Matt, Australia

I think it’s time for a little structure and schedule in this blog (just call me wild and free 😉 )

Something I always wanted to document from my travels and adventures was the people I met along the way. I wanted to solidify my memory of them somehow so that I wouldn’t forget the details.

So, on Fridays (maybe not every Friday – told you, call me wild and free) I will post in “The People Series” about an individual who I have crossed paths with. I won’t be posting photos of these souls as I respect their privacy and I want the reader to create their own image from my descriptions.

Let’s begin with Matt from Australia.

Cairns to be precise, on the East coast of OZ, I met him in a hostel I volunteered at in Chiang Mai, Thailand. He meandered into the bar with no sense of urgency. When I first laid eyes on him I may have gawked (hear me out). He is 6 foot 7. As slim as a green bean and walks as slow, steadily and deliberate as a giraffe. I honestly don’t think he would have been capable of darting across traffic if he needed to.

Picture Slender Man, but much more hippy-esk, covered in tattoos and wooden beads. His accent was subtle, his voice incredibly quiet and slower than his walk.. Was he high? Yes, but I also think that was just him!

He seemed to be the quiet yet confident type. I base this on the way he ruffled the feathers of a newly appointment hostel manager from Durham, UK (now this was a human I had the MISfortune of meeting). His presence was enough, and if you had the confidence to introduce yourself.. well you wouldn’t hear his reply because he was so dang quiet!

He knew a fair bit of Thai, but that’s no surprise, once I heard his back story. He’d been avoiding his hometown due to the classic traveller’s reverse culture shock and had spent a considerable amount of time in Asia, specifically Thailand. All his wealth of knowledge allowed him to embarrass me in another language with the Thai compliments he would throw.

And a few hours into knowing him, I knew he was the friend for me when he asked…

“Are you a chav?” -__-

Okay fine, I was wearing an Adidas top. But at the time it was 2019, don’t be assuming my sub-cultural group based on my appearance DUDE! Luckily he realised his mistake when I opened my mouth and spoke so perfectly, so eloquently (a-hem..)

I spent the majority of my final week in Thailand 2019 with him, it was meant to be during my volunteering at that hostel I mentioned, but that hostel manager I also mentioned, well, he didn’t like how Matt was my new BFFL and he told me to leave!

We did as the locals did, stumbled around Zoe in Yellow, avoided the sun, and watched fuzzy Thai skin whitening adverts.

He was interesting to talk to, with an edge of weirdness which I wasn’t sure was the good or bad weird, He showed me some social media posts of his, things that would set anyone’s Trypophobia off. but he bought me mango sticky rice and in my book that makes him A okay!