សូមអរគុណអ្នក, សៀមរាប!

I realized that I never finished writing about the Cambodia leg of our trip that we had until I saw that it’s been almost a year since this happened. (Almost, because this time last year was the Bangkok leg of the trip.) Then I saw this in my drafts, and I thought – why not post it on the anniversary?

Massive photo dump. And I may not remember the order of the places we went to. But even so, that Siem Reap trip was a good one. I think I kind of fell in like with Cambodia after that, and now I smile every time a photo of the Angkor Wat or Ta Phrom or any of the temples appear on my feed.

So here’s a very, very late recap, because  I kind of want to reminisce. :)

I am no stranger to crossing borders in trains, I realized, as I was thinking of how to start this post. I realized that I had done that several times when I was in Europe – when I rode the train from Switzerland to Paris, then Vienna back to Switzerland. Somehow, this border crossing from Thailand to Cambodia felt different, perhaps because of the company, and the fact that the Asian experience was different from the European one.

So early morning on the third day in Bangkok, we headed over to the train station at Hua Lamphong to ride a train to Aranyaprathet. I didn’t have high expectations for the train, based on the blogs I’ve read, and I was glad that I didn’t, because the it was a third class train, very much unlike the ones I rode in Europe. Nevertheless, I was in good company, so it was all right.

Bye, Bangkok!
Bye, Bangkok!

siemreap01

siemreap02

It was a long, long train ride, though. We arrived at Aranyaprathet about an hour later than expected, and it was hot and we were tired, but we must press on! We rode a tuktuk, had lunch, had a money changing experience, and then we made our way to the border.

And then we were in Cambodia! But there was a bus ride, and then a long van ride, and we almost got lost in Siem Reap. Thank goodness our hotel owner was nice.

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Then, hello, Siem Reap!

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All These Things (3): October Edition

Cliche, but let me say this: where did October go?

I realized today that the last time I blogged was when I released my book (ongoing blog tour this week, yay! Also, you can pre-order the print edition here if you’re not fond of ebooks :D), and a lot has happened from then until now that I should write about. I should, and I really want to, but work has been especially draining the past two weeks that I kinda just want to lie down and sleep when I get home.

That, and a lot of new things happened, like:

  • Last international trip for the year – Bangkok and Siem Reap! What a lovely, lovely vacation. I promise to blog about this one weekend this month. :)
  • My sister-in-law gave birth! I have a nephew! ♥ Most of my spare time goes to him (when he’s awake, anyway), so there. Isn’t he a cutie?
    apollorafael
  • Work. Oh wait, that’s not new.

October was a pretty fun month, though, and I’m not complaining. November, on the other hand, seems like it will be busy. Up until February. But…that’s not so new anyway. This kind of busy is good. :)

* * *

But look, it’s NOVEMBER. Last two months of the year! Last week, at our sisters’ household, the question was, What’s something you want to do (this year) that you haven’t done yet?

My short answer: cook a dish. I can bake fine, but I can’t cook. Or I just haven’t tried. Next goal: cook something for Christmas/New Year dinner.

Oh, but when I reviewed the goals I set for 2014, I realized that I have actually fulfilled most of them. Wow. And there’s still two months left! A lot can still happen. :)

My longer answer for that question, in one word: study. Let’s pray about this more.

* * *

To be perfectly honest, though, there’s a lot about the next two months that I feel a bit apprehensive about. Maybe it’s because I already saw a forecast of the first two months of 2015 for work, and the worrywart in me is glad there’s stuff to worry about again. Sigh, not good. But I don’t want to get lost in the busy-ness of the next two months. I don’t want to. I refuse to. Lord, give me the grace to take it slow and to breathe, and – in her words – count the thousand glittery things You’re giving me.

I felt God saying, “This is life, my girl. This is life. You don’t need to be somewhere. You don’t need to hustle. You don’t need to hurry. I just want you to suck this moment in good. You’ve come a long way. A long, long way. Be thankful and keep going. You’re so okay, my dear.”

That’s all God is asking of us at any given moment: To suck in what is what right before us– what He has placed there so intentionally– and then say thank you. Because it’s simple. And it’s true. And it’s a gift we forget to find the gratitude for. And it fills us so much more mightily than the fears and worries we stack inside ourselves when we think this day-to-day is about getting “stuff” done.

* * *

Yes, I’m also one of the many, many people caught up in the Taylor / 1989 mania. Couldn’t help it, really. Shake it Off helps in keeping me sane – shake off all the stress, I say!

Here, have an earworm. ;)