Canal next to the Amsterdam Red Light District

Prostitution and sweet Mary Jane

First off, if you’re looking for a sordid exposé of all the dodgy things we got up to in Amsterdam, you better keep looking, cos you won’t find it here. By the time we got to Amsterdam and tracked down our hotel it was 1:30am and we were all ready for some shut eye. Knowing … Read more

Ngati Ranana representative Ros at Hinemihi, Clandon Park

Slice of Heaven

Whilst reminiscing over old times (all of which were, of course, set in New Zealand), Sara mentioned that there is a Māori whare nui (meeting house) in England. In Clandon Park, to be exact. Looking it up online, we discovered that Ngāti Rānana, the London Māori Club, was scheduled to perform there that weekend. And … Read more

Wood cabin and horses, Khatgal, Mongolia

Channeling my inner herder

When the sun came up in Muren I was still sleeping, but I eventually woke up, checked out, and headed out to find a minibus the rest of the way to Khatgal. It turned out that finding the minivan wasn’t the problem so much as finding the other people who wanted to go out that … Read more

Swordfighter and Lady Hu - Huguang Guild Hall Peking Opera

Opera and acrobats

For someone who loves the theatre as much as I do, there has been a distinct lack of performances in my story to date. And when I arrived in Beijing, I was determined to change that. Being a huge city, I’m sure I could have found a Mandarin version of something like Les Miserables, a … Read more

Couple in front of a rainbow banner, checking photos

Bride of the Year

The morning after my walk in the rain, I got out of bed early, picked up my camera and finally set out to explore Qingdao. A German occupied city from 1898 to the outbreak of World War I when Japan took over the occupation, there is something familiar about the architecture in Qingdao. Just around … Read more

Wrestling at the Grand Sumo Tournament, Tokyo, Japan

Opening day of the Grand Sumo Tournament

Now I’m not exactly the biggest sports fan, being both unfit and uncoordinated, but I do try to adopt a ‘when in Rome’ policy while travelling. While living in Darwin, we went to an AFL match (still quite possibly the most ridiculous sport ever), and I went to see some muay Thai boxing in Bangkok. … Read more

Kappas at Taro's Pond

Legends of Tono

Speaking of unusual things about Japan, I didn’t mention this guy. He’s a kappa. And this is a kappa-ccino. And you thought the weird stuff was over. Now what, I hear you asking, on earth, is a kappa? Well, my friend, a kappa is a creature of Japanese folk lore. Roughly about the size of … Read more

Aaron and Jo's maid photo - At Home Cafe, Akihabara

Japan is weird

I pondered that title for ages, but really, there’s just no other way to say it. Japan is weird. If the Goku statues in the airport didn’t give it away, there were plenty of other opportunities to work it out. One of the things Aaron most wanted to do in Tokyo was see the cosplay … Read more

Entrance to Jalan Petaling market, Kuala Lumpur

High class retail therapy

Before I left Australia, Aaron’s mum asked me to buy her one thing in my travels. A designer handbag. Figuring that this would be an easy task to accomplish, I agreed; however, designer handbag retailers were not as plentiful as I would have imagined. I didn’t notice them in any of the markets I visited, … Read more

Fishing nets on Tonle Sap

Cruising Tonle Sap

Taking a bus from Siem Reap to Battambang takes about four to six hours on well-sealed roads. Estimates on the duration of the boat trip range from four to 12 hours, with descriptions ranging from enjoyable to torturous. At certain times of the year, the boat gets stuck because the river isn’t high enough for … Read more