Month One in Review

I can’t believe it! I’ve been gone for over one month already, and my trip is one third of the way done. It’s just flying by. Here’s a recap of what I’ve been up to.

Places Visited:

-Hong Kong, China

-Penang, Malaysia

-Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

-Yogyakarta, Java, Indonesia

-East Java, Java, Indonesia

-Legian, Bali, Indonesia

-Gili Trawangan, Lombok, Indonesia

-Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

Mandalay, Myanmar

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Favorite Places:

-Hong Kong: Talk about a city I could see myself living in. Hong Kong was the best combination of everything I loved about London and Asia. I could really see myself permanently settling down there.

-Ubud: A beautiful, cultural town with plenty of historical sites to see and awesome food and yoga classes. While it’s definitely not a big city, its calm vibe and slow pace make it a great place to relax.

Best Meals:

-Wantan Mee: Of all of the amazing meals in Penang, this was the one I kept returning to.  Of course, I made sure to try it at the same place Anthony Bourdain ate!

-Dim Sum: I ate at the cheapest Michelin Starred restaurant in the world–Tim Ho Wan’s Dim Sum. The pork buns were especially out of this world.

El Nido, the Philippines

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Craziest Adventures

-Being in Hong Kong during the protests: While nothing crazy happened, it was amazing being there watching history in the making.

-Taking the boat to Gili T: A tiny boat bouncing along at full speed over choppy waters. Apparently one sinks every year. Yes, I was terrified.

#elnido #philippines #asia #travel

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Biggest Challenges:

-Recovering from my accident in Penang: I sustained a minor injury in Penang, and while it wasn’t anything serious, it certainly took the wind out of my sails for a few days. I decided to slow down and take it easy until I recovered, but it was a little demoralizing, especially because I was only a week into my trip.

-Losing my debit card in an ATM Machine: The stupid ATM in Gili T swallowed my debit card. After panicking and spendig an incredibly pointless hour on the phone with an Indonesian bank, I realized I had a backup plan and nothing to worry about while I waited for a new card to arrive. That didn’t make it less stressful though! Thankfully, the card just arrived the other day.

Lessons Learned:

Geckos make noise. It’s almost like a hiccup-bark and I can hear it from inside my room. Weird, but the more you know!

Books Read:

-A Clash of Kings, George R.R. Martin: No explanation necessary.

-A Storm of Swords, George R.R. Martin: Ditto.

-Rainey Royal, Dylan Landis: I heard amazing things about it but I was a bit disappointed.

-Legs Get Led Astray, Chloe Caldwell: I love her essays but this book left me cold.

-The Wisdom of Whores: Bureaucrats, Brothels and the Business of AIDS, Elizabeth Pisani: A fascinating look at the way the international community fights AIDS and how it might be counterproductive.

-The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance, Laurie Garrett: Also fascinating. I never knew the discovery of new tropical diseases would make for such page-turning material.

On my to-read list? The last two A Song of Ice and Fire books, Self-Help by Laurie Moore, The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, Without You There is No Us by Suki Kim and The Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne.

 

What’s Next?

I’m in Bali until November 6th. I may stay in Ubud or I may head somewhere else if I get bored of going to yoga and hanging by the pool here. On November 6th, I’m headed to Singapore for four days, then onward to Myanmar until November 25th, when I head back to Singapore. That will close out month two of my Asia schlep. Hopefully all will go according to plan, but let’s be real…it never does.

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