Friday, July 8, 2022

River Life in Bangkok


Before being connected by phones and laptops, connections took place mostly in the physical realm. The town square, the market, roads, and of course, rivers are an ancient way to connect with others. In Bangkok, the river still carries this function. Today we loaded up in a long tail boat and explored some lesser known estuaries of the Chao Phraya river.

Thursday, July 7, 2022

The Mandarin Oriental Bangkok

A long journey elevates the destination in a way that can make any hotel room feel like a special sanctuary. Arriving at a destination and having a respite from planes and airports and jet lag gives the arrival location a home-like quality that is hard to explain.

I remember every room I have stayed in after a long trip with fondness. They have ranged from desperate backpacker hostels in Vietnam to grand hotels in Europe. Lately, I make a special effort to nail the the arrival and arrival room. 

Last night we landed, bleary eyed and bloated like gila monsters, at Suvarnabhumi Airport. It was around midnight and it felt much much later. The airport buzzed a light tired hum and armed members of the military shifted around in drab olive military fatigues watching passengers shuffle through customs. More than yesterday, less than 2019.

Much of Asia has been shut down since Spring 2020, with holdouts like China and Japan still erecting plenty of barriers for travelers, many too high to pass. Thailand recently opened up its borders completely and as a piece d’resistance, legalized marijuana. It was sudden and a rare move for an Asian country. That’s where we are at.

Made it

The most fundamentally important aspect of a long travel day is the focus it provides. We flew from Louisville to Dallas to Tokyo to Bangkok. Door to door, it took about 32 hours. That means for 32 hours, our family shared a single goal - get to Bangkok. It is important to focus and break down ideas into singular goals - when you do that and add up all the goals, big and small, the potential emerges to build and change the world.

I love travel days. You arrive as a different person than when you left. They are painful and filled with introspection and opportunities to think. It is an opportunity to center yourself, take stock, read, write, and plan. Since our first long trip from SF to Hong Kong in 2009, I have revered the long journey with a sort of spiritual relevance that doesn’t exist in our day to day lives. I have visited Asia again and again, and again and again, the trip centers me in an amazing way. 

Six of us traveled from Louisville to Bangkok. Kristin and I along with our three children and nanny Chelsea. We had no material delays, and aside from our daughter Harper throwing up a few times on the long flight - it was uneventful. We rested and ate and considered the manifestation of the trip - which required the energy of all trips and conquests that have come before it. When I first started traveling, I felt lucky. Now I am grateful.

Monday, July 4, 2022

The trip never ended

It felt like a war, but it wasn't. It seemed to last forever, but it didn't. As the years went on, our path around the world continued to carve deeper grooves into softer and softer dirt. I abandoned the words but never the travel. It grew more intense. From the silk road to the edge of the Pacific, we never stopped. 50 countries turned into 100, and now I chase something else entirely.

When it all started, I traveled - - and I asked the world to change me - that was the only goal. It was pretty selfish in hindsight. Formal education and stacks of books didn't gift me the perspective I imagined I needed or deserved, so I left. Travel delivered, and when my dreams began to come true I knew why. The world gave me this life.  But. It always seemed to be a quid pro quo. When the time came, I would have to return the favor the world gave to me. 

So we start again.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

The Morning Star to Hong Kong

Oh Hong Kong. Old friend. It has been a while. Five years. A few days ago, I saddled up in row 34 on an American Airlines 777 and flew direct from Dallas to Hong Kong. The morning star as I call it, the sun set just as the wheels touched down on Lantau Island. The light followed us the duration of the journey, all 16.5 hours.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Klein Bonaire

 Klein Bonaire is a small island off the coast of Bonaire - its name translates to small Bonaire. It is home to some great stretches of sand, as well as vibrant reefs. It is also empty. Years ago, developers attempted to build some resorts on the island and the Bonaire community pooled together $10m to prohibit building anything within 200m of the shore - that basically covers the entire island.

 A great place to dock with a boat 

 Kristin and pumps enjoying the beach

 From the boat, which is the only way to the island.


 Tube corals 

 Looks like a labyrinth 

 Check out this bro 

 Trumpetfish just breezing by 

 Walking back after a snork 

 Poor guy only has three flippers

 Me and Harper 

Great beach 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Bonaire Sunset

 Kristin and baby Harper at Rum Runners in Bonaire. Harper is  loving the sea life 

Dive shop on water 

Harper at dinner

What is my job as CEO?

According to google:
  1. More than with any other job, the responsibilities of a CEO diverge from the duties and the measurement. A CEO's responsibilities: everything, especially in a startup. The CEO is responsible for the success or failure of the company.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

1000 steps Bonaire

 1000 steps is a dive site in Bonaire with 82 steps heading right down into the water

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Bonaire slave hut

Bonaire has a bizantine and contrasting history of brutality and beauty, slavery and freedom. Here a slave hut frames both.

Klein Bonaire's inquisitive trunkfish

Trunkfish just staring into my gopro