Thursday, January 22, 2009

Raw "cooking" with a Thai zing

I've now completed seven days of fasting and feel like a new person both inside and out! All through my cleanse I was looking forward to taking a raw food class only to discover on the last day it had been canceled. Luckily, I found an alternative outside of the health retreat. Even better, it turned out to be a private session in Lam Sor, a peaceful area on the southern tip of Samui island. The food was deliciously fresh and bursting with flavor! Maybe it's because I'm finally able to eat after a lengthy period of ingesting only liquids or Ms Ta is a fantastic "cook" - it's probably both;)I helped prepare five fully raw and organic Thai dishes. All vegetables picked fresh from her garden.Serious preparations...Gorgeous colors and flavors.Ok, maybe not so serious... She's wearing a pamelo rind on her head.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Phuket Province

JW Marriott Resort - Stayed in a lovely villa for a week, time went by much too quickly! Tropical flowers blooming all over the grounds.As you can see, it's difficult to travel far in Thailand without seeing an elephant (most are domesticated of course).Beauty found.
One night we were invited for dinner in a neighborhood directly next to the airplane runway . These are some of the adorable children we got to play with. Happy happy family! Heard this repeated numerous times throughout the night!

Similan Island dive trip

Dive site sketch for help with navigation and orientation.

New Years in Khao Lak

Village Life

The following pictures are from the four days I spent in Ban Talae Nok and Tung Nang Dam.

One of the many traditional Thai-style meals we ate on a woven mat, laid flat on the "dining room" floor. On Xmas day we filled our bellies with a unique spread of spicy manta ray, egg and cabbage salad, dried-fried fish and cucumber.

Children in the homestay. Their strong desire to learn English and bubbling curiosity, made for a quick bond.
I arrived on the day of celebration to remember those killed by the 2004 tsunami. In this tiny village, 47 people lost their lives (17 of them were children).

Dinner with the whole village of less than 200 people. Everyone gathered - in remembrance of those passed on Dec. 26, 2004.Home in Ban Talae Nok. I learned that the man on the left (our guide) lost many family members in the tsunami disaster, two of his children and both his parents. The other man in red was our handy interpreter who also stayed in the village.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Sawadee ka. Still in Thailand, two months later!

I've been majorly slacking on updates.... too busy experiencing and not as much reflecting (although I have been keeping a detailed journal of my travels - I've found that to be necessary time spent). Currently I reside at Spa Samui Village (tucked away in the jungle) - a detox, yoga, meditation retreat - consisting of a seven day fast, where we are only allowed to drink juices and detoxifying concoctions. It's day three and already I'm feeling a fantastic energy surge. That is after a roller coaster of emotions and waves of nausea for the first two days.

Flashback on Christmas... stayed with a Thai family in a Muslim village for five days- this made for quite an unusual and memorable Christmas!

New Years was an amazing sight to say the least - on the beach in Khao Lak at a small beach bar pumping out reggae tunes. From there we could see fireworks launched from six different locations at the same time. To intensify this beauty, people lined the beach setting lanterns into the sky with burning flames.

Visited the best scuba diving site in the whole of Thailand - The Similan Islands - spent the night on a live aboard boat. We had an underwater videographer with us for the first few dives, so some of what we saw is captured on film (I'll try to provide the link when I get a hold of the DVD).

Met up with Sylvia, Rachel and Kairon from California - lucky enough to stay at the JW Marriot in Mai Khao beach (Phuket Province). Made for an interesting contrast of accommodations - ranging from the most basic in the villages and the boat to extreme comfort in the resort:)

The world famous Full Moon Party on Kho Pha-Ngan...... is a bit of a blur!! Danced with thousands of others until the sun came up over Haad Rin Beach.

After Ko Samui I plan on flying to Laos, but haven't exactly arranged that far ahead yet - haha. Laos and Cambodia are high on my priority list! When I first planned my trip to SE Asia I never anticipated spending an entire two months in Thailand... I have no complaints:)

I will post pictures soon... I tried to upload a bundle last night, but the computer froze and stress isn't conducive to cleansing!