Stickman Readers' Submissions May 7th, 2009

Anticipation Is Making Me Wait

I am filled with unbounded anticipation and excitement as I make my final preparations for my very first trip to the Thailand, Land of Smiles! I haven’t felt this exited and carefree and hopeful since I left home for the first time
to go to college when I was 17.

By way of background, I am a 38 year old average white guy from the States. I am divorced with no children and I get along really well with my ex-wife (read: I don’t have to pay alimony or child support). I have a great family, outstanding
friends, an excellent job, a nice home, and the rest of the trappings of a typical middle-class existence. Nevertheless, as many of you can likely appreciate, I somehow feel that something is MISSING! I have therefore decided to embark on a solo
around-the-world journey with no particular destination(s) in mind…I plan on travelling for about one year (during which time I have leased my home to two friends).

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I am not exactly sure why I chose Thailand as the first stop on my world-tour, especially in light of the fact that: 1) The flight to Bangkok is more than a 20-hour flight from the U.S.; 2) I don’t really enjoy hot, humid weather;
3) I don’t speak Thai (or Lao); 4) I don’t really like Asian food; 5) Asian women don’t really ‘do it’ for me; and 6) I like to smoke a little (ok, a lot) Bob Marley now and again (which I would not even consider
doing in Thailand due to the very considerable risks involved).

Compounding the uncertainty as to why I am even going to Thailand in the first place is the fact that many friends and family members have cautioned me against visiting Thailand at all, especially due to the political turmoil that has gripped
the country since at least December. Also, some friends who have visited Thailand repeatedly over the years are concerned that a lot of young Thai guys have become increasingly aggressive over the years (I am not too worried about this, though,
since I tend to get along with most people pretty well and I do not hang out in bars or late at night…) Also, even though some friends won’t come right out and say it, I have a sneaking suspicion that they think I am going to Thailand
to indulge some heretofore-unrealized desire for young boys (which, I assure you, I am NOT!).

Therefore, even though Thailand doesn’t appear to be a particularly good “fit” for me as a travel destination, I somehow feel compelled to go! Maybe it’s the allure of riding a scooter among the din of a foreign
land, maybe it’s the idea of playing golf in Asia, or perhaps it’s just the attraction of going halfway around the world because I simply want (and maybe even need) to get away.

As I make my final preparations for departure, I am particularly looking forward to just waking up for a while with nothing to do and nowhere to go (I realize that this may get old after a while, but after 13 years as a very busy attorney
with precious little time off during that interval, I mostly look forward to the extended period of leisure). It seems, then, that my real issue is going to be what to do in my leisure time? This “problem” sure beats waking up on
Saturday morning, after working like a dog all week, and not even being completely sure whether I have the day off or not (sort of like a prisoner being freed after 13 years and not really believing his captor that he is free to leave…)

My concerns, aside from what to do with all of my time, are few. Still, based upon the countless Stickman submissions that I have read, I am somewhat concerned about whether I will be able to meet quality westerners (either male or female).
I am also concerned about how best to carry/secure/access money and or cash-cards, especially in my hotel room. While I don’t plan on bringing anybody back to my room (especially since I don’t really find Asian women attractive),
I do have needs and I can imagine that at some point I will need a “socket” to plug into.

Anyway, I thank you Stickman for your excellent website and for the invaluable information that it contains. I can readily imagine that a year from now I will be a changed man, and hopefully for the better. I will be sure to write back when
I return from my journey and I am already interested to see how my original submission (pre-LOS) compares to my post-LOS experience. Hopefully, I will not be telling you about my new marriage to “Lek” or “Noi!”

Until then… Tom thanks

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Stickman's thoughts:

Thailand is an easy place to go to first up and is a great hub to be a springboard to other interesting countries, both in neighbouring and further afield. Keep your wits about you and you'll have a marvellous time.

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