News from Cambodia

Arin and i have been in Siem Reap, Cambodia for two days now. It is an intense country. The heat of this country is extraordinary, and is easily the most intense I have ever felt in my life. The average humidity is 85% and the average temperature during the day is 80-90 degrees. It doesn't sound like a lot, but the heat is much more intense due to the fact that we are so close to the equator.

We came to Cambodia for really one purpose: to see Angkor. And it is amazing. It is hard to put into words what you feel walking through these ruins as they seem to conjure up in my mind all the images in my mind that I had as a child about lost ruins lost deep in forests. It is a place on this earth everyone should see at least once, before it turns into another Disneyland - a reality far too possible will all the development and bus loads of foreign (especially Asian) tourists.

This internet cafe does not allow me to hook up my camera, so I am unable to upload any photos. Which is a damn shame. I have so many to share.
Chiang Mai was amazing. A place I sincerely wish I had more time in. It is such an easy city to visit. It is beautiful, charming, and life moves at a seemingly perfect pace. It was Arin and my oasis after the stress that is Bangkok.

We saw some amazing temples/wats, including Wat Doi Suthep, which can only be described in photos, the Elephant Conservation Center of Thailand where Arin and I got to play with a 3 month old baby elephant - an experience I will never forget, a two-day/one-night trek into the surrounding hills of Chiang Mai to go bamboo rafting and to visit and sleep at a reclusive Karen village, I cannot express just how much shopping Arin accomplished, we took a one-day Thai cooking class, we swam at our hotel, we gave toys away to hilltribe village children, we helped teenage novice monks with their English homework, I pet kitty after kitty after kitty, we went shopping at the 'Night Bazarre' (proof that 'shopping is a feeling'), we prayed for my Uncle Rob and spent everyday remembering him, and we booked our tickets home.

The trip is happening far too fast. I am not ready to even think about coming home, and now I am commited to coming home on Sept 4th. Booking those tickets was a sad day, almost as sad as leaving Chiang Mai.