Finding Peace of Mind in the Thai Countryside

It’s been over two years and this day is still vivid in my mind. One of the best days of my life.

I think it’s when I finally FELT the truth that you can do anything you want to. Seeing that I could move across the world alone, find work and find happiness (despite being isolated) instilled so much confidence in myself.

Riding through rural Thailand on a motorbike with coconut trees in every direction and random steer bathing in shady groves was hilarious. The contrast between life in the U.S. and that day was thrilling. I’d love to relive that day to transcend the stress and anxiety that day-to-day life creates.

What memories do you hold that you would like to relive?

A Flâneur Abroad

It’s the simple things in life that can bring us so much joy. It may be a cliché, but it’s true!

A couple of weekends ago I was feeling a little stressed and down. I decided taking a ride through the countryside on a motorbike would help clear my head. It absolutely did the trick. I stopped at the beach to take in the sound of the rolling waves. I pointed a lost couple in the right direction and visited a small beach town I had been to a couple of times before. I tried a restaurant on the beach and ordered fresh fish. YUM. I had to race the sun home but this short adventure brought me so much peace. The Thai countryside is so lovely. Remember not to underestimate the value of alone time as well as the value of quiet time! Carpe Diem!

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Portland Bae-cation 11/15

Pop into the Screen Door on E. Burnside St. for brunch. The lines are long but the food is worth it.

Order the Huevos Rancheros – the best you’ll ever have. Or, opt for the tower of chicken and waffles. nom nom. SO MANY GREAT OPTIONS.

Return to places you like. I’ve only been a few times but I already feel like I have my “spots”. Find your own or feel free to use mine 😉

Traverse the walls of one of the many climbing gyms.

Lounge about at a local coffeehouse or at Powell’s books.

Appetite – bring it. Food trucks, donuts, & restaurants galore. It epitomizes Portland.

Nightlife adventures – there are plenty of young people around and trendy bars to explore. Have at it!

Don’t forget to wear plaid.


This acrostic poem sums up our weekend trip to Portland earlier this month. Use my suggestions if you’d like but finding spots on your own can be such a grand adventure 😉 Cheers.

Until we meet again Portland.

Brave Para-gliders

When I think back to my time in Lima, my most vivid memories are of the Mira Flores district. I loved how the cityscape crept up to the cusp of the Pacific Ocean.  Lover’s Park teeters on the edge of a massive cliff between skyscrapers and the Ocean.  When I picture this lively place speckled in mosaics, I remember the para-gliders that flew bravely over-head. They glided close to the buildings and over the cliff’s edge. On occasion, they would cast large shadows overhead that blotted out the sun. This post is in homage to the daredevils that were brave enough to appreciate the beauty of Mira Flores from a new perspective.

What places have stood out to you?

Dreamland Beach, Bali, Indonesia

I loved the way the tide rolled the ash in the sand into intricate patterns. As the tide receded back into the sea, the wet glistening sand would quickly dry in the suffocating heat to reveal a fresh pattern of ash. Each new pattern was like a fingerprint for every new wave.

I was walking barefoot and couldn’t resist the urge to drag my toes through one of these patterns. I pressed my toes into the sand and smooshed a line through the ash. When I lifted my foot, my toes were black. Why was that so satisfying?

The tide rolled up again and as it receded the ash formed into a fresh, unspoiled design.

A Tourist Trap Worth Visiting

One of the main attractions near Koh Phi Phi Don, Thailand (Phi Phi Island) is the famous Maya Beach. It served as the set for the movie The Beach (2000), starring Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s depicted in the film as a secret paradise where a group of travelers have made their home away from civilization.

The beach itself is located on Koh Phi Phi Leh, a smaller uninhabited island just a 30-40 minute boat ride from Koh Phi Phi Don. The island itself is a national park and requires all visitors to pay an entry fee of 200 Thai baht upon arrival (unless the fee is included in your day tour). I visited this secluded paradise in March of 2014.

I gasped when I first sunk my toes into the fine, silky sand. It felt like powdered sugar between my toes. I spent my allotted hour of time making sand angels and walking the paths that wind through the small rain-forest. The sand from the beach stretched all the way inland along the paths. It only ended when I reached the boardwalk and scenic platform at the end of the trail. The lookout stood in a V-shaped crevasse between two towering cliffs. The view boasted clear, blue-green waters and free-standing, forested limestone formations in Loh Samah Bay.

After enjoying the view and making friends with a cat that lived on the island, I wandered down to the only snack shack on the island. Unsurprisingly, everything was overpriced. I continued with my snacks down to the crowded shore of the beach, which looked out over the reef-filled bay. Two dozen long-tail boats were anchored on the beach. The sashes tied around their tails came in so many colors: yellow, red, green, blue, pink, white and more. I was content just sitting in the sand and appreciating the view. I was thankful to have a couple of new travel friends around to share in the experience. Many visitors were sunbathing or wading into the warm clear waters for a swim.

The colors of the scenery made it the definition of a beach paradise. The vibrant sashes of the long-tail boats fluttered in the breeze with a backdrop of blue-green waters, an abundance of palm trees, and limestone cliffs covered in shrubs. The bright off-white color of the sand provided an aesthetically pleasing contrast to it all. I wish I had had more time on Maya Beach, but the tour that had brought me had a tight itinerary.

Vacationers can reach the beach through one of the many day tours offered on Koh Phi Phi Don, or they can privately rent a long-tail boat. The only way to enjoy the beach without the hordes of tourists is to camp on the island through Maya Bay Sleep Abroad. Their package is all-inclusive (food, sleeping bags, transportation, and even a complimentary bucket of booze). They bring you to the island close to sunset (when all the day-trippers are leaving) and leave the next morning after sunrise when all the day-trippers begin to arrive.

Next time you find yourself in the south of Thailand, I recommend that you make time to visit this gem of a paradise. Tourists or not! Also, bring your camera in a waterproof bag.

Coming Home

It’s weird. I thought it would be more strange coming home. I didn’t experience any jet lag and so far there has been minor culture shock. Either the culture shock is slowly going to set in, or I have successfully integrated the Thai attitude into myself. I’m hoping it’s the latter.

I’m taking a couple of weeks to catch up with friends and get settled before I make any big decisions on what I plan to do next. I have a few ideas but absolutely no solid plans. It’s nice to have a great void of unknown in front of me. I hate routine and if given the option to peer into my future, I would decline. I don’t want to know what’s coming and ruin the surprise. I also don’t want to fall into a lifestyle that will likely look the same 10, 15, and 20 years from now. BUT, a person’s gotta make a living. I’m not anxious yet but ask me again in a couple of weeks.

Now that I’m home and in a stable environment with internet access, I can catch up on my blogging. I already have a list of 15+ topics that I’d like to write about. Hopefully you’ll be seeing a wave of new stuff soon!

Carpe Diem.

Sunset Dinners on the Beach

Sunset Dinners on the Beach

One of the things that never gets old for me is sitting out at night, in the comfortable heat of the tropics. It’s a novelty to me.

As a native to Seattle, night time means freezing cold weather that requires a down jacket, a scarf, and maybe gloves. Even in the Summer, a light jacket is usually needed. At least for me anyway…

Cheers to tropical weather and sunset dinners on the beach! ❤