What do you get someone who has spent the last five months purging the personal items to the point where they fit in a 50L bag? This is what I kept asking myself as Kyle's birthday crept closer and closer. Material things were out, the Thai cooking classes were all booked, what did I have left? I quit my job to go on this trip. "WASN'T THAT ENOUGH?!" I rationalized. But on the morning of his birthday, we met D, who with one quick suggestion to join him in Phra Nang changed the course of our day and made it the most memorable day I've had in Thailand.
Taking the lead, this 12-year expat from Detroit with orange hands and feet (from his 5 kilo/day diet of papaya) swept us off to a day of cliff jumping, rock climbing & finally lagoon exploration. Quick to do flips and offer advice to passers-by in Chinese, D was kind enough to run ahead and take photos of us, scrambling down the rock faces like Smeagol. Thank you D, for sharing your generosity, knowledge and wonderful personality with us! My skinned up feet and knees are almost done healing as I smile at the memory.