I've been going through my pictures bit by bit from studying abroad for the photo contests I want to enter and these are just some that make me really happy.
these first 4 were from our second village homestay, atop of the mountain Doi Lang. These pictures were taken on Doi Chang (Elephant Mountain), when my brother from my family took a group of us to a coffee place, a little wat area in a bamboo forest, and a field of beautiful flowers with an amazing view of all the surrounding mountains.
this photogenic monkey was at the Chiang Mai Zoo. He was so funny and was a great model haha
these 4 pictures above are from a field trip we took for our Buddhism class to various temples in Chiang Mai and just outside of the city. The first 2 were taken at Doi Suthep, which is at the top of a mountain in the city. Since Chiang Mai is completely surrounded by mountains, it's the only light you can see in the sky (aside from the stars of course) and it looks so cool. The story of the temple is (and i don't have all the details 100% correct) there was an elephant carrying bone relics of the Buddha a long, long time ago. He dropped it by accident, and one small piece fell off in the city of Chiang Mai, where Wat Suan Dohk was built; the larger piece was then carried up to the top of the mountain by the elephant. Once he reached the top, he just fell over and died, and they built Doi Suthep in that spot. the other 2 pictures were taken at a wat in a forest (I forget the name of it). The broken statues were in the Buddha graveyard, where people bring their old and worn Buddha statues instead of throwing them away.
These 4 were taken in Cambodia, at Wat Pinom Chiso. It's an ancient temple that apparently only like 20 people have climbed in the past 15 years or so- well, climbed the ancient stairs, which is extremely hard because they're made of giant stones and it's really steep; most people tend to use another stairway that was built later on that is probably 10 times easier (we didn't see it). The monk in these pictures, Rainie, traveled with us for the day. Our resident director Chhunny used to be a monk and he knew him from when they lived in Thailand and stayed at the same temple.
this is from the same day as Pinom Chiso. We went to many different temples, going around Cambodia for 14+hours. It was exhausting but so interesting. We were in what is thought to be the most ancient city in Southeast Asia, which I'm pretty sure is called Angkor Borei (i know it begins with a B). Apparently in ancient Chinese scripts the hub of ancient Asia was described as an island, so originally it was thought to be in Vietnam, I believe, but then historians realized it was actually in Cambodia because during the flood season this area basically turns into an island.
these last pictures are from another excursion day in Cambodia. The first couple were taken when we stopped in some random village town outside of Phnom Penh to see the Mekong and see where all the veggies and other produce came from; the last couple of pictures were taken at a Lotus farm, which was also the site for an ancient Cambodian village. the kid in the last picture went and picked some lotus flowers for us to eat. Cambodians really like them, but unfortunately i wasn't really fond of it. it kind of just tasted like plants and dirt.
isn't it weird how sometimes when we look back on certain moments in our lives we remember all the good times, yet when we look back at other times we only remember the bad? i was just thinking about Thailand & Cambodia and how that keeps happening with the memories. i feel like my last entry about cambodia and the girls i was with was so bitter, and i kind of regret posting it. i mean, at the time i was very passionate about what i was feeling, lol, but there were definitely more good times than bad. and it's to be expected that you'll have disagreements with people you're constantly around for 5 months, and then living with for 2 months straight in really tiny quarters. but it was a lot of fun. now i'm kind of stressing out (not that much though actually lol) about finding 2 good pictures to enter in photo contests for my university and for the education abroad network, the company i went through to go to southeast asia. that's gonna be a bit difficult. i have to go through 5 months of pictures to find the perfect 2, and i realized a few weeks ago when i was looking through my external hard drive for my pictures that a bunch of pictures magically got erased from it =/. oh well. i probably have them on facebook haha. thank god i'm always so cautious with my pictures and save them in at least 2 places. i'm a bit anal about that.
and now i'm babbling again. blaahhhh.
i meant to upload some of my pictures from Camp Bisco, but i haven't done it yet. blahh. maybe i'll do it now. it's a really lazy day, but not really. i think i'm just in a really fickle mood. i need to stop babbling. trains of thought are quite amusing, if you stop to think about it.
...so I took the liberty to practice my "photography" (I don't call it actual photography, since i haven't taken a class yet, so i'm still just a newborn.) but, yeah. i really want to try doing some really funky photoshoots with my friends, but i've never done posed shoots before (except a little for molli's blog, http://alamerri.blogspot.com/ , but that's different). So this is me just testing the waters, see what kind of eye I have and all that jazz. blahhh. so i guess let me know what you think?
This past week of being "home" has been so....blahhh. I forgot how boring this town is. It's so odd. It was nice at first, being able to see my family and friends, but now it's just really boring. I almost forgot why I left this town in the first place- the first time to go to school in NYC; the second to study abroad in SEA.
Before, it used to get me down and I'd feel like I was stuck here. Now, however, it motivates me. I'm hoping to get at least 2 jobs this summer so I can work hard and make a lot of money, which I'll save up towards getting the heck out of here haha. During the school year I'll be renting a house with one of my best friends, Anna. I'm hoping to be able to keep one or 2 jobs while I study and just work my butt off at school to increase my GPA.
Being in Cambodia inspired me a lot to work harder in school. The students there have so much determination to succeed and do well, it made me feel lazy. These people go to 2 or 3 universities in order to major in multiple things, not to mention many of them work 1 or 2 jobs aside from that to help their families with money. And they are always so friendly and eager to help and do things. It's understandable why they're like that, considering the Khmer Rouge killed off all of the educated in the 70's, and it's great that this new generation is working toward something so special- to make Cambodia a wonderful place in the eyes of international countries, not just an ailing, grief-stricken, impoverished nation. I love that about them, and I miss my friends there so much.
It's raining right now. Ah, so peaceful. It was thundering on and off all day. Apparently it rained earlier, too, but I missed that. I don't know why, but for some reason I've been so tired the past couple of days. Not in a depressed kind of way, by any means, just tired. It could be because I never gave myself a chance to recover from jet lag. I thought I had manipulated my body's sleep cycle on the way back to this side of the world by trying to sync it with the time here, but maybe I didn't afterall. I've been taking naps, which is abnormal. I blame it on Southeast Asia. I never was a frequent napper before going there, but the heat gets the best of you and sometimes all you really need is a nice snooze midday. My problem right now is that i take them around 4 or 5 and don't wake up until around 7 or 8 hahaha. Oh, man. I think things will change once I get a job (hopefully that will be soon) so I can have a routine to my life.
Blahh blah blahhhhh.
Nothing else to ramble about. I'm gonna go try to watch the 'Virgin Suicides' online. Hopefully it's done loading. I really need to get Netflix. Which means I really need a job ;) lol