Sunday, May 19, 2013

Magical Moment 621, "Thailand - the Journey!"

I meant to take the summer off blogging...and ended up staying away for over a year! A complete accident and I can't believe it's been that long already! But I HAD to return to blogging now in order chronicle the amazing vacation that Eddie and I recently took to Chiang Mai, Thailand. 

Eddie and I had been wanting to take an overseas vacation for years. It's always been my dream to visit Venice and when the time came to choose our destination, I was sure that would be our selection. Just in case though, we went through a few other suggestions and suddenly, the thought of interacting with wildlife seemed like a no-brainer. We're both animal lovers. We've seen whales, sea lions, dolphins, and a heap of other animals in the wild here in the US. So we wondered, what else could we see that would be a once in a lifetime opportunity? Elephants!

We chose to spend 1 week as volunteers at the Elephant Nature Park in Chiang Mai Thailand. This is an elephant sanctuary that rescues abused, injured, and exploited elephants. We thought, what better way to support responsible tourism? 

Here is a little teaser of what's to come in a few posts:

But first, I'd like to share about our journey to and from Chiang Mai. I want to give the elephants the time and care in a post that they deserve. If you're curious about where on earth we were (geography is not my strong suit), these were the 4 flights that it took to get us there! (click to enlarge)

NYC to Osaka, Japan

Osaka, Japan to Taipei, Taiwan

Taipei, Taiwan to Bangkok, Thailand

Bangkok to Chiang Mai (no fancy airplane screen for this sir.)

We flew way above Canada, I searched out the window to see if I could spot Santa at the North Pole. No Santa, but I'm pretty certain we saw some glaciers. I can't be sure of course, it could just be a lot of snow for all I know, but I was excited just the same. 

Unfortunately, we only got a glimpse of Osaka from the plane as well. It was interesting that in our 18 hours of flying, the sun never set on us! :) 

Luckily we were able to spend some time in Bangkok, Taiwan, and the city of Chiang Mai (not just the northern mountainous jungle where Elephant Nature Park is located). Tomorrow I'll share all the amazing sights and sounds from the colorful markets that cover the streets. Hope you enjoy the photos. It's great to be back blogging, and I can't wait to catch up on everyone's posts!


DJan said...

OH, how wonderful! I look forward to hearing about your adventure. I love Bangkok and have been there several times, but never to Chiang Mai. And elephants? I am so in love with them, my favorite big animal. :-)

Steve Gravano said...

That sounds awesome, I can't wait to read more about it! Missed you....

smartcat said...

Welcome back! I'm looking forward to many posts!

Hilary said...

My sweet friend! I was so thrilled to see that you stopped by to visit. I knew it meant that you would be posting again. I've missed you.

What an exciting trip. I can only imagine the thrill you experienced interacting with these beautiful, majestic animals. What an adventure! I can't wait to hear all about it.

Big hugs to you and to Eddie.

That Janie Girl said...

Wow! What a neat trip! Can't wait for the elephant story.

I've never thought about volunteering at a refuge.

Great idea!!!

Linda said...

It's so good to see you in the blogosphere again, Elizabeth. You've been missed. Thanks so much for stopping by my blog to let me know you were back at it. I love today's post and am so looking forward to hearing more about your exciting trip.

Robin said...

I'm so pleased to see you back, Elizabeth! I look forward to reading all about the adventures!

Gary's third pottery blog said...

the sun never set, HILARIOUS! My buddy Christi was in Chiang Mai working for awhile, and there were monkeys too, right?

Rick said...

Great to see you and Eddy back in blogland, Elizabeth ! Had I known you were flying over Canada, I would have waved ;>)

What an adventure - nice teaser photo to start. Look forward to hearing and seeing more.

Elizabeth Grimes said...

DJan, yes they are amazing creatures. I can't wait to write all about them. :)

Steve, thank you. Missed you too!

Suzi, thank you!

Hilary, I can't believe I stayed away for so long! I realized just how much I've missed the blogosphere. :) Eddie says hello!

Janie, yes it was a great trip!

Linda, I've missed you too. Hope you and Doug have been well!

Robin, great to see you again too. Love your new blog.

Gary, yes monkeys! We didn't really see any though. There were supposedly Slow Lorises in the area we were, but we never saw one.

Rick, I did think of all my Canadian blog friends when we were flying!!! :)

TexWisGirl said...

nice to see you again!

what an adventure thailand sounds like... i'd not survive the food, i'm afraid. i'm not very adventurous. toast - yup! i'm there! :)

Michael Manning said...

Welcome back, Elizabeth! I'll add your blog. Thought you shut down. Nice to see the photos and read about such adventure!

Elizabeth Grimes said...

Thanks Michael!

Busy Bee Suz said...

I'm so delighted to read these posts of your trip! I saw a few peeks on FB and thought: What? What an adventure!!!!
Love to you and yours!