We left Bangkok after only two days there because the beaches and the Full Moon Party on Koh Phagnan were calling our names. We took a morning train out of Bangkok that arrived in Surat Thani around 6:00pm. From the train station we took a local bus (we were the only foreigners on it) to the stop that was only a few blocks away from Ban Don Pier. How did we know which stop was close to Ban Don Pier? Let me tell you: at the first stop we asked the lady who collected our bus fare whether this was the stop for Ban Don Pier (and by asked, I mean, said "Ban Don?" and pointed out the door). She shook her head and we knew that she would now help out us poor foreigners and let us know what stop we were looking for. So about twenty stops later (and about ten instances of, "Ban Don Pier?" "No, no.") she motioned to us that we were there and we piled out and only had to walk about four blocks to the pier (with a very helpful Thai lady who had gotten off the bus at the same time pointing the way).
The boat didn't leave until 11:00pm so we sat around and had a couple beers because we knew it was going to be a long night. The boat is mainly used to bring supplies to Koh Phagnan (Koh means island in Thai) and they had converted the top floor to sleeping quarters where they stuffed us in like sardines. I think when we left, we each had about two feet of horizontal space to sleep in.
We meet a Polish girl on the way to the pier who we had our drinks with while taking in the scenery of Surat Thani bay.
And then we tried to sleep smushed between fellow travelers (Maggie slept next to our new friend Maria, but Andrew's neighbor must have weighed about 300 pounds and wasn't interested in staying in his own space) until our boat pulled into Koh Phagnan at about 5:30am and we were off to the island.