I know how to jump from a ferry boat barreling down the river in Bangkok and land safely on the docks.
I know how to order a lassi that will mess you up for days at the guesthouse across the street from the Taj Mahal.
I don’t know how to tell my parents,
but I can island hop in the Gulf of Thailand for 100 baht a day.
I can’t find a man without an addiction or a wife,
but I know how to sneak a paddle boat onto the lake in Pokhara and stare quietly at the Himalayas while monkeys screech in the bushes along the foresty shore.
I know what alleyways not to walk down in Varanasi at night,
and how to get a chai at 4 a.m. on the train to Jaipur.
But I can’t keep a penny in my pocket or a friend happy.
I can tell you where to find the biggest, most air conditioned mall in Singapore,
and how to get past the guys with guns at the Kathmandu airport.
But how to breathe easily lying in bed at night
and not regret most of the things you’ve said to most of the people you’ve ever met—
I can watch my lover board a one-way plane to Italy and not shed a tear.
I can remember the moon over the Ganges.
photo credit: www.ericlafforgue.com