Saturday, 27 October 2007
Monday, 22 October 2007
Palolem, Goa, India
And one sunrise in recognition of the new beginning that awaits us...
Victoria Gate, Bombay, India
- Seek out the highest building so that you can mix both fine food and views of the Island Palace with your Bond screening
- Be lucky enough to have three different hotels compete for the award of best fireworks display
- Conclude the evening in the passionate embrace of a harem of stunning bond-esq girls
Well I was lucky enough to have two of the above...
Saturday, 29 September 2007
Ceiling of a Jain Temple (notice the 12 statues), Jaisalmer, India
On the path to Mehrangar Fort, Jodhpur, India
Tuesday, 18 September 2007
Saturday, 15 September 2007
The options in Delhi are endless, but this one I particularly liked - maybe you can guess why from the images.
Thursday, 13 September 2007
Some Chinese propaganda that I endorse
Lucky we were warned about this one. Lijiang, China (it was actually a cobbled road, so perhaps they had the 'antonym' function on when they sent this through Babelfish)
The term 'Chinglish' would be familiar to anyone who's visited China, much as 'Japlish' is to travellers to Japan. As these highlights show, this is a travellers delight - thank you Shanghai underground, for these gems:
This one reads more like a haiku...
Very sound advice
Hmm... Guesses anyone?
Saturday, 8 September 2007
Okay, so you might have guessed that this is actually short for 'Dynasty', but still the initial impression is lasting! Giving into curiosity, Ros and I decided to try one of their 'Dry Reds' (12% alcohol) - this is the bottle below.
Let me enlarge the text at the bottom for you:
Yes, that's right people "Constantly drinking this wine is good for your health!"
Friday, 7 September 2007
Why is it that I love the small to medium cities, but find it hard to 'find my space' in the bigger cities? If I was a country boy, perhaps there would be some context, but I'm not. I've always lived in cities, generally always travelled to cities, and have never really had much urge to live outside a big metropolis.
After pondering this, especially in China, where I found the contrast so strong, I came up with these possible reasons:
- Big cities have more pollution - especially in Asia. Bangkok, Shanghai, and other cities with 3+ million people that we visited in China were all shrouded in smog most of the time. When you can look up on a clear day, and the sun is a hazy mess, you're dealing with some serious pollution. (I will make one exception for Hanoi, where the smog actually seemed to increase the ambiance)
- Nature is planned - I've come to love Sydney's pockets of wildlife, the by-product of an environment dominated by the harour and it's rivers, but not so in the cities I've been visiting in Asia. I've seen gardens so beautiful and meticulous that they can only be compared with Japan's (so I'm not saying that beauty isn't there - it can be in abundance e.g. Hangzhou), just they feel too man made for me to fully relax, as I can, say, in the grasslands of southern China, or a riverside in Laos.
- People appear to be in transit, rather than living - I love seeing people doing their thing. Selling at the markets or in the street, pulling a horse/goat/buffalo/yak; and displaying their personality through clothes, gestures, and performances. This is, in general, absent from the bigger cities to the casual visitor - that that I lament at times.
- Where is the tasty food? - An unfortunate outcome of city living is that there are enough people who require food, that it is tolerated when expensive and/or of bland taste. Eating in small cities (anywhere, everywhere in Asia) is usually so amazing that I have often rated my meals as the highlights of the day. Watching someone pull your noodles, slice your chilli's, or steam your buns can't be beaten for a total culinary experience.
So yes, this Blog entry is particularly self indulgent of me (it is my blog after all), but please excuse me, as I want to remember my feelings clearly when I get back and review this trip. I should conclude that it's not that I haven't enjoyed the big cities, I have, it's just that I often leave pining for smaller spaces where I am more in my element...