Off now to the South American continent once again after a short trip to Brasil in JAN.2013. Again, I am shooting to travel light, and hoping for under 28kg, with little more than a carry-on bag, containing my laptop, mini pad, cameras, lens and a 50mm prime, batteries/chargers, power adapter, wires, cords and extensions.
I never travel without my diary of one kind or another, be it a paper journal, blog or a mish-mash of both.
One should always have something sensational to read on the train. e.g. my journal or a great read like a literary fiction novel.
I have been to a few places thus far; not nearly enough for me, and yet so much more to see! The world is wide, travel is getting more expensive and life too short to see every worthwhile destination. I pray I can make a dent in my travel itinerary. I hope to see, remember and document as much as possible with pictures and the blog. I hope to create better photographs too!
I have already done a pre-journal entry for S. America 2013, so take a peek at it.
July 3rd 2013
Preface Details/Outline of S. American Sojourn, 2013 Setting the Stage for My Travels Ottawa June 30, 2013 Pre-departure Entry (Jul3 Departure for Lima) Well here we go again! I am, yet once more, off down the road travelling S. America and I will be doing what I can to blog my trip, laptop/1TB external hard-drive, camera/long lens and 50mm prime at hand, and minimum gear, almost only carry-on, but still a little too heavy for my own good. I will need to whittle this weight down some. I'm travelling on the cheap, staying mostly, if not almost entirely, at hostels and looking to stay on the road for as long as I am enjoying myself; the only other f... read more
January 2nd 2013
¡Hola todos! Á mis amigos y los otros personas, Jan 1, 2013 (Ottawa) ¡Voy hacer de viaje á Amerique du sud en enero! ¿Yo espero aprender español muy mayor quando viajo Am. du sud? Yo empienzo el nueve enero 2013. Yet again, I will 'try', the operative word here is try, to blog the trip along the way, iff - i.e. if and only if, all goes well. Espero tambien que mi español es mejor en tiempo. ¿Eso es possible de decir? I have added a Canon camera with lenses and an iPad mini along with my MacAir in an effort to achieve my electronic ends. NEVER MADE IT BEYOND BRASIL BUT WILL BE OFF AGAIN SHORTLY. STAY TUNED.... read more
May 22nd 2012
On the trek of Annapurna, we enjoy the company of Ajay Dharal, the most wonderful and funny leader of a trek you could find, “possibly/somehow”, his favourite sayings, along with my brother porters: the warrior-like soldiers of the mountains, Prakesh (aka SnoopDawg), food provider Sushel, the famous dancing machine Buddhi and, finally, the funny and easy-going Ramesh Tamang, no relation to Buddhi. Watch for the soon-to-be-added video of Buddhi dancing Nepali style! The visit to Pokhara, which is the start of the trekking leg of the tour, was mostly uneventful in itself, but still there is so much more to enjoy. We dined at Once Upon a Time more than a handful of times; it was the anchor spot to spend our down time. As well, upon getting to Pokhara, we were strongly advised (by Ahjay) ... read more
May 12th 2012
Sat May12: I catch a train from Wuchang to Guilin10:30 am/Y120. And, after cheap taxi to station, I say goodbye to the Turks, as they and I go our own way. Well, the train could not not be more crowded, dirty, cold at times, other-times hot and stuffy, long sweaty, boisterous people and uncomfortable sitting despite being soft seats??? The trip never ends and Guilin never arrives, or so it seems to me. We are continually delayed and side railed to faster trains moving north. At one point, 5 trains are let passed while we wait. I eat only little in the early afternoon, some rice and potatoes with some sparse serving/topping of veggies. I am finally sitting now with my first beer of the day, or rather the night, and it is not all that ... read more
May 9th 2012
Into Chongqing and onto the Jiang Chang It is starting to feel like I am on one overnight train after another while travelling south from Beijing; however, it is so that I make my way onto the Yangtze, China’s longest river, notwithstanding having to bus first to Wanzhou for more hours, as well as money, than I would care to admit, or waste! All in all, the cruise is only 'interesting at best', but if you take into account the weariness element, the money and the actual “awe-inspiring” scenes you encounter, it is a very average experience. It might indeed have been the Gorges to see before the dam was built what with the high peaked cliffs above and a narrow gorge below, but not any more. Like LP notes, some might be amazed but for ... read more
May 6th 2012
Headed to Xi'anChina, the other walled city in China, mainly for the Terra Cotta Warriors and Jundi's Tomb. I get tackled at coming out of the Xi'an train station by a hawk wanting to sell me, among other things, a tour to the Terra Cotta Warriors and cab to hostel, but my alternative is a bus and, as easy as that might be, I am up for his offer of Y40 or take his tour and get a free ride to hostel. I bargain with him and get him down from Y380 to Y320, with Y120 up front which I gladly pay but hope I have not been scammed! (Later at the hostel, I am happy to know that I did quite well.) I check into hotel only to shower, eat some breakfast and have a ... read more
May 6th 2012
Today, without question, is going to be a do-very-little day for me as getting around the city will be difficult. Up early, more or less, and sent some emails and tended to this blog; am packed for 4:00pm departure for Beijing S. Railway Station. Because of the national holiday, there is no metro running. I have to take a taxi which will cost about Y40 or so! We’ll see -- turns out to be right on the mark, or the Yuan. Need to pay up at hostel 4 days @Y200/day -- waste of money for this dirt trap of a Sun Garden hostel, No. 19 DongsiQiTiao Dongcheng District Beijing -- wi-fi password tianyuan2005laoxu. (DO NOT stay here, and what is more, hostel will line you up with a cheat of a tour guide/operator, Alexander, who will ... read more
May 1st 2012
Draft for Tues. May 1 China National holiday I realize that today is going to be a do-very-little day for me as getting around the city will be difficult. I got up early, more or less, and sent some emails and tended to this blog; am packed for 4:00pm departure for Beijing S. Railway Station. Because of the national holiday, there is no metro running. I have to take a taxi which will cost about Y40 or so! We’ll see -- turns out to be right on the mark, or the Yuan. Need to pay up at hostel 4 days @Y200/day -- waste of money for this dirt trap of a Sun Garden hostel, No. 19Dongsi Qi Tiao Dongcheng District Beijing -- wi-fi password tianyuan2005laoxu. (Do not bother go there and what is more hostel will ... read more
April 30th 2012
MondayApr.30.2012 - Beijing This day like some in the past have not gone well for me, it is not really China's fault, per se, I think. Looking back on Beijing in particular, I have encountered some insurmountable diffficulties because of the language mostly but other things too just seem not to have fallen into place for me like they might have done had I not faced the Shanghai problem and the elderly woman on the tour bus getting lost in the market and our delaying leaving to try to find her. I was not able to get my hostel, Sun Garden, to make my train booking for me through an agency like I tried to do when I bought my Da~tong ticket, Y54 ticket price, Y10.00 commission, not really that bad considering, well considering what I ... read more
April 25th 2012
DAY7-9: Hangzhou/Shanghai Today, we made the long drive back to Shanghai, where we visited the Bund and Shanghai Old Street (Cheng Huang Miao). I remember little more about this right now. We did also make our way back to see more of the same only and thus there is little to add here. We did later visit the Jade Buddah Temple, a 1882 structure with 2 jade Buddhas sent to China from Myanmar/Burma. I have been to Thailand and was not impressed. That night we were all off to eat local Shanghaiese food. And, they call it "cuisine"? The next day. we were free to roam about town. L had a friend who took us out into the city to see what we might not have seen otherwise, but we saw little more of real interest ... read more