“We look so young.
We were so young.”
~ From the Metropolitan Art Museum in NYC
Have you ever read Raymond Carver’s short story “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love”?
Sometimes I think about that title, and I attach other words to the end:
What We Talk About When Talk About Happiness
But lately, I have thought most about What We Talk About When We Talk About Happiness.
What defines happiness? How do I define happiness? How do you?
There is that Kurt Vonnegut quote that goes, “And I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, ‘If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.’”
I haven’t fully dissected the definition of happiness for myself, but a large portion of acknowledging this more-than-contentedness, this fullness, this joy-in-being was recognizing it and holding it for what it was at the time that I felt it.
The description above is completely obscure, but maybe happiness is too.
All I know is that the day we went to Pranburi Beach was one of the happiest of my life. Riding fast on the back on a motorbike, speeding down the freeway, wind in my hair and bright sun on my back, no worries or cares for the afternoon, headed towards a beautiful beach –
This was happiness for me.
I wanted to wrap the day up and send it to everyone I knew.
But maybe this is also a facet of happiness: the fact that it is temporally driven. There is a period of time attached to it. Sometimes this time period is indefinite, and sometimes it is a given. The cliché term of “you never know what you have until it’s gone” holds true here. There is a reason it is cliché.
And so I miss that day, and I love that day still. I wish for more days like this, and who knows – maybe I will receive them, and maybe I won’t. I’m so grateful for that time period, fleeting as it was, and I also wish for you to have days like this. If I could make happiness purely transferable, I would. But in the meantime, here is how to find that beach, and let’s keep talking about happiness for a little while, shall we?
Location: roughly a 30 minute drive from Hua Hin, Thailand.
How to get there: rent either motorbikes for the day or take a songtaew. For a motorbike, the total cost should be roughly 200 baht for the day. For a songtaew, the roundtrip cost should be roughly 1000-2000 baht total.
Bring: a beach towel, good hiking shoes or water sandals for the short hike to an overlook, swimsuit, sunglasses, and sunscreen.
Amenities at the site: restrooms, a group of road-side restaurants right near the beach, and a national park office.