When I first landed in Koh Samui, there was graffiti on the side of the road just outside of the airport. It said,
“Come to the edge” I said.
“No we’re afraid”
“Come to the edge”
“No, we’re afraid we’ll fall”
“Come to the edge” I said again.
And they came
And I pushed them.
And they flew.
It was a testament to faith in the face of the unknown. As I stood alone on the dusty street in Thailand with a backpack twice the size as I was, I realized the significance.
I had come to the edge.
Throughout this last year, I have had the opportunity to travel to the U.S. Virgin Islands, Kauai, and Southeast Asia. 2016 brought me so many adventures, so many moments that took my breath away, dancing in the sunrise, deep belly laughs, new ocean homes, steel drums on the beach, colourful reefs and ocean life, sorbet sunsets, new friendships, and a deeper understanding of what it means to live in faith and in love. It was incredible and so humbling, and gifted me a year of immense growth. I was pushed to expand and expand and expand beyond boundaries. Experiencing different cultures broke my heart open and filled me with compassion and thankfulness. Amidst the very tactile growing pains, I flew.
The year started with a trip to St. Thomas and St. John, in the U.S. Virgin Islands with my momma. We got dive certified, spent hours walking through the cobblestone streets of Charlotte Amalie, almost drove off the road on multiple occasions (driving on the left side of the street is a trip), sipped Moroccan tea with street merchants, haggled with old shopkeepers, had a million laughs, snorkeled with sharks twice our size, and beach bummed our hearts out.
We then made our way to Kauai, Hawaii, the Garden Isle. Spoiled rotten, this was my ninth visit to the island. I always think that every island is my favorite, but I (might) actually mean it when it comes to Kauai. We had the most relaxing time, watching the sunsets, driving the coast, beach combing, and drinking copious amounts of Java Kai coffee and Kauai Juice Co. Kombucha, not to mention getting some prime momma time in.
After quitting my day job in August, I made my way to Thailand, for my solo adventure across Southeast Asia. I spent my days walking to the market and then to the beach, trying not to get hit by motorbikes, taking in the culture, resisting the urge to pet all the stray dogs, eating mango sticky rice and pad thai, laying on the beach (always), swimming with beautiful corals and exotic fish, learning about our oceans and teaching others, taking long walks, meeting new people. My trip got cut short by a trip to the Bangkok Hospital.
I went from 10 to 0 in a matter of hours and haven’t been the same since. I have been struggling with whatever bug I picked up in Thailand, without diagnosis, for the last 5 months. I am trying to view it as a part of the greater picture. Growth and good always come from trials. So, I am going to be updating the blog with the island adventures of the past year, things to do, best dive sites, etc.