A Love Note to Thailand

During the summer of 2017, I was blessed with the opportunity to spend two weeks in Udon Thani, Thailand, participating in service projects through a travel company called Rustic Pathways. My travel buddy, Kaia Baker, and I would agree that those two weeks changed our lives forever. Before the trip, my family and all my relatives threw me a going away breakfast in DC. I remember how hesitant my grandmother was to let me go; the 8,556 miles from Thailand to where I lived in New Jersey, stretched out like a lifetime between us. But, before long, I was on a flight headed towards the adventure of a lifetime. Now, looking back more than a year later, I felt the overwhelming need to culminate my thoughts into a love letter to this beautiful country that I fondly dub my “second home.” 

A Love Letter to Thailand

By Tyler Newman

I fell in love with you the moment I saw your blue skies.

Blue like aquamarine, I jumped in and your oceans rose up to meet me.

Your children are magic, their culture a trance so unlike mine

But when I walk through the village, a brown face turns towards mine and smiles

“สวัสดี (S̄wạs̄dī, Hello)” This greeting bridges us.

I feel like I’ve known you my whole life, but we’ve only just met.

Your rice patties and palm trees beckon to me and I run down to meet you.

Your sun paints my skin like gold and I smile

The paradise you bring courses withing me, liquid strength

When love is given it never goes away


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Hello! My name is Tyler Newman and I'm a magical creature.

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