When living a while in one location, you establish a base, from where you can travel to other places. What mode of transport you prefer, is up to you, in Asia’s equatorial weather, for me the best way to get around is by motorcycle.
Driving 20.000 km around Bali and surrounding islands over the last 2 years, I used a Honda Vario 110ccm CBS, which was a great way to use as my day-2-day vehicle. So when Honda came out with the 2012 model, I naturally had to take a closer look. Here is what I think about that bike after using it for 1 month and app. 1.000 kilometer:
When setting off a long-term trip for the first time, it’s common for people to bring far more than they need; the uncertainty of what the trip may bring can lead to a mentality of packing things “just in case”, or for comfort.
I remember my first 2-week trip to Thailand, hundreds of full moons back; my backpack looked like the one to the right and embarrassingly I even brought socks for that expected cold night in the tropics. Ahem!
It’s this time in Bali again, the beginning of the New Year 1934 following the Hindu calendar.
This is celebrated with a parade of paper mache Ogoh-Ogoh monsters followed by a day of silence.
During Nyepi Day, noise and light pollution have to be avoided, to not make the monsters, demons and ghosts flying over the island to be alerted, so they can continue their journey towards other islands and not bring their evil to Bali’s inhabitants.
On a recent short trip to Vietnam I had the chance to explore the country anew, after having not visited for over 7 years. The Vietnam Lunar Festival Tết Nguyên Đán was just in its last few days, when I touched down in Ho Chi Minh or Saigon.
Over the course of almost 2 weeks I commuted between Saigon and Vung Tau, a beach holiday destination just 125 km south of Vietnam’s largest city.
The overall experience was quite positive, it’s surprisingly easy to get around and make the most of your trip. Vietnam is quickly becoming a modern Asian country, after having suffered so much just a few decades ago.
Cebu and Bohol are apart from Boracay and Manila maybe the most valuable assets for the tourism industry in the Philippines.
Cebu has the second biggest international airport in the country and is a great hub for island-hopping, entertainment options or simply coming back to Civilization after having successfully toured the surrounding islands or provinces. Bohol is an interesting island which features beautiful nature, wildlife and friendly people.
So far, it was only possible to get from one of these islands to the other via ferry services, which takes anything from 2-4 hours, depending on weather conditions. But hear me out, what seems to be in store for the near future:
24 years ago, when Kuta in Bali was a small fishing village with bamboo huts and mud tracks, only known to late Hippies and a handful of adventurous low budget tourists, something interesting happened.
Amidst the serenity of its 8km long stretch of sand and (back then) clean waters a night club opened opened in Legian/Seminyak.
It was located directly at the beach, an open concept and opened until the wee hours of the next day. From 6pm to 6am. Thus Club 66 was born.
When things like this happen, it makes me feel that it’s all worth to maintain a website like this over the period of now more than 6 years.
This May, GQ China interviewed half a dozen Bali and Phuket Expats for a July Special Print Issue about people who left the city life behind. It seems more and more Chinese are overwhelmed by their work and life pressure and looking for alternative lifestyles.
So in a 4-hour interview and photo session which took part in the Four Season Hotel in Jimbaran and also Uluwatu temple, I was ‘interrogated’ about how I came to live the life I’ve been living the last 5 years. Here is what came out of it:
It was a long time ago.
I have almost forgotten my dream.
But it was there then,
In front of me,
Bright like a sun–
And then the wall rose,
Between me and my dream.
Rose until it touched the sky –
The modern working climate is unforgiving. In its never-ending strive for higher productivity and efficiency, employees are a mere cost factor in a firm’s calculation.
A cost factor, that constantly has to be optimized, downsized and monitored for return on investment; restructured and adjusted to fit the firm’s strategies and policies.
What happened to the human factor? To Work-Life-Balance?
Come on – don’t kid yourself! If you don’t watch out for that, nobody else will.
Here is the latest fairy tale from the corporate world, which might just prove that point: