Monday, June 27, 2011

A good read

One of the benefits of not having 24-hour internet access - apart from meaning I subject you people to slightly fewer pointless blogs each month (it'll take more than that to stop me) - is that I spend less time at the computer and more time elsewhere.

Although I still invariably end up wasting the precious gift of life, at least I'm wasting it offline and getting lots of reading done.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Dave 2031

What will become of me?

Right now, I'm happy enough visiting new places and writing about brain injury claims and Berlin city breaks for a living (those are just two random, recent examples - I'm not paid to write endlessly about brain injury claims and Berlin city breaks, and never are the two combined). But will that still be the case six months from now? Or in a year? Or 20 years down the line in the space-age sci-fi future dystopia of 2031, when I'm 45?

Do I really want to end up like Graham?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

You must be Malaystaken

Another smugly superior, borderline racist guffawing at the poor English skills, accidental double entendres and deliberate copyright infringements of foreign shop owners, this time across Peninsular Malaysia.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Travel babies

Artist's impression.
(Note: Artist is a racist)

It's exactly nine months since I started travelling, which means that any day now my tiny mixed-race offspring will start popping out of all those exotic women I had reckless unprotected sex with.

You might call this slightly troubling behaviour, but it'll be worth it to get a rough idea of what I might look like if I were a bit more Italian, Greek, Israeli, Egyptian, Taiwanese, Thai, Cambodian (it still counts) or Malaysian. I'll be honest, it's going to be hard to tell the difference between some of those.

Let the welfare payments commence!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Mandarin Wednesdays

Sort of like Orange Wednesdays. Except in this case the orange is specifically Chinese.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

North Korea's the safe one... right?

I may or may not be going to North Korea in a couple of months. I know, surprising isn't it? I don't normally make plans beyond the week.

The uncertainty isn't because of any safety concerns (as if I have the self-awareness for that), but because the planning is being done by someone else, who I don't even know. This is annoying because, as I've said before and stick by, people are unreliable and often downright rubbish. Especially me. I might just bail out of the whole thing. Or should I go?

Only one thing for it: let's bypass the deficient decision-making part of my brain and discuss my private business openly on the internet. Let's!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Revenge of the amusing podcasts

Podcasts have proven to be great travelling companions. Whether I'm wandering around unfamiliar streets or taking long cross-country bus journeys, having a couple of people jabbering on about next to nothing inside my head in amusing ways beats developing schizophrenia to achieve the same end.

There are quite a few good podcasts around at the moment - some old favourites tediously refusing to give up the ghost, and a couple of new kids making their mark on the block by essentially doing the same thing other people have done, but in a slightly different London accent. Is the podcast still an exciting and limitless medium, or just an excuse for people to not be very good because it's free?

That's right - these things are all free to download, so why not give them a try? It's only your invaluable life you're wasting. I've made a cheeky podcast sampler of some good bits (or in some cases, bits) from recent 'casts. If you like anything you hear, you can download full-length podcasts by following the links. This has been a public service announcement; now continue with your pointless lives.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Literally everything I'm carrying

Following my needlessly thorough budgeting blog, I thought I'd offer a further tedious and intrusive glimpse into my life with an exhaustive list of everything I'm currently carrying in the two bags I travel the world with and the pockets of the shorts I'm wearing right now.

People have asked me a couple of times about what I carry when I'm travelling, or seem bewildered by the compact size of my luggage. But I still think I have too many socks. So here's my dubious advice about packing for the long haul, which you can feel free to ignore (I am best though).

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Who's Taman? I'm Taman!

Against the odds, I survived the ordeals of Malaysia's Taman Negara national park. Mostly by limiting my adventurous trekking activities to tourist tours in safe groups, rather than heading off on my own. Not exactly Tarzan, am I? I'm not even bloody Mowgli.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Literally everything I spent last month

There were a couple of reasons why I never travelled before eight months ago.

One was my workaholic dislike of holidays (to me, 'holidays' means that extra money they add to your last pay packet when you quit a job), and the other was that I mistakenly thought travelling had to be expensive. Blame it on all the luxury travel agents I wrote copy for - I started believing my own propaganda.

But I've discovered travelling really isn't expensive, especially when you go somewhere cheap like South East Asia. It costs me less to travel around Malaysia, enjoy life and eat nice food all the time than it did to exist in a miserable flat in the UK, eating whatever crap I scavenged from the Reduced to Clear section of Morrissons and waiting for the blessed relief of death.

You say this a lot, but where's the evidence to back it up?

Oh I see, you want needlessly thorough and intrusive stats on my finances do you? You want the moon on a stick.