When I was eighteen, I packed up my backpack and headed off on an adventure. An adventure that was supposed to last ten weeks, where I would be volunteering in Southern Thailand in a small community, giving free English lessons and working on community development projects.
This is where I lived when I first arrived. A small area outside of Krabi.
I waved goodbye to my friends and family and promised I’d be back in 10 weeks. I was full of excitement, nerves, and uncertainty over what the time in Thailand would bring. Would I like teaching? Would I like Thailand? Would I make new friends? Hundreds of questions were going through my mind.
I boarded the plane with my Mum’s words running through my head,
“Whatever you do, don’t meet anyone over there and get married!”
I laughed to myself, thinking that would NEVER happen. Sitting on the plane, I kept thinking, I wonder what I’m getting myself into.
Eventually, after what felt like a long flight I arrived in Krabi. It was beautiful and everything felt perfect. I walked around and ate. I remember distinctly thinking, ‘I could live here forever’.
I settled into life in Thailand, I loved the teaching, and eventually told my family that I would be coming home for Christmas, for ten days, and would be starting a year long contract. They were happy and excited for me, but still had dreams of me coming back to go to Uni and get a career.
I explored the area on my weekends off, going to the islands, and making close friends on one island that I visited each time I had time off.
This is the island that would later change everything that I ever planned.
The next few posts will tell the story of my life and growing up and the life changing decisions I made at every year.