Goodbye Asia, Hello America
With this move back to the US, I really feel the weight of my decision to leave Asia. While I am happy to return and eager for a different kind of adventure, I know that I am really going to miss this extraordinary region of the world.
I fell in love with Asia when I moved to Japan in 2002. I traveled extensively through that beautiful country and learned to love the green of the rice fields, the change of seasons, amazing food, kind-hearted people, a healthy life, the beautiful culture which seeped into my heart and soul…so much.
During my days in Japan, I discovered SE Asia through Thailand and the amazing Nepal and Tibet trip. Thailand is an especially easy place to travel and makes for a great introduction to the region. Nepal and Tibet were just teasers for ridiculously unique and inspiring journeys.
And then in 2008, you’ll remember I traveled for four months through Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia before heading to Europe. One only needs to browse through my Travel Blog to learn what an impression those experiences made on my life. I’ve recently enjoyed one last trip to Laos before my time in Vietnam ends. Laos may be my favorite.
It’s been a very difficult yet very comforting decision to leave Asia and return to the US. It took a lot of soul searching and I’ve written lots of pros and cons lists and used my own crazy system of practicality, motivation, logic and reason to come to the conclusion that my life will be better for spending some time in what I should call home. I have every desire to stay in the US for a bit, but I cannot imagine a life without travel, and one where I don’t ever come back to Asia. And I cannot promise that after a few weeks back in America that I don’t freak out and just hop on a plane to Argentina or something!
I leave Vietnam today, and while it is always difficult to close a chapter of your life, I have a sense that a very bright and wonderful future is waiting for me and I need to go and grab it with total enthusiasm. I’m ready.
On the Bright Side,
About the photo: I chose the window seat for this journey for some reason. I think I needed to visually depart Vietnam and welcome San Diego, as well as emotionally adjust! ;p