Travel

What’s Changing Around Here

Posted by on Mar 11, 2015 in Travel | 2 comments

What’s Changing Around Here

So much has changed during the last six weeks it’s hard to know where to start. We’ve packed up the house in Laos and bid some wrenching farewells to our dog, Zulu, our staff, and friends in Vientiane. We scrambled through two weeks of medical and dental appointments here in Australia (all of Mike’s one year post-cancer scans came back clear. Hooray!!) so that we could all leave together for Port Vila on Feb 18th. Then we decided at the last minute that Mike should head out first and spend some time in the more remote projects while the kids and I stayed in Australia for few extra...

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Goodbyes: Does Practice Really Make Perfect?

Posted by on Apr 3, 2013 in Travel | 2 comments

Goodbyes: Does Practice Really Make Perfect?

Change is in the air. After three years here in Luang Prabang, we’re leaving. My husband, Mike, is taking up a new job in Vientiane (the capital of Laos), so we’re packing up our life here and moving. We’re also having another baby in just over four months. Because of the lack of quality medical care in Laos, it would be less than wise for me to give birth in this country. Because I have a chronic health condition called lymphedema that makes enduring hot weather heat difficult and damaging, it would also be less than wise to stay here, heavily pregnant, through the worst of the hot...

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Holidays and Hospitals

Posted by on Mar 21, 2013 in Travel | 11 comments

Holidays and Hospitals

We’re on R&R leave this week. For those of you not familiar with the aid world, R&R stands for Rest and Relaxation. Twice a year Mike gets an extra week of leave we can use to leave Luang Prabang and fly somewhere regional for a little mini-break. This time we’ve headed to the south of Thailand. We’re in Krabi, near a beach called Ao Nang. We’ve rented a small two-bedroom townhouse for six nights that shares a lovely pool with its neighbors. We’ve spent the week introducing Dominic to boats and beaches, catching him as he jumps off the pool’s waterfall, and eating good...

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This I Used To Believe

Posted by on Jan 14, 2013 in Travel | 9 comments

This I Used To Believe

National Public Radio in the USA used to do a segment called This I Believe, featuring short pieces on people’s most passionate and strongly held beliefs. The essays that resulted from this project span topics ranging from life as an act of literary creation to being nice to the pizza delivery guy. They are united only by the clarity and conviction each writer brings to their chosen topic. My husband and I were talking about these stories one day when we decided to flip the premise around and discuss things that we used to believe. There were a lot of these things. Some of these changes in...

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Bhutan at the speed of baby – the big hike and other happenings

Posted by on Oct 31, 2012 in Travel | 6 comments

Bhutan at the speed of baby – the big hike and other happenings

We’ve been back from Bhutan more than a week but ‘whatevs’, this is blog posting at the speed of baby. So what did we do during our last couple of days in Bhutan? Mama did an interview about Love At The Speed Of Email on Radio Valley 99.9, the first private FM radio station in the country. She didn’t talk about me at all. Boring. We spun a lot of prayer wheels. Mum and Dad didn’t let me do much of the spinning. Tell me that one about sharing again, why don’t you. We hiked up to Tiger’s Nest monastery. We were at 10,000 feet and it was 2.5 miles pretty much straight...

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Bhutan at the speed of baby – Day 1

Posted by on Oct 12, 2012 in Travel | 2 comments

Bhutan at the speed of baby – Day 1

We left Laos at 7am today and by 11 we were walking alongside a road in Thailand, sweating. The lady at the hotel had said the nearest restaurant was just a ten-minute walk away, but we were twenty minutes into trudging and there was still no food in sight. “How are you feeling?” Daddy asked Mama. Mama sighed. “I’m trying to be a good sport about all of this, but I’m not entirely succeeding,” she said. I’m not quite sure what she meant by “all of this”. She could have been referring to the two days of travel just to get to Bhutan or the hassle of packing (she says packing...

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A note from Down Under

Posted by on Jul 17, 2012 in Travel | 4 comments

A note from Down Under

In Australia, at my parent’s house. Finally, more than a week after landing, this trip is starting to make sense. Prior to now there was just being squished into my seat on a full plane next to scruffy teen headed to Thailand for a surfing holiday who clearly relished my son’s wiggling and screaming for most of the 1.5 hour flight (almost as much as he relished the fact that during the five minutes when Dominic actually got quiet – 20 minutes before landing and right after they put the fasten seatbelt sign on – Baby Ratbag deposited a giant poo in his diaper). And then there was...

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On the road again … 10 great quotes about travel

Posted by on Jul 7, 2012 in Travel | 6 comments

On the road again … 10 great quotes about travel

Apparently, the word travel has a common origin with the word travail. During the era when travel was uncomfortable and often dangerous, the French word trepaliare (torture) spawned the word travailler (to put oneself to pain or trouble). English borrowed the word as travail, meaning painful or laborious effort. From that root grew the word travel, which signified a wearisome journey. So there you go. Travel. Travail. Torture. Mike will be gone from Luang Prabang for most of the next three weeks. So will Dominic and I. The combined lure of spending time with family, seeing some doctors, and...

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Give me an “X”

Posted by on May 21, 2012 in Travel | 5 comments

Give me an “X”

We arrived back in Laos yesterday with our sore throats and running noses and 103 kilos of luggage (no, not making that up, that is actually how much we checked in and isn’t counting our four carry-ons which were loaded with children’s books) to find lots of hot sunshine to be had but not a great deal of electricity. As in, none. Mike hopped on his bicycle and went to do things like order yogurt and bread and buy fruit. There was no way I was braving the furnace that was upstairs to start unpacking suitcases, so I sat on the tile floor and watched sweaty snotty baby pull toys out of a...

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Holidays and stuff

Posted by on May 5, 2012 in Travel | 8 comments

Holidays and stuff

I always think I’m going to have more time on holidays to get stuff done, but in the end I always have less. Although, come to think of it, I guess it depends on how you define stuff. If you define stuff as spending time with family and friends, eating ice cream and brie, and shopping for essentials like children’s books, baby toothbrushes, bed sheets, and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, then I’ve been getting lots of stuff done. (After only having cheap Chilean wine available in Laos, this is how we feel when we’re getting stuff done in the liquor store:) (This is how we feel when...

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