After posting my flight plan changes (staying in Southeast Asia until late December and postponing the Dubai/Turkey leg) I received a veritable barrage of flustered emails. Let’s answer some of the questions you posed to see if we can all soothe our souls a bit.
Q: “Why aren’t you going to Turkey or Dubai?? I really want to hear your perspective on those places!”
A: I AM still going to both Turkey and Dubai, I PROMISE. Those destinations have just been postponed for a few months until a time when, 1) Turkey is warm enough to swim in (mmm) and, 2) I can have enough time to see Dubai in the context of its surrounding countries.
A: Patience, you feisty American! I am currently in passionate love with the backpacker paradise that is Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Laos, and I’m just not ready to leave yet. Southeast Asia is the ultimate blend of fascinating, warm, cheap, beautiful, friendly, safe, and wonderful. What’s more, I still have to achieve my goal of taking a massage course in Thailand, and I MAY also want to swim one more time (at least) in a Southern Thai beach. Depth over breadth, folks, right?
Q: So after Italy, where will you go from January to March?
A: The more I think about it, the more I really, really want to travel and work in Africa for a few months between January and March. If you have any suggestions for specific places to go, organizations that could use my services, or nice contacts to have, please email me at email@example.com .
In the devious master plan, I hope to extend my plane ticket to fly back to Boston in May 2010 instead of March, and use the March to May time to travel through Turkey, Dubai, and Spain, and to seek jobs abroad for the 2010-11 year! You gotta have a dream, right?
Q: You’ve now been traveling for three months, which is the longest you’ve ever been away from home. Have you had any epiphanies? Are you tired?”
A: My epiphany is this: I REALLY like this traveling and writing thing, and I want to keep doing it for as long as possible. I’m not tired anymore– I’m learning how to take care of myself on the road, and it’s more and more energizing each day. On a different note, though… things in my backpack (specifically my trusty bandanna washcloth) are starting to rot and smell funny. Ah well– it’s worth being stinky to be happy.
Q: Your website layout is kind of ugly, and it’s annoying that the photos don’t have captions. Will you ever fix this?
A: In the next few months, I am hoping to upgrade my blog format so that it’s easier to read and more professional-looking (given that I want to be rich, famous, AND professional). That said, this upgrade may take a little while because, well, I’m scared to take on the technology beast. In the meantime, please bear with me, leave comments, and send me an email if something is unclear.
A: AWESOME. I love it!!!!! Thanks for asking. Keep reading da blog and leaving (appropriate) comments. I hope school is going well for you! If you get top grades this year, I will someday, somehow reward you with brownies. Be in touch, and you’re great :)
(Note: All photos festooning this article are from the two-day Mekong riverboat from Luang Prabang, Laos, to Huay Xai on the Thai border.)
The author, Lillie Marshall, is 6-foot-tall National Board Certified Teacher of English, fitness fan, and mother of two who has been a public school educator since 2003. She launched Around the World “L” Travel and Life Blog in 2009, and over 3.7 million readers have now visited this site. Lillie also runs TeachingTraveling.com and DrawingsOf.com. Subscribe to her monthly newsletter, and follow @WorldLillie on social media!