The sun had gone down in Laos by the time I finished dinner, and I realized I was lost.
Not completely lost, but definitely more than a little turned around. Which way had I walked from my hotel? I looked down a few streets. Tuk tuks were everywhere. The lights on each street looked the same. Vendors were selling everything from chicken liver to snake to types of fish I didn’t recognize. The smells and the streets all seemed to blend together. I didn’t speak the language and my phone didn’t have service.
So I did what I’m used to doing back home in New York City: I started walking. I must have walked twice as far as I had on the way to dinner earlier, but I found my way back.
When I was a kid, I lived near New York and I was fascinated by the city. You could go anywhere by foot. The city seemed never ending and I wanted to explore every part. Later in life when I moved there, I would walk everywhere I could. If it was less than 20 blocks away, I was walking. No brainer.
I had gone to Laos to disappear for a little while. I told my friends and family it was “just a vacation,” but it was more than that. A lot of Major Leaguers take a vacation in the off-season, but for me this off-season was different.