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Showing posts from October, 2007

Lessons Learned the Hard Way

There are many suggestions in guide books about 'what to bring' when going on a trip.

You'll always need something from home whether it's 2 weeks, 2 months or 2 years.

Although I have read certain parts of the guidebook that lists these sorts of things and I did go through the list METICULOUSlY when we left Korea, there are few items that they don't tend to mention in the book that I've learned are pretty useful, you guessed it, the hard way.

Zip Lock bags - these things are indispensible, albeit not industructable but hey, they're cheap enough that you can carry about 50 of them with you!

They're great for toiletry items and allow you to catagorize so you not always confused every time you have to unpack your bag. I have all my shower stuff in one, my face stuff in another, my 'feminine products' in another, my hair products in another.

(And yes, for those of you who are rolling your eyes at the amount of products I'm carry, I'll kindly ask …

5 Years

5 years ago today I land at Schipol Airport in Amsterdam, with a pack on my back, a money belt around my neck and killer jet lag.

4 months of planning and 20 days away from D, I was ready to take on the world. Well, at least the Western European part.

It was the beginning of this life I now have come to inhabit as a nomad, a traveller, a bum, a itchy feet person.

I remember being that person, working in a job i didn't love, spending way to much money in an overpriced city, angry and argumentative, jaded, a bit bitter and overall, lost.

Not really that far off from most people in their early 20s, disolutioned with life after school, not quite sure what is meant to happen next and if this, this 'life' is really, all there is.

I want to go back to my struggling early 20s self and just tell her that it will all be okay, it will change, it will get better.

And it has, because, for the most part, I made a promise that I would never let myself be trapped again. I would never continue d…

13 Weeks

As you may have read, we are no longer in Australia and have arrived in the magical Thailand.

We had heard nothing but great thing about this place, something that always then makes me apprehensive about going somewhere because it then has to live up to it's hype.

For the most part, it has. And I'm continuing to learn so much not about places of this world but how to BE a traveller.

There are so many things that influence your experience in a destination. I think I've rambled on about this before but I feel it so much more now as I'm living it, day by day, in the moment of the journey.

I can't help but compare Thailand to Malaysia simply because it was the first SE Asia county I went to.

There are pros and cons to both.

It's easier to feel isolated on an island in Malaysia. You could actually see Malaysians on holiday, in the same resorts as you. In Thailand, the islands (the 3 we have been on anyway) are so developed, you're not sure whether or not your in Bangk…

Goodbye Oz and NZ

Thank you for all your western food.

Thank you for your clean toilets.

Thank you for your interesting cities, inspiring landscapes, breathtaking views and vans down by many rivers.

I'm heading back to the beach, the place I most feel at home, reinforcing the fact that the reason I loved Splash as a child was not ONLY because I had a crush on Tom Hanks but because I was a mermaid in a past life.

Thank you for feeling so much like home.

We'll see you again soon. G'day mate.

Next stop on the crazy train: Thailand. Bring on the lemongrass and the massages. And of course the sand and the sun.

Born Free

There was a new concept D and I were introduced to when we arrived in New Zealand - freedom camping.

I'm not sure why they're so technical about it because essentially it's just free camping but perhaps people are trying to be very clever about being cheap - 'It's not about the money. It's about the freedom. You know, being free from the constraints of an expensive campervan park."

Another buzz word was our 'self contained' vehicle. Self contained meaning everything you need is contained, inside, your van. Fridge. Shower. Toilet. Bed. Shelves. Microwave. And that means, you can just park anywhere.

Anywhere? I asked the hostel guy. 'Ya dude (as many hostel guys talk) you can totally just pull up anywhere in New Zealand and just park and just like..be..ya know.'

This was great! The cost of the daily rental of the van was cheaper than a nights accomodation and we'd be saving money on food because we could cook every night. It seemed like the p…