Where in the world Today?

Home Sweet Home

Sunday, December 6, 2009

With My Own Two Hands

The World is so big.
We had the opportunity to see parts of it we had only ever imagined and even parts of it we never imagined. We met amazing people. We opened our eyes wide but sometimes had to fight not to close them. We sang our hearts out, cried our eyes out, and laughed until our cheeks hurt. We challenged ourselves to our limits. We experienced things we had only ever heard about and many things brand new.
The World is so small.

Our journey does not end here. Nor does a new one begin.
The journey continues.
Turns out that every step of the journey is the journey.

Go ahead, chase that rainbow.
And wherever you go, go with all your heart!

The happiest place(s) on earth

Troy and I learned early on in our relationship that we both loved Disneyland and Christmas and counted them both on the top of our list of favorite things. Troy's list also included ninja movies and football but I was willing to overlook some things. Anyways, it only seemed fitting to cap off our year of travel by celebrating a few of our favorite things...
First stop, Disneyland! We took advantage of 24 hours in Hong Kong to relish the innocence that I'm convinced, now more than ever, can only be captured within the confines of the Happiest Place on Earth. As we took in the magic of the magic kingdom, we laughed at the cliche of the snow covered Canada in the It's a Small World display. (Little did we know at this point that the joke would be on us upon our return home when we would be assaulted with -30C weather and a foot of snow).
That evening as the lights of the Disney castle lit up in a spectacular finish, the curtain was also drawn on our 'whole year of awesome'. What had once seemed so far away was now upon us. Filled with excitement, anxiety, nerves and anticipation, it was officially time to go Home.

As we walked (who's kidding who, the picture clearly shows that I ran) through the arrivals gate at the Edmonton airport, it became obvious that not until that moment had we truly found the Happiest Place on Earth! Never had it felt so good to arrive at a destination. Probably had something to do with the familiar faces and the outstretched arms that greeted us despite having arrived home with little more than a day's notice and in terrible weather conditions.

There is no place like Home. And I don't think it could get much better than Home for the Holidays :).

We count our blessings having arrived home safely after 49 weeks of travel including visits to 11 countries! Home now for less than 48 hours, it seems a bit surreal. I am trying not to let myself think about What Next? Not yet anyway. After a year of constantly planning our next move, I can honestly say that I don't know what I'm doing tomorrow. With our calendars cleared until the new year, don't be surprised if we show up unannounced on a doorstep near you!

Big hugs and thanks to everyone who sent us smiles over the internet this year and to everyone who took time out to visit us at thefarnyard to check in on our journey. (Paige and Bree, this most certainly includes you, thanks for following along and can't wait to see ya).

It was great having everyone along for the ride.
Your support and kindness has literally meant The World to us!

Beach 'n Brawn

While Troy spent our final week in Thailand healing his aches and pains, showing off his purple leg and stitches, and wearing out the Youtube link to his fight video, I resumed training.

You know, just another day in the life of a muay thai kickboxer...
Yib (the trainer) continued to encourage me to punch him in the face, convince me to stop smiling and keep my chin down, advise me that there is no squealing in kickboxing (even if I am a girl and that is my immediate response when my legs are kicked out from under me), and inform me that when we return next time he will train me harder and I will fight. I held fast to my position as a lover.

I embraced my last week of training, came away with my own impressive set of bruises, and after logging a few more hours in the sun and flexing some muscle on the beach (hehe), it was time to say goodbye to Thailand.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Knock Out!

Undefeated in Thailand. Has a nice ring to it...

Sunday was spent on a wave of nervous energy. I'm not sure who was more nervous, Troy or I, but we both did a good job trying to hide it.
We entered the stadium and I was overwhelmed with the smells of sweat and tiger balm. Yep, we had arrived. The little kids were up first and while I watched 7 year olds with boxing gloves the size of their heads and practiced spectating without squirming, Troy got prepared. Or should I say that the pit crew (as i like to call them) prepared him. First was hand taping, then the massage and grease-up, some pep-talking and off to wardrobe!

This was the real deal, a professional fight. He looked the part and was the picture of confidence as he climbed into the ring in his silk robe. (Though he later confessed that he almost fell on his face as he negotiated the ropes...)

Troy went through the motions of the Wai Kru (the traditional 'dance' performed in the ring prior to fighting) and then the inevitable happened. The fight began. I had been hoping the formalities would last a while longer as I sought out an isolated seat in the corner from where I could watch alone with my nerves.

It started out a little tentative, as was expected. This was Troy's first fight. This was not the first fight for his Thai opponent. Troy took a couple of good kicks to the leg in the first round and then I watched the momentum of the fight turn as Troy got, well, pissed off! He found his one-two and got into the game. I didn't need that seat after all as I found myself jumping up and down and yelling like a hockey-mom.

Round 1 seemed to pass in a flash and the team sprung into action!

Round 2 was even shorter. This is a picture of Troy trying not to celebrate prematurely as his opponent, in the bottom right hand corner, lies unmoving on the mat... So proud!
The fight was definitely a crowd pleaser and it was agreed that while it wasn't necessarily a real pretty or technical fight, it didn't matter. A knock-out is a knock-out and the victory tastes just as sweet! He even ended up with a Thai Tattoo (aka stitches, four to be exact) as a souvenir. Who could ask for more?

On the way home, one of the trainers looked at me, nodded his head, pounded his chest, pointed to the box of the truck where Troy was sitting (he couldn't bend his leg to get in the cab) and despite the language barrier, he managed the english to say "Big Heart".

Check out the link below to watch the Farn in action :)