Thursday, August 25, 2011

Don't You Forget

The last week in Thailand included the beach. FINALLY! I was dying the whole three months to go to the beach, it was a great way to end the summer. Mind you I got totally and completely sunburned, but it was fun nonetheless. I mean, how do you not get fried when you try to cram a whole summer of sun into 4 days...?

After we left Laos we flew to Bangkok. Then we got on another plane to Phuket. Then we spent the night there and boarded ANOTHER boat for a few hours to get to Phi Phi island. It was quite the journey to get there, but it was well worth it.

our awesome hotel in Phuket

the Andaman Sea. FINALLY!

before we were tan...

view from our guest house

Our first night there we took a little hike up to the Phi Phi island lookout. It was beautiful. AND! We finally got to see a sunset. It always seemed to be too cloudy in Chiang Mai. This sunset was well worth the wait though!

Phi Phi was a straight up tourist island. Bars, restaurants, guesthouses, beach. That was about it. Not even cars, not a one.

One day we boarded another boat for a day of island hopping and snorkeling. It was a blast. Easily the highlight of Phi Phi island. Some of the sights...

And it started storming on our way back to the island. It was way fun to be in the water during the storm

Then we found Longbeach. Good thing because it was beautiful!! Easily a scene from a movie.

Then we found pizza and pasta. Probably the best i've ever had. Hence why we had it again for breakfast the next morning... and yeah we ate it ALL

But like all good things, they must come to an end. I write this recap at home, in America. It's good to be home. Hasn't gone down quite how I imagined the last four months, but it is good nonetheless. Of course I miss Thailand, but I did what I went to do. And now it's time to apply all that I learned back to my real life.

At least I brought a big piece of Thailand back with me. Hence the quadrupled amount of bags that I came with... and the Aladdin pants.

I'll never forget Thailand. Now back to provo...

Please Remember Me Once More

I've been home one week tomorrow. Say whaaat? Sometimes I think Thailand was a dream, actually i've almost convinced myself that it was one. One of those ones that you want to wake up from, but the second you do you wish you could fall back asleep and fall right into the same dream. Yeah, I wish I could be back in Thailand right about now.

Maybe I can relive it while posting my last two weeks of vacation in Laos and Thailand via pictures.


We left Chiang Mai after the goodbyes were had, tears were shed, and one aspect of my life was being left behind. I was sad to leave, like really sad. But it was time to enjoy the last weeks there and finally say goodbye to the summer of a lifetime.

We boarded a boat for 2 days of floating down the Maekhon River. We boated for about six hours each day, enjoyed the scenery and the new friends we met along the way, and tried to keep ourselves entertained as we viewed the beautiful country of Laos.

We found some fun ways to entertain ourselves for that long on a boat. Such as this little friend on my leg

And, in addition to the water view of Laos we got to go to a cave full of Buddhas.

Literally 1000's of Buddhas

And seeing as Laos was a former French colony their bread is AWESOME. So...we ate a lot of these

And Laos has things just like Thailand
gold shiny things


tuk tuks
Laos was a whirl wind of a trip. We boated in, spent a day, then flew out. It was fun to go experience another country. I mean, we were all the way on the other side of the world, might as well see some more of it right?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

I'm lucky I know, but I wanna go home

I've had an amazing time here in Thailand.

I've learned things about myself and the world and just plain life. I learned things I thought I would, and things I could never have imagined. I've eaten weird food, seen lots of shiny gold things, made amazing relationships to last a life time, and have truly had the greatest adventure. And now I sit here in Bangkok spending my last day in Thailand.

I'm sad to leave, and I know in one week i'll wish I was back here. But right now, right this very second I just want to go home. Almost 4 months is a long time, well a long time for me. I've done a lot, and now i'm ready to be home.

I'm lucky I have family and friends that make me excited to go home. It's good to have a reason to go home. And i've got lots of those very good reasons!

Just have to survive the thirty hours of travel that will be WELL worth it when I get to see all the people i've missed these last almost 4 months!!

Chook dii Thailand. Thanks for everything!

Until next time.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Monday, August 8, 2011

Only got 4 minutes

Currently i'm in some random city getting ready to board a boat to Laos in the morning.

I have so much to update and only 4 minutes remaining on my internet time.

That means all the updating will probably come in 10 days when i'm where? BACK IN THE USA!


Pretty much all the above.

Anyway, goodbyes are awful. I hate them. A big part of me was left in Chiang Mai, but i'm all the better for it.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

One Good Woman

This post is long over due. And breaking my heart to write.

I can attribute the success of my time in Thailand to one person. The person who was my roommate, my chef, my chauffeur, my bug catcher, my sister, my mom, my friend. Anna really was everything I needed here in one.

When I needed someone to be giddy with, she would gladly laugh with me and tell me stories of her past in her broken English. Such as the love poems she would write to tell someone she liked them. That was only 15 years ago, when she was 25 ha. It reminded me of the elementary check yes or no if you like me notes. She gave me advice as any mother would do. This included the heart melting, "Harry, be careful your heart." I wish she was married, she would make the best mom.

She fed me so well, oh man so well. I was never without biscuits (cookies) in the fridge, or my favorite meals waiting for me for breakfast. If she found out I liked something she would get it for me all the time. Laura and I would joke about the magic food table. Every time we would turn around there would be more amazing food sitting on it. Endless amazing food. Hence the little belly i'm coming home with...I can surely thank Anna for that one.

If I needed anything at all, Anna was quick to it. When I had my burn she was ready to rush me to the pharmacy for all the medicine she could get her hands on. When I needed some pb&j  she would rush to the store even if she didn't know what peanut butter even was. She would drop anything to give me a ride, even to pick up my peacock painting (which I bought btw).

I'll miss Anna more than anything. It took us a little while to break each others shells, and by a while I think I mean a week (we are working on the three month scale...) But once that happened we were instant friends. I know I was fully accepted when she would tell me stories of her past.

She has been through so much that I can never begin to image. She was born in Burma and raised in a Christian family. She has a memory of a gun being held to her head as a child. She has stories of being separated from her family at an all girls school. She has lived through more things then most people do in a lifetime. All of this makes sense to me though, she has her priorities straight, she knows what is important. And I want to be like her, just like her.

What Anna has taught me:
Pray before every meal. Even in restaurants.
Give anything. Time, money, help, People are more important than any amount of things.
Work hard. I have never seen someone haul trees like she did.
Laugh hard. Anna laughs at me all day every day. Selfishly I like to think that she laughs at me because I am funny. I think the reality is that she laughs at me when she doesn't understand...
To point to things with your lips. She is pro at that one
Be a good Christian. All of her family is named after the Bible and hearing her insight on religion is something i'll never forget.
And pure and simple generosity. I have never met someone so accommodating, welcoming, loving, and selfless. She was ready to feed anyone that walked into our house and make them feel right at home.

I'm incredibly grateful for the last three months, for so many things that have happened. I am coming home a new person, well I'd like to think so. I can say that most of that is because of Anna. She is a beautiful person inside and out. She made Thailand a second home and for that i'll be eternally grateful. I'll miss her like crazy, but can't wait to keep in touch. She already has my next trip to Thailand planned out.

Oh man, saying goodbye to Thailand is going to be hard enough. Saying goodbye to her just might break my heart.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Call Me Irresponsible

A few weeks ago...

...i did that

ate that (well not literally that, but one of those)

fed that

and that

hung out with this

and this

watched people stick their hand. and their face in this

and loved every second of it all.