Twenty-Three

Today is my twenty-third birthday.

Today is my twenty-third birthday and I am not in Bali celebrating with TESOL friends as I had planned; I am not off having wonderful travel adventures after the close of a semester of teaching English, as most of my TESOL friends are by this point.

No. Today is my twenty-third birthday and I am in Nakhon Chaisi, my Thailand home, very much alone…taking time for myself.

Really taking time for myself.

Not thinking about classes or school–school finished last week; not worrying about the future–that will come in time; not investing so much time in what other people think of me and how I’m spending my time–because I’m so tired of that; not expecting so much of myself–because I keep pushing myself to do things that won’t serve me…and that needs to stop.

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Last week, I was crying in a Thai hospital after a doctor had just diagnosed me with the early stages of pneumonia. I was crying because of the inconvenient timing–how I was supposed to administer exams the next day and how I was supposed to fly out of Bangkok to Bali on Monday. The doctor told me I could still go to Bali–as long as I didn’t spend any time in the water on beaches–but traveling is exhausting and I didn’t feel comfortable exerting myself in that way while sick (not to mention that spending time in the water on beaches was something I wanted to do…and I didn’t want to travel all the way to Bali if I couldn’t make the most of my experience because of illness). I was crying in this hospital because this was only the latest in what seemed to be a continuing list of physical maladies that have been plaguing me in Thailand and I was crying because I was angry at Thailand for doing this to me; more than being angry at Thailand, I was angry at my body for not holding up in the way I wanted it to in the face of adversity. I was crying because, dammit, life has been really hard these past couple months; when I’ve just wanted to make the most of my time here in Thailand–both on my own and with my TESOL friends and new friends along the way–my body and soul have consistently been telling me Continue reading “Twenty-Three”

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For the Love of PAI

A hipster’s paradise with a small town vibe.

So much to do, so much to see.

An abundance of natural beauty EVERYWHERE.

Something for everyone.

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If you were to ask me to write up a tourist pamphlet for Pai, Thailand, I’d most likely write something akin to the above.

Yeah, it’s corny. But it’s kind of a little bit 100% accurate.

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When my TESOL class found out we had a three day weekend in the third week of the course, we immediately started making plans (ha, well some of us started making plans and the rest tagged along. I must admit, I am NOT a planner…something I want to get better at while living abroad).

We wanted to get out of Chiang Mai for a little bit and the obvious choice for many of us was to head to Pai–a small resort town in the Northern mountains of Thailand.

Pai is this expats haven in the middle of Thailand. I saw more Farangs (the Thai word for “Westerner”) during my one and a half day stay in Pai than I have since leaving the United States. It was a little weird, to be quite honest. It didn’t feel quite like Thailand. But that’s absolutely okay…because Pai is it’s own little world. It’s own little oasis to get away to…and everyone needs to get away at some point.

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Honestly, I didn’t realize how stressed out I was from my TESOL course until I got to Pai.

Highlights from our trip included chilling by the sweet pool at our accommodation. Speaking of Continue reading “For the Love of PAI”

Friday Fifty-Six: A Dose of Currer Bell

Today’s Friday Fifty-Six is brought to you by the Penguin Drop Caps Edition of Jane Eyre, a.k.a. my second and very prized copy of this beautiful piece of classic literature.

Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre happens to be my favorite book and, for that reason, I thought it was only fitting to include it in an early edition of my contribution to the Friday Fifty-Six.

I cannot even begin to describe how important this book is to me, why I love Jane, the character, oh so much; how, since I read it for the first time at twelve years of age, this book continues to speak to me more and more with every read.

I cannot begin to describe any of that in one short post, so I leave you with this short excerpt instead, from page fifty-six of the Penguin Drop Caps Edition of Jane Eyre:

As yet I had spoken to no one, nor did anybody seem to take notice of me; I stood lonely enough, but that feeling of isolation I was accustomed; it did not oppress me much. I leant against a pillar of the veranda, drew my gray mantle close about me, and, trying to forget the cold which nipped me without, and the unsatisfied hunger which gnawed me within, delivered myself up to the employment of watching and thinking.

And, sometimes, the employment of watching and thinking is simply the very best there is.


The Friday 56 link up is hosted by Freda’s Voice.

INTROVERTS ARE PEOPLE, TOO!

Here I will relate a conversation I had with an acquaintance a person I barely know at a bar last night:

Person I Barely Know: “Wasn’t expecting to see you here tonight, Rebecca.”

Me: “My name’s not Rebecca.”

P.I.B.K.: “Becca?”

Me: “No…”

P.I.B.K.: Clearly struggling to remember my name, clearly has no idea Continue reading “INTROVERTS ARE PEOPLE, TOO!”