2 – The ability to communicate with just one word or a smile. It’s a pretty amazing feeling.
3 – Street food. Need I say more? The convenience, the price, the smell, the taste, the sight, street food sets your senses on fire! The struggle of paying $10 instead of $1 for a meal is seriously real.
4 – The convenience of the constant questioning of ‘Tuk tuk?!’. Yeah it can be annoying, but also oh-so-handy when you do actually need some form of transport!
5 – The smiles of the Khmer children, the Burmese women, the Vietnamese men. Southeast Asia is filled with happiness and positivity and it’s infectious, so it can be challenging to return home where people may not be quite as jolly.
5 – The excitement of finding rolls of film at the back of dusty cabinets in random little stores down alleyways that feel a little dodgy, and then finding that it’s expired and in an extremely faded packet but buying it anyway because hey, it’s a bargain!
6 – Your backpack. The longer you travel, the more it becomes like a trusty (and slightly overweight) best friend.8 – The fashion. Socks and flip-flops. Matching printed tops and pants. Outrageous beanies. Anything goes.
9 – Fruit, fruit, and more fruit. There’s nothing like grabbing a bag of a whole pineapple from a street vendor, wandering the street with mango in hand, or buying a bunch of those sweet mini bananas at a floating market.
10 – Exercising your haggling skills on a daily basis. It’s always fun to have a bit of a banter with street vendors or tuk tuk drivers.
11 – The fun of learning a new language as you travel around, practicing it with the locals, and then learning another a few weeks later as you journey through different countries.
12 – Everything’s a little bit different in Southeast Asia. The laid-back yet crazy lifestyle can become quite addictive, and the attitude of not worrying too much about anything is definitely something to miss.13 – Being surrounded by people in zip-off pants. They’re the bottoms of choice for many travellers through SEA, and it’s likely you’ll miss seeing them around when you get home.
14 – The loss of feeling like a celebrity wherever you go because there’s so many people that want to take photos of/with you because you’re outrageously tall or have huge feet.
16 – The ability to upgrade your flip flops whenever you go inside a temple. Begin with generic and make your way up to Guccis. Okay, so we never actually did that, and there’s not many (if any) travellers in Southeast Asia with Gucci flip-flops, but you could try it!
18 – Wearing t-shirts that say Cambodia or Vietnam and no-one caring.
19 – The chanting that wakes you up every morning at 5am, sure it’s not the best wake-up call but it’s certainly feels good to be up with the sun!
20 – We disagree a little on this one, but Gavin believes bum guns are something to miss. Bum gun you ask? Those little hoses that hang next to the squat (or Western) toilets that are used instead of toilet paper.