Catching up for Lost Time & Thailand: Sex, Spice and Sand.

Time moves quickly. This I know. Almost nine months have passed since I last posted on my blog, which makes me question my blog’s existence at all. Maybe all of you, my baker’s-dozen-or-so-odd-readers, have forgotten about me, and that would be ok considering my cyber disappearance.

I would like to lie and tell you I got lost in Japan without an internet connection (highly unlikely in such an advanced technological world), but really life just moved by so damn quickly. This is my attempt to bring you up to speed. Buckle up, my friends.

Thailand: Sex, Spice and Sand.

Before you start creating fanciful stories in your brain about my wild and crazy times in Asia, let me start by telling you it was painful to leave Japan. After all that amazing sushi, blissful ramen, and enough green tea lattés to slightly tint my hair green from the inside out, I sort of lost my traveling mojo. Had it not been for a very random blind-date with an ever-so-handsome, American high-mountain guide who also just happened to be passing through Bangkok (you can ask me how it went later; needless to say, there’s no ring on my finger), I wouldn’t have been very motivated to keep moving. Thailand shocked me with its stifling heat, its widespread sex industry, its high-rise, super air-conditioned malls and tourist laden beaches. Maybe I just wasn’t prepared for all the ex-pats, and gorgeous, slender Thai women draped over the shoulders of awkward looking Western men, but traveling got old and fatiguing.

Sure, it was fun to meet lots of enthusiastic and friendly international travelers in small beach towns and have some new, superficial friends to pound back a couple of Chang beers and watch fire shows together.

And yes, I loved getting massages almost every day in legit parlors and on the street during weekly markets while watching shoppers stroll past. [When I type this statement, I feel like a spoiled-rotten, overly privileged white traveler, which is another reason I struggle with Thailand.]

Who can forget all those hilarious moments when the street food vendors made my papaya salad too spicy with all those damn power-packed chilies? I begged for another Thai iced tea while sweating profusely and pulling off an incredible impersonation of a beet, and all of this, mind you, while laughing heartily.

On the other hand, I remember waking up over Chiang Mai one hazy morning, watching endless waves of motorbikes whiz past my window and wondering why in the hell I was traveling solo around Thailand when my friends and family were so far away. Traveling is like that. Highs and lows. Tears of spice and tears of loneliness. But I still love it, and despite the fact that Thailand won’t be high on my list for future travels, it won’t stop me from checking airfare to other far-flung destinations when maybe all I really need is to stay put for a while.

After Japan, I put my camera away. These are a few of the images I managed to capture.

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Bubbles in Bologna

There’s a very good chance that I was more mesmerized by these gargantuan bubbles than the crowd of excited Italian bambini pressed up against me one bustling Sunday in Bologna. These are the kind of bubbles that float in the dreams of clowns-in-training and overly ambition kids that one day end up at MIT. Remarkably, these bubbles are even capable of distracting me from creamy Italian gelato, if only for a good five minutes.

I was curious what ingredients went into such heavy-duty bubbles, and after a bit of online research, I stumbled upon the website of a man named Sam L Richards who shares his obsession for ‘Big Bubbles’ and even offers up a hefty, street-performer-ready recipe. One of these days, I’ll test this recipe and fill you in on the results, but in the meantime, I encourage you to find an empty street corner, set out your tip bucket and start inspiring those around you with your soaring orbs of brilliance and color.

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