Saturday, December 31, 2011

We're Here!

I think of myself as a seasoned traveler. I am used to the protocol in airports, I know what to expect, and usually I'm not phased by anything. I don’t know if it was because we left so close to Christmas, with my mind more focused on family and friends, but the moment I got to the Albany airport on Thursday morning, I knew I wasn’t entirely 'ready' for this journey.

"I left my passport at home. 15 minutes, I'll be only 15 minutes" says the Indian man taking the shuttle down to JFK with me. Let me tell you, anyone on that shuttle will never forget their passport while it’s Wally, the driver’s day to bring passengers to the airport. This man was so mad and he made sure to let everyone know it. He made up for lost time though, 85 all the way. I was holding onto my stomach the entire trip.

I'm the first passenger off and I ran into JFK so fast making sure not to look back at Wally. Feeling sad for everyone left with the aggressive driver, my preoccupied mind walked into arguably the craziest airport in the world. Terminal 1 included Turkish, Korean, French, German, and Chinese airlines. It was a people watchers delight. I found a seat and took it all in, until Dan arrived 2 hours later.

We had our last indulge at the golden arch and got the show on the road. I think our airline, agents, and flight crew were all relatively new. I've been warned about pig piles. I've even witnessed them first hand on last year’s adventure to India, but this was like nothing I had ever seen before. Asians couldn’t be more polite if you asked them to. Lines are formed, there is minimal talking and rules are followed. Well what happens if there is no queue or no rules? Asians freak out. It was the most unorganized flight I've ever been on.

After an hour of standing in line to board the plane, Dan and I look at each other with the same thing in mind...sleeping pills. I go for the heavy stuff. Dan stepped up his melatonin to the Dramamine. Within minutes we were sleeping babies. Now we thought the plan was to stop in Anchorage for fuel, but a crew change was added to the mix. Do you know what that means? All passengers must get off the plane. All passengers include me, the girl in the middle of her sleeping pill. I zombie walked off the plane and sat. I don’t know where, I don’t know what I did. All I know is Dan had a few laughs but got me safe back on the plane.

After another connecting flight in Taiwan we made it safe to Bangkok. We checked into our hotel that’s in what you would call the time square district and there is karaoke blasting from all different sides of us!


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Last Minute- Why Not!

I am usually not a last minute person. I like my ducks in a row, if ya know what I mean. But, for some reason, I thought it would be good to leave it ALL until after Christmas. 3 days is plenty! (WHAT WORLD ARE YOU LIVING IN MEGAN!)

Dilemma #1 Last night I washed all my laundry, except it wasnt all of my laundry. Forgot my favorite pair of leggins. My sister came to the rescue and did a load this morning for me!! (Thanks Moey) As im folding my laundry, I realize my jeans are a few washes away from a nice hole. Great. How did I not notice this earlier? Secrets out: I hate washing my jeans. I love having worn in jeans, but these are just a little too worn in. 9am trip to buy a new pair of jeans: check!

Dilemma #2 After the laundry was done I started to pack the infamous pack. WHAT A JOKE. Last year I surprised myself and had so much extra room. This year, looks like im bringing 2 bags. I was having heart palpitations. Frantically, I called Danny. He made me read through everything I had in that bag. I was waiting for the "Why are you bringing that", but it never came. He realized that everything I had, there was a reason for. There is no solution for this problem. I have no idea what I am going to do.

Dilemma #3 Laugh all you want, but I need to figure out how im going to watch the Giant v Cowboys game this Sunday (Monday for me) It's the talk of the town in this household. I chimed right in and they all looked at me like I was crazy. I was so excited for the game I forgot that I wouldnt be able to watch it. I'm on a mission... I am going to find a bar to watch that game. I am going to cheer them into the playoffs all the way from Bangkok!

As for everything else. I think im set. I've got my passport, my money, banks have been called, and goodbyes have been said. Pizza is my last meal of choice. Chuck's special from Testo's!! If you're ever in Troy, you've got to have it. It's good enough to make it your last meal. Now lets hope I dont have to add dilemma #4 to this list.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and enjoys their New Year!! We'll see you in Bangkok.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Market of all Markets

I now know what it feels like to be "stuck" with 2 travel nuts who wont stop chatting about their experiences and reminiscing about god knows what. The topic of conversation was the Chatuchak Market. I sat there pretending like I was in the loop... crazy market, on the weekend, everything you could find blah blah blah.

Well I've done my research and I really regret buying hundreds of dollars worth of Christmas presents. My lax preparation is looking purposeful more than lazy. Everything that I forget, I can pick up at this market. If my research is correct. this market will be like the Mall of America and NYC Shopping combined... on crack with a twist of Thai!

Spanning an incredible 35 acres of shopping, most stalls are tucked into tiny narrow lanes overflowing with produce, clothes, and home decor to name a few. The weekend market attracts some 200,000 shoppers, browsers and buskers each Saturday and Sunday to its roughly 8,000 stalls.

My mother recently asked me if I wanted a compass. I told her no thanks, but Im thinking of reneging my answer. I might need it to MacGyver my way through this market. Which reminds me, I need to bring my bartering skills back up to par. (Fast forward to Christmas dinner.. I'll trade you three shrimp for half your filet) Now lets see who the lucky person is that gets to sit next to me!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

What I Call Preparation

Less than two weeks before our adventure begins, I find myself making my lists and checking them twice (ho ho ho). I haven't had to do much to prepare for this trip. Instead of stressing and packing, all of the things that a type A personality should be doing, I am taking the advice of a good friend..."buy your ticket, say your goodbyes and figure it out when you get there," (Let's be serious here, I still have my lists and my inherited type A personality)But instead of stressing the small stuff, I'm enjoying the company of friends, family and the luxuries of the USA.

The past week has been spent indulging in an assortment of favorites. I have watched more Law and Order SVU episodes while wrapped up in blankets warm in front of a fireplace then I thought possible. I have eaten beef for at least one meal (OK two) a day and have visited and revisited with the special people in my life.

I've had the pleasure of leisurely Christmas shopping, sleeping in, and cooking. Yes, you read that correctly. Cooking is leisurely when you know you wont be doing it again for years.

Now let's let the fun of Christmas Craziness begin!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The boats rocking...

Do what you like, like what you do..... That was the quote I put in my 6th grade year book. Little did I know then how much of an impact it would have on my life. It comes from the clothing line Life is Good, which most of you know is near and dear to my heart.

But what if doing what you like and liking what you do is hurting the people around you? The good-bye season is upon us. My family said bye to my boyfriend this week but minutes before the final hugs and kisses, came "the talk". It hit us square in the face. It was the non-chalant (we've heard it a million times in the last six months) "Why are you going to Asia"

After 10 minutes of tears, explanations, and everything in between all parties involved came to the mutual agreement that we would never fully understand the opposition.

I took the silence over the past six months to be acceptance when in actuality it wasn’t that at all. "I just want to understand. I don’t have to like it, I just have to accept it."

It was a sad moment, knowing what you're about to embark on is going to hurt your family.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Calm Before the Storm

I've got 24 hours left in Vermont. My room is bare, my car is packed, and the snow is coming down. For the last two week's I feel like I've been a crazy lady trapped in a cubicle and today it all comes to an end. Work is over in Vermont and it's time to pack it up and head down to NY for the Holidays. I've got nothing to do but soak in the company of friends and family and I couldnt be more excited.