From tourist to non-tourist towns (six months in Rayong)

The other day I went to a tourist information booth and asked, ‘Tell me about some of the people who were here last year. – Steven Wright

Until recently, I’ve pretty much lived in tourist towns.

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No Girl is an Island newsletter

No Girl is an Island (a newsletter!)

“What happens when people open their hearts?”
“They get better.” ― Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood

I’ve wanted to start a newsletter for some time (and podcast while I’m at it), but I didn’t know what to share. I’ve also contemplated starting another blog and even to find other sites where I can talk about everyday stuff. Then a few things happened.

First, we moved (and kept moving), and I started to miss having friends, particularly girlfriends. Second, I started to get into my appearance (hello, forties) and felt bad for my boyfriend as I shopped for Korean sheet masks that would make me look thirty again. And third, I started watching British period romances (again) and wistfully remembered the lost art of letter writing.

As an expat, it can be easy to make new friends, but I’m living in a town that doesn’t have much of an expat community. Now, I’m not opposed to making local friends, rather the opposite, but I’m discovering, like other times in my life, how difficult it is to make new friends.

Being coupled-up doesn’t help either. Oh, there is all manner of excuses. When you’re comfortable it can be challenging to start something new. You might want to branch out, but other people might not want to. There are compatibility and schedules to contend with – and I freak out when I have too many social engagements.

“You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.” ―William Faulkner

It’s possible I haven’t lived anywhere long enough to make new friends yet. Even so, I’m going to take this opportunity and enthusiasm I have for this project and try something new. We’ll see how it goes! (I’m also considering putting a newsletter archive page here so folks can see what I’m writing about if they’re not sure what they’re getting into.)

I’m going to aim for a bi-monthly email drop. I hope you’ll see it as a letter from a friend with no pressure to write back, but of course, I’d love to hear from you.


No Girl is an Island newsletter
Click the image or link below to go to my TinyLetter newsletter sign up page.



“You can choose courage, or you can choose comfort, but you cannot choose both.” ―Brené Brown

How do you relate to people different than you?

There’s a debate regarding what education is for: is it to prepare students for work or is it to stimulate the soul? But one of the key components I feel is missing is that we go to school to learn to get along with others. We, then, continue to play nice when we enter the workplace. Although, we’re not usually taught how to get along with diverse characters, right? There’s a lot of trial and error. So here are some things I’ve learned along the way. I hope you share your experiences, too.

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What’s your relationship to poetry?

It was my junior or senior year in high school when I fell in love with poetry. I think like a lot of people I had a preconceived idea of what poetry was and I had decided it wasn’t for me. Since English was my first class of the day, I used to put on makeup while sitting at my desk, and my nerdy friend Keitha watched as I lined my eyes or curled my lashes.

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Why I love being a domestic goddess

Why I love being a domestic goddess

Okay, okay, maybe domestic goddess is too strong a term, but I do enjoy cooking, keeping a clean house, and staying at home. When it’s cold out, I’ve been known to pick up my crochet needles. I can build a fire to warm up a winter home. I love to bake. (I miss baking! Thai apts do not have ovens!) I’m not particularly great at sewing, but I can mend simple things. I like gardening and having plants. I also love power tools, and I’m not afraid of a little DIY. I believe because I enjoy simple domestic activities that I’m a happier person for it.

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Let’s go to Khao Yai National Park

Despite my small role as a chaperone, the humidity, heat, and great fear of wild monkeys, I enjoyed our trip to Khao Yai National Park. Khao Yai is a World Heritage Site declared by UNESCO, includes rain and evergreen forests and grassland, and is home to “more than 800 fauna species, including 112 species of mammals, 392 species of birds and 200 reptiles and amphibians.”

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