See Ya Later Aussie

I’m bound for Singapore in a few hours. I’ll probably get to the airport a bit early just because they have free and fast internet access there. Much better than what I can get in Darwin.

I can’t believe I’ve been here for more than five months. I originally intended to be here for about 2-3 months. The size and vast emptiness of the country really is astounding. While it is approximate in size to the continental US, it is very different in how things are spread out. It would be like the US if everything outside of the east coast and Sand Diego was the Nevada desert.

I’ll have a lot to say about Australia in the coming months. There is too much to say in one post. If I can summarize it in a simple sentence however, it is that Australia (and Canada, US, New Zealand, UK) are more alike than they are different. When you visit a place like Australia, as an American, you notice the things which are different. When you visit Japan, you notice the things which are the same.

Singapore will be the second country on my trip which I’ve visited previously (technically third, but a 24 hour stop over in Japan really didn’t count). I was in Singapore for four days back in 1999 and fell in love with the place. I am really interested to see what has changed and how the city is different. I’ll probably be writing more about Singapore than I otherwise would for a country its size, just because I find the place so fascinating.

One thing which I’m looking forward to in Singapore is FREE WIRELESS INTERNET. During my entire stay in Australia, I’ve found it in one place outside of an airport. Australian internet has been disappointing to say the least. It is slow and expensive. Many things I’ve wanted to do on my site I’ve put on hold till I could get to Singapore, just because of state of the Internet. I hope some of the location based services on my iPod Touch will work in Singapore.

I’m also looking to the lower prices of South East Asia. Australia is expensive for someone using American Dollars (and in some items like Coke is expensive for everyone. $3.50 for a 600ml bottle, or about 20oz. Yet you can often buy 2, 2 liter bottles for $5). Even though Singapore is probably the most expensive place in SE Asia, it should still be cheaper than Australia. One Singapore dollar is worth about US$0.75. When I was there in 1999, five Singapore dollars was about US$2.

Expect a few podcasts in quick succession. One problem with doing a podcast like I do, is you are held hostage by what internet connection you can get. I have two I shot in Australia almost ready to go. I might not be able to post exactly one per week, but I think I can average one per week by putting up more to compensate for when I can’t post. I also might be going back and revisiting some places I went where I didn’t shoot video by doing the Ken Burns thing with still photos. We’ll see.

If anyone in Singapore is reading this, drop me an email (gary AT I always enjoy meeting people.