Jessica Klauzenberg

JKlauzenberg

Jessica Klauzenberg

“If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home.”
–James Michener.
I am invigorated by the smells and sounds and tastes of new cultures, and almost daily I have an urge to close my eyes, spin the globe, and buy a plane ticket to wherever my finger lands....next up is...wait for it....

This is my first time "blogging", and I'm loving it so far! I'm a 25 year old (soon to be 26..eek!) Professor of English at a technical University in western Japan- I went to grad school full-time and simultaneously had a full-time job teaching English to adult refugees in my state of Vermont and a night waitressing job at the Bearded Frog restaurant. Needless to say, I worked really hard right out of college and got my Master's in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), and now it's time to reward myself (a bit!)

Why a TESOL degree? I've asked myself so many times, haha, but I knew I wanted to travel and see more of the world, and this degree has opened so many doors that I never could have imagined!! Besides living in Japan every day, one of the best parts of my job is paid vacation time!!! And a lot of it!!! This past February and March (2012) I travelled around Thailand, Cambodia and Bali by myself (thank you very much)-- it was amazing and I cannot wait to explore more of Southeast Asia!! I am always looking to share experiences and learn from people who have travelled these paths before me-- please follow/comment/share if you are intrigued by anything I post!!

Enjoy 😊



Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai June 3rd 2012

In America, it is very common. In Japan, you see it nowhere. In Chiang Mai, it is scare, but beautiful. Some of the graffiti I photographed in Chiang Mai was thought-provoking, complex and colorful. Living in a country where there is hardly any graffiti, I have started to notice it more and more as a I travel. Why do people graffiti? It's an interesting quesiton, one that cannot be answered in a single try. I prefer to take pictures of it and accept it as part of the local culture and feel of the city. Who knows, maybe they were done by foreigners trying to leave a more permanent mark during ever-changing period of travel. Maybe it was a local. It doesn't matter who did it, or the reason, but the fact that the artwork is ... read more
Open for Interpretation...
What do YOU see?

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai May 23rd 2012

Glitter, gold, and glam was not what I was expecting when I first saw the temples of Thailand, but, compared to Japanese temples, these are bedazzled. They are almost over the top, until you realize, hey, that's just how they do it here. I must say that Japense temples are mostly wooden structures, extremely old, and they are constructed in the most sensible fashion. But Thailand, man!! The colors, the glitz, the sparkle-- I felt conflicted whether I wanted to pray or have a dance party in some of these places. Reasons behind it? I have no idea. I tried to research "bedazzled temples" and the search results on google were not promising. All I can say is that they were beautiful. Most of the temples are called "Wat____" (insert name after Wat). A wat is ... read more
Gold Headed Lion
Wat Pan Tao
Sunset at Wat Chedi Luang (I think!)

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai May 23rd 2012

A Memorable Day of Elephants, Tigers and Orchids If you've ever visited Chiang Mai, you've probably gone on an elephant tour-there are many to choose from! Some offer more than others (for more money, of course), and I figured hey, an elephant's an elephant, so I went with the cheapest option. Of course, I considered that the price of these tours could possibly help the animals in different ways, but then the fact remains that despite the cost, these animals are most likely overworked and underfed regardless of the price I'm paying. And where does that money really go? So, I took the cheapest Elephant Tour I could find, and I had a GREAT time!!! Here's another plug for the Montrara Happy House and its staff! The front desk guy arranged for the tour company to ... read more
2-1-2
The Real Captain
Captain Jess?!

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai May 22nd 2012

Let it be known that I love food. Almost all food. And I only say "almost" as a disclaimer-- I'll try just about everything once. Everything from hearty meat and potatoes, to the most delicate sashimi, from slurping oysters and tasting tentacles at eight years old (thanks to a trick by Mom and Dad), to a steak you don't even need a butter knife to cut, vegetarian, vegan, caught and butchered in the backyard, if you cook it (or serve it), I'll probably eat it. I've eaten sea urchin, escargot, sashimi (raw fish) that was literally alive the second before it touches your lips, horse meat, shark fin (by accident!!), and the list goes on and on. That being said, experiencing Thai food in Chiang Mai was one of the highlights of my entire eating career, ... read more
Thai Green Curry
Heart-shaped Jasmine Brown Rice
Lunch

Asia » Thailand » North-West Thailand » Chiang Mai May 22nd 2012

Chiang Mai, Thailand. What a place!! Overall thoughts: excellent food (especially vegetarian though I am not a vegetarian), reasonable prices, extremely friendly people (locals and foreigners alike), and comfortable atmosphere. A great starting location to my three week trip. I was very happy that I started here instead of in Bangkok--first impressions can never be changed, and I'm glad I got Chiang Mai! The excitement and energy of stepping foot in a new city, especially after several hours of travel and a planned but uncomfortable overnight stay in an unairconditioned airport (Kuala Lumpur), is settling in and finding your home-base for your new part of the universe. Finding my hostel is always first on the list- after dropping bags, a quick change of clothes, and a new SD card in my spankin new camera (Canon EOS ... read more
Bookstores Galore!!




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