Friday, 19 August 2011


I feel like the word excitement is a bit of a strange one, because there isn't really any way of describing the levels of excitement. It's not like when you're cold and you can be a bit chilly, or down right freezing. But realistically is that how excitement works? I mean if you're Rebecca Black and you're singing about Friday, you might be "so excited" (we're looking forward to the weekend), but it's not really the same as when you're me and you're blogging about going on holiday to Vietnam in two weeks is it? I mean the very nature of weekends is that they occur once a week, where as holidays to Vietnam, well they don't grow on trees you know. However, being excited about your holiday to Vietnam, is probably not the same level of excitement as you would get if you were my friend SJ and gearing up for your wedding, because, well, that's pretty much a once in a lifetime thing, and therefore infinitely more exciting than Fridays, and probably a whole lot more exciting that going on holiday, even one as exciting as mine. In short. The English language is insufficient. Also, congratulations SJ. (And Elodie, and Jane, and anyone else reading my blog who just got married, or is going to...)

(Also, I'm pretty excited about Vietnam in two weeks, just not as excited as I would be if I were getting married tomorrow.)

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

I was so wrong!

So it turned out I did not have everthing I could ever need for vietnam, today I bought the kindle version of the lonely planet guide to vietnam. And its brlliant! iI founnd out about the lake in Tra Vinh, and about all the other things there are to do and see there, and i physically could not be more excited to go! This is whole new levels of excitement, even for me!

Also i just wrote this on the kindle. I don't think you'll be getting long kindle posts guys, this takes forever!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011


In EXACTLY 17 days I will be leaving on my adventures, so naturally, being a boy scout, I shall be prepared for all eventualities. In this vein I have been typhoid proofed, I have anti-malarials, I have a bikini, I have factor 50 suncream and I have ear plugs. I can't really see what more I could possibly ever need.

In more home based adventures I have been hanging out with my wonderfully fantastic friends, and I have been trying to learn how to use my camera properly (pictures to follow) by taking photographs of the Surrey flora and fauna (i.e. the deer in the garden and the Royal Horticultural gardens at Wisley.) So far I have discovered that my camera can do all sorts of magical manual focusing and such like, but that I basically take better pictures when I leave it in automatic. 

Also you guys, I bought shampoo in bar form! Like a bar of soap, but it's shampoo. I'm sure this is infinitely less exciting for everyone else than it is for me, but it's teeny tiny and won't explode in my bag. Which makes me happy.

The thing with deer is that they hide behind plants and move around.
And scratch their noses

And won't let me come near them....
Benches on the other hand are great at staying still

Monday, 8 August 2011


Oh hey I can post to my blog without having to actually go to the website, i.e. I can post on the road!

(Just to explain this, I have an email address that I can email posts to and then they upload to the blog automatically, which is good because it means I can use my (mother's) Kindle to blog with, once I get to Vietnam!)

Friday, 5 August 2011

You know what you're doing once you get there, right?

Sure. I know exactly what I'm doing once I get there. I'm checking into my pre-booked hotel, following which I have a day to explore Hanoi before I go on my perfectly organised tour of Vietnam. I'm going to Sapa and Halong Bay, before returning to Hanoi, following which I'm going to Hue, then Hoi An. Then I'm flying to Ho Chi Minh City, where I'm doing a cyclo tour (no, I don't know either) before going to the Mekong Delta. From whence I return to Saigon. Along the way I'm hiking, canoeing, making a lantern, going to various museums, learning to cook, and even staying overnight with a Vietnamese family. It is very adventurous and I am excited! 

After that the plan gets a little less plan-like and a little more vague, but basically I hope to meet up with a friend from my adventures in the land of the Hamburgers and stay with her while she teaches people English. I have been promised that there is a good lake, and that I will be able to eat frogs legs. Other than that I'm not too sure there is really a plan, other than to avoid decapitation. Still, this being spontaneous and off the beaten track, shall be all the more adventurous and I get to hang out at a Vietnamese University, which should be exciting!

So you see! I have very precise and detailed plans! Aren't you excited to read all about my adventures? I know I don't have a good track record of actually blogging when life gets adventurous, but I promise you, I have good intentions! 

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Counting down to my next adventure!

You guys, it's 30 days until I fly to Vietnam! I put a fancy little countdown widget over in the side bar so you can count down with me! I have been doing research into serious travelling blogs, and I believe at this stage it is customary to write a blog stating exactly what you are going to pack. I will not being doing this, partially because I'm sure you have no interest in exactly how many pairs of socks I will be taking, and partially because I honestly don't have a clue. However my research has revealed that there are three golden rules when packing:

1. Three pairs of underwear will suffice. I don't think I will be keeping to this rule; no matter how many times I read about the "Four days, Four ways" theory of underwear, it becomes no more appealing. I will wear my underwear the standard way. Not back-to-front, not inside-out, not back-to-front and inside-out. This is my final decision. I will also bring a sufficiency such that I do not spend my entire holiday washing my knickers. And before anyone even thinks of mentioning paper pants, I'd like to point out that this is so far outside the realms of things that are likely to ever happen that there's no point me shooting it down.
2. Absolutely no denim ever. I'm going to break this one too. Possibly twice; once in full length and once in short version. The only way I know to dress myself involves denim and hoodies. I don't think I can be deprived of these items for a whole month. I tried in South Africa and wound up buying myself a pair. I don't care if they dry slower than Christmas. They're coming. And besides, I am going to go live with a friend, who has a real person job. So I have to look like a real person, and preferably like I'm not going to smell like I'm on day 3 of the 4 day underwear cycle.
3. Don't bring bedding, it will be provided. Again, this one is looking like it's going to be broken... Anyone who has seen me at camp will know of my deep devotion to my silk sleeping bag liner, and the separation anxiety which occurs when I am bereft of it. I'm pretty sure it can protect me from bed bugs, knife wielding rapists, and the yeti, all at the same time. And I might bring my baby pillow too, because I love it, and it's been to South Africa, Nepal, and America three times and will get sad if it gets left behind.

So right now it's looking like I'm going to be taking everything, including the kitchen sink, I've never really been any good at packing light...