Teenage Kicks Right Thru the Night
February 5, 2010

“oh crap the sun is up” – me on the beach of Koh Phangan 6am
It starts to sprinkle lightly. I look up at the early morning sky. I can feel my feet sink into the sand. The water is up to my ankles and can’t find my Rainbow sandals. They went missing 4 hours ago. My arms are starting to look air traffic control; they rock left and right to the music. I still have the energy to dance like a maniac, even though there’s not much partying left in the morning. My legs feel like Jell-O because of all the walking and dancing and some running thrown in here and there. My hair is like my energy, a strong mohawk earlier now struggling to stand on it’s own. Nobody in our crew has stopped partying yet. I need a second wind to hit. What have I gotten myself into?

twelve hours earlier

There were many nights out before the actual night of the Full Moon Party, so I was properly fatigued, BUT the Full Moon Party brings the best out of everyone it seems. Every full moon on the island of Koh Phangan on the Haad Rin side, there’s a massive massive beach party that goes on pretty much until you don’t want it to go on anymore. It all started with a few travelers getting together on a hilltop and drinking themselves silly. After word got around it became popular and now people gather from all over to throw it down once a month when the moon is at its fullest.

So I’m waiting at my bungalow, waiting for everyone to assemble together to communally prepare for the onslaught. A couple people who came over brought jars of neon paint. I knew putting too much on would make anyone a hot mess, so I chose to have a couple of tasteful pieces. I painted a super mario star on my arm to remind me to have the energy to keep partying, cuz tonights gonna be a good night. So armed with the star and a pink neon kiss someone planted on my cheek, I was ready to go.
After we were battle ready, some of us hit the shroomshake shop.

The shroomshake shop is a small hut in a dark corner. It’s owned by a longhaired smiling ex-con who looks like he’s been drinking his own concoctions for awhile. He’s happy to greet us and welcomes us inside. These guys know exactly what we want and are ready to give it to us. Like I said, Thailand is a place that caters to the every need of foreigners. The inside of the hut would look mundane in the morning, but at night the black light turns it into a psychedelic dream. Splashes, written text, and pictures painted with neon paint pulsate from every angle.

He waddles over with a tray of icy shakes then returns to his perch behind the main counter. Once everyone finished their shakes a couple of Thai cops came in to “shake” us down (ha). Luckily, we weren’t carrying anything illegal. I almost wanted to carry some hash on me but decided at the last minute to leave it back at the bungalow. So we didn’t have to bribe our way out of anything. Damn Thai crooked cops. Even though I was confident I was in the clear I felt kinda worried for the others in the group. Anyway after a couple shakes we had to go pick up our buckets.
Everyone has their bucket and we all drink out of each others buckets and pretty soon it’s a crazy crazy crazy time. So after a night of talking, dancing, laughing, peeing, drinking, screaming, handshakes, hugs, tripping out, we get to 8am and the sun is coming out.
So someone yells “Hey everyone the suns coming out!” and en masse people are clearing the clubs and pour onto the beach like the awakening of man from the caves or something. And everyone starts dancing outside. It was like mother nature, hearing our call, touched by our feeling and emotion, and smelling our club dwelling stench, decided to mint us up a bit. It starts to rain but just a bit. Warm tropical drizzle. Then the rain goes away after 10 minutes and everything is beautiful again. We end at about 9am. But not before we hit up the best burger joint in asia – SAME SAME BURGER. Arguably the best night of my life.

After the Full Moon Party I could not, for the life of me, party for another two weeks. the night after the full moon party, when my crew had already left the island and it was just me and the world again. I wanted to head out to the beach to sit and quietly watch the dark ocean and just reflect on the madness that had just gone down less than 24 hours ago. As I’m heading towards the beach, though, familiarly loud music plays – Black Eyed Peas, David Guetta, Yves LaRock. People are yelling and screaming and having a good time. I think, are you kidding me Koh Phangan? The Full Moon Party was yesterday and there’s already another huge beach party tonight. There’s pretty much a party every night on the island. As someone I once knew would say, it’s pretty ridiculous.

The next day it was my turn to leave Koh Phangan. As the boat motor filled the background as it sped away, I looked back at the island. Island living was something I was sad to leave. I spent a couple quiet days in Phuket to rest up and then flew out to Malaysia en route to Korea, South Korea this time.