I stepped out onto my petite patio to take my first conscious breath in a foreign land. It had been pouring and dark when I arrived the night before, so this was my first view of my new surroundings. In a state of ecstatic shock I gazed out over the beautiful monster that is Bangkok. The emotion that surged through me was unlike anything I’d ever felt before. It was all so beautiful! The sounds of roosters and tuk tuks, the sight of building upon brooding building, lustrous color and a moist haze that envelops your entire being. What hit me hardest though was the smell. Until later, I would not find out what this strange aroma was, but even now I revere it with respect, for it is an aspect of the city that to me makes it that much more charming.
How Bangkok transfers from my memory to paper.
Some may disagree, instead suggesting a comparison to a pitbull, or a dust devil of delicious (and often suspect) street food, insane drivers and many a far fetched tale of events barely imaginable. That being said, the extremes of the city captured me in a unique sensory whirlwind. Arriving there alone was the first time I’d ever felt truly out of my element, and I was so excited.
I remember going downstairs for my first overseas breakfast (other than the interesting food served on the plane). I can almost feel the warmth in the air as I write this, as if these first memories have solidified more than others. There was a metal tin with steaming yellow eggs and one of some kind of ground meat and tiny green chili peppers, which I would discover was an amazing dish called “laarb”. There was also coffee, tea, and bread with jam and little butter packets. It was really quite fancy for what I was expecting, and what I would see in days to come in Southeast Asian hostels. “Kapkun-kah!” I thanked the lady nearby who was washing dishes, shyly trying out the Thai word for the first time. Sitting at the table sipping coffee, I formed an itinerary for the day. Skype mom, nap, shower, and then figure out how to get to Khao San Road. Not particularly a place I have any desire to go now (in fact many of the feelings I had at this point seem humorous to me now), this was the gateway, as it is for many, that would help me begin my solo explorations.
Otherwordly and unforgettable, these thoughts brings a smile to face, reminding me that no matter where we go, what we do or how many lessons we have learned, life never ceases to surprise and amaze us, the journey is everlasting, and as long as we keep out hearts and minds open, there is endless possibility.
If you like this post, spread the love and share with others using the buttons below! Or, sign up via email to receive notifications of new posts!