April 24, 2010

A Journey Back to Thailand

I bought yesterday's book, Touch the Dragon, 5 years ago on a family vacation to Thailand. We were in Chaing Mai and I walked into a little expat bookstore and asked for a book on the country. I didn't want a picture book or a travel guide. I wanted a book about life in Thailand. The proprietor did a great job with this recommendation.

It has been said of this book that it is "as if I had been lifted all the way to Thailand without ever booking passage." I think I have to agree. While I can't speak to what life with the Thai people is like, I can say that my memories of the trip mesh perfectly of her descriptions of the country. Vivid color. That is what I remember and that is what she describes. I don't think I have ever been anywhere as colorful as Thailand.

The blues seem bluer. And there are more shades of blue in the Andaman sea than anywhere else. ...

There is more gold and red.

Sometimes you begin to think that every part of the country is covered in color.

Even the elephants can paint.

And while I can't speak to life in Thailand, I understand the loneliness of living in a place where you just don't belong. We were able to travel so easily to Thailand because we were living as expats in Korea. Talk about not fitting in. Talk about not understanding a culture and a people. While we did make some friends in Korea, we never truly felt like we were part of their lives. We were always on the outside.

I should have read this book while I was in Thailand, but I am kind of glad I waited. I had a wonderful time yesterday looking through my old photos and remembering our trip.

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