How do I write about everything that has happened in the past ten months? Well, I guess first by letting you all know that I will update this blog monthly from here on out. I feel that it is important to keep you updated but more important to put my thoughts down so I don’t forget to remember how lucky I am to be able to experience this time of my life in a place like South East Asia.
My good friend from California, Brian White, visited me in July. Having travelled the world extensively, Brian has been to Asia before so I was not worried about his acclamation to the culture. Brian landed in Bangkok during the tail-end of the World Cup tournament and I made sure that he and I had a good place to watch it in along with the company of some of my good Thai friends. Funny though, the Thai girls we were hanging out with, Ning and Am, wanted to watch the games in an English pub while Brian and I were looking for more of a Thai experience. Alas, the smiles of the girls won out.
When the World Cup was over Brian and I enjoyed some down time on the beaches on Koh Samui before getting packed up and heading off to Cambodia to visit (again) the temples of Angkor Wat.
This place amazes me every time I visit because just the time of day and the sunlight filtering over the century-old ruins changes the feeling and the look of the site.
We engaged Mr. Sen and Mr. Leung, tourguide and tuk tuk driver, respectively, to be our guides. Brian and I enjoyed the sunset from atop the temples with only a few hundred other people. (If I have one gripe about this place, it is that it has become just too popular.)
Next stop was Laos. I had to go for a visa run and Brian wanted to see Luang Prabang. We spent a couple of days together in Vientiane, Laos, basically riding bicycles around the city, going to the gym and overdosing on the French-inspired baguette sandwiches. Vientiane was pretty uneventful, but I realized that it was nice to be travelling with my good friend especially since he and I like a lot of the same things including eating and exercising. Way to go, B-Dub! After a couple of days in Vientiane, Brian headed off to Luang Prabang while I headed back to Thailand to Chiang Mai where Brian would meet me again. I LOVE Chiang Mai. The city is small and old. Bicycle friendly, too! The weather is cool compared to the rest of Thailand. The food is amazing too.
Brian and I spent three days there just riding bikes around, hanging out with friends like Fon, James and Gan who I had met on previous trips there. It turned out that Gan and his wife are pregnant and Brian and I got to go to dinner with the two of them and James and Fon. A fantastic Thai BBQ buffet restaurant where you just sit and eat until your heart’s (and stomach’s) content!
Finally, back to Bangkok where I said farewell and “Until next year” to my good friend Brian.
Next posting...Time to immerse myself in the country by enrolling in Thai Language School. Take care everyone!