How I Became Less Scared of Moths in Thailand

Jungle Hut

My ultimate insect phobia is moths, I can’t stand them. I get that it’s totally irrational, like what are they going to do to me? Flap me to death with their teeny tiny wings? It’s just they’re so black and silent and fly around your face. When I was kid I would get a bit hysterical around moths but I like to think these days my fear is at more manageable and socially acceptable level. And all because of a trip to Thailand.

We were staying in the Khao Sok National Park in huts clustered along the river. It felt very rustic because we were quite far from any big towns but the accommodation was quite luxurious. It was amazing to walk out of your bungalow and see monkeys clustered along the river bank. You could walk down the unpaved roads to bars dedicated to Bob Marley filled with tourists, next to a Thai massage place that did an incredible oil massage for about $4 and there was even a laundry shop that doubled as bamboo tattoo parlor.

One afternoon after getting a pedicure we walked out to find a sudden monsoon has soaked the road and left puddles everywhere. So we tip-toed back trying not to ruin our freshly painted nails. The whole area was a contradiction like that. Tourism was such a driving factor for the local economy that shops that seemed it total opposition to the rainforest everywhere made a thriving trade on adventure and relaxation seekers alike.

But back to the moths. The jungle was, as you’d expect, filled with animals and insects of every kind. I have never heard birds or frogs that loud in my life. They actually kept my awake the first night. And the moths were huge, I have seen birds smaller. They were the size of the sparrows we have at home and the first time I saw one I thought I would die right there is my open roofed bathroom of my bungalow. But funnily enough I didn’t die, not of shock or moth poison or a violent ambush of moths. I had come to a rather pivotal cross roads where I had to decide how scared I was going to be. Was I going to sit and cower and let this ruin my stay in the jungle or was I going to choose to be brave and enjoy getting into nature? So I instead of running away and hiding I would just flinch and turn away and enjoy my surronds.

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