Location: Haad Rin, Koh Phangan, Thailand
The beach at Haad Rin is the home of the world famous "Full Moon Party." Although we were here for a different phase of the moon, we had a fun night out watching fire dancers and hearing the loud techno beats that cater to foreign party-goers. Interestingly, it is this party that largely drives the island economy. Our night was considerably tamer than what gets advertised.
In the morning, we woke up early for breakfast, followed by an Oceanography class. Afterwards, the divers went out on navigation dive to complete their Advanced Diver certifications. The water was a little murky, but provided suitable conditions for relying on compass headings underwater.
Once all the dive gear was rinsed and sorted down, we dropped everyone off in Haad Rin to get some lunch. With nothing planned for the afternoon, everyone had a chance to explore Haad Rin during the hours which flaming objects aren't being thrown about and techno isn't getting driven into your ears.
Everyone was back onboard Argo for dinner. As we were finishing up eating we watched a powerful weather system pass about five miles to our South. On the edge of the front, we watched two water spouts (ocean-going tornados) touch down and suck sea water up into its vortex! Fortunately the wind and weather remained calm at our anchorage.
After, we started our Navigation course and then went off to bed with the sound of techno blaring all night, clearly audible from our bunks.