“Don’t you ever let a soul in the world tell you that you can’t be exactly who you are.” Lady Gaga
After two weeks on the ground in Yangon in search of anti-trafficking organizations and a potential job placement, it became clear that I wasn’t going to find one and let’s be honest, Burma’s fucking expensive. Highly ironic for being one of the poorest nations on the planet. The language barrier wasn’t making things easier. While I’m by no means fluent in Thai, I have taken for granted how much I actually speak and how it enables me to live and navigate my way through the Kingdom quite comfortably. When you can’t even ask someone how to get somewhere or how much something costs, it’s downright frustrating. Mai chop mak laew. I made my way back to Bangkok. And just in time for Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Ball. I didn’t have a ticket but thought I’d check out the scene and let the chips fall where they may. I hopped a motorbike taxi to Rajamangala Stadium, surprisingly secured a ticket (I guess I thought they’d be sold out), attended the pre-show and had a righteous night. The Royal Family was in attendance and Lady Gaga did not self-censor. America and Thailand came together to share an explicit evening in the Haus of Gaga and it was nothing short of magic. I felt my American culture in a way I haven’t in a long time and I also felt nationalism towards this country I have called home since January 2011. Ima let the images speak for themselves!
P.S. If you’ve never taken a motorbike taxi across Bangkok during rush hour with a driver on a war path, I suggest you do it. Saddle up, engage your core, and hold on for the riiiiiide of your life!