Many people told me to watch The Beach before moving to Thailand. The scenery was to die for, they said, and the story was a classic expat-moves-to-Thailand tale. Maybe I would relate? I saved the film in my Netflix cue, but never got around to watching it before my move. During my year and a half living in Thailand I continued to skip it … Read More Why I Hate ‘The Beach’
When you’re jet lagged and running off maybe two hours of sleep, you forget to check the open/close hours of the place where you booked a rental car in Honolulu (which you only booked because it was so much cheaper than picking up at the airport). You take a city bus to the rental place. The bus driver continuously gets off the bus to … Read More How To End Up In A Sexy Convertible VW Bug In Hawai’i: A Short Story
The blue destination dot on Google Maps seemed far away as my two friends and I crawled out of the minibus at the Kanchanaburi bus station. It was nearing 8 p.m. We’d left Bangkok around 4:30 p.m. The driver shut the door and drove off, leaving us standing dumbly in the street. My two friends, one a fellow expat also living in Bangkok and … Read More Broken Hearts and the Power of Women on the River Kwai
When a desk agent from my Hanoi hostel asked if I wanted to book a hiking trip through Sapa I thought, Sure. Why not? I’d hiked plenty of times. I had a limited amount of time in Vietnam and Sapa was supposed to be a “must see” place. A hike seemed like fun. The journey started with a 5-hour overnight sleeper bus to Sapa. … Read More Trekking Through Sapa
While flying down an Indian highway at 100 km/h, I didn’t have the normal thoughts someone would have during their first trip to India: This is awesome! I’m in India! On a motorcycle! Why is there a cow in the road? Instead, at nearly 11 p.m. at night, after driving 470 km, all I could think was: Oh my god. I’m 30. I landed in Jaipur around … Read More Expectations in India
I can’t believe it’s been over two months since my last post. That’s mostly because I got a new job, which consumes my working week. Any free time I have has been spent with friends or writing for various publications. When my new job’s Board of Directors offered me a position, the President said, “You cannot write about our school.” (The most I can … Read More A Quick Catch-Up: New Job, New Places, New Trips
When I asked my Thai friend about Songkran, she looked me up and down, laughed, and said, “You’re a walking target.” “What?” She used her spoon to dig out a chunk of mango from our shared bingsu. “We throw water at foreigners,” she said. “You’re going to get soaked.” I’d heard about Songkran when I first arrived in Bangkok, but not much detail. A … Read More Surviving Songkran: A Step-By-Step Guide
When you move to a country that has a completely different culture from what you’re used to, it’s easy to commit a faux pas here and there. When one of my friends first moved to Thailand a coin rolled down the floor of her classroom and she stepped on it to make it stop. “The class gasped,” she told me. “The money has the … Read More Oh, the Faux Pas You’ll Commit!
I am crap at ordering street food. Bangkok is practically bursting at the seams with food stalls, food carts, and foldout tables laden with 25 Baht banana leaf wrapped goodies, and yet I rarely order anything more than a coconut or iced coffee. This has nothing to do with sanitary worries or being picky about food; it’s all to do with my embarrassment at … Read More Your Visa’s Not Valid: A Trip Through Language Barriers
The first time I went to California I hated it. I don’t know why, I just did. On the surface California had everything I loved: beaches, otters, National Parks, diverse cultures, art scene, hippies, liberals, Mexican food, and a landscape ranging from surfer ready beaches to sprawling metropolises and imposing mountain ranges. Despite checking all of those boxes, however, when I first traveled to … Read More California: I Hate It, I Love It.
When I came to Bangkok, I planned to keep dating around and enjoying the single life just like I did back in the U.S. Obviously every time I write about my ex there’s still some bitterness and anger there (Ross, if you’re reading this, just like you’ve apparently been looking at my LinkedIn profile, fuck you) so I think it would be unwise to … Read More Dating in Bangkok: (Definitely Not) A Love Story
A few weeks ago I took a Thai cooking course at the Silom Thai Cooking School. I learned about the course through a Girls Gone International Meet Up group, and it looked like a fun way to spend a Sunday. As far as the course goes, I had zero expectations. I hate cooking. I was joining the class/Meet Up group for the twin purposes … Read More Why Everyone Should Take a Cooking Class in Thailand