For the next three months, I am partaking in a writer’s residency at The Content Castle in Koh Samui, Thailand. “Big World, Bigger God” is a travelogue of my time and experiences.
Paradise. I’m in paradise. That was my first thought as the plane flew into Koh Samui island. Crystal blue water, exotic landscapes, and a tropical breeze (turns out the breezes are few and far between!). I knew I was in a different place when the baggage claim was open air and the bathroom had vases of live birds of paradise!
I’m writing this from my private balcony – yes, you read that right. I am so blessed with this room with its space, hot pink accents and three big windows – on top of the big glass door to the balcony! I even have a desk and separate wide sitting chair (which I hauled out here on the balcony to help make my “outdoor desk” space).
The Content Castle is situated on the main Ring Road around the island, across the street from the beach. It has three floors, seven bedrooms, three patio/decks, and plenty of common spaces and little alcoves. There are signs all over the common areas with writing inspiration, whether that’s quotes or descriptive adjectives to use!
My room, called “The Boudoir,” faces the front. There is a line of buildings in front of the water, but even though I can’t see it from here, I can definitely smell it. If I have the urge (which let’s face it, I always do), it’s a two-minute walk to the sea and a five-minute walk to the pier and waterfront area. This street reminds me of the Strip on Myrtle Beach because there is a lot of action up and down it – quiet and peaceful, it is not! But it makes me feel like I’m right in the thick of it.
The incredibly creative and talented women I am sharing the Castle with come with diverse backgrounds, interests, and so many travel experiences. We got to share some stories with each other over dinner – yes, my friends, there is a darling housekeeper named Cherry who has a big smile and makes scrumptious meals for us.
Some of the countries my five Castle mates have worked and volunteered in: Malaysia, Myanmar, Costa Rica, Morocco, Cambodia, Egypt, Dubai, other parts of Thailand, New Zealand, Singapore, Curacao…and that’s just what I’ve heard about today! Wow. I am definitely the “plain Jane” and least traveled of the bunch – but I am HERE. And I’m so excited about what I’m going to learn and be able to do.