Frances Liao


Frances Liao

My name is Frances and this is my opportunity To bring you along on my unique and interesting journey travelling the globe. I'm a native Arizonan but I've found myself in good ol' Houston Texas for the last three years. I love this place which is full of friendly people, diverse cuisine and exploding with festivals and activities! But the world is a big place and I plan to explore it all. So come, join me, and we'll learn and experience some new things together!

Asia » Vietnam August 25th 2010

So, after a 8 hour long negotiation meeting, matt and I decided go and do something fun on Tuesday evening. Matt wanted to get some souvenirs so we headed to the famous Ben Thanh market. If you've never experienced an Asian market your first trip may be an assault on the nose, eyes, and ears. Stalls are packed and crowded next to each other overflowing with everything from knock off perfumes to strange medicinal herbs. Sellers are shouting for your attention and shoving things in your face since they know you rare a foreigner. Hint:haggling is a must here and at least start by cutting the price in half. After we did a bit of haggling and some souvenir ogling, Matt bought some gifts. If you must know, I've sworn off Ben Thanth due to being ... read more
The Rice Throwing Resturant
Thrown Rice Bowl
Ben Thanh Market

Asia » Vietnam August 21st 2010

It’s been a while since I last updated; mainly because I’ve been very busy with work. This weekend I decided to free my soul and get out and enjoy Saigon. It was a cloudy day as I walked into the street. Motorbikes were whoosing past me as I headed for the Reunification Palace. HCMC has such a different vibe from Tokyo, even though both places are crowded, I would characterize Vietnam as more “disorganized chaos”. The motorbikes have completely no regard for pedestrians so crossing the street is much like running for your life! After a short walk, I reached the Reunification Palace, which is where the president of Vietnam meets his heads of state and congress. In this multi-level mansion there are displays of the different receiving rooms the president would use for his guests ... read more
Shoot that baby!
War Remains
View of the City

Asia » Japan » Tokyo » Shinjuku August 18th 2010

On my last day in Tokyo, we headed down to shinjuku to visit the government metropolitan building no. 1. On the 49th floor there is an observatory where you can get a bird's eye view of Tokyo. I even managed to get a small glimpse of Tokyo tower. After that, we went back to the station and had a quick lunch of "don katsu" which is lightly fried pork cutlet in bread crumbs. Our last train ride back to the hotel I couldn't help but think what a wonderful and eye opening experience this has been. Next time, I hope to stay in Tokyo a little longer and take a bit more relaxing vacation. Now, as I sit on the express train to narita airport, I look forward to what my second trip in Vietnam will ... read more
Ads outside Shinjuku
Tokyo - View of the Park

Asia » Japan » Tokyo » Akihabara August 15th 2010

On my second day in Japan, I decided to do a major shopping trip and explore as much as I could of Tokyo for my last full day here. My first stop was Akihabara the technology district of geekdom where one can buy all the types of gadgets, computers, and cameras straight from the innovators of Japan. Akihabara is also the place where many otaku (anime geeks) go to get their fix on. Every street was filled with electronic stores hawking their wares, shops with cute anime figures and games everywhere, and also maid cafes. Stores are tiny, cramped six to seven story tall buildings bursting to the limit with merchandise. I never realized I was claustrophobic until I encountered Akihabara. My main goal in Akihabara was to just look around but I found myself ... read more
Kiddyland Cuteness
Teppanyaki Master Chef

Asia » Japan » Tokyo » Shibuya August 13th 2010

After a long but smooth flight, I finally arrived in Tokyo. From the airport, I took a one hour bullet train ride into the heart of the city to Shinigawa where my hotel is located. As the lush trees and traditional Japanese buildings flew by in the window, I put on my headphones and listened to some Japanese pop music to get me in the mood. Stepping off the train, I was greeted by a mass of people in a gigantic subway station. I found my way to the beautiful hotel, freshened up, and got ready for a night out on the town. Matt (my co-worker on this trip with me) and I were famished and we headed back to the subway and squeezed ourselves on the train and headed out to Shibuya, the youth district ... read more
Shibuya Neon Lights
My first Victory!
My First Sushi in Japan!

North America » United States » Texas » Houston August 11th 2010

It's the eve of my journey out of Texas and I can feel the adrenaline building up in my veins. I've been on several business trips before but never had free reign to explore. Tomorrow, in just a mere 12 hours I'll be headed for Tokyo, Japan for a weekend of fun in the land of insane gadgets and girls in cute anime maid outfits. What do I hope to see? Crazy Tokyo teenagers wearing clothes that look like they walked blindly into a Goodwill and threw something together? Yes. Anime figurines, manga, and cosplay characters that any Otaku (anime geek) would drool over? Yes. Robots that can sing and dance and wash your dishes at the same time? Yes. Lots and lots of raw fish strait out of the ocean and more tuna than I've ... read more

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