Awkward and Accident-Prone in Asia


This sign pretty much sums up my life during the past month. While I had a gentleman visiting from back home, I managed to make a complete and total klutz out of myself. He has now returned to San Francisco, but my injured legs, arms, ribs, and ego remain here in Thailand. I’ll spare you from a series of bruise photos, but would like to share the moments that have been the most embarrassing, funny, and ultimately cringe-worthy from the past month alone (as it would take several posts to cover all of the afflictions that have befallen me since my arrival in December). Please absorb this information and do your very best to NOT replicate these incidents. Please.

In order to organize this list, here are my injuries by body part:

Left Forearm – While sitting on cement benches at a bus stop in Surat Thani, Terra stood up to grab coffee and my arm was pinched between two of the fixtures. I was instantly freed and instantly bruised. Really badly.  This one deserved a photo. How weird is that bullseye?



Right Shin – As we made our way to the Full Moon Party on the beach in Haad Rin, Koh Phangan, I managed to walk directly into a metal pole that was positioned horizontally across the path, about 8” off the ground. Who in the hell thought that was a good idea?  I stood nearby and watched as dozens of drunk people managed to clear the obstacle without incident. I think something may be wrong with me.


Right Shin (again) – We had just finished an amazing meal at Koh Lanta’s Krua Kritsana, and instead of focusing on my immediate exit from the restaurant, I fixated on the two stray dogs across the street (that I had befriended back in January). In standard fashion, I walked directly into a wooden bench (in front of an all-too-amused couple) and was left with a scratch and bruise in an awesome horseshoe shape.


Left Hip, Ribs, Scull – This one is the most unbelievable and yet I didn’t have the wherewithal to take a photo as proof. As I scurried into the bathroom late at night, I stepped onto the wet tiles (from my earlier shower) and my feet slipped out in front of me. In a last-ditch effort to stay upright, I grabbed a hold of the sink and instead of providing stability, it shattered under the force of my grip. I nailed my entire left side and was left on the ground with a broken sink, a replacement bill for 1,000 THB, and the remains of what may have been a snake nest that had been housed within the porcelain fixture. Killer.


Right Forearm – The dog at one of my favorite restaurants (Krua Kritsana) is apparently not a fan of being de-matted as he nipped my arm as I attempted to sort out his dreadlocks. He barely got me, but must have hit a special spot as I instantly bruised and it doesn’t seem to be fading.


Right Shin (AGAIN – HONESTLY, WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!) – We had just parked our motorbike in front of 7-11 (as one does in SE Asia) and instead of gracefully dismounting and cruising inside, I took a step backwards and fell into a hole in the ground. What was it doing there?! I can’t take myself anywhere. Hopefully I can hold it together for the last two weeks of my trip!

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Have you been injured during a vacation in SE Asia or elsewhere? If so, tell me about your embarrassing or painful moment in the comments. If for no other reason than to make me feel a tiny bit better about my own clumsiness. You’re the best.



    • Mom on June 7, 2013 at 4:00 pm
    • Reply

    Poor Baby! I have some more of your injuries to remind you of. 1) falling onto a broken branch on a fallen tree in a creek in Graeagle, 2) breaking one fibula while playing soccer in Sact, and 3) the other fibula at church camp. I think you should come home asap where you are safe! Your tetnus shot is still good, right? Love you! Mom

    • Dad on June 7, 2013 at 4:36 pm
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    Quit being such a wuss. No blood no foul.

    Your always encouraging and loving Dad 🙂

    However, I think thats enough stiff upper lip for a while: tread softly.

    • Anny on June 11, 2013 at 11:08 pm
    • Reply

    Ali thank you for sharing this post as I am constantly injuring myself during my business travels (most embarrassing still it’s the one when I was in Cologne, GE at a major Neuro conference and I fell down the red carpet grand entry stairway during peak exhibit hours…. add if being the token Asian didn’t already cast me out that day :-P)

    Love reading your blog and hearing all the happy dog endings!

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