It's been more than 15 years since my last trip to this city. When I lived in Paris I visited Amsterdam more frequently, it was so easy to jump on that train and a few hours later
There's so much to tell about this incredible country and I want to stay true to Japanese minimalism, by describing the country with few but hopefully well chosen words.
I was given the best birthday present ever....TIME... on my own.. in Paris!!!. I had no obligations, I woke up whenever I wanted, I ate when I wanted and definitely no dinner preparations, those things I do in my everyday life in Bangkok. I was wandering the streets of Paris, enjoying the museums and the several hours I spent at the cinema. I met up with friends which is always so lovely, but mostly I spent my time home.
So apart from hanging with the cool kids in Canggu, the digital nomads! I also did a bit of visiting in Bali. I didn't go very far but that's fine!. Next time I will do the amazing travel around the island and see the mountains and the volcano and the immense nature you can find here!. But this time I just took a one hour motorbike drive up to Ubud! A day trip to Ubud is way too short, I know!. Too many things to see and just to drive around in the town and in the outskirts of this town is just refreshing, so you need perhaps at least 3 days. Absorbing the beautiful nature and go to the great eateries and cafés in the most exquisite places. See the beautiful craftsmanship of every house and temple, dance like crazy at the ecstatic dance evenings at the yoga barn and so on ..... My day trip with Lisa at least gave me a hint of this place everybody is talking about. One of the greatest part of that day was to meet Pia Örjansdotter, a former theatre actor from Sweden. How she decided to leave Sweden for Ubud, we never had time to talk about that, but hopefully I will get there in another reportage from Bali. Becoming the creator/stylist/costume designer of her own brand. See her work on instagram, looking for a fix.
If I had a house on the Mekong River..... It would be this one. An archaeologist and a mathematician, about three years ago, put down their luggage in just this beautiful house straight on the Mekong. The town is Vientiane the capital of Laos. A small town in a small country, but rich in extraordinary nature, culture heritage and craftsmanship. It might be a hidden gem, one hour-flight from my bustling Bangkok. Silence overwhelms you when you come here, well if you don't count the neighbour's annoying dog barking sometimes or the communist party's "el Jefe" of the community, waking you up at 7.00 am telling the people to be happy and get up to go to work...... but silence, peace and mindfulness on the Mekong is bliss, absolutely bliss. I could have stayed so much longer than my 4 days, 2 weeks minimum to visit Vientiane and see all the small temples and back streets, find the craftsmen, see the beautiful arts of weaving and just sit by the Mekong and read and watch and listen to the sound of silence and occasionally a small long-tail going up or down. The air is lovely and smelling the rain on the leaves and hearing the wind whisper softly. My days were filled with coffees and lunches at cute small places, window shopping at designers/creators shop house like, Birds Follow Spring , the very famous American Carol Cassidy and her textile house Lao textiles Carol Cassidy , visiting friends of my friends seeing more beautiful houses along the Mekong, drinking tea on the verandah....