“Adorable!” I immediately cooed as I watch him jump up into the air to try and catch the toy leaves made by his trainer. On the other side, a man was petting him on his belly. In response, he rolled over on his back, similar to what my dog Shaia would’ve done. I think I melted in uber-adorable alert. I posed my camera to take a video of the huge “beast” that would normally eat your head off ala Life of Pi. I know I say beautiful one too many times in this blog, but there’s really no other non-bullshit way to say it. This animal was beautiful.
She was beautiful. But beyond her deep, dark brown eyes was a hint of sadness. And for a moment, I didn’t know whether to feel sad or happy that I am here. Was I just another one of them tourists who treat these women like a circus? Or am I one of those who would rather immerse in culture, appreciate and respect? I wasn’t sure.
I dragged my 20L backpack off the van and onto my back. I closed my eyes under the heat of the 9.30am Thailand sun. Normally, I wouldn’t be sweating this much, I thought to myself as I walked down the street. It was only my backpack and my sweater that was making me hot. But really, the combination of the sun and the cool, mountain air of Pai was refreshing to the heat of Phnom Penh and Ho Chi Minh.