Bye Bye Bye, Southeast Asia

Bye Bye Bye, Southeast Asia

Things have gotten rather busy the past few days as I prepare to say a sorrowful farewell to Southeast Asia and  a hearty “g’day mate” to Australia. And I don’t mean busy in an “I have errands to run, temples to see, legong dances to do” way, but in more […]

Heed the warnings on Koh Jum

Welcome to the Jungle. And, Yes, That IS a Scorpion.

To a certain (semi-large) sector of my friends, I’ve been coined the Fresh Air Fund Kid, an allusion to the program that sends city kids out to the boonies for a few days to get their nature on, and I’m any indicator, return to the city happily aware of how […]

Longtail boats, Koh Mook

Thai Island Hopping Heaven

Does life get much sweeter than hopping longtail boats among Thailand’s perfect Andaman Coast islands? Um, that’s a rhetorical question. Answer: NO. It absolutely does not. Here’s why: 1. The view from your beach blanket, more often than not, looks quite a bit like this: 2. Once you’re happily ensconced […]

Phallic offerings, Princess Cave, Railay Beach

Large Phalluses Are Always Welcome

It’s one of my favorite lines of one of my favorite TV shows, HBO’s “Rome.” Atia of the Julii sends a gift to placate her arch-nemesis, Servilia: a large African slave with a pink ribbon tied around his, er, well-endowed man parts. Her daughter looks at her dubiously and asks […]

Railay Beach West

Yes, Belinda Carlisle, Heaven Is a Place On Earth

The list of superlatives that could describe Railay Beach, Thailand hardly do its stop-you-in-your-tracks beauty justice. I’ve got to admit, after the unforgettable Maldives, it’s hard to be overwhelmed by even the loveliest beaches. So many are truly gorgeous, like Koh Kong, Cambodia, but few will be as pristine and […]

Stormy days on Koh Samui, Thailand

I Ain’t Afraid of a Big, Bad Monsoon!

I blissfully began my stay in the lovely isle of Koh Samui, Thailand by basking in a few hours of perfect sun. But alas, my cheery reverie would shortly be followed by a 3-day stretch of intermittent torrential rains — the kind with thunder claps that make you leap out of bed […]

The perfect beach at Koh Kong Island, Cambodia, which remains undeveloped..

Photographic Evidence: Why I Left It All Behind

To be fair, this postcard-worthy deserted beach on Koh Kong Island off the coast of Cambodia isn’t specifically the first and only reason why “I left it all behind” to travel to globe – but it certainly counts for something. Seriously, I left to explore, to be changed and learn […]

My Crack Team of Masseuses and the Hot Russian Next Door

My Crack Team of Masseuses and the Hot Russian Next Door

“Madame! Madame!”Their pleading cries (sounding like “Ma-DOM”) greet me like clockwork every morning, within minutes – but more often seconds – after I set foot outside my bungalow door. And more often than not, I smile and shake my still bleary-eyed head, “No, thank you.” First, it’s the fruit vendors. […]

Checking Off the  Bucket List: The Maldives

Checking Off the Bucket List: The Maldives

Years ago, while working as a freelancer, one of my regular gigs involved writing beach reviews for the world’s best stretches of sand and surf. Year after year the Maldives made the list, and with each new stint of research my obsession with seeing what’s widely believed to be the […]

On a Day Well-Spent

On a Day Well-Spent

There’s a heck of a lot to be said for sitting and watching the sea. And even moreso when the sea is the Arabian, and you’re watching it perched high above on a rocky red cliff in Varkala, India. But seriously, back to the sea. If you stare long enough […]