Well, isn’t this an interesting experiment. Somehow I’ve been coerced by Shyam into looking after his two pet turtles for the next ten days while he is travelling around Japan.

Why? I hear you ask.

For Shyam, Japan is country he’s always dreamed of visiting, a place that he’d seen pictures of in books as a kid that stirred an emotion in him that no thing and no person had previously managed. It instils a certain combination of awe, curiosity and a strange kind of caution that many won’t experience in everyday life. Some say Shyam has found a unique place on Earth where he can really experience this life. I feel like he’s finally returning home.

And the turtles?

No fucking idea.

Thanks Shyam for the picture. Of course I’ll mind your little mutant ninjas.



Oh man, that was close. Its a truly different kind of terrifying when you live away from home. Maybe I’ve become complacent. Probably. Accidents like this always seemed so unlikely, and here I was thinking that on day 217 I was safe, in the home stretch. But, I’d never had a scare like that before. What’s probably worse is that I never considered what I should do if the situation ever arose.

Luckily, it was just under the bed.

My record breaking ‘No Odd Sock’ streak continues.


I’ve got everything organised. Naturally, the non-believers aren’t here to witness this rare and unusual occurrence. I reached a new low/high on reddit this morning, peaking around 332 posts. Enough with that. I’ve got my coffee, laptop, pens, paper, motivation?


What’s that last one again?

I’ve just looked at the few inches of notes I need to analyse. Not a helping factor. Luckily, they mainly consist of definitions; after all, most of the students here are not native speakers of this language I use for things as trivial as this blog.

An afternoon of perusing should be enough to get the key concepts, that’s the easy part. But memorising lists upon lists, that’s a new thing for me. I could use the old π trick. No, not enough time. Hah, when I say that what do you think? That I’ve pushed myself to the limits cramming and depriving myself of sleep. Because what I really mean is not enough time saved to do what I do, you see. Whatever that may be.

Wow, getting off topic. How strange that that can happen even when you are procrastinating. Anyway.

I’ve got a new trick now. Remember the first and last part of any given piece of information. Enter exam, channel slight adrenaline/caffeine trip into imaginary drum solo and make up the middle part.

Its worked so far. In fact, so much so, that I’m sceptical the other methods will achieve the same result. Maybe it’s not worth my time, which is, after all, ticking by at a ridiculous rate. It’s a sunny day and much of Hong Kong remains unexplored. I’m glad the non-believers aren’t here because you know what? You’ve convinced me. That’s right. Try not to feel bad that it’s your fault I’m not studying today.

Because it is and you shouldn’t and I’m not.

I’ll watch the sunset instead.

korea (or how I learned to stop worrying and love the kimchi)

Xavier and I spent the last week in Korea.

Like with anything (sufficiently fun), it felt like an instant.
But it probably looked more like this…

…statistically, it could be represented as 6.5(days visting)/7889(days living) equivalent to just 0.082% of my life or about 1min and 11 seconds out of a single day. You sound interested. Moving forward.

Neither of my regular readers asked me to follow up on my last post ‘higher’, but I’ll share my sentiments with you. I think this graph works nicely.

Most things will be explained in time. In other Korean fun facts: Did you know? That research has shown only 1/3 people are really excited to arrive in Korea?

Can you guess who?

On the other hand, absolutely no one is excited to enter North Korea. We technically spent about 3.5 minutes across the border at the Joint Security Area. I won’t attempt to explain the details but its quite a strange situation.

Some excitement was killed when the ‘we take no responsibility for you death or injury in case of spontaneous attack from the north’ form was produced for us all to sign. Of course we had no choice, we didn’t get up at 6.30am to see only a fence.

Subsequently, the situation beyond the fence killed any remaining excitement.

In fact, remaining emotions turned into ‘What the in the actual fuck are we doing in this place?’ as our US Marine/UN escort described the 2m razor fence, 3m electric razor wire fence, 100m active minefield and massive anti-tank rock wall in that order as we were driving through. Did I mention the road was also lined with explosives?

Hah! I hadn’t felt so awake at 9am for quite some time.

Yep, that’s the border between those 2 building. Pictures can only be taken facing north, no pointing. Naturally, no photos of the exploding road, national security.

Oh man, I don’t really want to get sidetracked but this is not your blog, it’s mine.

Welcome to ‘Seoul Waffle Fika’, I know Lovisa is proud (and hopefully jealous).

Ok, back on track.

Ex-student of my dear Mother’s, travel extraordinaire and Korean local, who says “Okay, let’s go” with an Australian accent, Juhyang was kind enough to lend us a day or 2 of her time to show us around town.

Karaoke: icing on the cake, kinchi on your rice. Call it what you will.

Thanks for the great trip.


It’s not often that I impress myself, but I’ve done it again.

I remember the last occasion was in Beijing in early January as we were travelling towards the so called “pearl markets” (aptly named, as it was revealed). I seemed to have also impressed Felix. He gave me a high-five.

This particular event, while of a different nature, has been impressive none the less. I, single-handedly, selected my travel essentials for a week in South Korea with such scrutiny that it seems I have too much space left over; is that even a thing? I don’t care.

Actually, do I? On second thought, will starting on such a high note would leave no room for improvement during the trip? I suspect not, I hope it will be a product of my attitude. Something that I’ve been considering since Melissa gave me a piece of my own advice; shocking at first, but quite refreshing when put into perspective.

“Not with that attitude.”

I’d take a picture of my lack of luggage for you, but a lack of anything seldom makes a decent picture. That, aside from the fact I’ve already packed my camera. Instead, I’ll post this song that came on shuffle while browsing Gustav’s album of our trip to Yangshou. It felt like I was there, reliving the December of a previous era.

It’s a metaphor. Start on a high, go higher.

Coincidently, the title contains a few of the things I’d like to do and a number of places I’ll be visiting at some stage.