One of the highlights of my day job is the fact that I get to go to some pretty interesting places. During the month of May, I headed off to Thailand. This was a special destination since my parents lived in Northern Thailand while in the Peace Corps back in the 1970s (that was 40 years ago!!!!). My brothers and I grew up watching slide shows of all their adventures and experiences there. Those photos certainly installed a love of travel in me at an early age.
When I heard that I was going to be in Thailand for work, I knew that taking a trip with a family member would be really special. So after a little convincing (very little really), my younger brother had bought a ticket to join me. On May 10th, after 9 days of insane work, we started our adventure across Northern Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. To be honest, it was probably the best trip I have ever taken. It was amazing opportunity to see what my parents experienced all those years ago (although it is much changed now), spend time with my brother, and reconnect with my vagabond heart.
There are SO many things to say about the trip. I am always in awe of how traveling can still change me, shift my perspective and open my heart. If all goes well, I will be putting those thoughts and experiences down here in the days and weeks to come. For now, the images will tell the story.
Beautiful wat in Chiang Rai, Thailand. (It is a terrible thing to admit, but at some point in anyone's trip to SEAsia you hear yourself saying "oh yeah, another wat"...but they are truly spectacular!!)
A tea break during our jungle trek. Nothing like some hot tea on a 95 degree day. (it was actually surprisingly refreshing though)
Our guide and chef. He cooked our lunch in bamboo stalks. Does not get much cooler than that!
Rooftop cafe! We were hot!
The view from our hotel. Chiang Mai.
My parents, and now our, dear friend Wattana.
Beautiful natural dyes at Studio Naenna
A day of dyeing and weaving at Ock Pop Tok in Luang Prabang, Laos
Elephants are AWESOME! Riding them bareback is even cooler. (FYI, there are a lot of terrible elephant camps in SEAsia. If you are going to do this be sure you research a company that treats their elephants well). After we were done with our ride the elephants go back into the jungle to roam. That made me feel good.
Our guide. He was hilarious! Like a Laotian cowboy!
Crossing the river!
Our girl was ready for a banana after the trip!
Buddhist cave. The Laotian people hid lots of buddhist statues in caves during the war. I was saddened to learn how affected Laos was during the Vietnam war. I had NO idea. I found more information about it here.
I look happy, but I was not ready to leave Laos.
Alex, receiving a blessing at Angkor Wat.Jungle Temple. Angkor Wat.
Kob Kun Kaa! See you soon friends!