Travel

Three days in Chiang Mai

“What’s that?” my friend asked, pointing at a bubbling pot full of black soft lumps of unidentifiable food.

We were at the Elephant Gate night food market in Chiang Mai with Coco, our tour guide for the evening. Coco paused and considered my friends question, not knowing that his answer was going to land me in some serious shit.

“Umm it is sausage”.

“What type of sausage?” my friend asked, looking at me with growing contempt.

Buddhist monk

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What to do with four days in Bangkok?

I stepped out of the taxi and into a wall of humidity, noise and car exhaust. The glass of the hotel was opaque with condensation. A door opened and the bellboy hurried out to help us with our bags. The lobby of the hotel was everything Bangkok wasn’t. It was clean, calm and cold, with floor to ceiling white marble and a waitress standing by to take our drink orders as we began the process of checking in. As I sipped on my mojito I realised that this was without doubt the last expensive holiday I would take for a long time.

Keeping watch in Wat Pho

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Hamilton Island and the Whitsundays

This post is about Hamilton Island, but first I want to talk about by travel buddy R and how we met.

Small insignificant moments can often make the biggest difference. In 2003 I was mid-way through my first year at university and not overly enjoying myself. My dorm-mates were a bunch of stoners, choosing to sit around smoking weed rather than socializing or experiencing Bristol. The one good friend I did have was a girl called Sarah, and she ended up dating one of the stoners, so I soon lost her to the black void of lethargy that marijuana seems to create.

Hamilton Island guests on the Balcony

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Byron, the first few days

Byron is exactly what I needed.

It’s 10.30pm on a Sunday night and I’m sat on the deck of a beautiful beach house. I can hear the waves rolling against the sand just beyond the trees and nothing else. I was locking up the house at the end of day three in Byron with the intention of going to bed, but when I walked out onto the decking I took a deep breath of fresh sea air and felt an overwhelming desire to keep this little dream going a bit longer, so I sat down to write.

DCIM100GOPRO

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Gonorrhea, drugging your boyfriend and cruising

Let’s leave talk of gonorrhea till later. It’s far too early in the morning.

Sydney, that’s my first stop on this Christmas adventure, and that’s pretty much all I know. Work in Hong Kong has been pretty crazy in the run up to holidays. Everyone wants desperately to have a Christmas where they don’t read work emails or take a work call. Because of this the office is a frantic flurry of activity, stress, deadlines and meetings. I actually found myself in a meeting about how many meetings we are having. Seriously.

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