You Look Happy

A reflection of thoughts while traveling Cambodia: December 2019

At the time of writing, I’m in Siem Reap, Cambodia, on one of the most exhausting and exhilarating days of my life. After a day of temples, quad biking, pasta, and rooftop dancing, I’m reflecting on a comment a friend made- “You look happy”.

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Some highlights of my Cambodia trip:

  • swimming in the glow of bioluminescent plankton, glittering around me, lighting up the pitch dark ocean
  • tuk tuk rides through the city, my hair whipping around
  • gigantic trees splitting the ruins open, standing tall despite the odds
  • tractor riding to a mini grand canyon
  • tucking in mozzie nets
  • swinging across the monkey bars on the banks of the Mekong River

And it’s true. Here, traveling, in the warmth of the early morning sunshine, I am the happiest I’ve been in a very long time. I’m a sunny, glowy, soul-deep kind of happiness. The kind of joy that makes you want to dance all night, that chases away all the sad and gloom and pain. A joy that calls happy tears forward at the immense beauty of the life you have the privilege of living.

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It’s not the first time I’ve ran away from my real life and stumbled into this happiness. There’s something about the freedom of being in an unfamiliar place alone, exploring new places, friends, foods.

My goal for 2020 is figuring out how I can capture and hang on to this bliss. How to build a life I can live joyfully. How to continue grappling with the question of home. How to sate my curiosity and continue exploring. The goal, to do this not in little glimpses, but in broad swathes.

Cambodia was a joy. I lost track of the days, went quad biking at sunset, sweat more than should be humanly possible, and had all the passionfruit smoothies available. I’m bringing the blog back in an effort to be more reflective, thoughtful, and aware of my experiences. More about this trip to come.

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