Mangrove beaches on Langkawi island

There is a laconic routine to the days here: wake up late, bake in the sun, float in the warm aqua-marine waters, head inside for a shower during the late afternoon downpour, have a light dinner and go to sleep embarrassingly early. Repeat.

I included three days in Langkawi on my itinerary because it felt wrong to spend five weeks in Southeast Asia and not have a proper stay on the beach. The timing could not have been better because for once, I am completely sated with food, full at my very core, and in need of a little detox before plunging into the next spectacular leg of eating in Thailand.

Beaches are the perfect place to do this – ever since I was a kid visiting Rehoboth Beach, Deleware in the summer, we'd start the day by biking to Cosmic Bakery for a big breakfast and after a day of sun and surf, we wouldn't even realize we were hungry until our eyes started to droop closed from a long day in the sun. I am self enforcing the same sort of stay here – foregoing the many activities I could do on this tropical island in favor of simply sitting still and relaxing.

This is not something I'm especially good at. I always want to see and do everything, get the most out of a place for fear I won't be back and will have missed a life-enhancing experience. But sometimes being still is that experience. So that is what I am doing. Reading, reflecting, relaxing. And loving every minute of it.

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