I did not even realize it until it had already happened. How could I have completely overlooked this significant personal milestone?
It was a muggy November afternoon at the very decadent high tea of the Shangri-La when it dawned on me; here I was in Bangkok, the official spot that brought me full circle all the way around the world! In 2006, I ventured on a trip westward with my dear friend Seeta visiting India, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. On this most recent trip traveling through Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand I had now arrived via the east. I had officially circled the globe!!
This was a defining moment for me. For someone who is passionate about international travel, I actually felt like I was legit now. I genuinely could say I have “been around the world” because I had! This may not seem like a big deal to some people, and to others it might be a cool stat, but this really did mean something to me. On a deeper level, I understood and appreciated how lucky I am to have the freedom and means to travel and experience other cultures; the opportunity to indulge in new adventures, foreign cuisines and interactions with local citizens. But probably the most important of all, and as cliché as it sounds, are the insights I’ve learned about myself; the good (attention to detail with trip planning), the bad (cranky when really hungry) and the ugly (zero tolerance for bugs and small critters in my living space). And I learn more and more about all three of those characteristics, as well as others, with each international (and even domestic!) trip I take.
Ok, back to the high tea. For someone who loves the occasional indulgence of an extravagant high tea at a lavish hotel, I have to say the one at the Shangri-La Bangkok ranks up there as one of the best yet (a side note, I was staying at the Krungthep Wing which is the “private enclave” within the Shangri-La)(a second side note, I’ve heard that the high tea at the Peninsula in Hong Kong is the best in the world, but I haven’t tried that one….yet). All of the food was impeccable in its presentation and very meticulously put together. I loved that they already prepared my vegetarian high tea and asked the correct questions to make sure it met my dietary restrictions (i.e. I don’t eat fish, but do eat dairy, etc).
By far my favorite item of all the amazing choices was the triple chocolate mousse tart. It was rich and sumptuous, yet light and airy with an unbelievable chocolate flavor. Hershey’s had no business here!! I am imagining this chocolate came from some exquisite chocolatier in Switzerland or something like that. I never bothered to ask, but all I know is that it was probably one of the best chocolate desserts I’ve ever had (yes, a very bold statement)!