Saturday, May 3, 2008

Thailand Trip! (finally)

Okay, so it’s been a while, once again, I need to get better at this. I am currently in Thailand visiting my family. This trip is a trip of a lifetime, and I am terribly sad that Allan is not here to share it with me. I want to copy some of what is in my travel journal to give you all an update. Let’s see, this trip has been pretty grueling and unbearable at times, and completely amazing and unforgettable others. I arrived in Thailand on March 17th (having left on the 15th…somehow we missed Sunday altogether).
My travel partners are my Mother, and her husband, Fred. We had a very long flight of over 20 hours that seemed to last a decade. The entire time I was wondering whether Fred was going to make it. He is an extremely large man with terrible health conditions, and probably should not have been traveling in the 1st place. We have a very hard time communicating with each other (okay, who am I kidding, we just don’t get along) and felt that maybe during this trip, we would turn a new leaf and start fresh. YEAH, right!!! I was hopeful in this pursuit, and I know the trip isn’t over, but I feel this is a lost cause. More than anything, I want this for my Mom. She doesn’t need to be stuck in the middle; it just happens. This is just a little intro to how my trip has been so far. I am halfway through at this point, and pray that it gets better.

Anyways, here is my journal entry Day 1:

It’s March 17th (I think) and I am so friggin’ tired and starved. It’s my 1st day in Thailand, and it’s already off to a terrible start. Never mind the 20 something hour plane ride it took to get here, and the fact that Sunday was completely skipped, Never mind all of the family drama that ensued the whole way here… Ugh, I am too tired to even write about it…just never mind.
I’m over it.

In between these entries we stayed in Bang Saen, Thailand, and Bangkok. We stayed on the beach one night in Bang Saen at a pretty low-end, dirty, beachside, “hotel” with no AC. It was a pretty eye-opening experience. I may be exaggerating a tad, but it kinda reminded me of the motel that Leo Dicaprio stayed at in the beginning of the movie The Beach. That evening, we ate at an amazing seafood restaurant with prawns the size of lobsters, and some of the best Tom Yum Goong (shrimp soup) I have ever tasted. My Aunt (that I had just met) and her best friend ended up bunking with me that night in my room, and we all three slept together like sardines in a can. It was interesting- two Thai women who speak no English, and little ol’ me, the farang (white-girl), who speaks hardly any Thai. If only I had it on film, so you could see the cave-man way of playing charades to get our points across.

The next day, after our complimentary breakfast of rice soup, and fried miniature fish, we headed to Bangkok. We went to a beautiful (that is understatement) temple on the way. I have never been to a temple like this before. It was sort of an outdoor temple. There were wild monkeys, amazing Chinese-style artwork, and beautiful bright colors of red and gold everywhere. This was a special place for me, and I don’t really even know why. Incense fumigated the air and there were flowers everywhere. I knelt down on my knees and prayed and prayed. I was full of emotion, not only from the trip, and Fred, and just about to start my “lunar flow”, but because I had finally made it. I made it to this place that has always left my heart a little empty. Tears slowly fell from my face, as sweat dripped from my forehead. Something overcame me as I wiped my tears so that I could see the beautiful, peaceful, shrine that was in front of me. I don’t even think I could explain what it all meant. I just know that, for that small moment in time, all I could think about was Allan, all of the people that I love so dearly, and everything that I am most grateful for. Most of all, I was grateful for being there, at that moment.