Extraordinary souvenirs from Koh Samui
When walking Chaweng or Lamai road all touristy shops look the same with a repetitive range of T-shirts, sunglasses, flip flops and typical beach front souvenir dullness.
Living out off our suitcases as perpetual travellers since February 2012, with our home sold and no permanent residency, souvenir buys are not what we’re after but a fun thing to check out in foreign countries. After making an impulse shopping purchase in Japan I will be carrying that irresistible Kokeshi souvenir with me until I might decide to send it off to my parents to Germany spending more on shipping than I did on my wooden treasure :)
But the curse and joy of perpetual travelling is that you get to see things and find souvenirs that are unique and amazing, which gradually makes me improve my willpower to reduce consumption. Let me tell you that with these truly amazing finds it was a difficult task but I managed.
The uttermost outstanding souvenirs were robotic like sculptures made of scrap metal pieces neatly welded together to create gloomy alien fantasy art.
Some were cute little flying creatures made of nuts and bolts that would fit in a shoebox while others were resembling detailed, daunting but interesting, bigger than man size Predator beasts. Prices were reasonable for handmade original art and ranged from 1.500 for the shoebox sized to 60.000 Baht for the huge figures.
We had a glimpse of the production site right next to the shop located at 9/89 Moo 2 Bophut. It looked a bit like an underground laboratory.
The other shop we stumbled upon looked like a misplaced fairy tale castle but was in fact an individual jewellery manufacture with anything from scary silver skull bracelets to fragile romantic rings.
In the middle of nowhere, this house emerged.
The jewellery shop’s logo. ‘Jewelry’ is written in a funny way.
In front of the shop was an old Volkswagen van which had travelled the world and which the Thai jewellery designer got from some independent travellers.
He told us that he’d unfortunately not travelled the world with the van but some folks who had collected all those funny signatures from people they met on the road.
A very sweet place but still work in progress was the decorative stuff carved by artists of the Fine Arts Centre on Koh Samui.
So far it consists of an impressive entrance area and an alley leading to a variety of goods that are waiting to be properly displayed.
Their ambitious project aims to build a world of sculptures and small temple like houses. The statue of a faun family were my personal favourite (although I would remove the flower pot from it).
Are those Kamasutra carvings going to be a best seller?
The final souvenir shop is quite a find selling really old stuff. By that I do not mean antiques but just plain stinking old.
The secondhand shoe shop had a very unique smell to it.
Jesus saves bikers’ waistcoats.
This WWII bag replica was a very special find as it came all the way from Warsaw and was actually a souvenir from the Warsaw Rising Museum, which focuses on the towns occupation by the Germans in 1944 and its Polish residents who fought for a free capital and died for an independent Poland.
Sometimes the most rewarding souvenir can just be a precious moment in time such as a beautiful view. Hm. Where was that shopping mall? I am not quiet there yet.