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"Travel far enough, you meet yourself."

Written by David Mitchell in Cloud Atlas, it's one of my favorite life quotes. And his perspective is so very true for those who backpack or briefcase the globe wanderlusting for adventure and meeting new, exciting and interesting people. All over....

It was in a jungle just south of the Golden Triangle, when I first saw an elephant paint. I was expecting a tacky show, featuring a few lucky swipes of a brush that connected with canvas. Instead, the elephant turned out to be an artist.

It seemed like a crazy thing to do. Crawl into a cage with four huge tigers, past the signs warning: "Danger. Do not put anything in the cage. Especially fingers or hands..."

I could smell it before I saw anything. They were burning the jungle north of Siem Reap to clear land for new fields. Through the smoke, I could see lines of men walking together across the fields with long sticks, poking the soil in front of them as they went. In a few hours, I would know...

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