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Rowan: Paroxysms
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Miles and Miles of Milestones

Over the last month or so, we have passed a number of milestones, and we have moved on from Japan/Australia/Asia to Europe.  March 5-8 was our last trip to Singapore, the hub of our travels, where we have been four times and really have loved.  We have a great friend in Singapore, Bel, who we met up with again this trip.  We met Bel in Boracay (here she is on the top of the world in Boracay looking over the Phillippines), and she was the greatest hostess for our Singapore trips - miss ya, Bel! 

And Singapore is the home of the world-famous Sim Lim Square, one of Singapore's meccas of technology, and the place where Trixie, Rowan's new "gal," was adopted by Rowan. 

Trixie is a Samsung Galaxy Note, which was Rowan's big present for his birthday.  Here, in Chiang Mai, Thailand, our friend Vinnie teaches Rowan the *tricks* of Trixie! 

Meanwhile, in Southeast Asia, you never see drawer organizers like this, in our favorite Perak Hotel in Little India in Singapore, where we stayed two of the four times we went to Singapore.  You would be surprised how happy we are to have an in-room safe and plenty of effective and efficient storage spaces.  Plus their art is great, and of course, there is a cat in the painting.  (Theme)

We went to Singapore in order to fly into Thailand for Rowan's 60th birthday on March 15th (Water Dragon baby; those only come around every sixty years - no kidding!).  If you come into Thailand over land, you can only stay for 15 days, but if you come in on a plane, you can stay 30 days!  So on March 8, we flew from Singapore to Chiang Mai, Thailand, which was *the* place in the world that Rowan chose to celebrate his big birthday, with our big group of friends we made when we were there for a month in December-January.   There was a lunch:

and an evening party:

For us, Chiang Mai was all about getting pampered with pedicures and massages.  It was one of the last places where massages are both good and incredibly affordable.  Here are our masseuses at iSiam (does eveything have to sound like Steve Jobs invented it?), with the owner's daughter, a real sweetie pie.  Massage for $12 for an hour and a half, anyone?  Wowie.  And they are really good!

And the relaxation is amazing!

Shirl also celebrated her 25th birthday on March 18th in Chiang Mai, Thailand, again with all our good friends.  Steve was responsible for getting the cakes (Thanks, Steve!)

and for the candles that couldn't be blown out!

And here is the serenity that is Koh Samui, Thailand - on the beach - with incredible massages, where we passed the half-way mark of approximately 280 days away from Twin Peaks:

Then we spent a day and a half in Kuala Lumpur at a nice bed and breakfast near the airport, Ramah Putih.  It is owned by a couple who are incredibly hospitable and drove us to the bus that takes you to the airport.  That was after Rowan found a used clothes store and was able to score a heavy shirt and two heavy coats and a pair of gloves for $30 (yes, that is $30!) for the cold that we knew would be Paris in the early spring. 

And then we were *treated* to a 13 1/2 hour flight to Paris on Air Asia, on a flight that Air Asia discontinued as of April 1, 2012 (no kidding!).  Here we are getting settled into Premium Class on March 29, which on Air Asia is 18 seats with lots of room, flat beds, reading lights, and a big bright red pillow and comforter (that is Air Asia's color).

We slept a fair amount, but who is that masked man??  A guy ready to move from Southeast Asia, get some sleep, and get to Paris, tout de suite!

We still had jet lag, but then we could sleep it off in a beautiful apartment in the 9th arrondissement in Paris.  Yeah, Paris!  Now we are ensconced in the City we love the most in the world.  Here we are having our first breakfast, when Paris was still unseasonably warm (now, not so much), on the terrace on the 7th floor. 

Aah.  Mais oui, c'est magnifique!



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