As most of you probably know, I’m finally back in America for a quick visit with family and friends, so I’m sorry for the delay in spilling details from the final leg of our Grand Adventure.
When we arrived in Bangkok on the sleeper train from Laos, I felt relieved and happy to be back in Thailand. We spent a few nights at Sam Sen Sam Guesthouse in Banglampoo and explored all the major attractions from The Grand Palace and Wat Pho to the Amulet Market and Khao San Road. We also took a break from being “backpackers” and splurged on drinks at the Mandarin Oriental and the Sky Bar on the 64th floor of the Lebua Hotel, which provided the most stunning views I’ve ever seen.
After a few days, we decided we needed a break from the hustle and bustle of Bangkok, so we slipped down to the beach side town of Hua Hin for a little getaway. A quaint town with beautiful beaches and hundreds of bars tucked away on side-streets, Hua Hin is a popular destination for local Bangkokians and is also where the Royal Family comes to relax.
When we left Bangkok, I hopped on a flight back up to Lampang. Boy, did it feel good to be “home.” Michael took a little detour and spent a few days in Shanghai at a friend’s bachelor party. Let’s just leave it at that…
He joined me in Lampang later that week, just in time for Songkran, a huge water festival to celebrate the Thai New Year. We celebrated like locals with my Thai teacher friends and it was by far the coolest festival I’ve ever seen. Everyone stands along the road, armed with squirt guns, throwing buckets of water at passerby and smearing colored powder on their faces for good luck and well wishes in the new year. Stay tuned for some video clips from this wild holiday…
We spent two days “playing water” for Songkran, then headed down to Chiang Mai to catch a flight to Hong Kong, the final destination of Michael & Hannah’s Grand Adventure! Michael has been to HK a handful of times for work and was excited to introduce me to one of his favorite cities. It’s a unique combination of “East meets West” and had all the comforts of home, as well as heavy Chinese influences. We stayed in a great Airbnb apartment at the top of the Mid-Levels Escalator (the longest outdoor escalator in the world!) and had a great time exploring Kowloon, Victoria Peak, Cheung Chau island and the Central district.
I could say the trip was over in the blink of an eye, or that before we knew it, six weeks had flown by, but that wasn’t really the case. We saw a lot. We did a lot. And it was exhausting. Nevertheless, we made sure to savor each day in each city, knowing that this was a once-in-a-lifetime kind of trip, and I wouldn’t change a thing. We had a fantastic experience, took our relationship to a new level (as a long-distance couple, that was the most time we’ve ever spent together consecutively), and came home with photos, videos, memories and a new perspective of the world. It truly was a Grand Adventure.