Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bottle or bucket?

Koh Phanghan is infamous for its Full Moon Party every month on the night of the full moon.  Tens of thousands of people converge onto the island, probably doubling its population, to a small beach about a quarter mile long to drink and drug all night long and dance away to hard techno music in the sand.  So well known is the party that neighboring islands have borrowed on the theme to throw Blue Moon and Black Moon parties.  The cheap accommodations, eats, and booze draw the gap year, vacationing college kid, and young backpacker lots that have made the party what it is.  As for the booze it comes in two forms… beer or bucket.  The beer of choice is Chan Lager popular for its 8% alcohol content and cheap price which is usually served as a tallboy 22oz‘er.  Small stalls about 1-2m wide line the beach front with shouting and hollering Thais trying to entice you to buy their buckets over their neighbors under bright red lights signaling the danger that lies ahead.  Usually used to help build sand castles for cute little kids buckets are sold in various sizes with a much naughtier intent.  In the smaller buckets you find either a can of soda or juice, a bottle of Red Bull concentrate (100ml concentrate bottles with ingredients illegal in the US including ephedrine), a 200ml bottle of your poison of choice, and four straws.  The cheapest, most popular, and most likely option to strain your liver being SangSom, who’s label claims the substance inside to be rum while a taste tells you it is clearly a liquor in a genus unto its own.  The larger buckets just double or triple the soda, the Red Bull concentrate, and the booze and double or triple the likelihood you wake up in a tub full of ice with your kidney missing.  I am not much of a gambling man so I will just stick to my Singha Lager.


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