It has been a while since I have written anything on this blog, a combination of writer’s block and an ever increasing backlog of things to possibly write about, which led instead to an effective abandonment of this site.
In my last post I was arriving in Northern Thailand from Laos after a two day river boat journey.
Since then there are countless things I could dedicate entire posts to; I have enjoyed the highlights of Chiang Mai, experienced a sleeper train to Bangkok (which included my first ever shower on a train), had sensory overload in Bangkok, been amazed by the beauty of Singapore, seen paradise in Indonesia, ticked off an item on my bucket list in Malaysia and finally returned to cold reality in Europe!
Back in June when I left on this incredible journey I had a vague idea of where I would like to go, but I could never have predicted the opportunities I would have, the extraordinary people I would meet, the spectacular sights I would see and the emotional impact it would all have on me.
Returning to the UK has been a mental shock to the system. Not least of which being the grey skies and cold weather!
It is a surreal feeling of being home but also not quite belonging.
As the map above shows there is a whole world out there and, despite my best efforts this year, there is a huge amount of it still to see.
I have tried to reduce the wanderlust feeling by cooking food from the places I loved. Although I think my attempts at Cambodian curry and Thai soup have only increased my desire to return and have the real thing.
I am not sure what the next step is for me. I am still trying to figure out if it is time to settle back into a routine at home or whether I should immediately find my way out the country again to continue exploring.
I fear my escape from custody may simply have been a release on bail.
Whatever happens next though, nothing will take away from the memories and connections that have been made over the last 6 months as I have travelled through 15 countries over 3 continents (or 4 depending on whether you count Indonesia in Australasia).
To anyone who has read or followed my travels on here on Instagram and has not yet been to South East Asia I hope my trip has inspired you. It is impossible to truly explain the experience and all I can do is to loudly repeat the unmissable opportunities such as breathtaking scenery, exceptionally friendly locals, ridiculously cheap prices and a whole community of fellow travellers who will support, encourage and improve the experience.
I cannot overstate the importance of those I met along the way. Including those from home I had the pleasure of meeting whilst away!
To those who kept me smiling and provided the enthusiasm to continue on during the bad days, those who made the mundane attractions special and turned average places into incredible memories, and to those who inspired me on where and how to travel.
There are too many to name but I hope you all know who you are and how much you mean to me.
If anyone has suggestions on where the next adventure should be all ideas are welcome!
The final stats in miles for this escape are:
Plane – 26,334
Car – 12,442
Bus/Taxi/TukTuk – 2,214
Motorbike – 1,259
Train/Subway – 809
Walk – 430
Boat – 323
Bicycle – 72