1990 – South East Asia

Back in 1990 we took our first long haul holiday, to Asia.

This trip, described in the travel brochure as ‘Pearls of the Orient’ comprised four nights in Bangkok, four nights in Hong Kong, and ten nights on Phuket.

Val had always wanted to see ‘curly buildings’ – hence Bangkok, and had dreamt of visiting Hong Kong; while I had been struck by the visuals in the James Bond movie ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’, and when I discovered that it had been filmed near Phuket, that became the final leg of the tour.

Having mentioned our plans to my parents, they asked if they could join us, so it was four of us that made the trip.

Bangkok - view from the Royal River hotel - Tolfalas.comThis was the view from our room at the Royal River hotel, Bangkok.

We took a tourist trip to the ‘Rose Garden’ experience.

Parasols at the 'Rose Garden' @ Tolfalas.com

Parasols at the ‘Rose Garden’

My parents at the 'Rose Garden' @ Tolfalas.com

My parents at the ‘Rose Garden’

 and the floating market at Damnoen Saduak

Floating Market at Damnoen Saduak - outside Bangkok

Floating Market at Damnoen Saduak

From Bangkok we travelled to Hong Kong

Causeway Bay, Hong Kong @ Tolfalas.com

Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

View from 'The Peak' - Hong Kong @ Tolfalas.com

View from ‘The Peak’ – Hong Kong

'Shabu Shabu' hotpot dinner in Hong Kong @ Tolfalas.com

‘Shabu Shabu’ hotpot dinner in Hong Kong

 Val and I celebrated our eighth wedding anniversary while in Hong Kong,
and enjoyed dinner at the ‘Jumbo’ floating restaurant, in Hong Kong’s Aberdeen Harbour.

Dinner at 'Jumbo' floating restaurant at Aberdeen, Hong Kong @ Tolfalas.com

Dinner at ‘Jumbo’ floating restaurant at Aberdeen, Hong Kong.

From Hong Kong we travelled to Phuket.

At lunchtime on our first day on Phuket we were introduced to ‘Papa Octopus’
he and his family ran a beach cafe, and for the next week or so we were frequent visitors.

'Cafe Octopus' - Phuket

‘Cafe Octopus’ – Phuket


My parents speaking with ‘Papa Octopus’


‘Papa’ Octopus’s family – Lek, Geng and Winnie

We also took a day out to Phang Nga bay, where ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’ was filmed.


Phang Nga  ‘James Bond island

We were fortunate enough to be present for ‘Loy Kratong’, the Thai festival of lights.
While our hotel held its own festival, we were invited to join the ‘Octopus’ family’s celebrations.

A ‘Kratong’ is meant to represent a lotus flower, the basis of the festival, to my understanding
is that people would put a candle, coin, snip of fingernail, and all their bad luck into the Kratong
and then sail it out to sea.


Lek presents my mother with a Kratong


Loy Kratong dinner


Saying farewell to the ‘Octopus’ Family

Cafe Octopus - Phuket - October 1990 - Tolfalas.com

Cafe Octopus – Phuket – October 1990

Val and I on Phuket - October 1990 - from tolfalas.com

Val and me on Phuket – October 1990

Phuket Beach @ Tolfalas.com

Phuket Beach