Tag Archives: travel

River Waltz

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Approaching the jetty of our host as we end our river cruise

It was around 10:00 in the evening when we cruised the Pengkalan Datu River. There were no artificial lights seen along the way except from distant houses, from the torch of lone fisherman seen occasionally by the riverbank working on his net or trap, and from the headlights of the boat navigator. The water was so eerily still and quiet except for the sound of some huge fish jumping now and then.

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We cruised that night on a boat just like this one

We were actually cruising deep in the night to see the fireflies. Those insects must be huge for I can see them flicker from distant trees and bushes as we ride along the river. Too bad the moon was very bright that the simultaneous flickering was not that spectacular. On the other hand, the full moon was perfect. It made the night so beautiful while we waltz along the river.

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Pengkalan Datu River at sunset

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Pengkalan Datu River at sunrise

Lumpini Park

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Coming out from the Silom metro subway station, you’ll see this statue by the entrance gate of Lumpini Park

It was inevitable that I found myself in a metropolis on a Sunday. But then, there was the Lumpini Park where lovers eat side-by-side on a bench by the lagoon, turtles lifting their heads in the water, kids throwing round multicolored breakfast-like cereals intended for fish feeding in the lagoon, photographer capturing paddleboat shots, group aerobic exercise near the park entrance, runners and walkers doing their rounds in a very much runnable park, expats, locals, and tourists, squatting on a rented mat while enjoying the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra concert– including myself.

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Paddleboats much like those in Baguio’s Burnham Park

With beautiful music, greenery, and contemplative atmosphere, that Sunday afternoon in Bangkok turned out lovely ultimately.

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See those runners?

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Plenty of expats in this free concert at the park by Bangkok Symphony Orchestra

On Traveling Light

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My pack is 5 kilos only for 5 days including my race gear and I don’t even have to use my allotted 30 kilos for check-in baggage. Though I’m very fond of my lightweight Highland duffel bag, this time I’ll be hopping on buses and trains of which I imagine that I may need to be hands-free most of the time, hence a backpack.  This is not Japan, in other words the conditions may not be as precise and predictable. And I’m not fond of wheel bags. It’s too cumbersome, there is no freedom of movement, and you need a bit more space around you which is not practical at times in public places. Aside from that, the concept itself is plain boring.  I believe that I must be fit and strong enough to carry my personal stuff for it is an indication that I can do more, travel far and be flexible enough for spontaneous decisions.

What I routinely do in my everyday life, I can afford to eliminate when traveling. If one’s reason for traveling is to have some diversion now and then, then one can do away with daily rituals and this varies from one person to the next. It may be all sorts of body creams and beauty regimen for some, fancy shoes and clothes, or electronic gadgets for others. Without these, then one may realize that it is easy to pack light after all. But if you absolutely cannot do away with creams and extra fancy clothes, then objectively, maybe that kind of traveling is not the same as what I have in mind. Or presumably, you are not that cute as you think you are.

On Itinerary

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In relation to the traveling I have done, often times I would get polite requests for itinerary.  Itinerary is non-existent in my realm. I do have an idea what kind of stuff I want to see, and what sort of place I want to immerse myself that my decisions were largely based on that. I think I do it on purpose to go on a trip unprepared, sort of. Without some extensive pre-journey notes afforded me with observations and discoveries entirely my own. Several people may tread the same path, may perceive things the same way, may do things the same way, but I may see things differently if my mind is independent.

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Walking about for some Kyoto enlightenment

Moreover, without itinerary there is no timetable to follow as this is something that I truly have an aversion to. Something repulsive as: 5 AM: Wake-up call; 7 AM: Hotel breakfast; 8:30 AM: Temple hopping; 10 AM: Off to this museum ; 12 PM: Lunch at resto X; 2 PM: Photo-ops at this tourist spot; 4 PM: Souvenir shopping; 6-8 PM: Free time; 8 PM: Dinner at resto Y.

Spontaneous decision on what to do and where to go is more fun. And when time is not micromanaged, ideas flow freely. Learning becomes more profound when you check out certain curiosities and make discoveries in an unhurried mood, thus making your trip an exceptional one.

Winter Walk in Hida-Takayama

Some aimless unhurried walking late in the afternoon on the first day of calendar year 2015 in Hida-Takayama, a traditional city in Japan Alps.

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Graveyard

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I appreciate the English translation

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