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Monday, December 7, 2009

The spirit of Thailand

It's Monday afternoon, the 07th of December. I woke up this morning and couldn't believe how lucky I was.. Just for being here. All afternoon the same feelings have been going around in my heart and my soul. I'm feeling like the richest person alive, just for having these experiences. I can't quite believe how blessed I am to have met these amazing people I'm surrounded by. Already I don't want to leave them. The thoughts of this ending feels wrong, so soon after our meeting. The feelings I've been having, since I got to this island, are unreal. It's all very familiar because I was here on my last trip through Asia, but it feels so much better than I remember it feeling. Just being in Thailand, feels totally different than I remember it feeling. Absolutely everything. It's the spirit of the people that almost fills up the air. I feel almost as if I'm one with everybody. I don't feel like I'm Westerner, or a tourist, or a stranger or an outsider. And I don't want to be a tourist either.. I don't care for doing all the touristy things, just to be able to tick them off of the "list" or to be able to say that I've done and seen it all - which is the case for the majority of backpackers and holidaymakers you come across. For me, it's the people of this country that I meet, what make it amazing. Every single encounter, or gesture, no matter how big or small, is special and gives me an insight into the way they live and the kind-heartedness they possess.

David said something interesting, when we were talking about the feeling or the vibe I got in Thailand, compared to Malaysia for example. He said it's more than likely because it's a Buddhist country and Malaysia is a Muslim country. And being in a Muslim country, as a single girl, traveling alone, can be frowned upon and they express that, through giving off bad vibes. I'm convinced now, that Malaysia isn't necessarily a country I feel I need to be in or need to enjoy or where I need to relax or need to practice yoga or meditation. I'm in Thailand now and I'm delighted to be back here on this island.

While I was traveling up from Kuala Lumpur, I did sometimes have these thoughts that what I was doing was silly, because I was basically following the same route I did, back in 2007! Yes, it felt right what I was doing, but why wasn't I exploring other places? Why am I sticking to what I knew best and why wasn't I taking a risk and venturing to a different island? Well, coming here, was a risk in itself. I didn't know exactly how and if I was going to reach the Sanctuary. And I was just following my feeling. That's why I wasn't going elsewhere. I don't regret it for one minute.. Not when I realized yesterday just how blessed I was to have met German Andy in KL, who told about the Sanctuary, and then to finally make it to the ferry to find out that the Sanctuary was fully booked and then, because of this, to meet the guys I already feel I've known for so long.. It's truly amazing!

I know it seems to have become my favourite word: amazing. But I can't describe it any other way. I'm looking at this country through different eyes, eyes that were closed when I was here first, but are now wide-open. I'm convinced I was meant to get to this island again, and do pretty much the same route I did as the trip in 2007, even if it was only to experience it properly and fully, this time round. Back in 2007, I wasn't too healthy.. I was probably, or most definitely, already suffering from anorexia.. That's why I can feel the difference so much. Back then I was numb, I wasn't fully experiencing, I wanted to be the tourist and tick off the list of things to do. So being here, brought up my suffering from back then. But also what brought it up, was the way I am now experiencing the food. I didn't realize back then, just how delicious and healthy and tasty and diverse their cuisine is. I didn't enjoy it, and I can see now that I closed myself off to experience that side of this culture, that makes up such a big part of getting to know a country and it's way of life. It's truly, again, amazing to now sit with David and have rice for breakfast and experience the food totally and have great talks and great drinks and eat how much and whatever I want. And I'm more grateful than words can say that I'm able to feel the difference..

So, I'm learning so much from this traveling again. My eyes are so open right now and I don't want this to end. I'm living for each and every moment and can't believe how this journey has evolved so far.. It's so exciting!

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