Work in Progress

“In the best travel, disconnection is a necessity. Concentrate on where you are; do no back-home business; take no assignments; remain incommunicado; be scarce. It is a good thing that people don’t know where you are or how to find you. Keep in mind the country you are in. That’s the theory.”
–Paul Theroux

A human who loves the world, finds beauty in the unknown, and can't keep her feet on the ground. I like finding unique (and cheap) ways of making my way around the globe. Interacting with people while living, learning, and loving the culture I'm surrounded by.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

One night in Phuket

Our Phuket adventure started with a two hour "taxi" ride from Koh Lak. The man driving us was in fact not a taxi diver, but a primary school science teacher named "M". We happily engaged in conversation with us and told us if we needed to stop for food or the toilet, just to let him know. Come to find out he hadn't ate all day because he's been so busy with his second job - we all decided it's a good idea to stop for food. We pull up to a little restaurant and start the process of figuring out what we want to eat. Shortly after filling a toilet with water from a bucket so that it will flush... spicy chicken, soup, beef, and veggies arrived  at our table. Trying to describe the intense deliciousness of the meal seems impossible, so just take my word for it. It was perfect. After taking selfies with M, witnessing a group of Thai kinds banging around on drums for the Lunar New Year, and filling our stomachs to the max, we jumped back into the car and got a quick nap in before we arrived at our hostel.

We made our way out into the streets of Patong, itching to find a street market we drove past earlier with M. On the way we grabbed some cheap beer from a convenient store and bought matching bracelets laced with crystals. I picked one with Tiger's Eye out for Jessica. My sweet best friend is on the adventure of her life traveling throughout Thailand and needs all the luck she can get.

I am so lucky that I got to share this experience with her. She is one of those people that I know will always be apart of my life. Her free spirit and friendly heart make her one of my absolute favorite people in this world. After spending time traveling with her, I was reminded of how much she inspired me to get out and do my own thing. 

Anyways. Beer, cheap souvenir shopping, and selfies with Polaroids ensue. And then we stumble upon Bangla Road. Massive amounts of people lining the street filled with bars and boxing clubs and people advertising pingpong shows. It happened. It was something that needed to happen. Something that will probably never happen again. 

I made friends with similar interests on the streets, spent money on things that I can't unfortunately get in Korea, and convinced a 7-11 store clerk that I was desperately sick in order to use their toilet because I had to pee so bad. Decided we were lost and accept the challenge of finding our hostel and getting to bed at a decent time.  We weren't having any luck, so decided to eat delicious Pad Thai on our mission back to the hostel. It gave me just the fuel I needed to realize I had directions to the hostel on my phone. In Thai. All I had to do was show it to our sweet server (who may or may not have charged us twice). Thankfully we were right around the corner and ended up falling asleep and waking up  with plenty of time to explore day time Phuket. 

On our way to find food and coffee and 20 pairs of vibrantly patterned pants we ran into a friend Jessica had made on a bus a few days ago. He was staying at a temple with a monk that Jessica knew. She had already told me the story of this sweet little guy so I was happy to follow our new friend to the temple. 

We walked along the beach, drinking our Thai coffee, taking everything in. The temple grounds were beautiful. Filled with dogs and chickens eating bowls of rice and running away from us. There were beautiful trees adorned with Buddhas of all shapes and sizes and colors. Flags and ribbons and bells. 

The monk, who's name I couldn't tell you, went to a lot of trouble to get us all chairs - which he situated on the patio outside of the room he was sharing with Brendan, our new friend from "The Amsterdam".  

We chatted for a while, talking about how small the world is. And how lucky we are to have ran into them. The monk said something that really resonated with me. I can't quote him directly, as my memory is not that good... But what he said was along the lines of:

"If the world was flat we wouldn't run into each other. We are lucky the world is round and our paths cross."
When he said this, my eyes got big and I made a mental note to never forget it. It resonates with me so much. Time after time, through out the past few years of my life, I have realized how incredible large and small this world is.

Jessica and Karyn both left before me, so I was given the chance to do a bit of wandering on my own. I meandered through the beach, watched the myriad of tourists pass by while they were hustled by Thais to get into their "taxis". I got some noodles and convinced someone at the hostel to buy me a smoothie since I spent all my cash on food. Chatted with new friends while waiting for my mini bus to arrive to ship me off to the airport.

My time in Thailand was far too short, but I will be back. OH, will I be back.

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