Posts Tagged ‘ travel

Next Stop: Hong Kong

Patrick and I have booked our tickets to Hong Kong and we’re leaving at the end of the month. I’m trying to hold off my excitement since I’ve still got the rest of January to get through before I even start packing. We did watch a lot of travel shows yesterday though for planning purposes. You know, I’ve actually been there a few times but I honestly couldn’t give any tips about where to go and what to see because I haven’t been since I looked like this:

No time for love doctor Jones!

No time for love doctor Jones!

That was about 10 years ago. I pretty much look the same so that may not have been the best picture to use, but it WAS taken in Hong Kong!

Anyway, the travel shows we watched were half with Anthony Bourdain, and most of them mentioned the HK film industry, which was a bit weird. It’s not something that tourists could ever really participate in when going to the area so I’m not sure why they all seemed to have a segment featuring the host doing some type of martial arts and rigged flying stunts.

Really looking forward  to all the food, exploring the city without a guide, and seeing my aunt and uncle. WOO!

 

Greetings from Hawaii

Getting back into the swing of things! (posting I mean) I’m in Hawaii and I’m on vacation (also accomplishing the “travel overseas” and the “kayak in Hawaii” items on my 30 for 30 list). I made some observations while here on Oahu:

  • Waikiki is full of young Japanese families. This means lots of new parents with cute, fat little babies everywhere.
  • Those Japanese families like to shop, and not just shopping at say… Target or Banana Republic but like, Coach, Ralph Lauren, Armani shopping.
  • Marketing for shooting ranges in Waikiki is like “escort” advertising in Vegas. Why are there so many shooting ranges in the tourist area?
  • Japanese restaurants are in abundance (duh)
  • Coconut syrup is greatness. I might get some from Amazon.com just to show everyone in LA how good it is.

Waikiki Beach from Diamond Head Summit

Mumbai and Delhi Recap

Bombay to Delhi as the locals would say

Patrick and I have traveled from Mumbai to Delhi yesterday and got a few hours in Delhi to get driven to India Gate, the Presidential house, Parliament house and past some embassies. Also, we stopped by the travel agent who helped us book everything here in the Delhi, Jaipur, Agra area and she took me to her henna guy down the street:

We’re supposed to start getting ready soon for today’s leg from Delhi to Jaipur, so I don’t have a lot of time to think about what I want to say.  I’m actually awake at 5 am just thought I’d get some time in to jot some stuff dwn before I have too much to write! Here are some observations I have made in the past few days in short Tweet-like thoughts:

In Mumbai we did some shopping at a mall, not to different from one back home. They even had a McDonalds with a Filet-O-Fish, and some McChicken burgers (instead of beef, obviously)

However, we did find some other places that seemed to sell beef burgers (we didn’t eat them)

Despite staying at hotels that are all LEED certified and seeing a lot of public service posters about reducing pollution and “going green” it seems that there are a lot of people here who teach their young to litter at an early age. It was quite irksome.

The air quality in Mumbai leaves something to be desired.

However, the air quality when we arrived in Delhi was much worse. It smelled like the city had been burning and it looked like it too. The afternoon sky was red through the dust and smoke.

Cows here are sacred, of course, so they get to do whatever they want, but I’ve also noticed some cows tied to things, I wonder what that is about. Are people keeping them as pets?

Speaking of pets, there are a lot of feral dogs and cats. They are all skinny. The dogs are usually a mid-sized to large breed, something like a lab or retriever, mostly short-haired. I did see one that was much fluffier the other day but that seems rare.

The birds seem to be the healthiest wild animals in the city. There are more crows or ravens than pigeons. The pigeons here have much shinier, iridescent neck feathers, not sure if that’s due to the humidity, their diet or the general health of the birds.

This is probably true in other countries as well but, as a tourist, you’re going to have to hone your haggling skills and be constantly ready to decline the offers for unrequested goods and services, as well as general begging.

If you’re in Delhi, stop by Kahn’s Market. In the alleyway there is a restaurant called The Kitchen. Get the Khao Suey or Hawker Noodles.

Also, caught this tear-jerking story on BBC world news this AM http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-20202406

 

 

Well, I’m off to the Orient!

I haven’t mentioned this but in about three days I will be on a plane to India. This is very exciting, despite my lack of exclamation mark. The reason I am still being a little reserved is because of work. Having to make it through two days of work before I go is keeping me from getting to excited about anything but the week end.

Anyway, details: Patrick is already there, for work. I am going to be meeting him there on Friday, or possibly Thursday, I can’t remember what day it will be in India when I actually arrive but it will be Wednesday night when I leave. I’m traveling on Halloween night, which is fine with me I guess, for some reason I haven’t been into Halloween so much for awhile. Possibly since Patrick and I started dating, not sure why that is though since he is into dressing in costume too. I think I might like the romanticism more and it’s hard to get caught up in it when those around you are not.

Back to India! I’m going to meet him in Mumbai, where his company’s Indian HQ is and he’ll show me around Mumbai for a few days since he has been to that particular area of India a few times already. Then we are flying to the capitol, New Delhi. There’s a tourist circuit in that area called The Golden Triangle and it consists of three cities: New Delhi, Agra and Jaipur. There are lots of historic sights and landmarks to see there, like the famous Taj Mahal, for example. There’s also something called The Red Fort and some government buildings that I do not know the names of.

Honestly, I don’t know a lot about India and the history of the country. Actually, I know a bit more now that I’ve watched some docu-mini series about the history of India and how it has gone through a long line of invaders/rulers who have all contributed to the diverse culture that India has today. I also learned that at the southern tip of India, in Tamil Nadu there is a village where a man’s DNA has been liked to some of the first humans. This is because 1. his family has a history of marrying first cousins so they’ve kept the bloodline pretty pure and 2. they are pretty isolated in that area so it’s not hard to maintain that lineage.

The Lotus Temple by InsideSouthAfrica on Flickr

While we are there I hope to:

  1. eat amazing food and take pictures of it
  2. take pictures of US… on vacation! (I don’t have a lot of pictures of us)
  3. ride an elephant
  4. touch a monkey – or notice a wild one from far away and say “HEY! A MONKEY!” in excitement as the locals walk on, uninterested
  5. try to “blend in” as much as a non-Indian can
  6. buy some clothes
  7. buy some jewelry
  8. buy some spices (can I bring these home?)
  9. learn some words in Hindi
  10. visit a Hindu or Sikh temple

London Trip, Google Books, Universal Health Care

Quick and to the point update!

A health care bill was passed this weekend and was signed by President Barack Obama into law. There are a lot of things to work on and a long time before it’s going to work well but HOLY SHIT THIS IS, as VP Biden said, A BIG FUCKING DEAL.

One part of the health care bill that I particularly enjoy is that restaurants will now be required to print calorie counts on their menus. Pretty cool.

In related news, I don’t know what the fuck is up with elected officials nowadays. Republicans are being really offensive IN the House. I feel like the past 8 years democrats have been politely complaining, and certainly not calling for Bush’s assassination. I don’t get where these people get the idea that they can act like this. When did become acceptable behavior for people who are supposed to represent America? Could we take a step back and look at these people are doing? I wonder if governments of other first world countries act like this in legislative houses. I wonder if Canadians or the English are like this.

I guess I’ll get to find out later this year… ’cause I’m planning a trip to London! Woooooooo! Yeah so I’m finally in a place where I’m financially stable enough to save up money to go on a trip like this. I’ve gotten pretty excited looking at vacation packages and what not. I think I want to stay for a whole week. Eee! I also just found my passport tonight and luckily it doesn’t expire until next May so I don’t have to worry about paying for a renewal. Huzzah! In the meantime I have trips to SF and Seattle booked. I’ll also be going to Laughlin in August and Oregon in September for Sarah’s wedding.

Finally, I just discovered Google Books! Look how cool it is!

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