: After the haircut Johann ran out of the spa and round the corner returning a couple of minutes later with a disposable bic. I don't think he'd ever shaved a beard off before because he went straight in against the grain making it painful but it was sort of better than doing it myself.
Next up the good bit, a half an hour massage. So which one of the pretty girls in the spa will be taking over for this? I had my fingers crossed for the slightly older woman because I was a little conscious that after being on my own for quite some time a pretty girl's hands on my skin might get me over excited. I went in to the massage room and took off my t-shirt.
'Okay Gleeen can you lie down on the table please'
'Oh so... cos I thought maybe one of the girls might... err no problem yes, yes, so... okay'
I could be comfortable with this, what difference does it make, it's about having the massage not being felt up.
'So Gleeen you want one hour?'
'Half an hour is fine'
'And shall I massage the front as well?'
'Just the back thanks'
'Ooh hoo hoo, why not front? You shy?'
'Jast the back is fine'
As much as I wanted to be all modern and okay with the massage I was not relaxed in the slightest. It wasn't that it was a man doing the massage, it was how much he seemed to be enjoying it. I was regretting the earlier light hearted flirty banter.
Johann asked if I wanted my legs done as well, I decided that yes this would be fine.
'Okay can you take your shorts off?' he said. Please just the shorts, let me leave my pants on, please just the shorts. Thankfully it was just the shorts.

This was only my second ever proper massage so I'm not sure if the massage moves were official or not but I was not comfortable with the bollock contact when he got to the top of my legs. I wondered what level of invasion it would take for me to tell Johann to stop and then it happened: he touched my feet.
I jumped up and rather embarrassingly barked 'Don't touch my feet. Please'.
'Ooh hoo hoo, you ticklish Gleeen?' He playfully tickled my foot again.
What I said next is not something I'm proud of, in fact I was ashamed of myself but I really do have unpleasantly ticklish feet. In a raised voice that most of the spa would have heard I angrily declared 'Do that again and I'll kick you in the face'. Johann didn't seem too offended and gave me a tilted head pursed lips smile. The smile told me that the fucker was planning to tickle me again.

There is a school of thought that suggests the less comfortable you are around gays (and I'd decided Johann was definitely gay, not just camp now) the more likely you are to be a gay. If that is the case then at that moment I was Julian Clary listening to the pet shop boys spooning Dale Winton.

I checked my watch, the half an hour was nearly up, I couldn't wait. Just the right leg to go. All the way up for a little testicle contact then all the way down to...
'I TOLD YOU DON'T TOUCH MY FEET' I'd been playfully tickled again. I made up my own mind that that was the end of the massage and put my shorts back on.

Waxing: Unsurprisingly Johann took the lead again and there was no doubt in my mind that he was going to enjoy ripping the hair off my back. It hurt and to finish off Johann reached around to the front of my shorts and asked if I wanted anything else waxed. I laughed off the offer, it was time to get out of there.

I didn't really get the girly pampering I'd hoped for but at least I looked and felt less like a hobo than when I went in. On top of that if I was feeling lonely that night I was fairly sure I had somewhere to go for a bit of bicurious experimentation!

Local Street Fair in Kathu Village

Kathu district covers a large part of Phuket from Patong to the edges of Phuket Town. It's an old area of Phuket with lots of history, where the Phuket Vegetarian Festival originated and was the center of the tin mining industry in Phuket for 200 years. And it's where we live, as do thousands of other people. There are older streets and lots of new housing in Kathu. Lots of shops, schools, hairdressers, temples and the odd aircon dealer and vet. You know, normal everyday life. From Patong to Kathu takes 10 - 15 minutes by car. Patong is tourism central. Kathu is where people actually live!

On the way home from work last week, I had noticed tents and a small stage being erected along the road between Ket Ho junction and Kathu village. So on Friday night we went to look at what was going on. This was a very small local fair for the local community, the municipality basically blocked off half the road for a few hundred metres and in came food stalls, games for kids, and the first thing we saw, dance performances by kids from the local schools.

Thai Dance

Kids doing traditional Thai dance

We watched a few of the dances and then took a little walk along the street. It was pretty crowded, given that everything was packed onto one side of the road and there were stalls lining both sides. The kids had already seen that they could do some painting, so we dropped them at the painting stall where they could entertain themselves for 20 Baht and get a canvas and paint, sit down and create a masterpiece.

Kids painting

Many of the stalls were selling food, everything from spicy sausages to grilled squid and spicy salads. We actually went back on Saturday (the fair was on for 2 days) and bought up a whole load of snacks, back to our house with some friends, pick up some cold beers on the way and whaddaya know, an impromptu party!

Sausages!

Street Food in Kathu, Phuket

Chicken!

It was a fun thing.. very Thai... "Oh what the heck, lets close off the road and have a party!". And a LOT of people were there, or it seemed like a lot in the narrow space. I liked this bunch of kids all dressed up and painted dancing with bamboo poles.. I think this is a Northern Thai tradition actually, but given the number of immigrant workers in Phuket, no surprise to see it here.

Bamboo Dance in the street

Meanwhile, our son had completed his Ultraman painting, and our daughter had done a cute cat. Our kids like these events, in fact they seem to enjoy doing pretty much whatever we do. I am thinking of writing a "Phuket for Kids" page, but from my point of view, I say just take your kids along to whatever you do, except maybe shopping and massage. It's different as residents but wherever we go, our kids see something new, and learn something I hope. On Saturday we took a little detour and drove round some back roads in the center of the island passing huge fields of pineapples. We stopped to show the kids - this is what pineapples look like when they're growing. Now they know, and I tell you, kids enjoy knowing things. I had no idea how pineapples grew until I saw them here! Anyway, here's Ultraman:

Ultraman, I think

And a quick word for our sponsors... it needed a good bit of support by the local constabulary to run the event, to keep traffic flowing since the fair took up half the road! This guy below is a local policeman who we see often, sometimes on duty, sometimes in local restaurants. I have also seen him with pierced cheeks during the vegetarian festival - check the scars...

Kathu City Law

Here he is... this photo from 2006:

Vegetarian Policeman!

The vegetarian festival starts sometime end September to mid October (different every year) - details here: Phuket Vegetarian festival Schedule. You'll always find something going on around Kathu during the festival.

I realise this kind of very local street fair will pass most visitors by, but I know some tourists do like to explore, rent a car, drive around, find some back roads.. where the real Phuket is found. Welcome.

Map showing location of this street fair:


View Kathu / Ket Ho Street Fair in a larger map

Freedom I & II

freedom I

freedom II

pessimists calculate the odds.
optimists believe they can overcome them.
--- ted koppel

Trapeze.

Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.
---– William Hutchinson Murray

Enough is Enough

This is my first time in the Hammock in 21 days as you can see , I've lost a little weight (14 lb.) but I'm feeling stronger.

Well , I think I've been a slave to that bed long enough , I've been in and out of it (mostly in ) now for 21 days and I say I need to pull myself up by my bootstraps and get on with living normal again, I have eaten good the last couple of days and have started to get my strength back .The Dr.'s ran all kind of test and everything turned out ok , My last run thru the hospital a few days ago they said I just had a bad flu, that was not responding very well even to anti-biotics and told me to get all the vitamin C I could and in doing this I feel a lot better .

Thanks for all the well wishes and encouragement and prayers , thats what keep me from getting depressed, and there was a few times when I felt like throwing in the towel .

I am soooo much thankful to Ciejay, she has had her hands full ,taking care of me , I don't think I'm a easy patient to care for , I hate being sick . She has been a real trooper and , I will forever be greatful to her .

I'll be back to my blog in a couple of days as soon as I get my mind back in gear too .. Malcolm

Baba (Peranakan) Wedding in Phuket

A what wedding? If you are not familiar with the history of Phuket, you probably don't know about the Baba or Peranakan culture. I am not an expert either. In a nutshell, Nyonya (female) and Baba (male) are the terms used for the descendants of mixed marriages between Chinese immigrants and locals. Malaysians use the Malay word Peranakan. Apparently the word "Nyonya" is not used much as it's hard to pronounce, so male and female alike are all Baba! Many Chinese came to Phuket in the 19th century as traders and to work in the tin mining industry which created a lot of wealth for Phuket. Some of the biggest and richest families in Phuket are "Baba" families, including the Hongyok family. The current Mayor of Phuket City, Somjai Suwansupana is also a Baba. There is a lot of history there, a lot that I think we cannot fully understand without being a part of the "clan"!

So - about the weddings - the Peranakan culture is not just in Phuket, it's found also in Malaysia and Singapore. The Phuket Baba wedding has been promoted by the TAT and this year some 18 couples from Hong Kong, Taiwan and China were due to be wed in traditional style, meaning lots of dressing up and lots of tradition. The wedding event took place over 2 days, 14th - 15th August starting with a garden party at the Hongyok family house in Phuket Town. I had driven past the house before and wondered who it belonged to.. now I have been there! Saturday afternoon was a bit rainy, I arrived quite early and sat in the car for 20 minutes hoping the rain would stop. It did, as it has a habit of doing. Thankfully, or the garden party would have been a washout. I entered the gates into a world of old ladies dressed in their traditional clothes. There were many more old ladies than men. A stage was set up in front of the house and seating for a good 150 people in the garden. Nothing happening on stage yet, so I approached the house, not sure if I'd be let in! Entering this old family house was an odd experience. The history was clear, the house is from the early 20th century, and the main drawing room was full of old Baba ladies chattering away...

Baba ladies inside the Hongyok family house

It was a glimpse into another world, a Phuket far removed from tourism and modern conveniences, an old Phuket. You can get a taste of this with a walk around the old part of Phuket Town, but this scene was like old Phuket brought back to life! Nobody minded me being there.. I mean, it was not a private party, it had been advertised in the local papers and the event is partly organised by the TAT.. but just being the only foreigner felt odd! Phuket has seen so many changes in a lifetime, I wonder what these 2 ladies have seen...

Older Baba ladies at the Hongyok house in Phuket town

Not being a regular at top social events for wealthy locals, I admit to not knowing who most of the people were. I recognised some faces, but if anyone reading could tell me (leave a comment) who the people are in these photos, I'd be much obliged. In particular, who is this man below? He seemed to me to be part of the family, an elder member of the Hongyok family?

Elder family member at the Hongyok house

An orchestra was starting to set up on the stage outside, and with the last of the drizzle clearing up, I also went into the garden. Behind the assembling orchestra, this guy was hidden away and setting up his Fender steel guitar. Maybe there was some country music later in the evening after I left?! I was there when the music started but I did not hear any steel guitar.

Baba with Fender steel guitar

The older ladies started gathering in the garden to watch the show, I continued snapping photos. There were noticeably very few younger people. Does the younger generation not feel so connected to the traditions? The older ladies sat sipping tea. There is certainly a real sense of pride among the people here. It's in the air.

Baba ladies sipping tea and waiting for the show

A handful of other foreigners appeared including Alastair and Tim who both do websites and blogs here, and a couple of wealthy foreign residents who I have seen before, but despite the mentions of this event in local websites, like many other local events I have attended, there were just a few foreigners present. I did find some young Baba girls in the garden too, probably members of the big families. The traditions are yours to carry on...

Young girls at Baba Wedding ceremony in Phuket

Girl at the Baba Wedding ceremony in Phuket

More guests were arriving including some important people like Khun Anchalee who is deputy secretary general to the Prime Minsiter, her husband is a Phuket Democrat MP, and then the wedding couples also arrived, not all dressed up yet, as the actual wedding ceremony was to take place the next morning (the Sunday morning ceremony included a procession in town, unfortunately I had to work and missed it.. a couple of links at the end of the page to other people's blogs/photos).

Flowers for the happy couples

To be married

After some music (including "Over the Rainbow"... I often hear rather odd and rather un-Thai music coming from Thai orchestras!), there were speeches given (in Thai) about the Baba wedding tradition, and all were translated into English - I suppose this must be mainly for the non Thai couples taking part in the event which I read that they pay 39,000 Baht per couple for. At one point I could see the guy translating into English looking around for people to "translate to", he spotted me and Tim hiding behind a tree and seemed glad he wasn't talking English for nothing!

As the evening progressed and it started to get dark, it was time for me to head home. Another taste of Phuket history and culture. I would have liked to be at the ceremony and see the procession next day, but for now, continue working 6 days a week looking after a dive center :) People were still arriving as I was leaving, guess they were being fashionably late. This little baba arrived with her family...

baba-young-kid

These events, these very local events are what I enjoy most in Phuket. I always happy to discover new places to explore and attend festivals that are based on the history and traditions of Phuket. I realise this kind of thing passes most visitors by, it's totally unrelated to beaches and tourism, but for me, the longer I stay here, the more I get pleasure from the "other" Phuket.

Baba wedding - Gallery on Flickr


The second day of the wedding event was Sunday 15th - I did not attend the procession, should have gone to work late I guess! But Alasdair was there, so was Tim, you can see some photos on their websites...

Alasdairs Photos on Phuket Observer
Tims photos on his blog

More festivals in Phuket on this blog:

Phuket Vegetarian festival
Phuket Heroines festival
Kathu Village Festival

Going to watch the Football - Phuket FC!

Yes, you can watch live football here in Phuket! And I am not talking about the English Premier League in a bar, but real life football in a stadium with real players. Phuket has a football team (that's "soccer" for those of you who are uneducated). Phuket FC play in the regional southern league division 2, one of half a dozen second division leagues from various parts of the country. The winners of the division 2 titles enter a play off to get promoted to division 1.. there is a Premier division above that. So right now Phuket are in a low division, which is hardly surprising, as FC Phuket was only formed in 2009! In their first year, Phuket FC did rather badly, only winning 2 games all season, but this time around Phuket are top of the table and heading for the playoffs. I have been vaguely following the teams progress via websites and Facebook.

I have meant to attend a match for months. Had a plan to see Phuket v Ranong a few months ago, which Phuket won 5-0, but ended up drunk and watching Chelsea v Man Utd instead. I think the Phuket game would have been better. With the end of the season approaching, a friend sent me a good ol' fashioned Facebook message on Sunday "Going to watch Phuket, you coming or what?" - Yes! Looked like a rain free evening, kick off due for 6pm, I was delayed at work until 5:20, dashed to Phuket Town by 5:45.. made it. The Surakul stadium is on the edge of town near the Darasamut school, not far from the Central Festival mall. There's parking behind the stadium, or you can park bikes out front. Fortunately this is Phuket and not Liverpool. No huge crowds. There were people buying tickets but my friend had already bought ours, and some beers! Yes, you can take beers in.. cans only, not bottles. Entrance fee? A huge, whopping 50 Baht for adults and 20 Baht for kids. Win!

Vuvuzela in Phuket!

Crowd was arriving right up to kick off. No big queues, friendly staff at the gates including the guy above with his vuvuzela. We found a seat in the main stand right behind the main supporters club, all in green, with drums and hooters already making plenty of noise, totally drowning out the handful of opposition supporters from Hat Yai who were at the other end of the main stand. By kick off, I estimated the crowd to be at least a thousand, maybe as many as 1,500. The main stand is best, but there were a few hundred folks in the (uncovered) stand on the far side of the pitch too. Here's some of the Phuket FC fans just before the match started:

Phuket FC Fans

The seats in the stand are built for smaller people than me! Not much legroom, better to stand up.. after all, it's called a "stand", right? Sitting right behind the die-hard fans was good, they started with chants and drums and pretty much continued through the entire match. A very friendly atmosphere. I had not been to a live football game for many years, this was good! But Phuket needed a goal. Top of the league, not yet guaranteed a place in the play offs, though. Nervous times in the first half as Phuket went close a couple of times and Had Yai hardly saw the ball. With a 6pm kick off, the first half was played with the skies still light (sunset around 6:45pm), though floodlights were turned on during the half. Could Phuket get a breakthrough? YES! GOOOALLL! Excellent free kick by Ali Diarra, who is from the Ivory Coast and actually on loan to Phuket from Muangthong United who play in the Thai Premier League.

Goooaaalll! Crowd cheer as Phuket score against Hat Yai

No wonder one of the Phuket fans favourite chants is "Ali! Ali! Ali!". The goal was near the end of the half. The interval, time to stretch legs, my friend went to buy some more beers. The bathrooms are on the far side of the stadium, and I'd say in need of some renovation. Not the nicest toilet in Thailand.. if Phuket FC get promoted, might be an idea to improve the facilities! The stadium itself is pretty decent, the pitch looked to be in good condition too.

Surakul Stadium, photo taken at half time

Second half in the dark under floodlights. No let up from the crowd, non stop songs and drums, but you could feel the nerves. One goal is never enough, and Hat Yai started to get some chances. Every rough challenge by a Hat Yai player was booed, and when one of them got a yellow card, a big cheer! Phuket's keeper made one great save, and the crowd started to wonder if we could win this. My friend bemoaned the lack of goals - we should have come to that match against Ranong which Phuket won 5 - 0! And then that second goal came, a well worked move ending with Camara Ahmed slotting home. Cheers and a palpable sense of relief in the crowd! Now the singing could really begin. There are only 4 games left this season, Phuket should have a chance at promotion, but 3 of the remaining games are away from home. That's why this home game was so important.

Cheers as Phuket score a second goal

That was an enjoyable evening, and hopefully I'll be able to watch the last remaining home game, which is on the 29th August against Phang Nga, plan to take the whole family next time, I know our 5 year old boy will love it. With the match complete, hands shaken, the Phuket fans chanted "Hat Yai, Hat Yai" to show respect for the beaten opposition, and then the Phuket players came over to the stand to thank the crowd and the supporters thanked the players. More chants of "Ali! Ali!" which seemed to amuse the player himself.

Fans salute the Phuket team after the game

Well, maybe next season Phuket will have tougher opposition. Hope they can get promoted! If you are a football fan and want to watch a game, the stadium is easy to find, as I said it's only 50 Baht to get in, and aside from the football, you can call it a "cultural" experience. There weren't more than a dozen foreigners in the crowd as far as I could count. A couple of them were from the Phuket Gazette, who do reports on the games. A few German guys were sitting near us, one of whom I knew, a dive instructor. And I saw a few others one of whom set up a Facebook group for Phuket FC. You can find info on the games on there, as well as on a blog. There's also a Thai website and Facebook page.

Phuket FC Supporters Group on Facebook (English/Thai)
Official Phuket FC Facebook Page (mostly Thai)
Phuket FC Website (Thai)

Ha! Just found a Youtube video showing very very brief highlights from the game...



Surakul Stadium - Location Map


View Surakul Stadium Phuket in a larger map

I've really been sick

It's not that I don't want to put up a lot of new post about retirement , but I have really been sick this past week and am even today only feeling about 50% . Take care and I'll be back soon , don't forget me . Malcolm

Drive Safely, Wear Protective Gear ...

Two lives, as different as night and day.  Unrelated, unconnected, and under normal circumstances, destined to never cross paths.  On this day, the fickle hand of fate thought to forgo normality, choosing instead to reshuffle the deck.  Creating a confluence of events, bringing together two individuals at a specific time and place, in a collision of chance.

In the gray light of early dawn, events unfolded as they often do.  A six o'clock wake-up call.  A cursory reconnoiter of the weather situation, with a decision to proceed with, or abort, our planned route for the day.  By the time my friend covers the 50 kilometers between our perspective homes, I am showered, dressed, armored and ready to go.  Not feeling one hundred percent, I suggested that my riding partner lead, as he often does anyway.  So seven o’clock and we were on our way.

Cool and dry, with a high dense cloud cover and excellent visibility.  In short a perfect day for a ride.  Very much indeed, like a ride we had enjoy just three days before.  Seventy some kilometers into our ride, I became the unwilling audience to what played out before me.  It was no more than a glancing blow as the two motorcycles crossed paths on a long straight section with but one entranceway from a local petrol station.  The slower plodding bike and driver dropped immediately in place but suffered relatively minor injuries, as I watched my partner do a fair impersonation of a professional racer sliding tens of meters on his back, before friction took to rolling him for greater effect.

My eyes fixated on my friend, I have no recollection of what the bike did but we found it later, in the ditch a bit further down the road.  Being Thailand, help was immediately at hand.  One very helpful lady arranged for a passing pickup truck to take both injured parties to a hospital eight kilometers away.  I stayed behind to see to the bike and was quickly offered assistance in extracting it from the prickly brier that lined the roadside ditch.  It took every ounce of force the three of us could muster, to right the bike and get it up the embankment. 

The sliders and fairings took most of the impact from the fall and the slide.  The bike duly rescued and parked at the petrol station, I followed on to the hospital to offer moral support and translation service when needed.  A few hours later the bike was in the back of a friend’s truck and headed for the garage.

In stark contrast to those horrible tales propagated by some elements of the foreign population here, everyone without exception, behaved in an exemplary fashion.  Strangers on the highway, relatives, hospital staff, even the police were wonderful and caring.  Fault was clear but not made an issue.  My friend and his wife offered financial assistance, though none was requested or expected, feeling sorry for the old man who was fated to stumbled into our path on this day.

Though my friend took the more dramatic fall, he fared very well, due to his protective clothing and armor.  A reminder to all, not to ride without the appropriate gear.  Helmet, jacket with armor, gloves, boots and leg guards.  Today could have been much worse without these items of apparel.  So drive safely and defensively, but always dress for a fall.  Keep the shiny side up when you can, wear your gear and may good fortune be on your side, when things take an unexpected turn.  Ride on.

Mushrooms, Snails and Floods...

The rainy season is truly upon us.  The pond flooded briefly and water covered the floor of our sala.  Not only does the grass grow profusely but mushrooms seem to be everywhere.  Snails are laying their eggs. I won't even start on the beauty of the sky and the ever-changing pattern of clouds.









ODE TO BACON

Preamble: Some days, all of the problems of the world feel so overwhelming.... it's nice just to stop and smell the bacon for a moment.


O, greasy little piece of fat
Grilled to perfection
You smell so delicious
Tempting just a taste
"Ok, just one," I say
How can I resist?
One turns into two
Then two into four
Is 1/2 a dozen bacon strips
Too many for my heart to ignore?
They tasted so delicious
And, now I want for no more
A nap is really what I need
Where I can sleep in peace
And dream about more bacon strips
While my heart beats happ-i-ly.

© 2010 Lisa Ann Edwards

Sabai Sabai Indian Restaurant

The local radio station 91.5FM has a bunch of very local advertisements, many of them seem to be voiced by the same geezer with what used to be called a "suburban cockney" accent. One of these ads is for an Indian restaurant, of which there are several in Phuket. The geezer proclaims "I've not had a curry for Ages, I really fancy a Tandoori Chicken" or something like that. I know how he feels. Kind of. I mean, this is Thailand, so curry is everywhere... Red, yellow, green, jungle, massaman, penang. You want curry, Thailand has it, but you know us Brits abroad, we like a taste of home. And, at least to my generation, an Indian meal is British food! And I had not eaten one for ages, so was happy to join a bunch of dive folk last week for a curry at a little restaurant in Kata.

Sabai Sabai curry house in Kata

Sabai Sabai is on Thaina road in Kata center, next door to Calypso Divers. The owner used to work as cook in another restaurant which stopped doing curries, so he opened his own place. It's not big, only half a dozen tables, nothing flash but I was assured the food was good and cheap. See the sign outside - curry from 99 Baht. Win!

The menu is pretty extensive, all the favourites are there - Vindaloo, Rogan Josh, Madras, Masala, Korma made with different meats or vegetarian. And of course you can get the add-ons like onion bhaji, popadoms, nan bread, and rice. Everyone knows that you should order rice OR nan. I ordered both so I could roll home nice and full. Only nan next time, as it was the size of a small pizza...

Garlic nan bread

Beers are not expensive, I think 50 or 60 Baht, and you might have a few as the food does take a while. It seems that the restaurant had only 2 staff, being the owner (chef) and his wife (service). Well, good company ensured that the wait was not too long, helped by a few cold ones. One of our group had a smoke on a shisha (or hookah, or however you want to call it). You can see them lined up just outside...

Shishas (or Hookahs)id=

Smokin'!

Food started to arrive, beginning with the bhajis...

Onion bhajis

And the curry! I ordered a chicken Madras (spicy) to go with the pizza nan and rice. Looked good and spicy and the sauce good and thick.

Chicken Madras

Chicken Tikka Masala

Was spicier than I expected.. well, of course when out with the lads you have to say in a deep voice 'Make it Spicy' :) Others ordered tikka masala or vindaloo. The food was very tasty, a great reminder of Indian food. In the great British tradition of going out for a curry, I was stuffed full. Did not have 6 pints of lager, though, just a Chang or 3. Hope to eat at Sabai Sabai again soon. Good curry, good price!

UPDATE 2013

Food is still good here - see photo below - I was back on July 1st 2013 - great Chicken Madras, friendly service. The prices are up somewhat - no more 99 Baht curries. My meal was 170 Baht plus rice and onion nan and a few beers, total for 2 people 780 Baht. Worth every Baht - I would not eat Indian food so often, but might go back there more regularly now, it really was very tasty ...

Curry at Sabai Sabai

Related posts on Jamie's Phuket

More restaurant suggestions
Kata beach hotels

Sabai Sabai Indian Restaurant - Location Map


View Sabai Sabai Indian restaurant, Kata, Phuket in a larger map