Was this the year I was finally going to go travelling? After chatting about going to South East Asia with people who had already done the backpacking thing, my conversations always ended with: “but I haven’t booked the flights yet”.
I wanted to prove I wasn’t all talk. It also helped that Will and I were sick of our monotonous freelancing routine in London. So we committed. Buying flights leaving in April to Bangkok. Returning in July. Our three month trip around South East Asia was official and I spent the next few months feeling excited and sick with fear.
We travelled clockwise from Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia. Finishing in the southern Thai islands. Apart from the direction via a few key cities, we made a lot of decisions whilst on the road. Something that I, the planner, never thought I’d be able to do.
Some places we almost skipped because the logistics seemed complicated, but they turned out to be the best. Other places were easy to reach, but these turned out to be the worst. With either—because we hadn’t made solid plans—we were able to extend our stay or get the first form of transport out of there.
Did I find myself? No. But I did enjoy being more productive in three months than I have in three years. I got to take a break from the computer, go outside and do things at my own leisure. I’ve hiked across rice paddy fields; learnt to cook authentic dishes; ate the most delicious street food; rode on the back of a scooter in Ho Chi Minh City in the rain; stayed in a bare basics bungalow on a beautiful island in Cambodia—and my favourite—learnt how to scuba dive.
Stick around. More stories to come.