When does a trip start, when does it end?
Sometimes, it start when you are still in an other one, sometimes it starts when you pack your luggage or make an appointment for your vaccin against tropical diseases. Sometimes it starts when you book your plane ticket but this one for sure started some weeks after my return from the Philippines adventure when I got a mail from a stranger asking me if Fool Moon could donate some SUP to a foundation in Northern Thailand.
The stranger introduced himself as Alexandre a Swiss citizen from Geneva who wrote that he and his wife Stephanie had decided to give up their swiss life a few years ago and that they had moved to the poorest region of Thailand to open a foundation close to Nong Khai in the Thai province of Isan. He explained that the goal of the foundation was to help orphans and young people from poor families to learn the skills of the hotel business and then to help them to find a job.
At first I was not sure of the connection between the foundation and SUP but then he wrote that the foundation also proposed, on top of the classes, dormitories, a dining room, a kitchen and some office spaces, plus four bungalows to welcome clients and give the opportunity to the students to train their skills. I also understood that the Isan province was the less known of Thailand, close to Laos and Cambodia with very little tourism and that their idea was to find occupations for their guest. The foundation being some miles away from the Mekong river, they thought that a paddling experience on the river could be a good activity to occupy their guest.