alilou's Adventures in Wonderland - all over the map.

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by alilou, Apr 20, 2010.

  1. Buzz

    Buzz Well-Known Member

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  2. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Ah, thank you. Everyone has heard "hell has no fury like a woman scorned", but it's nice to see the original, and true, version.

    Gonna try to stay up all night to watch WTT - but only if the internet speed is fast enough, otherwise I'll see more buffering than skating.
     
  3. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new post ready - about how to make rice noodles (surprisingly interesting!) and Saigon, and a fantastical temple and religious group who decided to combine Buddhism with Taoism, Confucianism and a little Christianity to come up with a unique and colourful spiritual soup. Their temple has to be seen to be believed. So use the direct link for this post.

    Also a post on the nomadic life about emotional and physical health - direct link
    http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2...fe-emotional-distress-and-physical-wellbeing/

    It's 3.45 am and I'm up watching WTT FD live streaming in Mexico :cheer2:
     
  4. orientalplane

    orientalplane Mad for mangelwurzels

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    Thank you so much for sharing with us your fascinating lives, and the beauty and heartbreak of a world that most of us will never experience! :)
     
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  5. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Thanks orientalplane, I'm so glad you enjoying our stories. Yes, it's a fascinating world alright. So much to see. When I look at a map I can't believe what a tiny amount of the world we've actually seen. And even though we're a bit worn out from our last big journey, every time I think of places I haven't been to yet, I'm just about ready to get up and go again . . . . .well not just yet, but the fascination with all the variety of ways of living, and the natural landscape, in all the different places in the world still excites me to want to see it. I just read a blog post describing a trip to Tibet in the 1990's, and photographs of the people, and I immediately wanted to go see for myself :)
     
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  6. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new blog post ready. This one's about our return to Cambodia to see the breathtaking, monumental, archaeological ruins of Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom, near the town of Siem Reap. I'm not much into archaeology or history but the buildings here are so well preserved, and the scale so enormous it was hard to take it all in, and really worth seeing. It is justifiably designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Also saw some beautiful traditional Khmer dancing and managed to get one or two good photos. Gorgeous costumes. Oh and we ran into a Cambodian wedding party in the grounds of Angkor Wat - beautiful outfits.

    Bah to all the haters! WTT is a great competition :cheer: Had so much fun staying up all night watching the ISU live stream.

    And now I'm starting at the beginning of the season watching the GP competitions that kwanfan1818 put on dvd for me. I'm finally getting to see some of the programs I've only been able to read about :cheer2:
     
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  7. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    Echoing this, with gratitude.
     
  8. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Thanks skatesindreams. Thank you!

    And there's a new post ready - this time about a wilderness wetlands bird sanctuary, a floating village, village life in a village on land, a croc farm, and how to make beautiful crafts from water weeds, and candies from palm sugar - all in Cambodia.
    The usual link in my sig line.

    And a new nomadic life post about trying to maintain equilibrium while travelling (haven't figure it out yet :lol:)
    Direct link:http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/the-nomadic-life-finding-equilibrium-and-equanimity/
     
  9. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new post ready about our travels in Laos this time. We spent a week in Vientiane. Lots of markets and temples as always - SE Asia's like that :lol: and the usual quota of Buddhist monks, and a real highlight - being invited to a special family ceremony for two men who had just joined the monastery. A rollicking good time :cheer:

    We love Laos - it's a very gentle country, even if the people will eat just about anything that moves. But the story, and photos, of that stomach-churning market is for the next post.
     
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  10. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    What a "slice of life" you experienced with the monks family.
    Indeed you were "in the right place" for an extraordinary occasion.

    Thanks, for continuing to share experiences that we would know very little about, without you.
     
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  11. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Your welcome. Such a pleasure for me.
    That monk ceremony was amazing, and what incredible luck to be there when it was happening. We also stumbled into a couple of monk ceremonies in Burma (Myanmar) which I'll write about eventually, and I had great conversations with a monk in Burma, and with a couple of monks in Thailand. It's really fascinating - well for me anyway since I've been meditating for years, and drawn to some of the teachings of Buddhism.
     
  12. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new post ready. This one is about a national park near Vientiane, Laos, a quite remarkable salt works, and a stomach-churning market. Be warned :D

    There's also a new post about some blog awards we were given. Direct link: http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/awards-awards-awards/

    Enjoy. Well you might enjoy the national park bit, but the markets maybe not so much :yikes: :scream:

    I follow, and comment on many other blogs these days. I find I really really miss the FSU emoticons. They are the best anywhere! So graphic and expressive.
     
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  13. Buzz

    Buzz Well-Known Member

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    Thanks again for another great post Alilou! :respec:
     
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  14. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    For this post. I concentrated more on the glorious orchids; and less on the market!
     
  15. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    You're welcome Buzz. Thanks.

    Well I did warn about the market didn't I :lol:, but as a friend pointed out - who are the real 'barbarians' - the people who eat bugs and bats, or the people who bombed their country for nine years? I still can't quite wrap my head around those statistics - 100 bombs, every 8 minutes, for nine years. Now that's truly barbaric. Poor Laos.
     
  16. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I <3 Kozuka

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    Wonderful post on Laos and photos!!!!!!
     
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  17. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Thanks Kwanfan1818. I have such fun with photography. Maybe I'll make a book one day.
    Laos is pretty amazing eh?
     
  18. Maofan7

    Maofan7 Member

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    Great post, and yes, a real eye opener. Thank you
     
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  19. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Thanks Maofan7. We've been to local markets all over India and SE Asia and I must admit this was the most . . .um . . .colourful :scream:
     
  20. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new blog post ready. It's about a shreiking-at-the-driver terrifying ride in a minivan to Vang Vieng (beautiful place) and then Luang Prabang, a town so lovely we doubled our planned time there - markets, temples, monks, etc. You know the drill - SE Asia at its best.

    Also there's a new post in the Nomadic Life series. Direct link - http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/05/08/the-nomadic-life-the-way-it-is/

    No graphic markets this time :D
     
  21. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    What a fascinating and beautiful adventure, alilou.

    Please, thank Don for sharing his thoughts.

    I'm sure that the "unknown" is worrisome at times; but, think of all you would have missed had you opted for that "cottage"!
    No one can really predict the future, no matter how secure we feel.
    There are never any guarantees.
     
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  22. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Thanks skatesindreams. And you're right, there's never any guarantees no matter what kind of life you lead. We don't really want the cottage, not yet anyway. These storms come and go, and them we're back to realising how lucky and blessed we are.
     
  23. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I just published a new blog post. This one is about a ten hour (!) hike to some villages, kayaking and swimming with elephants (just the most fun ever!), and a boat trip down the Mekong to a temple in a cave.
    As usual use the link in my sig line.

    Also another post about a fashion parade of all things. It was a showing of the glorious traditional outfits worn by all the different ethnic groups of Laos - beautiful and unusual. Direct link: http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/05/14/laos-part-4-fashion-parade/

    I am so behind lol I've almost finished watching Canadians from last January :lol:
     
  24. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    You have the most fantastic adventures!

    And that fabulous fashion show.
    What gorgeous photos
    I'm delighted to have seen them.
     
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  25. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Yeah, don't we though?! :cheer:

    We too were delighted to have seen the fashion show - pure luck that we connected with Jim and Lily who told us about it.
     
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  26. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    Another blog post is done - about Chiang Mai, train rides, puppet shows in Bangkok and another beautiful temple :)

    Also a post about being discombobulated. Direct link:http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/05/20/the-nomadic-life-discombobulated/

    I've now finished watching Canadians and am watching US Nationals. Slowly catching up. Every evening before bed I watch about 45 minutes of skating. Puts me to sleep nicely :)
     
  27. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    There's a new blog post ready. I've finally gotten to write a post about Burma (wanting to keep it all chronological). It is an amazing country and I'm really glad I got to go there. This first post about Burma (Myanmar) is about the city of Yangon. As usual, use the link in my sig line.

    There's also another post in the Nomadic Life series about becoming undefended.
    Direct link :http://alisonanddon.wordpress.com/2013/05/26/the-nomadic-life-becoming-undefended/

    Thanks for reading :)

    Just finish watching the men's comp at 4 Continents. Good to finally see Reynolds skate-of-a-lifetime. :respec:
     
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  28. spikydurian

    spikydurian Well-Known Member

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    Hmmm... not human beings?? :p

    Share your conversations and insights, please. Many many decades ago :D ... a friend gave me my first book on buddhism (I remember it was written by a Thai monk, and unfortunately I lost the book since). It was, IMO, well written because unlike many books which tell you the teachings but somehow unable to relate the teachings to normal or ordinary lives. It is from this book, that I finally grasped the abstract concept of 'nothingness'. What meditation method do you use, Allison? I don't meditate.. have tried ... but not successful. Too much of a roaming mind.:(
     
  29. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I'm so hopeless - I don't remember what I talked about with the monks in Thailand :( We chatted for about one hour, one of them spoke English and translated since the other didn't. I'll get Don to check his notes later and see if he wrote anything about it. All I remember is that we learned the older monk had been a monk for 5 yrs and that he'd gotten all his tattoos before becoming a monk, and the younger one had been a monk since he was a child, and that it would be fine for us to come and listen to their evening chanting and join in their meditation which we did the following evening.
    The other monk I spoke with was in Mandalay, Burma, a beautiful quiet soul who asked me a lot about my beliefs, and meditation practices, but I could tell that he was really hearing me. I think it was a pretty one sided conversation actually :( - I could have asked him more, but he kept asking me questions.

    I've been meditating for so many years. I started just constantly returning to the breath. It took me a long time to realise that I shouldn't be trying to get something from meditation. If you're trying to get something it means you're striving. Now it's not about quieting the mind - I'm pretty good at that, but more about watching and questioning. The mind makes up stories. The issue isn't the mind, or it's stories. It's that we believe them. So my meditations are sometimes just about exploring/resting in the emptiness, and sometimes challenging the mind stories with "is that true?" The question doesn't have an answer. it's simply to challenge any fixed or rigid position of the mind.

    Everyone has a roaming mind because we've all been taught to believe that's who we are and therefore need it to survive. Funny thing is at the times there's no thoughts - there we still are :)
     
  30. alilou

    alilou Crazy Stalker Lady

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    I have a new blog post ready. This one is about the truly magnificent Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, Burma. It's one of the most amazing places I've been to - I run out of superlatives. And other stuff about seeing traditional dances and local comics. Fun!

    I hope you enjoy it :)