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Monday, April 23, 2012

Internet, escaping work, family time on holiday in Thailand

Luxury of bane of your holiday? Having Internet connectivity can be a double edged sword keeping you fully in touch with work and life back home but ensuring  you miss part of the reason why you are out in Thailand in the first place.

I think you need time to unwind or "do nothing" on your holiday in Thailand to help restore your own equilibrium and in some situations, your sanity. To stop the 'worry chatter' in the back of the mind and just live for the moment, has a cathartic effect of relaxing the body. For me this is the essence of holiday making.

Family time on holiday
Some of the best times I've had as a parent has been sharing time with my children on holiday in Thailand. Free from distractions, commitments and the general day to day of running a family, I have spent some memorable moments just hanging out with the kids, playing. Playing is the time when my kids have seen that mum and dad can be fun, see our lighter side and these are some of my most cherished memories.

We will go for a snorkel on our favourite place  on Koh Phi Phi Don, Long Beach every time we are there. We do this as the sun is coming up. As the family finishes off and gets out of the sea, we have pancakes at a simple hut on the beachfront. With views of Phi Phi Ley and the sun on the Tonsai Cliffs, it's a magical and complete moment.

Holiday in Thailand- views of Phi Phi Ley from Long Beach

On other times we would go round to Wang Long  at sunset and watch the sun slowly slide into the sea right in between two vertical cliffs. The perfect symmetry of nature and the presence of family have a powerful effect on me, transporting me far from any realities of work. Returning I am moved, refreshed and ready for anything the world has to offer.

Holiday in Thailand

Escaping work while in Thailand?
If you live a life where being in touch 24/7 is essential you might find that you do need to get all those emails that are Cc around the office and department. When you get back you don't feel like you are too behind the curve. The fear of having a horrendous first day back at work often forces you to take a sneak peak every half a day just in case you can head off that problem before it arrives. A timely mail can often saves you a lot of time so it makes sense to keep in touch.

This is part of modern working condition and something that never would have been dreamt of just 15 years ago. Then, you could take a holiday without guilt. Once you left the office for the last time the only way you would stay in contact was by the costly and not always reliable phone. The expectations were not there, you hadn't signed up for a 24/7 existence.

Kids and Internet
Nowadays the "screens" of TV, Internet and the mobile phone captivate 95% of the kids of the travelling population. Parents are so used to using these "screens" as entertainment for the kids (myself included) and it is such a convenient style of babysitting, that it can be quite difficult to get the kids to concentrate on the holiday and focus on their new surroundings.

If all these comments sound like you then here is an idea or two.

Family Phuket resort Le Meridien Phuket Beach Resort

Ideas to help you escape work and spend great time with the kids.

  1. Parents should define their own time, work time, catch up with the news time, Internet time and family time and make sure they are in agreement.
  2. Set out a definition  of what is appropriate screen time for the kids. This is quite a defining idea. If you take the screeens that offer 100% entertainment for 70% of the time, away from the children, then you must have an idea of how the children will use that 70% of the time. Very few kids just want to meditate on existence. Make sure family friendly hotels like the Laguna Beach Resort or Le Meridien Phuket Beach Resort in Phuket are part of your itinerary. See more  Family Phuket Resort here.
  3. Plan the days on holiday so that the kids have activities to look forward to.
  4. If possible, vow to not stay in touch with home.

On the technical side.
  1. Find a place with out Internet
  2. Don't take the lap-top
  3. Don't get the phones on roaming 
  4. Stay in a low tech hotel that might only have a few TV channels and no free wi-fi.
  5. Have a standard reply to all emails in your inbox automated. It can read something like this..."Thank you for emailing me. I am on a rare holiday with the family and will be back at the office on XXth Date/ will answer you mail on XXth Date (the date you designate to work while on holiday). If you have a real emergency please contact me via phone number or hotel particulars. (People rarely have real emergencies so they won't bother you.)

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