And so it begins – an other leg of the journey – this time there will be no warm family to drop into. Now we start our long stretch of just us all day every day. This also means there will not be any expectations broken aside from our own.
The second half of Costa Rica was a blur of activities and food and fun. The house was over the top amazing and managed to contain 20 people many of them circling 20. There were surf excursions, diving days, boat rides, zip lining, waterfall hikes,
Humble pool views
monkeys, flowers, restaurants and lots of family time. It was supremely luxurious to not be parenting 24/7. To have so many distractions of loving cousins, aunts, uncles and Gran all who took so much time to make the kids feel loved and give us a break. One of the hard things about the 24/7 parenting is also the 24/7 watching of the parenting and it’s always a good reminder that no one really wants your parenting opinion unless they specifically ask for it. There were some moments – Chris is just better able to let it roll off his back – I take it all too personally. Especially when anyone thinks I’m being blasé about safety. I mean I am a disaster specialist – I can tell you exactly how any small thing can kill you or your child. I live like that all day – I wake up playing disaster fantasies over and over in my head. I can follow every action to a conclusion that I can’t live with – but still you gotta get in car where you are statistically more likely to die than doing anything else. The statistical chances of your child being kidnaped are like being hit by lightning but the statistical chances of your daughter being assaulted by a friend or lover is one in three so how do you reconcile that? I’m happy to be back to our little family of four where I can easily let strangers disapproval roll off my back. Then on our last day as we drive toward San Jose we crossed a bridge underneath which crocodiles floated in the river. Amazing. Costa Rica was perfect for getting the kids used to an other culture and country and for them to get into the ocean safely and build their confidence in the water.
Now I sit on an Air China flight and it already feels different – more foreign. The kids are high with the love of flying – endless movies and snacks. They have no idea we are at the beginning of a very long long long journey. Up over the earth across a continent and over oceans. We will stop in Beijing for a couple of hours and then on to Bangkok again for a few hours and on to Koh Samui. We have never had such a long trip. So we will see how it all unfolds. Neither kid has been able to sleep much. Very unlike our red eye to Costa Rica where they both slept soundly for the entire flight.
We have a short two hours in Beijing where – inexplicably we have to go through airport security again even though we just got off an other secure airplane. Security is confused by Anderson’s passport picture from when he had long hair. They keep trying to compare it to Sabine until one guard points out “boy”. Then they laugh and look at us strangely. Maybe we should have got him a new passport when he cut his hair? It doesn’t help that Sabine is still traveling on her infant passport which is good until age 5! And of course looks nothing like the long haired long limbed Amazonian three year old that she is. After grabbing a tea we walk onto our small plane to Bangkok. It’s cold and wintery out the window – grey, brown and muddy looking. It’s hard to wrap my head around where we are and where we have just flown from. Air travel always does that to me. I try to talk to Anderson about it – we just flew over the North Pole – we were just on an other continent. We are on the other side of the world! We have actually gone back in time. But it doesn’t seem incongruous or amazing to him – his mind easily able to cross time and distance like we exist in a graphic novel. The twelve hour flight from LA to Beijing was a piece of cake but I have a feeling this 5 hour stretch is going to be tough – no screens on the seats and both kids have less than half battery life left with no charging available on the flight. Fingers crossed for sleeping.
Not too much sleeping went down for the rest of the travel day but we made it to Koh Samui and to our hotel which turns out to be really beautiful and right on the beach – we have a huge room and balcony as well as a big soaker tub – which may prove to be very fortuitous since it’s raining here and it looks like it will rain for the next 3 days!!!!! We just spent two weeks in LA with almost solid rain. Sheesh ya take a year off to travel hot climates…… the good news is that the room service looks good and is really inexpensive – it seems like we may be “relaxing” and getting over our jet lag indoors. Both kids conked out in the shuttle from the airport – neither could even be roused for a warm welcome with cool towels and iced tang. I mean don’t all kids love tang? So now it’s 8pm and everyone has passed out on me – I’m sitting on the balcony drinking a beer from the mini bar (bad girl) and listening to the wall of sound from the crickets and frogs. Still trying to wrap my mind around the distances traveled and actually being physically here – in Thailand.