After 3 flights, 2 layovers, with a total of 30 hrs of travel, Ashley and I walked out of Canada’s perpetual winter and into the sweltering heat of Bangkok, Thailand. We had finally made it! After all our preparation, saving, paying off debt, dreaming, and sometimes thinking it would never happen, our feet touched the land of our dreams. I smiled a big sweaty smile as I watched Ashley walk with a backpack as big as her. After getting off the airport link train at Phaya Thai station we descended the steep concrete staircase into the streets. The Bangkok city orchestra began to play for all of our senses; car horns honking, scooters manoeuvring effortlessly through impossible traffic, a wrinkled Thai man shouts from his shop doorway. Scooter taxi drivers lounge in hammocks tied to fences, lazily waiting for their next willing victim to ride the Bangkok roller coaster. Still others move with purpose, while some purpose not to move at all. It’s a sea of humanity, moving with tides of the ancient and modern.
Food carts line the streets sending smells of barbecued fish, spicy curries in every colour, fresh mangos, pineapple, papaya and strange fruits we had never seen, all wrapped in the thick humidity of this colourful city.
“Babe, a temple!” Ashley points down a seemingly random side street. The temple stands tall and skinny, golden and ornate, walls white with red wood trim that swirls at it’s ends. Soft monotone chanting surrounds the temple grounds while golden bells attached to the rooftop chime in the wind.
Sticking a hand up we hail down a cab. Opening the door we greet our cabbie with the only Thai we know, “Sawasdee cup” “hello”. We hand him a crinkled paper with Thai directions to our home for the next four days and throw the remainder of our earthly belongings into the back seat. As the cab pulls off the curb we slid our sticky hands together, looking at each other with eyes full of satisfaction for a dream fulfilled, minds swimming with anticipation for a journey just beginning, and hearts bursting with thankfulness for a God who is always faithful to our hearts.