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January 1st 2009
Published: January 17th 2009
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Hello everybody! This is the travel blog I'll be keeping as I backpack round China and south-east Asia. For those of you who don't know already, I set off with my girlfriend Rachael on January 2nd 2009 and the initial plan at least is to return on March 26th 2009. That gives us 12 weeks to see Beijing, Hong Kong, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand.

However, since we're both unemployed (and consequently have nothing better to do) there is talk of extending the trip and taking in other countries. Watch this space.

Sorry for sending round a group email - it's either this or write individual messages to everybody. Which as a journalist (allegedly) would be a bit of a busman's holiday for me.

I've had to do a bit of guesswork about who would love/hate to be sent updates on my travels. I know some people have strong views on either side so apologies if I've guessed wrong. Just send me a quick message if either:

a) you want to be taken off the list, or
b) you want to be added to the list

Also, please feel free to send me messages about what you're up to or if you've got any thoughts, travel tips, etc. It's always great to hear from you!

Ok, a few quick lines on what to expect. I'll be posting a new message on each country/region we visit. I should be able to update the written blog fairly frequently but pictures might be a different kettle of fish. I have visions of screaming at the computer in a dodgy internet cafe in Laos while my photos repeatedly fail to upload, so I might wait till I get back to Manchester and my lovely broadband connection. The point is, pictures will be up at some point anyway.

I think that's everything. Hope you enjoy reading the blog as much as I enjoy writing it.

See you soon,


17th January 2009

You lucky bastard.
Looking forward to updates mate! And hopefully photos if the internet café connections can handle them :)
17th January 2009

How do
Good to hear you're both ok! You're not missing much back home, the weather is typically un-winter-like and Uniteds inevitable ascent to the top of the league has begun. Still you don't want to listen to me moaning about Manchester! Looking forward to some pictures! All the best, Owen, Adam & Emma.
28th January 2009

Respect and jealousy
Richard Frost, you have me green with envy! Travelling is on my list of urgent things that need to be done in the next 5 years. But being unemployed and several moons behind you in the journalism-job stakes, it looks like it's going to be postponed for a while yet. Alas, keep me dreaming of that fateful day with your blogs and have an amazing time! Right. I'm going to go and do another 12-hour shift of job hunting now... Kae :-)

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