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Christmas in Calcutta!

Well, the travel agent just called, and I'm going to India!!!!!  Until
now I was just on a waiting list for tickets and things were not looking
too good for this year's winter outing (expenses wise)...and then voila!
 The universe smiles in my direction!!

I leave Korea on the 17th, with a one week stopover in Bangkok.  So,
friends in Seoul, look for me around the 15th or 16th for a catch-up
before I go.  My flight to Calcutta goes Christmas Eve (not such a bad
way to pass that particular holiday - hmm, seems like last year I was on
a train in China Christmas Eve, new tradition perhaps?), and by
Christmas morning I should be very wide eyed-overwhelmed in the chaos of
Calcutta.  Probably wondering what the heck I was thinking (though I'm
sure that will pass quickly enough)!!  I don't return to Korea until the
16th of February.

I find the idea of India both thrilling and a little terrifying.  Not
exactly sure why it seems so much bigger an endeavor than China, but it
does.  Luckily for me, I will not be going it completely alone.  My
friend Erik and his family (father, brother) will either be with me when
I arrive, or will follow shortly after me.  They are due to leave
Kunming (China) tomorrow to begin their journey to Bangkok overland,
taking roughly the same route I took in the summer, except in reverse. 
The plan is to meet up in Bangkok, but my tickets for India are a few
days ahead of what we had planned, so we'll see how it all works out. 
Either way, it's nice to know there will be friendly faces around

I am looking forward to the week in Thailand first, to get back into the
swing of travel in a now-familiar place.  And to visiting my friend
Sarah - a fellow traveller I met on the road in Laos this summer (so
make your plans now Sarah, the tickets are bought!!).  Yikes, just over
a week!!  Suddenly it seems so close!!!

If you haven't already guessed from the tone of the words, I am pretty
excited at the moment.  Bouncing around my little attic like a jumping
bean on speed.  Best hit the gym and run off some of this excess energy,
or I won't sleep a wink tonight!  In the meantime, be well.  You are
thought of VERY often (yes, each of you!!), and I am looking forward to
hearing about whatever is new (or old!) with you soon!!  Much love!!!