Freitag, 20. Januar 2012

Back to Samui, Thailand Update no3

Been some days until my last update and I got some spare time so here some new details. Life is good atm and besides deciding which hands to get in preflop and which not my other main decisions are to which restaurants I'm going and if I spent my time in teh sun at the pool, the beach or in front of my lovely villa.
But let's start a little earlier. After my time in Khao Lak I went with Alex to Krabi for the weekend there. Not too much to say here. Krabi is a pretty small town with a pretty overrated Ao Nang beach. They telling it is one of the nicest beaches in Thailand but the beach is literally 3m wide and dirty as fuck. We arrived saturday noonish and after some decent lunch at the tourist mile we decided to do a last ALL IN night while we both are in Thailand. We were staying in some meh 4star resort but in the end it was cheap and it was only for 2 nights so I guess it was ok. Night out was kinda funny though. In Krabi they have no clubs but a shitload of Bars and Beerbars (or as I call them: Hobbyhookerbars) so your only option is to get shitfaced in one of those and see where the night is taking you. After finishing up Alex minibar we got us a tuck tuck and headed towards the city for 1Euro charge. When we got there some Thai PRs got us into a bar with no protitute where we started what we do best - drinking. Alex went for his usual Vodka Absolut + 2 Breezer bucket and I sticked to double Vodka Soda with lime.

From now on the night went pretty fast. Alex memory went on holiday after the next bar and mine maybe 2 hours later. I'm getting the cheque for this the next day when I'm not able to leave bed and eat food until an hour b4 midnight.
On monday our ways spilt while he is heading to Phuket and back home the next day and me heading to Samui again. Main reason for this was bc I knew some german pokerplayers living in a villa here and wanted to give them a visit. Arrived there in the afternoon and things are kinda messed up bc they don't have a physical adress and living on a mountain close to chaweng so one of the guys has to come with his scooter in order to pick me up and guide the taxi with my lugage. Next 2 days I spent with these 5 guys in their villa on the mountain but there was only one spare room left with an airmatress and it was a massive hassle to get food (hard to get food delivered when u don't have an adress) so I decided I'm doing better if I buy me in one of the resorts down at the shore again. Thankfully I had my best night at work the night before I booked so my last 5 days were already more than paid for which was a good feeling. I always wanted to check out a Nikki Beach resort and since there is one in Samui I decided to roll with it:

I'm paying like 150Euro a day now which is quite alrightt for what they give you. Probably the best resort I've stayed in so far (even I have to admit I haven't seen much because I was not too much travelling until now). They have like 15 supermodern villas very close to the beach, the best internet I had so far during my trip and a sick pool area with a massive soundsystem where you can listen to house tunes all day long. While that might be not something for everybody it is definitely something for me. I'm definitely a big fan of Nikki Beach after my stay and can't wait to check out another one (even though alot of the stuff here is very pricey especially for Thailand, I feel very good here and in the end I think that is what counts.)
So I arrived here on wednesday and after finding out that a couple I know back from my days in Mannheim, Germany was staying very close to me we decided to spent the night out together. Was defnitely very nice to catch up with the guys who I prolly haven't seen during the 1.5 years or something like this. Still it was kinda mindblowing how less busy the nightlife district already was compared to the time around NYE when I was here with Adrian and Alex.

The next day was somehow ok for some reason compared to my usual hangovers to that I was able to get out of bed at 1, having some lunch at the beach and visiting the gym later. Yesterday and today I did not do much besides playing cards, eating, working out, beaching and sleeping and I hope that continues this way until monday when I leave bc some recovery time is definitely a nice thing after all the parties during the last 3 weeks.

Part of my good mood is definitely due to the fact that I'm running and playing pretty decent atm. So I found myself up around 7.500$ (incl. rakeback) after 50k hands and basically already played back all the money I spent here and even a bit moar... Especially NL600 likes me atm so that I'm getting the best seats there and winning the big pots which is highly appreciated. I should not forget to mention that I'm up a decent chunk of money EV-wise (as usual).

Since this is probably my last Thailand post here some thoughts about it. I definitely would recommend everybody to have a look at it and travel around for a bit. It is definitely a very nice country with amazing food and very friendly inhabitants. I was a little bit shocked though about the general english skills in such a touristic country. Now at Nikki Beach I'm in the first resort here where you can actually really have a conversation with the guys at the reception and the front desk. I mean, tbh I would expect that from every 4stars resort here ffs. There are some nice parties here but things get boring pretty quickly from what I've seen. Male/female ratio is not really working in males favour and for money you can litereally have sex with any thai girl here (there might be exceptions, no offence here) but the amount of hookers you see here everywhere (bars, clubs, streets, massage salons, whore houses, etc.) makes St. Pauli look like a village. Furthermore even though Thailand is still cheap it is buy far not as cheap as I thought it would be or as if you would think it is. Ofc you can eat for 50cents if you go to some tiny village in the middle of nowhere but if you are in some sort of semitouristic place you will still pay 8-10Euros for your meal. All in all it was definitly interesting to be here but for now I could not really imagine to live here for a long period - maybe 3 months but that's about the max I would do.

best regards from Nikki Beach, Samui

Dienstag, 10. Januar 2012

Khao Lak and Poker update

Hello there, me and Alex arrived in Khao Lak 2 days ago. We r staying in a pretty nice resort in 2 Villas very close to the beach. Yesterday we had dinner in Khao Lak which is like 5km away from our resort. Life here is alot moar quiet and relaxed compared to Patong (Phuket), Samui, Phi Phi or Koh Phangan. But since we want to keep it slow for now, relax, work and work out it seems we are at the right adress.
Unfortunately I managed to get sun rash (prolly for teh first time in my life) which shows that the sun here is alot stronger compared to anywhere in europe. First I thought my neurodermatitis which I had as a child is coming back or that it had something to do with the extreme alcohol consumption during teh last 2 weeks but since Alex showed me an article about sunrash it was pretty obviuous that this is the right diagnosis...It's pretty uncool bc atm we have decent weather and I have to stay away from beach and pool but there is not much I can do about it and it seems to get better now. Good thing is, that we have pretty reliable internet here and a very good gym for a hotel so I can make some money and work out without getting to bored. Atm we thinking about if we longer our stay here for 1 or 2 moar days bc we really like this resort b4 heading to Krabi which is basically our final stop in our Thailand journey. Attached some picz of the resort that you can get a feeling how it looks like:

Well. the good thing concerning my sun rash is that I have plenty of time to play cards and make some money which is working out well so far (had only one day where I lost a bunch I think.) Haven't checked every results but yesterday I made almost 2.000$ in not even 5000hands which is pretty nice and related to my rungood at teh NL600.

I never imagined working with only my laptop would be that easy and work out that well but it does (stacking > tiling as usual) so I'm not even sure yet if I'm going to buy a whole setup in Brazil.
Pokerstars announced big news shortly before NYE where they changed their Rake(back)system from dealt to weighted contributed which means that in the old system every player who was dealt into a hand would receive the same bonus points at the end of the hand while now only the players who actually put money in the pot receive bonus points. That results in a system, where players who play moar hands, aka play moar loose, getting moar rewards while tighter players getting less. In the end with this new system basically every casual player gets a little moar while almost every poker professional (besides the loosest players) gets significantly less. I'm no exception here. I was always playing a so called TAG style, not too tight, but not extremely loose either and after my first session I was pretty confused when I got 0.35points for every hand while last year I was getting 0.5-0.55 almost all the time. If you now put that in money terms you can see that I lose about 30% in value and achieving milestones gets significantly harder which would result in a net-rackback loss of something between 20.000$ and 30.000$ which is alotta money. Furthermoar I really thought about shooting for Supernova Elite again this year but with about 3million hands needed for it I will for sure not pull the trigger. At the moment it seems like Stars will compensate players a little bit better after a meeting in teh end of january but no matter how this meeting goes I will never make close to what I did in teh past in case of rakeback with my tight-agressive style and playing 20-24 tables.
Ofc everybody hates it when somebody takes something away from them if they felt it belonged to them in the first place. But poker is a fast industry and everybody himself has to find solutions to maximize their earnings. My solution after that first horrifying session this year was: "if they want me to play looser, they'll get it". So I experimented a little bit and now playing somewhat different compared to last year with only 15 tables at the same time and an improved tableselection. So far everything goes pretty well but I ofc have to see how other regulars will react to my new style once they have my correct stats in their HUD. Pointwise I still get a little less per hand (10%) but I assume after the aforementioned meeting I will have at least the same if not moar per hand compared to last year. The pokereconomy moves fast, is permanently evolving and changing all the time and if u decide to play for a living you basically have to accept that and make changes yourself accordingly. Moral of the story is that it is very unlikely I will shoot for SNE as it was planned in the beginning. Bad thing is I will def. lose some value in rakeback (which I can hopefully get back from worse players) and good thing is I will have plenty of free time this year and will never be forced to play too long sessions, play when I don't want to play, play when hungover, and so on.
I cannot exactly say yet what I think about these changes but things don't look so bad atm which can always change rapidly ofc.

best regards from Khao Lak and good Lak at teh tables!

Sonntag, 8. Januar 2012

Trip Report Thailand no1

While sitting in teh Hotel Lobby in Patong and waiting for our Taxi to Kao Lak I figured I have some time to keep you guys update.

Arrived in Phuket teh 29th of december after a direct 10hour flight from Munich. After my arrival I met up with my travelmate Alex in order to move to Koh Samui for New Years Eve. Unfortunately all flights were completely booked so we had to take a taxi + ferry for appr. 350km. Was not a big issue moneywise bc taxis are sick cheap here (paid like 150Euros for that distance) but obv it takes some time.
Arrived in the afternoon at our nice 4star resort in Koh Samui were my roomie Mr. Aussie was already waiting for us. Hotel was quite nice but rather expensive though (170 a night) and internet was shit unfortunately but since I wasn't going to play anyways the first days it didn't matter to much. We then went out 2 nights in Koh Samui which was quite cool, pretty nice Beach Club/Bar and thereafter a massive
club in teh center of Chaweng (which is sort of the touritown in Samui). On NYE we headed to Koh Phangan for the countdown party, This was really massive. Koh Phangan is like a small island designed to make party. I would estimate that between 10k and 20k people were dancing through the streets and on the massive beach which was def. a sick experience and I only can recommend to anybody who is coming here to
attend a fullmoon party there. However my night ended rather quick when my good aussie mate decide to give me a vinegar shower so that I took a boat back at around 4am. Probably bc of this incident my phone wasn't really working the next couple of days but now it seems to be fine again. We than chilled most of the 1st day in 2012 and went for some nice Brazilian Restaurant in the evening. Food in general is
awesome here, I love the Thai Food and will def. miss it once I leave.

On the 2nd we took the ferry + taxi back to Patong/Phuket where our next hotel was waiting for us. It's a pretty nice Boutique Hotel where each room is designed a little different, but again not so cheap haha. Internet here is alot better though so that I was able to play some hands the last couple of days. Games seem pretty decent and alot of regs probably at the Bahamas atm which is a good thing. We went out twice here but I have to admit that Patong is a little bit too much for me. You cannot walk 2m without having a guy trying to sell you a taxi, ping pong show, a hooker, a beer, whatever. After a while this gets really stressful. Nevertheless I cannot say we haven't had fun here... Went for elephant riding the other day which was cool, were attending a sick magic show and went to Phi Phi Islands for 2days and one night which was massive. It's a beautiful island without cars, alot of nice beachbars and insane beaches. In retrospect I think it
wouldve been better if we would've stayed longer there but anyways. The main party road here in Patong is called Bangle road and for people who know Paceville in Malta it is like 10 times this. Really insane.
As being said now waiting in the hotel lobby for another guy to come and pick us with a taxi. Kao Lak is our next stop on our tour and should be alot moar relaxed. Our goal now is to take it a little bit slower bc I'm already sick of all the alcohol so it's detox time and time to get a tan and my ass back in the gym and on teh grind. Booked like 2 Villas in a 4star resort at the beach and will hopefully spending most of my time at the beach the next 4 days. Weather is finally better compared to the start where it was raining alot and not
much sunshine but I assume this is the price you have to pay in a subtropical climate. However it is always 30°C so it's still nice even while raining.
After Kao Lak we going to Krabi for another couple of days until Alex is going back to Malta. I'm flying from Krabi back to Koh Samui where it all started to stay there for a week with a couple of other german poker players in their house until I fly back to Phuket and from than to Brazil. So still alot of stuff to do and I'm pretty excited about it.