1 Day in Atlanta : Travel Itinerary

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Looking back on the various locations that I have lived over the years I can’t help but have numerous fond feelings for the diverse city of Atlanta.  Whether it was the sitting front row of the 3rd base side at a Braves game for only $1 or getting into nearly any concert I wanted to for free, there was always a good time to be had in this city.

This past summer I was able to return to the ATL for a quick, one day trip with the family.  Such a short time meant I had to be efficient when deciding what we were going to do, especially since I wanted to hit up so many of my favorites from my time living there.  With such a daunting task before me I felt compelled to make if perfect and I believe I got as near as possible.

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Top 4 Concert Venues in Raleigh, North Carolina (and Within Driving Distance)

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If you happen to have caught any of the Good Vibes posts you should be well aware that I am a fan of a wide variety of music.  Prior to moving to Thailand I lived in Raleigh, North Carolina which is arguably the best city for live music throughout the entire state.  With more venues than any other city in North Carolina as well as being the home to unique music festivals such as Hopscotch Music Festival and World of Bluegrass, Raleigh has cemented itself as the go-to city for concerts in the state.  Now that I am back stateside I already have numerous shows to attend and many of them are actually in Raleigh.  Below you’ll find some of the best venues that make North Carolina’s capital city a truly special live music hub along with a couple of cheat concert halls that are within driving distance.

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Sawasdee : Saying Goodbye to Thailand

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As I sit here on my last day in Thailand staring at my packed bags I cannot help but let the memories of the past two years creep into my thoughts.  This adventure has reached its culmination but it has imbued a long lasting effect on my life.  Between the people I have met, the crystal blue waters that I have swam in, and the children that I have had the pleasure of teaching, my time in Thailand has been nothing but extraordinary.

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I Can See Clearly Now : Eye Care in Thailand

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It is an unfortunate truth that I am blind as a bat wearing a blindfold without my contacts or glasses so it was necessary I properly prepare when moving to Thailand.  I made sure to bring a year’s supply of contacts and my glasses just in case but eventually my stock ran out and my specs were scratched.  It was time I visited the an eye care center for the first time in Thailand.  Rest assured my fellow sightless travelers as eye care in this Southeast Asia hotspot is a breeze to find (barring the language barrier).

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Beer Snob Abroad : Craft Beer in Thailand

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One of the most difficult adjustments this traveler had to make when living in Thailand was the severe lack of diversity in beer options, or, at the very least, easy access to those options.  It can be quite difficult to dig yourself out of a pile of nothing but Chang, Leo, and Singha beers, but rest easy as a true craft beer scene is beginning to emerge in the Land of Smiles.  The options are still severely lacking but it is becoming a bit simpler to satiate your hops craving.

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Khanom, Thailand : A Backpacker’s Respite

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A typical backpacker’s journey to the south of Thailand will take them to the party islands of Koh Tao, Koh Samui, and Koh Pha Ngan where free flow Sang Som buckets and neon-painted tourists reign supreme.  These islands are a tremendous experience in their own right but every now and then the wandering soul might require a bit of time away from the fire shows and non-stop EDM parties.  This is where the lovely beach town of Khanom comes in.  Commonly frequented by the expat teachers of Surat Thani and Nakhon Si Thammarat, this quiet oceanside community may slip by the standard traveler’s radar.  It features a stretch of nearly untouched sand that can provide a much needed rest on your Thailand holiday.

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Good Vibes : Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) by Darlene Love

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This will be my second year in a row spent far from home for the holidays so I am filling this Good Vibes post with a bit of Christmas nostalgia.  While sitting here in my Thailand home finishing up packing for a Christmas beach trip I noticed an email sent from my dad.  Inside I find a link to the very last performance of Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) sung by Darlene Love on The Late Show with David Letterman.  For years on end my dad would have the entire family gather to watch this annual performance on the last show before Christmas.  It goes without saying that this video brought a tear to my eye.

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Surviving Thailand : Motorbike Safety Tips

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Have you ever played a game of Frogger?  That is essentially the same game you are playing when driving a motorbike on the roads in Thailand.  According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Thailand has the second deadliest roadways in the entire world.  That is a great deal of pressure put on your shoulders while making your way to teach every morning.  It is not all doom and gloom though as I have gathered the skills to face these automobile challenges and bring you this article.  Rest assured as I have sat down with some of the best farang minds in Surat Thani to compile a multitude of suggestions to ensure your safety on the road as you seek to educate the youth in the Land of Smiles.

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Good Vibes : Pulling Teeth by Lucius

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Tasks that once came easy can sometimes feel like “pulling teeth”.  Whether it is discovering new ways to reach my students, thinking of material to write for my blog, or simply navigating everyday life in Thailand, each activity can be a strain on the mind if not properly tackled.  Lucius’ new song, “Pulling Teeth”, is brilliantly relatable in its addressing of the idea that having difficulty with what was once simple can apply to all who listen.

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Craving America : What I Miss the Most

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‘Murica

With just over two weeks left until I make my first trip back to the States in over a year I cannot help but think of all the American greatness that I have been missing.  While in Thailand my taste of home has consisted of ill-prepared “hamburgers”, a CCR CD being played in my cab, a “chili dog” made with Thai chili sauce rather than actual chili, and English songs sung by the worst cover bands imaginable.  So without further ado I present the raw badassery of what I will be partaking in during my all to brief visit back to the greatest country on Earth!

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