My Top Ten: Best Places to Swim in the World

Ocean creatures nibble on your feet as the wide expanse of seawater pulses with waves for bodysurfing. Nude night swimming as a teenager felt like breaking rules that weren’t meant to be followed anyway. Sunday night swims at the Y.M.C.A, when we were still a family of four, with vending machine ice cream followed by the classic show by the formerly virtuous, presently vilified Bill Cosby.

Swimming was always a part of my life. Continue reading

Taking the Sleeper Train from Chiang Mai to Bangkok

City dwellers wave goodbye to the train wearing the eponymous grins from the “Land of Smiles”, motorbikes sit idling at the crossing. Brick walls evaporate into the rice paddies. Two pretty Asian girls in glasses and ponytails settle in across from me, one thin and bird like, the other, cute and plump. I’m sweating and they are pulling out their shoulder wraps to prevent a chill from settling upon their ultra delicate skin. Continue reading

SCUBA in Thailand

The videos prepare you for the worst, the instructor prepares you for the dive, the panic prepares your concentration, the excitement prepares your anticipation, and yet nothing can truly prepare you for the quiet, pulsing energy of breathing underwater. The barnacle crusted line leads downward toward the dark, sandy bottom. Equalizing the pressure against your ears as you swim, the calmness begins to envelop your body. Continue reading