Saturday, September 8, 2012

Here I Am, This is Me

A lot has happened in the past week.

There is so much to say but I don't think it's possible to adequately explain the entirety of our story. So, I'll just start by saying that Stephen and I ended our teaching contract last Friday. We arrived in Khon Kaen, back in May, full of excitement and passion for teaching and a new experience in a foreign country. However, we were made aware pretty quickly what kind of work environment we would be experiencing at Anuban. We didn't feel welcome with our Thai teachers and found fault with the school's policies, which often didn't jive well with our moral compasses. That, in combination with city life, ultimately brought Stephen and I to our decision to move on. Needless to say, it was an incredibly difficult one to make.

Our lives have changed drastically from what they had been for the past 4 months, teaching in Khon Kaen. Coming here, I knew it would be hard, but we have been faced with so many unexpected challenges that have helped us grow and really shaped us as individuals. We are grateful for all of the experiences we've been able to have since coming here to Thailand. Although teaching at Anuban and living Khon Kaen may not have been the right thing for us--ultimately--we gained a lot from it. I am so happy that Stephen and I came to Thailand. Our journey has taken us somewhere we couldn't have ever anticipated going, but I am enjoying the ride. There are countless things I have learned from living and working in Khon Kaen that I am going to take with me for the rest of my life. I can truly say that I have absolutely no regrets.

Now, we're just traveling and enjoying our youth. Before coming here, I had only ever been out of the country once--to Quebec, Canada. So I'm incredibly happy to be continuing my traveling experience and further developing my skills. We just came back from a trip to Siem Reap, Cambodia, where we enjoyed 4 days with two of our friends. We rode horses through the countryside, rented bicycles and explored ancient stone temples. It was an amazing time and a great way to celebrate the start of this next chapter.

 Relaxing with a beer by the pool on our arrival in Siem Reap.
 Obviously, Mexican food for dinner.
 Why not throw in a mustache party?

 Sleeping in a hammock on a tuk-tuk. SE Asian normalcy.

 3 pigs on the back of a motorbike. Atypical, but typical in Cambodia, apparently.
The Happy Ranch Horse Farm
 Smaller Cambodian breed of horse.
 Kissy kissy.

 Stephen's first time on horseback!

 Tourist shot.
 Angkor Wat.

 Riding around the temples.
 Ta Prohm.

 Artsy hotel we stayed in next.

 Beng Mealea.

 It started to rain a bit.

 Then it began to pour.
But this was still, by far, our favorite temple.

Now we're back in Thailand, soaking up the sun in Krabi.


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