Monthly Archives: April 2010

Interview with El Mundo

Posted by on April 30, 2010

Bienvenido, los lectores de El Mundo! Espero que disfruten de este sitio! Si usted tiene alguna pregunta para mí, por favor deje un comentario.

I was interviewed by El Mundo yesterday, one of the largest newspapers in Spain. You can read the article (in Spanish) here. Read an online translation of the article in English. It was fun and a great honor to be featured in one of the largest Spanish media outlets.

Valencia Update

Posted by on April 29, 2010

I’ve arrived in Valencia after 24 hours of airports and airplanes and have been keept exceptionally busy since.

I’ve been taking photos, exploring the city, eating fantastic food and met some great people. I’ll be writing in more detail as soon as I can find some free time to go through my photos and write a longer piece.

Some of the highlights:

  • The Valencia Cathedral has the supposed Holy Grail. (thanks to Spud Hilton for the tip)
  • I’ve had paella for lunch both days I’ve been here. Its a rice dish which is the signature dish of Valencia.
  • I got a tour of the Palau de les Arts, which I honestly believe is the most impressive building on Earth. I’m not exaggerating when I say that.
  • I visited my 111th World Heritage Site: La Lonja de la Seda de Valencia.

Today I’m going to speak at a tourism industry event (which is why I’m here. They paid for my trip to Spain.) and will be moving down the coast over the weekend to Benidorm and Alicante.

I also want to give a shout out to Lillie Marshall of AroundTheWorldL.com who was in Spain and came up to Valencia to hang out with me. She’s been great fun so far.

Spain Stream of consciousness

Posted by on April 25, 2010

I’m in the Bangkok airport where I arrived very early waiting to board my 12 hour flight to Valencia.

While I’m sitting here, I figured it would be interested to inventory just exactly what I know about Spain. I haven’t read much specifically for this trip, so I thought it would a fun exercise.

So here is the regurgitation of everything I can think of about Spain…. (more…)

Bye Bye Bangkok

Posted by on April 23, 2010

I'm looking forward to being able to walk down the street and not worry about what color shirt I'm wearing

I'm looking forward to being able to walk down the street and not worry about what color shirt I'm wearing.

My tickets have finally been booked, the ash cloud is favorable, and it appears I’ll be in Spain in about 24 hours.

I’ve spent almost three months in Bangkok which is more time than I’ve spent in any other city since I’ve started my travels. While I have been here I didn’t visit a single temple or tourist attraction. I did something totally different from what I’ve been doing the last three years: living as an expat.

Normally, because I travel alone, I meet people but never develop any sort of friendships. Usually I don’t even get last names. In Bangkok I was able to meet a large group of people and was actually able to experience something resembling a social life. Almost every night I could find something to do with a group of people somewhere in Bangkok. I probably drank more in the last three months than I did in the last three years combined.

Just some of the people I met in Bangkok include Jodi Ettenberg, Greg Jorgensen, Cody McKibben, Sean Ogle, Kevin Revolinski, John Berns, Sarah Lipman, and Richard Escobar. I’m going to miss many of the people I met in Bangkok and hope to meet them again. (more…)

Comment Guidelines

Posted by on April 22, 2010

I don’t enjoy having to write this post, but I’m getting sick of having to weed through spam comments.

If you have left a comment on this site and it didn’t appear, it is most likely because me or my spam filter declared you as being spam.

This is the official set of rules for commenting on blog. I’ll be linking to this post in the future so everyone knows the rules. Here are the basic rules: (more…)

Stuck Between Airborne Volcanic Rock And A Hard Place

Posted by on April 21, 2010

Bangkok, I'm yours for a few more days

Bangkok, I'm yours for a few more days

I was supposed to be leaving for Spain today, but fate finds me still in Thailand. The huge ash cloud hovering over Europe has caused enough chaos in the air traffic system that I’m not exactly sure when I’ll be leaving. My hope is that I will be leaving within a day or two, but I have no idea.

Technically, Spain hasn’t really been effected by the ash cloud. It hasn’t extended beyond the French Pyrenees so far. However, my original flight was supposed to be on Air France with a connecting flight through Paris. Moreover, planes which might have flown a route to Bangkok might have been stranded in Germany, so things gets screwed up all over the world.

The end result is that even though there is technically no ash between Thailand and Spain, I’m stuck in Bangkok.
(more…)

Songkran: Celebrating the New Year with day-glo green and blaze orange super-soakers just like Buddha would have wanted

Posted by on April 18, 2010

No one is safe from getting wet during Songkran. No one.

No one is safe from getting wet during Songkran. No one.

On Tuesday I put my iPhone and wallet on the desk in my room and walked outside without them. I felt naked without them, but I didn’t feel it would be a good idea to carry them around that day. It was the first day of Songkran.

No sooner than I got 20m down the street from the entrance to my hotel a woman who was a total stranger grabbed the collar of my shirt, pulled it forward, dumped a bucket of water down my chest and smiled “Happy New Year”. Her friend slapped my cheeks a muddy goop from a dish made up of water and talcum powder. 60 seconds after hitting the street I was drenched head to toe and had a face full of wet talc.

It was quite the introduction to Songkran. (more…)

Living Under A State of Emergency

Posted by on April 13, 2010

This is the side of the protests you probably wont see on the news

The protesters have stopped being shiny, happy people

I began writing this post last night but had to delete everything once the bullets starting flying around 6-8pm Bangkok time. After a month of redshirt protests in Bangkok, things have finally come to a head. The protests thus far had been peaceful and the government has seen no real need to negotiate seriously with the redshirts. The most recent reports I’ve heard are that 20 people have been killed. One Reuters photographer from Japan was killed and the rest being soldiers and protesters.

I am perfectly safe.

All of the activity is taking place over an area of one to two square miles of the downtown area. I’m about two miles from the closest redshirt roadblock and another mile or so from all the clashes. Walking around the neighborhood in my area, I would never know that anything was going on in the city. (more…)