• CategoriesTravel

    Playing the Tourist in Tam Coc

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    I arrived at Ninh Binh train station from Hanoi as the sun was dropping out of a hazy sky. I had the general intention that I wanted to rent a motorbike and find a homestay (the Vietnamese name for a hostel), but that’s about as far as my plan went.

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    War Planes and Word Games

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    My second day in Vietnam started with a hasty departure from the apartment I’d borrowed. My plan, formed the previous evening with the person who usually lived there, was to head to the train station and get a ride to Ninh Binh, which I’d been told was a beautiful and peaceful spot.

  • CategoriesTravel

    Not Being Lonely in Hanoi – Part 2

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    In my last post, I talked about my plan-less plan to see the north of Vietnam, arriving in Hanoi and rescuing a young girl’s balloon in a random act of kindness. Now that first evening in the country continues as I approached the Old Quarter.

  • CategoriesTravel

    Not Being Lonely in Hanoi – Part 1

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    Anyone who has ever asked me if I get homesick while living the expat life has always been given the same answer: Only at Christmas. Having grown up with big family Christmases, suddenly finding myself alone and thousands of miles from my homeland hits me hard. This year, I decided to force myself into a situation where I wouldn’t and couldn’t think about it. I also needed to use up the last of my annual leave allotment for the year, so I booked a holiday in Vietnam.

  • CategoriesExpat Life · Travel

    Playing the Tourist in Phuket – Part 3

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    When I last posted, an ungodly amount of time ago, I left the story of my long weekend being a tourist in Phuket on the drive back from a cruise around Phang Nga Bay. The minivan dropped my friend, Malinda, and I at my apartment at about 6 or 7pm. We decided to immediately go and look for something to eat.

  • CategoriesExpat Life · Travel

    Playing the Tourist in Phuket – Part 2

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    My weekend of looking at Phuket through the eyes of a tourist, instead of an expat, continued with a trip to one of the most famous and impressive parts of Thailand – Phang Nga Bay. This has been on my bucket list for much of the four years I’ve lived in Phuket for yet, just like the Big Buddha, it has taken me the better part of all four of those years to get around to it. If it’s always going to be there, what’s the rush?

  • CategoriesExpat Life · Travel

    Playing the Tourist in Phuket – Part 1

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    During August, I had the opportunity to play the tourist and look around many of the key points of interest in Phuket. The reason was that a good friend of mine was visiting from Bangkok – Malinda. She was coming to celebrate my birthday with me, though she also wanted to do some surfing since Phuket is virtually the only part of the country with any descent waves.

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    Overlander: Day 5 – On the Road

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    Alas, it’s not really an overlanding trip without travelling long distances by road. Several days of my adventure through Southern Africa in 2011 were just getting from point A to point B, and Day 5 was the first of these.

  • CategoriesTravel

    Overlander: Day 4 – Fish River Canyon

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    When I awoke on the fourth day of my adventure through Southern Africa with Dragoman, I still had the same energy boost travel always tends to give me. I don’t really like sitting and watching people labouring for my benefit, so I volunteered to help Dougie out with making the bacon-and-eggs breakfast for everyone.

  • CategoriesExpat Life · Travel

    The Last Ride of Lady Macbeth

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    I owned my 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo for a grand total of 306 days, of which I estimate that she was on the road for maybe half. In spite of that relatively short ownership and my limited time driving, I still miss the old girl to this day. We had some…interesting adventures together, among the best of them being her final voyage.