I’m seated quite comfortably during my flight, other than the fact my legs are twisted in a slightly odd angle to overcome the cramped space in front of me. Yet despite that, I felt like being on the edge of my seat: I’m having travel anxieties.
My brain was constantly reminded of the thought that it is my very first time planning for a trip and no amount of work I had done before seemed enough to quiet down the nagging thoughts that I could have missed something.
“Relax… take a deep breath”, I told myself, repeatedly, making a conscious attempt to calm my nerves down.
The humming of jet engines in the background was then interrupted by a cheerful voice through the intercom, “We’ll be arriving at Phuket in 15 minutes, please fasten your seat belts…”. There’s no longer room for self-doubt now and I took another deep breath.
As a novice traveler, everything is an adventure to me: what better way to embark a journey than to explore the area. It’s a fine weather when I reached there, just the perfect sign of a good trip. Soon after I had checked in the hotel, I started my exploration around Kata, the place where I was staying at for the entire trip.
I like to take my time and explore my surroundings the first moment I arrived at a foreign destination. Being the kind of person who gets anxious easily, a walk around town allows me to observe and understand the place in a relaxed manner – giving the orientation I needed to feel at home.
Towns in Phuket are quite easy to navigate, there’s usually one road that trails along the west coast with sandy white beaches in sight and the seas extends to the horizon. Along that road you’ll see all sort of conveniences catered for tourists: restaurants, stores, tour agents, massage parlors and even opticians. I bet sunglasses sells quite well here.
Most restaurants and bars are beautifully decorated with different styles: from modernistic designs to rustic designs inspired by nature. I’m often awed with the beautiful interior design and architecture, allowing my eyes to capture every detail presented. I particularly liked some nature-inspired designs: the earthy tones, wood and rattan furniture, stone walls, plants and sculptures. There were really rich in texture, colour and detail that blends in harmony, giving an air of serenity.
Watching these work of art made me feel like I wanted to hire a Thai interior designer when I need one.
Venturing a bit deeper into town paints a different picture altogether: a place where the locals actually lives and do business at and where tourists usually wouldn’t bother to go into. Like most town where locals lives, the surroundings has a practical air and less flashy. To me, this practical side of town is far more interesting, as it shows how everyday life is really like for the people who called Kata home.
My journey ended in their local night market, which strikes a strong resemblance to the night markets back home. Never noticing a wet market around the area, it seems to me that this is where people buy their vegetables and meat from. There’s also stalls that sells barbecued seafood and meat as well as clothing.
It has been an interesting and relaxing start to me. And what comes ahead gets me excited as the next few days would be a different kind of adventure as I experience what Phuket is famous for: the breathtaking outdoors and the pristine islands and beaches.