The Empire Builder’s Handbook says that the campaign must start at home. Supporters, subjects, and sycophants need tangible proof that the king has the wealth and power to rule and expand the kingdom.
Plan as you might, whether between cities, countries, or continents, transit days are tiring and stressful. Some trips are harder than others of course, but in foreign countries almost all trips are demanding.
Bangkok is an assault on the senses. Mad Max tuk-tuks careen wildly through traffic while the Skytrain glides effortlessly above. Sleep-deprived backpackers rub elbows with cellphone-toting monks and neighborhood masseuses.
She is a study in concentration. Hands on the controls, tentatively shifting gears, pink sari flying in the breeze. This young woman is my hero! Why? She’s learning to drive a tuk-tuk in a country where few women dare to drive! I’m sitting on our balcony in Ella, watching the kids across the field play …