Monday, August 29, 2005

Nifty

I know things on the ol' blog look a bit bleak with out some pictures, so heres one I took in Thailand. No clue what it is but I thought it looked neat.
: )


Weird vine thingy Posted by Picasa

Slowly but Surely

I am starting to figure stuff out. Yesterday I went to the free WiFi place again and did some research on how to apply for my visa to go over to te UK and live with Luke. APPARENTLY, as long as I can prove that we have been together for 2 years or more I should be approved- touch wood. We have had a joint bank account in Aus. for more than that. Other than that he needs to write them a letter saying he will take care of me and i wont need government funding and stuff. All fun and games.

Aside from that, my friend, Jenn, goes back to school next week and her parents said I can use thier daughters' car after Jenn and her sis leave. Its a new Beetle. Sweeet. So, maybe now I can get around and visit those people like Lauren who I am dying to see!!

Next week, however, my mom has planned a week up in Cape Cod. I have been looking forward to this for a while now because I love the Cape and it reminds me why I love living in New England. I PROMISE i will have tons of pictures from there.... Its just that theres not much to photograph when youre sitting home watching TV as I seem to have been for the last 2 weeks or so. In any case, it seems like my life here is starting to take shape, however reluctant I am to let the old life go. "Thats the way the cookie crumbles," I guess.

Friday, August 26, 2005

The Trees are Huge

I have been having a lot of trouble gathering my thought for Blogging since I have been home. When I was at school and I was hooked up to high speed internet all the time and I could just jump on and write, or post pictures. Here I get so frustrated waiting for the slow dial up to just log into blogger, let alone publish a post or a photo.

I feel myself changing already. College is done. I miss my friends and my Australia and my Luke more than I ever thought possible. No, scratch that, i knew that this was how it was going to be. I just never thought the time would actually come where I really had to deal with it. Now I do. And its hitting me hard. I havent taken a single roll of film since Thailand. How can I hold on to the 'me' that i grew to like so much when everything has changed so fast?

Connecticut seems like a totally different place than when i left. Everything seems... i dunno... smaller, somehow. My hometown of Naugatuck seems to have literally shrunk since I lived there as a kid. Except for the trees- In Australia, at least in most of the country, they dont get a lot of rain. So, there are trees, but they are sparse and dry and almost brittle looking. CT on the other hand, gets a lot of rain and is heavily forrested in most parts- and the trees are so thick and massive that I feel like im driving through a tunnel!

I got a text from one of my Australian friends today saying something to the effect of, "we're out in town and we miss you." I almost lost it. The most I can do is say "i miss you too" because if I think about it too much i start getting sad. My life there is over.

So, in the mean time im trying to find a job and keep my mind off things. I miss keeping up with all you bloggers and i promise I will make more of an effort to brave the dial up and post more often!

Friday, August 19, 2005

My Repatriation

Well, Ive been home for a whole week now and let me say has been stressful! We have slow dial up internet at home so ive been going to a cafe that has free high speed wireless. Let me recap quickly as this place is trying to close:

I got home Friday. Sunday my friend was in a car accdent. Hes ok thank goodness. Monday my cat had to go to the vet. Tuesday was normal.... Wendesday my brother chopped off the tip of his finger with pliars and got 10 stitches in the emergency room. And my dog had to go to the vet. Today My sister had her wisdom teeth taken out. This weekend im supposed to be going camping and my friends want me out on friday night. So busy. So Stresful! Already im missing my quiet Aussie life. I wish I could be a little more detailed here but the shop is trying to close... Ill be back to write more as soon as i can get down here. Sigh.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

How I got here

I came across a fellow blogger this morning who wrote about her first day of university having some rather significant things happening to her, and it got me thinking... The choices we make during those first very impressionable months definitely affect us for the rest of our lives.

Me, I wanted to go to uni in Boston more than anything. Rightfully so, its an awesome city. The school I chose was Simmons, a small women's school on the Fenway. Wasnt too thrilled about the people there, but because I was in Boston I didnt really care.

At the time I was dating a guy who was about to go in to the Air Force. His leaving 8 months into our relationship was heartbreaking and I struggled through the first 7 months of school in the city on my own.

Then, everything changed; i happened to walk by a table in the dining hall advertizing 'Study abroad in Australia or New Zealand'... and well, you know the rest is history (although originally i was only supposed to spend one semester there... instead i left Simmins and moved there.) I put all my efforts into making it happen, and soon found that I wanted to take my life in another direction, ie, not spend my days living on an air base waiting for the next deployment issue or base transfer. That would have been torture for me.

Australia was waiting and i was going on my own and i knew no one or nothing about the country. Terrifying. And i was going in less than 3 months.

I decided, seeing as though Oz has some of the best reefs in the world, to take a diving course. Here, I met Luke. He was doing his gap year and was assistant instructing the SCUBA classes. I was on the verge of breaking up with my Airman and the farthest thing from my mind was finding a new guy 3 weeks before I was about to move overseas, but somehow we became immensely close in that short time and agreed to meet up in the UK after my semester abroad was over. Once again, the rest in history. We have been inseparable ever since and he moved to Australia with me despite the fact the the first year of our relationship was spent over the phone. We had spent a grand total of 17 days together in our lives when he arrived in Oz and basically moved in with me.

My point, of course, is that if something is meant to be, it will defy all kinds of unlikely odds to manifest itself. Dont ignore the small signs if you feel something... it was my gut feeling that led me to Boston, to Australia, to Luke, and hopefully to England soon. I think my ability to go with my guts has led me down the most amazing path and I wouldnt dare change a thing thats happened.

Monday, August 08, 2005

An Experiment

By the way people, I have entered the kite surfing photo and picture #10 from my Thailand post into the BBCs photographer of the year competition. I dont expect to win but if my some miracle they think Im talented can i count on you all to go vote for me??

Still chilling out here in England until Thursday. I have tons going in my head but not much motivation to blog it all. I opened up an English bank account today for when I come back... guess thats a small step toward making this place home, huh?

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Kite Surfing

It always astounds me how big the Australian sky seems compared to England.


kite surfing Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Im back!

Well, here I am, back in 'sunny' old England. The first thing I wanted to do when I got here was post some photos so you can all see some of what Ive been up to the last 2 and a bit weeks. It was really hard to choose because I took so many, but I have put up some of my favorites. Sorry if its a lot to read and look at at once but your comments would be appreciated!

So, let me give a little recap;

Bangkok is crazy! The pollution is insane, the lines on the road more a general guideline than an actual set of road rules, and as Luke said, "Ive seen things go past on motor bikes that i think I would have trouble fitting into a transit van."

Yet, we were fascinated by it all. We were eager to meet up with our tour group and start seeing the country. The first night we met everyone in the lobby and immediately went out for cocktails and got to know everyone. The group consisted of Nutty, our fearless leader and protector, Hazel, Mike, Luke, Jose and Anna, the English, Louise the Irish, Sandra the Scot, Tony and Louise from New Zealand, and Chris, Eliza and myself, the Americans.

And so we became 12, about to embark on the journey of a lifetime led by Nutty, who without, of course, we would have been completely lost and half starved had it not been for his help, and knowledge of the Royal Kingdom of Thailand.

We travelled by boat, train, rickshaw, elephant, tuk tuk, by foot, song tao (spelling?) and managed to fit 8 people into a Pajero. The things we saw and did are almost beyond words for me right now, so Im going to cut to the chase and show you some pictures.

I do want to say, however, that Thailand was supposed to be a holiday to ease me out of the life I loved in Australia. Unfortunately, this did not happen. I was almost equally as sad and 10 times more lost and confused having to leave the people who, though I just met, only wanted to keep spending time with. I felt, and Im sure my group members reading this will agree, vulnerable and sad without Nutty and the rest of the group by my side after we split up. It really goes to show how the people you meet affect your happiness wherever you are. The people I met on this trip made it feel like home, and I thank all of you for that.

Now, look at my photos!

On our first night after trekking, we stayed with the Lisu Tribe. This is a Lisu woman with her baby in a pouch.



Hill tribe woman and baby (this one's for you, Mike) Posted by Picasa

Teaching English

After our first night, we had the opportunity to go down to the local school and teach the kids Engligh for 30 minutes or so. They are so isolated they definitely dont get many tourists, so they were fascinated by us and were soaking up everything we taught them.


Our English class Posted by Picasa


Hill tribe Boys Posted by Picasa

Trekking

This was taken on our 3rd day of trekking after leaving the Akah village. Here, Im not sure if Nutty saw me taking a photo or whether he was communicating with someone else, but he is giving the thumbs up. Good eyes! This was taken from around the bend of the trail fairly far away. Oh, and it was pissing down rain as it had been the whole trek.


Slow pokes :-) Posted by Picasa


Bridge over the river Kwai Posted by Picasa


Hazel laughed at me for taking this.. any other thoughts? Posted by Picasa


Buddha head in a tree Posted by Picasa


I know, I know.. weird. But I like it. :- P Posted by Picasa

Temples

Just another one of the many temples we visited. I likes this one because it is different from the others we saw. Not as elaborate, but still very colourful; I like the yellow.


Neato Posted by Picasa

On the 3rd day of trekking we stopped on the mountain for a rest and i had som fantastic photo opportunities. Despite the fact that i had just slid down a hill and stopped only when my knee collided with a rock, I managed to get some great shots such as this, the sunflowers, and others.


Picking the rice... Posted by Picasa


I love my camera Posted by Picasa


It was a lot prettier once the sun came out... Posted by Picasa


The coolest bug I have ever seen Posted by Picasa

The bamboo bridge

We were wet. We were hot. We were tired. Not to mention covered in red clay from head to foot. Somehow falling into this creek was not appealimg and we managed to scurry across bamboo logs passing as a bridge.


Luke Crosses the "bridge" Posted by Picasa


Us, immediately after we finished our trekking.. Sandra's expression about says it all here... Posted by Picasa

An afternoon in Laos

The area where Thailand borders Burma and Laos is called the golden triangle. We had the opportunity to visit the other countries for an afternoon and we took a speed boat across the river to Laos, where for some strange reason, they like to stuff snakes in bottles and pass it off as a refreshing alcaholic beverage. See next photo.


No way, Jose! (Hazel, Nutty and Jose on the boat to Laos) Posted by Picasa


Snake whiskey. Ew. Posted by Picasa

Cool People

Our group photo on our last night out together. I dont think any of us forsaw how close we would become in such a short amount of time. I miss you all!!


The Sabai Sabai Monkeys Posted by Picasa


The 3 Yanks Posted by Picasa

I like this photo because it seems to encompass just how much fun we were having.. ALL the time. When one person would start, everyone would be in hysterics before long. I think I burned off more calories laughing than I did hiking over that mountain.


We laughed... a lot! Posted by Picasa


Temple detail Posted by Picasa


Elephant riding Posted by Picasa


Elephant at Doi Suthep Posted by Picasa

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