The Asia Jaunt: Month Three in Review
Month One was all about getting into the rhythm of long-term travel and dealing with the unexpected, along with some truly crazy emotions.
Month Two was all about independence, solitude, and the joy of getting off the beaten path.
So, what was Month Three about?
Friendship, fun, and the backpacker trail.
On my third month, I made the most amazing friends in various hostels throughout Cambodia and Laos. I traveled with several of them for three weeks through three countries. I kept bumping into other friends over and over as we traveled similar routes.
And yes, because this was the backpacker trail, there was quite a bit of partying. You may have noticed!
I spent a full week in Sihanoukville and over two weeks in Vang Vieng. I guess I finally found my backpacker hangout! I’d love to go back.
Here is my third month in review:
- Sihanoukville, Cambodia
- Siem Reap, Cambodia
- Bangkok, Thailand (visit #3)
- Vang Vieng, Laos (twice)
- Luang Prabang, Laos
Climbed all over temples at Angkor, feeling like Indiana Jones or Lara Croft!
Celebrated Christmas on the beach in Sihanoukville.
Made amazing friends and traveled with them from Sihanoukville to Luang Prabang.
Witnessed Angkor Wat at both sunrise and sunset.
Celebrated New Year’s Eve on Khao San Road in Bangkok.
Tubed like crazy in Vang Vieng — eight times in total!
Met dozens — nay, hundreds! — of hot guys in Vang Vieng.
Biked through the countryside surrounding Luang Prabang.
Went to a second Bangkok ping pong show — this time, with friends!
Totally became a hippie in Cambodia.
Went skinny-dipping in Sihanoukville…and got robbed!
Shotgunned my first beer ever.
Drank a beer through a vuvuzela.
Turned an overnight train to Nong Khai into a Thai party train!
Checked into a guesthouse in Luang Prabang that forbade “making sex movies” with locals.
Had offensive phrases written all over me and car paint sprayed onto me in Vang Vieng.
Took the bumpiest, swerviest bus ride ever — TWICE. (Vang Vieng to Luang Prabang and back again.)
Met a guy from Massachusetts in Vang Vieng! (Trust me, this was VERY exciting!)
Learned the “Americano” dance in Vang Vieng — I can now do it in my sleep!
Endured a 33-hour bus journey from Vang Vieng to Hanoi and almost got rejected at the border.
As always…SO many that can’t be mentioned here!
Enough to fill the Nam Song.
The money isn’t lasting as long as I thought it would. Advertising is not coming as easily as it once did. I’m not going to lie — I’m afraid.
I’m thinking of going back to Vang Vieng and working at one of the bars. If the weather had been nicer, I would probably be staying and working in Hanoi!
I learned to let go this month. I had been holding onto something for a few months, something that filled my thoughts more or less constantly, and it was making me miserable because there was nothing I could do about it.
I had to let go of this, and I knew I had to let go for quite a long time, but this month, I was finally able to do it.
I’m free. Finally.
Media and Blog Mentions
Month Four began in Vietnam: Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue, and Hoi An. I got strep throat in Hanoi, so I spent longer than I intended recovering there.
This month will be spent primarily in Vietnam, with visits to Nha Trang, Dalat, Mui Ne, Saigon, and possibly the Mekong Delta and/or Phu Quoc if I have time. My visa runs out February 21.
After that? Totally up in the air. I’m leaning toward the Philippines. We’ll see!