El Nido

Last post before I depart!  I thought a travel sex story would be fitting.

I’m not someone who loves Valentine’s Day, nor am I one who scorns it.  For me, it just comes and goes like the tides.  There is one Valentine’s Day, however, that is forever etched into my memory, and thinking about that particular day will always make me smile.

Two years ago, I was travelling in the Philippines; I was sitting at a bar my first night on Cebu, and I started talking to the gentleman next to me.  Our conversation flowed so easily that it felt like we’d known each other for years; we skipped the small talk and jumped right into deep conversation about our travels, life philosophies, families.  We laughed and talked for hours, then agreed to meet the next night.  I arrived that night with a huge group and dragged him from the bar to our table… then proceeded to ignore all the people I came with to talk to him.  I felt so drawn to him – to his laugh, his easygoing nature, his penetrating questions and openness (maaayyyybe to his extraordinary body as well).

We met again the following night – same place, same time – and as we were chatting on a porch underneath a full moon, a photographer asked if he could take pictures of us “while we were flirting and the sparks were flying.” Yes, of course, we said, laughing.  As he walked away, I put my hand on Neil’s leg and said, “Just so you know, I am flirting with you.”  He smiled nervously and we continued to talk until I absolutely had to go.  He walked me out; we were both planning on heading to another island around the same time, so I asked him to come north to meet me when he got there.  Sadly, he said, he was heading south, but he’d keep in touch and maybe we could meet up for a day before I left.  I grabbed his hand, leaned into his ear and tipsy-whispered, “No – you need to come up north so I can fuck you.”  He kissed me lightly on the lips and said he’d try to make it.  We said our goodbyes; I didn’t sleep a wink that night thinking about how his strong hands would feel running down the length of my body.

Fast forward a week and a half.  I have just arrived in El Nido; I’m walking back to my hotel, and who should cross my path but the one person I’ve been wanting to see this whole time?  We hug, we laugh, we beam at each other.  He tells me that he was warned not to go south because there was political turbulence, so instead he came north, hoping to run into me.  Looks like the stars aligned!  That night, we had dinner on the beach, the surf literally touching our toes.  We ate freshly-caught fish and drank fifty cent beers by candlelight and talked like children do when they have a secret language.  The wait staff finally had to tell us that we had to leave – they were closing.  We looked behind us to see that they had taken all the other tables and chairs off the beach and we hadn’t even noticed.  I looked him in his clear, blue eyes and asked if he were going to take me home with him some night that week; he asked what I thought about tonight?  I kissed him in response, and we walked uphill to his hotel, me in bare feet.  We got a bit lost along the way – the good kind of lost.

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We spent the next three days going on adventures (sightseeing, kayaking, snorkeling, making out in secret caves), eating amazing food, and fucking like bunnies.  My last day in El Nido happened to be Valentine’s Day.  That morning, I got a massage, bought a dress (a rarity for me), tweezed and shaved my travel body, and told him to come to mine before dinner.  As an avid fan of Dan Savage, I knew it was best to fuck first – so when he arrived, I was only wearing a sarong, which quickly got flung aside.  Even with the air conditioning on, we were soon covered in a slippery layer of sweat, which we’d earned.  We relished every inch of each other’s bodies and slid all over each other in the heat of the tropics until we were starving and exhausted.

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Time does seem to sprint by when you’re enjoying yourself, so I remember the night in flashes: We’re sitting at an Italian restaurant overlooking the ocean, devouring pizza and sipping on cocktails.  We’re dancing at a club, our bodies jumping and bouncing to pop music along with a packed crowd, rum and cokes in hand.  We’re outside, dancing in the ocean to cool off, spinning and dipping.  We’re sitting on an old, overturned, wooden kayak, making out like teenagers.  He’s facing me toward the ocean and putting his arm around me and asking if I’d ever come back to El Nido – and if he were there, I’d be back in a heartbeat.  We’re walking back to his hotel at 3:00 am to fall into a deep sleep in each other’s arms – but not before taking silly pictures with each other on the balcony. We’re waking up at 6:00 am to the sound of church bells, and I have to go.

I’ve had interesting Valentine’s Days before and since, especially while traveling, but I can’t imagine any topping that night – a night that felt perfect.  A night that capped off a magical movie-like travel romance in an idyllic setting.  A night when the stars aligned.

 

Transitions

I’ve mentioned this briefly in a lot of posts over the last six months, but here it is again for good measure: I’m leaving South Korea.

After seven years of living in this beautiful country that has become my second home, I’m packing a few boxes to ship back to the US and selling / giving away everything else in my apartment.  I’ll be leaving the country with one backpack, four crossed fingers, and a thousand memories.

Seven years.  Typing these words leaves a lump in my throat.  I’ve developed some of the closest relationships in my life here, and although the world is getting smaller and my friends are only a Skype call away, it’s not quite the same as hopping on the subway or walking down the street to meet someone for a beer spontaneously.  In the past few months, I’ve felt like George Bailey at the end of It’s a Wonderful Life because when you part from the people you love, you tend to tell them how much you love them. There’s a Korean word, 정 (jeong), that describes how I feel about Korea – it’s indefinable even in Korean and has no matching English word – but encompasses feelings of love, attachment, affection, community, and giving.  Korea sometimes feels like a big family, and I appreciate that more than I can say.

I’m nervous about going home… I’m expecting the reverse culture shock of coming back to the US to be much more difficult than the original culture shock of moving to Korea, especially given the current political climate! That being said, I have a LOT to be excited about – seeing family and old friends, forging a new and more meaningful career path, probably moving to a new city.  I’ll be traveling for six months (in Africa, Spain, and the UK) before I arrive in the US and definitely looking forward to grand adventures!  My future is uncertain, though: Will I be able to find a job?  Where will I end up?  Will I have to have roommates again in order to be able to afford living in the US?

Also uncertain is the future of this blog.  I don’t use my phone to do anything blog-related for privacy reasons, and as I’ll be backpacking, I’m not taking a laptop or iPad with me.  I don’t know how often I’ll have access to internet cafés or if the ones I come across will be places I feel comfortable posting in.  I will try to post / check into Twitter when I can in the next six months, but it’s likely that posts will be few and far between.

So before I embark on this journey, I’d like to say: I feel so incredibly lucky to be a part of this blogging community.  Writing this blog has given me an outlet to uncage a creativity I didn’t even know I had, and I’m grateful for that every day.  The ways in which sex bloggers support and encourage each other inspires me and fills me with joy.

I’ll be coming through Barcelona, London, Edinburgh, and Bristol this summer; if you happen to live in one of those places or know a trustworthy person who does and will provide a sleeping space on their floor in exchange for some good storytelling, please shoot me a message on Twitter or an email (@teachershavesex / teachershavesex@gmail.com) and let me know!  As you can imagine, traveling for six months is going to be pretty expensive, and even hostel dorm rooms add up!

I’ll be posting one more Sinful Sunday and one more non-fiction story before I take off; for now I just want to say thank you so much for reading (and for posting the hundreds of gorgeous photos and pieces of writing many of you do that put ideas in my head!).  May your 2017 transitions be positive and peaceful ones, and I hope all of you will experience your own grand journeys this year, even if they happen in your own home.

xx

Jo

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