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Budget Baywatch

Warning !!!! This is a long post so if you have to go to work, read it later.

Remember a while ago when I showed pictures of Phuket and told everyone to remember a particular picture? Hands up all those who committed it to memory. Never mind, here it is to remind you (sorry to those who memorised it, you didn’t have to after all).

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So now that we’re all caught up, let me explain. The body of water going off into the distance is a tidal lagoon. For anyone who is thinking “Huh?” that means it fills and empties out with the tides. It was a lot of fun riding the flow out for an hour or so  each day after the outgoing tide started to ebb. The rest of the time it was either a lake or a raging current that dumped you way out in the ocean.

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This is between tides when it’s calm, that’s me at the back.

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This is when it empties out, that’s me again.

One of the main reasons I love Phuket is that there are no Thai girls there, well of course there are Thais who are girls, but ‘Thai girl’ has a specific meaning. They are a cross between a hooker and a girlfriend, closer to a girlfriend but less expensive. Something that I’ve always found amazing in South East Asia is that despite the fact that millions of people live on islands surrounded by ocean, no-one knows how to swim.

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These are the actual girls in the story

One afternoon while we were just lounging in the shade with a whiskey in one hand and a joint in the other, I heard some excited male voices. Heading down towards the beach I saw two Italians, who had brought the girls in the photo from Bangkok, running around like chooks with their heads cut off yelling “The girls! The girls! They no can swim!”  Out in the water were the two girls thrashing about, apparently they saw us having fun in the water and decided to have a go themselves. They should have paid closer attention to us, because we were all waiting for the current to slow down a bit.

Being a person of stunning mental acumen and blessed with lightning quick reflexes, I immediately appraised the situation, “Hmm, they probably shouldn’t be out there if they can’t swim”, this brilliance was followed by and even more astute observation, “Perhaps the Italians who brung them should go and get them”. I would have imparted this pearl of wisdom to the Italians, but just as I got close enough to tell them, they both ran off waving their arms above their heads in a manner reminiscent of the great Italian war heroes.

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This is Sven (or something).

Luckily the Swedish guy in the photo was there at the time too (he’s name was probably Sven), so we just looked at each other and somehow wordlessly decided it was up to us. Having grown up in Oz I have lifesaving qualifications, I didn’t know if he did too,  but he was calm which is the main thing. The most important thing you learn when you do lifesaving training is that you need to keep drowning peopl out of reach until you are ready to grab them, and when you do grab them make sure its from behind. Many a person has been drowned when the person in trouble panics and grabs hold of the rescuer and tries to climb out of the water (I’m not kidding, it really happens).

Anyway we managed to get them back in without too much trouble, although the undertow was pretty fierce. It is said that rescuers feel empathy for the people they rescue, I just felt angry that these stupid bitches were fucking around in the ocean when they didn’t even know how to swim. And it turned out that having disdain for them was the right emotion because neither they nor their fucking lowlife Italian johns offered even a word of thanks. Either at the time or over then next three days they were there. Not that we did it for any reason other than to save their lives, but at least saying thanks would have been the polite thing to do.

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16 Responses

  1. Ah….you have made the conversion…Blogger Beta it is….What’s your professional opinion? I have tag envy. Then again, what the heck would my tags say? Comedian wannabe? Godblog? Kidstuff? Crap, that’s pressure (lol). Here we go, comments are supposed to be about YOUR POST: 1) How do you pronouce “Phuket”?2) It looks beautiful, tides & all. Beautiful. Did I say beautiful? 3) I’m certified, too. As a lifeguard that is. Or at least I was (nearly drowned taking the practical). 4) Reach, row, throw, go….or something like that.5) Sven is cute. 6) The back girl looks like a girl :(…too young for that kinda thing.7) Maybe they were trying to escape their Italian captors…unless they looked like Sven and they were trying to be coy.Seven seems like a good stopping point. I’m glad you maintained composure and weren’t reduced to a stepping stool or toe hold and lived to tell this magnificent tale of heroism in the face of danger ;).And you didn’t friggin’ save ’em for the thanks…you did it because it was the right thing to do. However, if I ever find myself going down for the third time, I will most assuredly become indentured to my rescuer and shower him/her with 1000 tokens of appreciation.

  2. I’m really a fuckwit this a.m., but how come when I pull up your profile, I’m not able to access your blog?

  3. robin – 1.It’s pronounced poo-ket, actually the Thais have a way of saying it that sounds like pboo-ket. 3.I’m not current anymore.4.Something like that.5.Cut that out.6.Some are much younger than that.7.They won’t leave you until the money runs out.Beth – I’m not sure, but it’s probably not you. Blogger its weird.

  4. On their behalf – and because their mama’s didm’t raise them rightPlease let me say —THANK YOU. AND GOD BLESS YOU.Swen isn’t loading up on my foxfire.I bet my pop up feature is involved.

  5. Oh WT…that place is beautiful (oh, wait, Robin already said it!!)…and you are a master story teller!! Very funny (especially the bit…hmmm, maybe they shouldn’t be out there…”) astute observation!and yes…Sven is cute!

  6. oh, and I would pronounce Phuket a whole other way…sounding much more like a phrase that is becoming very familiar to me lately as I get aggravated with my assignments! 🙂

  7. I have trouble understanding people who live right next to nice, big bodies of water and never learn how to swim. Swimming is great. Swimming is fun, it’s great exercise (one of the best!), and it just might save your life (or another’s). Why the heck wouldn’t someone, particularly someone right next to the ocean, learn how to swim?But that’s just my opinion…

  8. Some are much younger than that? That is really, really sad. That place is beautiful and how fun would it be to ride the tide. Providing you knew how to properly do it and all. I used to be a lifeguard at a local water park and it amazed me at the number of people who paid to get in there but could not swim.

  9. Instead of commenting on the fact that the journalists say “phoo ket” when they know they want to say “Fuck it”, or commenting on your lovely pictures, I’m only going to point out that you forgot #2 in your comment, since you made fun of my two #5’s. Payback for picking on a grief-stricken military wife.

  10. Well, at least you can sleep at night knowing you did the right thing. Beautiful photos, thanks for sharing. And about the rescuer getting drowned, yup, I nearly did that to my husband at Noah’s Ark in Wisconsin Dells. It’s one of his favorite stories to whip out at a party.

  11. That is a beautiful body of water. . .I’m with Silly, there are some that are younger than that? Do those people have no pride? Apparently not.

  12. Ah, Thailand – a land of extremes, beautiful water, beautiful girls – too-young to be doing what they are doing for whatever reasons, and idiotic Italian men (and others) taking advantage of the situation when they can’t get it at home. I suppose not learning to swim is the same as other people never learning to ski when they live by a mountain.

  13. Pamela – it’s something to do with Beta, when I loaded Sven I ended up with two pictures so I deleted one. I’m not surprised there’s a problem.Claudia -thanks, and most people have trouble with the pronunciation.James – your’s and mine both.Hillary -yeah it’s bizarre.Melissa – I left it out on purpose as there really was no way to answer, I should have used the IBM ploy of “this page left blank on purpose” and said “2.No response”. Thanks for noticing.Momto3 – thanks for proving my point!Shauna – the sad thing is that they do it for their families and send all the money back to their villages.Karmyn – yeah it should be mandatory for people to risk breaking their limbs.

  14. Well, the least they could have done was buy you a drink or something. And there is nothing I detest more than people who run around screaming in a crisis and not helping. And his name isn’t Sven, silly. It is Lars. I know his type. The calm ones are always called Lars. Sven wouldn’t have gotten his hair wet.

  15. I’m here for you, WT. 😉

  16. hey Laura…maybe his name is Thor…and willow…speaking of tomboyish ways…I’d probably be hopping around the rocks that Sven/Lars/Thor was resting on!!

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