Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Overcoming fears.....

So I always believed that part of life is about getting over one's fears. And certainly we all have had our share of scary moments or thoughts that we wish we could get rid of. Well, for me, one of my greatest fears in life was travelling on a motorcycle at ANY speed, let alone a very fast speed. Well today, thanks to a kind a gentle friend I met today from Australia, my fear is now gone. There I was, on the back of a motorcycle for a good 2 1/2 hours traveling at speeds of up to 75 mph , winding through curvy mountain roads, and just taking in breathtaking scenery (yes, I wore a helmut !!). This experience was all about trust and I really felt very safe the entire time. I even burnt my leg on the tailpipe ( a new lsson now learned; a tailpipe is ALWAYS hot , even when the bike is off !!) yet felt very little pain as I was just so happy to have overcome this seemingly ridiculous fear. The moral of this story, is that it is NEVER too late to overcome anything. I feel so happy that I can now check this fear off my list !!!

I also felt it was time to show some pictures of a few more friends that I have met since being here in Chiang Mai. I have been befreinded by a wonderful group of Swiss and Thai people here. Some of them live here (one is the owner of the guesthouse I am staying in- he is the Val Kilmer look alike in the group picture and his girlfreind Sai is a local Thai woman; the others are from the same Swiss hometown outside of Zurich and were here to have a reunion all together. Needless to say, I have never seen such an animated and party loving group of people in all my life (I think they would give the Greeks and Brazilians a good run for their money !)!! They welcomed me like family and we ended up traveling all together up to the moutainside town of Pai last weekend. I am thankful to have met such a fun loving group of people. They are all now in the south celebrating together on the island of Koh Chang. I am here now helping Sai, one of the beautiful Thai women in the group shot ( see pic below), open up a new massage salon and coffee shop next to our guest houese. She asked me to help with writing out their promotional brochures - great fun for me to be able to help out in this way ! The shop opens tomorrow and should be quite a success in this neighborhood.

Some of you have also been asking what my daily routine is like. Well, right now I have two things I start my day with. First, I go to a nearby temple (picture to come soon) and meditate for about a half hour or so . The temple is filled with one very large beautiful gold buddha with many gold-adorned relics around. It is very peaceful here as I have this Buddha all to myself. I swear he smiles directly at me every morning as if we are old freinds. I am usually here alone for the entire time- I feel blessed to have this peace for myself.. After this, I walk to my gym about a mile away and work out for about an hour or so and then sit by the pool and read, sun, and swim for a bit. I will send photos of this pool as well because it is quite beautiful where it sits. I have a view of the whole city when I swim.

My evenings are usually spent getting to an internet cafe and doing some school work and catching up with friends and family and then I usually take a walk to visit my Greek freinds at Zorbas for a drink,meal and/or conversation. Often I have a nice quiet massage if and when I need one. I am determined to help heal my herniated discs in my neck (old injury) and want to take advantage of the very cheap and very efficient massage here. On average, a one hour massage here costs about 4 dollars.

So yes, my life has been lived in a pretty healthy way so far. I even stepped on a scale for the first time in a very long while and realized I have already lost 10 lbs. in a month ! I usually wouldnt share such a fact (and I do share this with great modesty) but in this case I wanted to share this as a testimony to how great it is to lead a relatively stress free (and sugar/caffeine free!) life ! And , of course, I walk everywhere I go-this definitely helps will be strange to jump back into a car when I return to the states.

Okay, I have babbled enough for now.....I just needed to share with you all that I am doing just fine. It was a rough week but I believe I am "over the hump" is short and I want to make sure I embrace as much as I can from this overseas experience.


Hello from Doi Inthanon National Park !

My Swiss freinds taking off for the South (inside a "songthauw",

the local transport/taxi around Thailand.

Taking a rest stop on the way to Pai

Family transport in much of Thailand....

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