Chris Bull/Hayley Spencer


Chris Bull/Hayley Spencer

Tii nih mian niak jeh phiasaa awngle te?

Oooo it's started already. The culture is flowing through our veins like the Human Bot-fly larvae will be in just a matter of days.

Hello and welcome to our vivid and often exaggerated account of our trip across the World. Signed off from work and with so many holes in our arms that we look like human sprinkler systems when we have a drink, we set off on April 7th 2010 due to rotate back to the real World in October of the same year. We've both had our boozy trips to Australia, now for something a little more adult (and hopefully a little less racist).

Our route - ARGENTINA, CHILE, BOLIVIA, PERU, USA (NY), CANADA (TORONTO), THAILAND, LAOS, VIETNAM, CAMBODIA. It's not a lot more detailed than that right now. Wherever the wind takes us, so to speak (although with the weight differential between us there could be quite a difference in destination using that plan).

We travel in search of sunshine, though being English if we ever see any our faces will be something akin to an American stepping off a plane and realising Americans aren't the only people on the planet. Let's get brown, competition well and truly on. Liken it to the tortoise and the hare, Hayley slowly roasting like her sister's chicken whilst Chris burns then peels (that's the bit where the hare falls asleep) and has to start all over again. Skin layer 3 or 4 will be the moneymaker.

We hit South America with no grasp of the lingo (ooh look we are picking up some Spanish already) and a very real fear of spiders (Hayley), snakes (Chris) and military coups (both). Could be disastrous.

Here's hoping it makes good reading.

See you back for English winter. Feel free to post your well-wishes and news so we know we have something to come back to.

Total Distance: 0 miles / 0 kmMouse: 0,0

Summer of 2010

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Phuket September 15th 2010

Wednesday, 15th September I had a dream I wet the bed. I woke up and it was raining. Were the two connected? Either way, b*ll*cks it's our raining. What do you do when you come to a place solely for its beach? Start with a huge Irish breakfast that bulged out of our stomachs for several hours. That took an hour and left another 14. I 100% believe you shouldn't wish your life away but this rain's going nowhere. Perhaps not 100% then. We took a walk to a large covered market - mostly full of the cr*p we didn't want yesterday but with twice the pushiness. It's true that Thais have no common sense, watching us for 2 seconds and any singular functioning brain cell would fathom that the hard sell tightens our sphincters and ... read more
Jenga - killing rain time
My turn for some wave time

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Phuket September 13th 2010

Monday, 13th September We got picked up at 6pm last night for the second last long bus ever. Well hopefully not ever, admitting that right now might as well admit to killing myself. As standard for these things we got less than a pill-popping rave monkey. Neither did the woman in front of me because she knocked our big painting off the windowsill and it hit me in the face. So I kicked her chair for four hours solid. I doubt she learned anything. The bus stopped at 3 and 5, and then had another 2 HOUR stop at Surat Thani - the complete other side of Thailand to where we are going. Some sort of Amores Perros moment where all the characters are in one place then split off into a million places. Kinda feels ... read more
Karon town
The view from the hotel room
Hayley on the beach

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap September 10th 2010

Friday, 10th September After a full and tiring day of temple spotting yesterday we opted for another day of temple spotting. We decided on the remainder of the "big" circuit, the lesser-spotted temples of Angkor Wat and probably slightly less spectacular. The day started well with our tuk-tuk driver waiting at the hotel. Smiley and with a personality; Lucky is back. Turns out my racism was not so much - yesterday's little dreamer was his brother. The day started with the surprising revelation that the Chinese have invaded. In buses not tanks. I have no idea where they all went through, the temples were all pretty quiet today. The first temple we hit today was Ta Keo, and thank God it was the first whilst we still had energy. The stairs at Ta Keo were steeper ... read more
Stairway to heaven
Ta Keo main tower
The beautiful view from Ta Keo

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap » Knar September 9th 2010

Thursday, 9th September Yesterday we signed ourselves up to the chauffeured company of Lucky, the guy who brought us to town from the bus station. It's the way to do it here - hire these guys for a few quid a day and they will take you wherever you wanna go. And then they will try and persuade you to go somewhere much further away for more quids. We haven't the time nor the inclination. Anyway imagine our surprise when leaving the hotel and a man who looks like Lucky but isn't Lucky (ooh racist) is standing over a tuk-tuk. Is Lucky just a pimp? Will this guy try and blow us? He certainly doesn't have the little fellow's charm. We took the tuk-tuk to the Angkor park or site or whatever it calls itself. Via ... read more
View from the top
Enjoying the day
The shot you have to get

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh September 8th 2010

Tuesday, 7th September We've only got today left in Phnom Penh which sadly means no gap in between our genocidal tourism. Our dessert, as it were, to Choueng Ek was the prison of Tuol Sleng. Set right in the middle of the neighbourhood just a few blocks down from our guesthouse the prison was formerly a school and now a museum. Not quite the direct route to Nirvana but a museum is as close a place as any. As mentioned yesterday those Red Khmers sent everyone away from the city, so anyone left here must have been a bad boy or girl from the party's point of view. The tall white-cum-grey buildings were falling into disrepair but a hive of builders was putting paid to it. Difficult to know if it's better this way, it might ... read more
Just to prove I wasn't bullsh*tting about the rules
Quiet litte Siem Reap
Fish Spa

Asia » Cambodia » South » Phnom Penh September 5th 2010

Sunday, 5th September Vietnam done. Ticked. Finished. My final thoughts - beautiful country, sad history. Sadder that we couldn't really connect with the people. Just too aggressive. You could argue that their perception of Westerners was ruined by the Westerners themselves, but then it could also be the political agenda stuffed down their throats with all the shrimp porridge. I have no idea what to expect from Cambodia with an arguably even sadder history. We got the bus. Same as always. Have to say - getting out of Vietnam was a lot easier than getting in. 2 minutes and through. Evidently the general suspicion of foreigners is lessened when no-one's got anything worth stealing. The bus arrived in the capital, Phnom Penh, to what can only be described as ridiculous rain. It was less 'rain', more ... read more
The killing fields of Choueng Ek
The killing fields monument
An excavated grave

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City September 4th 2010

Saturday, 4th September On our latest train we noted that the Blue Sky completely ripped us off. Citing yesterday's celebrations as a reason that they had to buy our ticket on the black market, they got us hard sleepers instead of soft. When we broached the subject of the price on the tickets being less than a fraction of what we paid the best our flustered host would do was offer us a taxi ride to the station. Then he goes off-shift and the next guy denies all knowledge. Perfect. Did I mention I hate these people? Sam threw a plastic chair in his frustration. The guy flipped! We literally sat at the train station waiting to be stabbed. Until we got on the train. Then we wished we'd had been. The next day started with ... read more
Just to reaffirm the point...
The man himself
The ever-changing name

Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Khanh Hoa » Nha Trang August 30th 2010

Monday, 30th August Caught a sh*t train, sat with the peasants. Disaster. Tuesday, 31st August We arrived in Nha Trang yesterday but not early enough for me to be bothered to write about it. We checked into the Blue Sky, another great value place. We seem to have our hotel routine down now. Our tips: 1. Identify on the map where you want to stay. Don't deviate. 2. Every person who hassles you; get a flyer. 3. Listen to the quoted price and offer at least $2 less. 4. Say you will look, NEVER take your bag upstairs. 5. Have a cost in your head you won't go over. Nha Trang is our first beach town this trip (ignoring the Cat Ba Island 10 minutes in a sardine can sea). It has everything you would expect ... read more
Waitin' for the crocodile steaks...
The invisible barrier
Early evening flood

Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Quảng Nam » Hoi An August 28th 2010

Saturday, 28th August We've had an epiphany. All this travelling is not the holiday it quite sounds, albeit it is far from being at work, so we are going to have one. This means slightly cutting short parts of our planned trip to have two weeks in Phuket. Beachy, hot Phuket. So today a bus. But no ordinary bus. A bus that won't leave until it is half full or more. Even if that means circling around town trying to round up stragglers who have never even heard of Hoi An. Despite all of the delays we still got to Hoi An by lunchtime. Hoi An is the Liverpool Football Club of Vietnam, clinging to the past until its fingers go blue in a way that can only be described as 'charming'. Actually I like 'quaint'. ... read more
Rainy season strikes
One of the main streets
The overgrown fields of My Son

Asia » Vietnam » North Central Coast » Thua Thien - Huế » Hué August 25th 2010

Wednesday, 25th August The typhoon didn't really hit Hanoi over and above the normal storm that leaked into our hotel room. The p*sshead who kept trying to get into our room during the night until I rotated him 90 degrees towards his own door made sure that we didn't get up early enough to go and look at Ho Chi Minh's dead body. I went to the Lord of the Rings exhibit and saw dead Sean Bean, probably isn't even him. Plus we would have had to wear trousers. Instead we took the long and dangerous road to Hoa La prison. Nicknamed the Hanoi Hilton it was served both the glorious French colonial rulers and the even more glorious Communists. At the very first information point I realised how mistaken I was. The French were not ... read more
Thai Hoa Palace
Purple City
Hayley pretending to be Jesus

Tot: 0.138s; Tpl: 0.014s; cc: 14; qc: 88; dbt: 0.0248s; 1; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.5mb