Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Flashpacking Bangkok: On Perfect Winged Eyeliners and Letting Go

After years of resisting every opportunity to visit Bangkok, I finally booked a flight to one of Asia's consumerism capital.

Bangkok is one of the most popular destination for Western backpackers in Southeast Asia. It is also popular among Asians as a shopping mecca. Popular and shopping, two words I try to navigate away from, and two reasons why I was never eager to visit Bangkok. But since I thought I've changed a lot after I moved to Malaysia, I gave Bangkok a try. I even agreed to travel with a group of people that are not really in my close circle of friends, people whose travel style I have no idea on.

Losing Grip

"Let go, just let go you overthinking controlling anxious person." I told myself as the Air Asia plane bound to Bangkok took off from KLIA2. I wanted this trip to be about letting go of any expectations and to just let things happen on their own.

Planning an itinerary before a trip is one of the things I enjoy doing. I would usually read all the blogs on first and second page of my Google search results, making sure that there will be no minute or money wasted on the trip that I am about to take and I did just that for this trip. However my group wasn't too eager on following my itinerary so at the start of the trip we decided to drop it. I was cool about it since this trip was supposed to be about letting go.

But then halfway through this trip, I realized that I am just walking on paved roads of the city and crowded alleys of shopping malls and markets. Even in Pattaya, the beach is filthy, literally and figuratively. 

I lost it. No matter how much I tried to enjoy myself, I can't. 

I was reminded of why I turned down every opportunity to go to Bangkok. I was reminded that city travel is not for me, that I'd rather walk on sand and trails. 

On Perfect Winged Eyeliners

Traveling is like putting on a winged eyeliner. Sometimes you get it impeccably perfect and proportional but there are days when you mess it up and you just have to wipe it off.

This trip is a drunk-drawn asymmetrical winged eyeliner.

I realized that I am quite hard-headed when it comes to sticking with my travel style, that I have a long way to go when it comes to letting things be, and, above all else, that I am better off traveling alone because I can be a pain-in-the-ass to travel with. I need to let go of the idea that each trip will be instagram perfect. I need to learn to just let things happen at times and be open to each circumstance as they unfold.  

The Bangkok Series:

Flashpacking Bangkok: 5 Days Itinerary, Expenses and Travel Tips
Flashpacking Bangkok: On Perfect Winged Eyeliners and Letting Go

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