Thailand & Transitions
It is a sleepless morning here in Bangkok. A fierce and fiery meal gave me an extra special wake-up call hours before my alarm went off. In proper jet-lag fashion, I waited in bed for before finally abandoning sleep for the idea of being productive. And now- with coffee in hand (special thanks to the cafe staff at the hotel who let me in nearly an hour ahead of opening) I am happy to make a speedy report of my journey... thus far.
Bangkok -such a sweetly familiar place, and yet I have never quite pondered the contrast in the day to day reality of how materialism meets Buddhism. This inquiry is not uniquely my own. It was spurred by a text for my courses in Bhutan called, A Splendid Isolation, in which Madeline Drexler digs deep into the roots of Bhutan's Gross National Happiness (or GNH). I have to say, GNH is singlehandedly the reason for which Bhutan has captured my curiosity. The psychological factors at play in a government who wants to not just serve, but improve the quality of wellbeing in it's people strikes up vast, varied and wonderful conversations. And yet, I cannot help but be skeptical of how this shapes the minds and development of it's people. Much more on this topic later...
For now- it is nice to note that the group with whom I am traveling is safely ready for departure from Bangkok and off to our final destination in Bhutan. We are a conglomerate of 10 - three ladies, seven gents and one academic sherpa to shoulder the organization of us all as a unit. Yesterday, after arriving in the Bangkok heat, we took refuge pool side at our (very fancied) Best Western Hotel. The dynamics of the group are incredibly sweet and well natured. As an adventurer who prizes the anonymity of flying solo, I cannot say that I have ever felt so much joy at being one in an assembly as I do with this collection of individuals. The growth of which has quickly become my second field of curiosity for this, ever so, special journey.
With this, my first entry from abroad, I am sad to report several crashes which have deleted my entry content on three occasions and so my ideas are cut a bit short as I have to go repack my luggage which was drenched in the rain on the runway in Hong Kong. More later!