(Sa-wat-dee Kah)

I know it has been a while since I returned, but I think it is about time I caught up on at least one post I had been saving. Time to share some bits and pieces of my adventures in Thailand. Just have to start by saying: Wow! 

Thailand is a truly magical place. I'm racking my brain for a way to even describe this crazy place/trip of a lifetime, so I guess I'll just borrow a few of the things me and Kels would say to each other just about every day of the 2 weeks we got to spend there...  

An "adult disney land" 
"seriously paradise," 
"a dream land"
"A country I will never forget."

Me & Kels spent less than an hour on the phone deciding our destination and vaguely figuring out the details of our next adventure prior to landing in Bangkok on July 1st. We didn't even know where we were going to meet each other in the airport for God sakes (a fact we didn't even consider odd until both of our mothers ask, "how are you going to find each other?!?"). Fairly confident in our detective and McGuyvering skills, we both figured it would happen and best to just trust in both of our killer instincts. 

At this point in time I hadn't seen the girl in over 8 months and we had been going through so much in that time that 2 weeks alone, adventuring in a foreign land, was our version of a perfect reunion. 

The second I got off the plane, scooped up my bag, and shimmied past lagging travelers. I booked it out of the arrivals gate and wandered right into Kels. Once I did, all I could ask was, "Where are we?!"

The things we saw, the places we stayed, and the people we met in those 2 short weeks will be memories I will keep for the rest of my life. 

Our temporary homes included a beach bungalow, a green hostel, a woven-roof hut (ontop of which the monkeys would jump down from neighboring tree limbs...and scare the shit out of me), the shwankiest Best Western I've ever seen, a treehouse (literally), and "resort" among the rock climbing cliffs of Railay.

As the old saying goes...
It's not where you are; it's who your with. 
This trip more than upheld that cheery little anecdote. It is undoubtedly the people that make Thailand so special. Whether it was laughs, deep talks, directions, shared experiences, or just another person to get lost with, each individual we encountered gave us something we so desperately needed at just that moment. Both Kels and I couldn't believe how unbelievable lucky and serendipitous the whole thing was. It almost didn't feel real.

Ben (RIP) & the Beach Travelers crew, Tin the Malaysian fire dancer, the people of Railay Bay, the staff at Smileys bungalows, the two crazy Australian cousins, the eccentric Spaniards, the awesome kids we met at Skunk Bar from Montana (the only other Americans we came across), our epic "i help you" hotel attendee that got us the last room in all of Koh Phangan, the British girl from our frantic ferry ride to make it to the full moon party, and everyone on the back of the bus ride from Chumphon to Khao Sok...
Thank you.

 I think some experiences are best shared in images, so here are some of the most memorable from Thailand 2012.

*All pictures are owned by me and permission must be asked before attempting to use or reproduce these images.