Air Conditioning

Here is your chance for the "I told you so". I have never been a fan of air conditioning as it is always cranked to about 60 degrees on perfectly comfortable summer days. Well comfortable for me anyway. I rarely get hot enough to want air. Not in SE Asia! It is hot here. Laying and doing nothing still produces beads of sweat unless you are directly in front of a fan. Being able to come out of the heat to an air conditioned room where you can feel normal again is wonderful. Mind you we were leaving 105 heat to a room cooled to 78.

Contrast

It was nice to get back to Thailand and it really showed me how everything is relative. When I first arrived in Thailand I noticed a lot of differences. It seemed somewhat dirty and there was a lot of waiting for things that didn't need to happen and just an overall air of disorder. After traveling in Cambodia and Laos and now seeing Thailand it appears clean, efficient and not corrupt (no one with 5B signs). It is interesting to me how my mind can change so dramatically just based on where I came from. Oh well I am happy to be back "home".

Traveling

After much relaxing we were off to Thailand again. As we pulled away on the bus to the border the conductor came up with a sign that said 5B overtime for Sunday. 5 Bhat isn't much but we already payed for the ticket and it was Saturday. We and the couple across the way refused to pay a Sunday charge on Saturday so he went and talked to someone who could write in English, she crossed out Sunday and wrote in Saturday. What an interesting note. in the end we payed the 5B.

Don Det

I seem to have left off on Don Det, an island in southern Laos. This area is called 4000 islands, and I didn't count but there are many. At this point in the trip we could have biked all around and seen new islands everyday and such. My body wasn't up for that so I basically did nothing. Not true, I worked on my beads did yoga read and played cards. Definitely frequenting the hammocks, and with a good restaurant across the street we barely left the guest house. Eric got sick unfortunately, but at least we were stationary and not traveling. I am

Border Crossing

The Cambodian side was a small shack with a hammock and a desk which housed stamps, a stamp pad and a notebook for our info. After we paid the one dollar (scam? standard exit fee?

Travel Days

Next stop Kratie where we just spent the night and bought our super convenient, all inclusive ticket for the next day. The ticket was a bus to Strom Treng, a ferry across the river, a sontao to the border, a truck to the pier and a boat to Don Det the Island we were heading. Now that is all inclusive! Unfortunately each time we changed transport we were dropped at a restaurant and informed not to worry it would be a little bit but we definitely had time to eat. Lovely. Again a little nerve racking to wait until the last possible moment to leave for the borde

Visa

April 7, 2007

Well after Angkor Wat we had some intense travel time. First back to Phnom Penh to pick up our Lao visas. As we drove up to the embassy I noticed a sign that said they closed for 2 1/2 hours for lunch, in 5 minutes. Nervous I jumped out and asked the guard if they were closed and he just said "hurry up". Luckily we got our visas, no incidence, just the way I like it.

Angkor Wat

Next was Angkor Wat. It is a series of temples laid out to match the constellation Draco or the dragon (between the big and little dipper if anyone wants to find it). It was started about 1000 years ago but lines up with the constellation as it looked in 10,050 BC! Weird. There are dragon figures all over all of the temples. Many are being restored but some were left as is, with trees still engulfing the ruins in some parts. Many of the temples had huge faces carved in to the sides or towers.

Learning

March 13, 2007
Well I finally have a minute to recap my experiences over the last month or so. 
I left the farm to go to a going away party in Chiang Mai. It was sad to leave these kids too, but at least I already said goodbye so it wasn’t as intense. We watched the kids dance and everyone sang and had a great time. We played a few games and had lots of good food.

Celebrations

Truly a time of celebration. First it was Hadar’s birthday and we had a party complete with pizza and chocolate cake (and rice and soy milk and veggie stir fry. Hey we are still in Thailand). Then it was valentines day and we did a poetry reading. I am still a little to shy to read in front of everyone and I haven’t written a poem since high school but I feel more able to do so now. Maybe next time I will have a poem I have written.