Thoughts in Thailand

3:53 AM


There are rare moments in life when you stop, take a look about you, and realize you’re sitting in the middle of an ideal. This is one of those moments. It’s swelteringly hot, the low sun is swollen and it’s dyeing my page and everything else red. Surrounding me are brilliantly green rice fields and cat fish ponds. We’ve parked our suv in a strategic place to spot flocking gap-beaked watcha-ma-call-its, should they choose to grace us with their presence. We are all coincidently color-coded in kahki-and-white; and we’ve got more pockets all over us than I think we know what to do with. Oh. My. Goodness. The sun is not behaving properly; it’s huge and red as a Christmas light. It’s dropping so fast it’s as if it’s burning right through whatever’s propping it up in the sky. Oh! To my left something large just made a sloshing splashing racket in the water, concealed in the reeds. Ah, at last my adventuresome companions have called it a day, and we are barreling along these narrow dirt and gravel dikes that divide field and waterway. The AC is blasting; the perspiration is evaporating. I’m propping my notes on a field guide on reptiles of Southeast Asia; a book of maps, Latin and detailed drawings. The british and aussie chit-chat up front commentates today’s photography expedition. I’m a bystander, a tag-a-long, out of my league, lacking both the patience and passion they possess for this pursuit. I envy them but nonetheless am content to come along to observe and muse on this marvelous wonder of an earth that surrounds us. The stick-shift transmission and rough roads rattle my perch and pen, but it all makes for one of those rare moments. I’m sitting in the middle of an ideal and I wouldn’t change a thing.

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