Photo Essay

Living in Pattaya: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly


A very crowded Walking Street at night in Pattaya, Thailand. Tons of clubs, go-go bars, and restaurants line both sides of the streets. Bar girls and tourists crowd the neon-lit street.

There are very few places I’ve visited that match the strangeness of Pattaya. At first, I never really contemplated visiting the infamous city of sins. I’d heard so much about its rampant sex industry that it just turned me off. I really thought living in Pattaya was reserved for none other than retired sexpats looking… Read More >>

Living the Dream in Koh Samui


A picture of the sea water crawling up on a Koh Samui Beach. A palm treet leans into the picture. Cover photo of: Living in Koh Samui.

I remember that day quite well, the Monday I packed my bags and went to the airport without a flight or hotel reservation. At the behest of a close friend, who would not stop painting Koh Samui as an island paradise, and that it would tremendously help my novel-writing, I obliged and found the first… Read More >>

Ao Tonsai and Railay Beach: A Visit to Remember


Ao Tonsai on Railay Beach in Krabi Province, Thailand. A small, isolated beach, cupped against a shore with lush mountains close behind.

If one looks at a map of Thailand’s coast, it almost seems like the list of Thai beach paradises goes on endlessly. Island upon island dot the long East and West coasts, which themselves host a great deal of beaches from the likes of Ao Nang Beach and Phuket, to Pattaya and Hua Hin. Very… Read More >>

Ao Nang Beach: Living in Paradise


Longtail boats moored on beautiful Ao Nang Beach in Krabi province of Thailand. The water is light green and shallow, the sky blue. Beautiful living in Ao Nang Beach.

Four years ago I visited Thailand’s Krabi province for the first time, and I was mesmerized by what I saw. Back then, I really considered living in Ao Nang Beach, it had everything you could possibly want. Idyllic beaches, islands and islets, and even a decent entertainment complex called Centerpoint. Granted, club-goers may find living… Read More >>

My Disappointing Visit to Hua Hin


My visit to Huan Hin beach: commercial umbrellas and mattresses on a beach that looked polluted with green waters.

When I arrived in Thailand, my plan was to visit the Northern mountainous provinces, then visit the country’s idyllic beaches. Since I’d previously been to a few beaches already, I thought I’d start with one which came highly recommended: Huan Hin Beach. But I’m not one to shy away from speaking my mind: my visit… Read More >>

Sa Dec Videos: Vietnamese Life in the Mekong

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Clip picture from one of the Sa Dec videos showing the hard Vietnamese life in the Mekong streets. The sidewalks are dirty and unkept.

Every country I’ve visited has held some sort of fascination in my mind, something hinging on a specific memory. For Vietnam, it will always be Vietnamese life in the Mekong. It was an experience like none other. I’ve been asked why that particular area of the world matters so much to me. The answer is… Read More >>

My First Impressions of Myanmar


I was only able to visit Myanmar for four days before a hip injury forced me to a hospital in Malaysia. I arrived in Yangon and one of my first impressions of Myanmar was intense sadness. Before coming to Myanmar, I was expecting something far more modern than the Yangon I stepped into—a place way… Read More >>

My First Impressions of Bangkok


One of my first impressions of Bangkok: The impressive BTS Skytrain and its station, pictured here at night.

Much of what I’ve read about Bangkok truly mirrors my first impressions of the city. Smell and sound merge into an indistinct flavor to which only Bangkok holds the secret. My first impressions of Bangkok were of diesel fumes, street-side grills, and a cityscape full of tall buildings and well-organized highways. Yet, throughout, you notice… Read More >>

The Lover’s House of Pain in Sa Dec

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The Lover, Huynh Thuy Le's House Sa Dec, seen through the front gate.

Huynh Thuy Le. That was his name. Up until a month ago, I never heard of it. Marguerite Duras never mentioned it in her novel “The Lover“, an autobiography depicting her life as a lustful teenager in Sa Dec, Vietnam. In her novel, young Duras simply described him as a nameless lover, a thing. A… Read More >>