Sunday, October 16, 2011

Escapology : Vietnam

Last September we managed to escape (again !) to Vietnam, along with our friends Reni and Grace. After one and a half year planning, well actually it started with 13 people on board, then each of them cancelled, so in the end - there was 4 of us.

The journey started from Jakarta - Singapore. We were supposed to meet Grace there, but none of us realized, that we would arrived in Singapore at lunch time.... and puppy was the only one carrying Singapore dollars. Reni had late breakfast before leaving Soetta... but puppy and bear didn't. And because we flew with Tiger - we needed to go out and go to Terminal 2, because puppy thought the budget terminal was not a great place to spend 3 hours waiting for the next flight. Thanks God after going here and there, we found Burger King... in Terminal 2. By the way - there is transfer bus from Terminal 3 (budget terminal) to terminal 2. And from Terminal 2 to terminal 1, you will need a sky train. 

*) later we found out that there is also Burger King in terminal 3, if we only cared about walking another 200-300 meters from the bus stop :P

We met Grace, and so off we go. 

We arrived in Hanoi late at night. We were quite shocked that to enter Vietnam, you don't need to fill in the immigration form cards.. *and there was no sign of course...* Immigration was quite fast, unlike Bangkok, then before meeting the guy from the hotel, we exchanged some money. Good thing is, the rate for VND compared to USD was higher than what we thought - it was 20,000 VND for 1 USD. Puppy and bear exchanged USD 100 each, and we instantly became millionaire :)

We arrived at the hotel late... and Hanoi in weekdays night at 10 pm, the city was already empty...*or so we thought*. We could only find one restaurant - please note that we are staying in the old quarter - a bit like the old town in Central Jakarta, hence it was a bit shabby. Not luxurious. First night, we all decided to take it easy, because the next day we had to leave for Halong Bay :)

Just a glimpse on Halong Bay - we will definitely have another post on Halong Bay *clue : we did stupid things here*

Back in Hanoi - we went to see Water puppet :) Which are cute and adorable dolls... well few scary looking dolls...

cute dragon dolls.... wonder if i could have some of them to take home :)

After Hanoi, then we left for Ho Chi Minh.... We went to several places.... but we avoid going to the famous Cu-Chi Tunnel for this one reason :)

 Just to avoid the bear getting stuck in the tunnel !

We'll post more on each city :) Cheers !

Thursday, July 28, 2011


There are things that making me go berserk lately.. Could it be a part of me denial as well? And when that hits, it is best to torture the bear...

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Monday, May 2, 2011

Hunting season

The bear is a mean creature... Rather than using poison and mouse trap, he uses gun to kill rats.
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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Play in the water

Last month i was lucky to experience "the kindness" of my company (before the torture :( ).
We had an annual convention in Bali - so i thought, why didn't i extend it ? Some fellaz from the office are also going to extend their stay. So - for a day - Marketing team (in particular, us - the slaves), were all gone.

Well, to sum it, our stay was all about pigging out (eat -sleep - eat-fart).

In one of those days- we went to Nusa dua, and after all this excitement of diving (been dying to try it), i finally decided to give it a go. Well - before spending millions on it - i think, spending a bit does't hurt. At least i had to try before spending for the serious one.

After all the grueling experience of putting the wet suit, I finally get into the water, and was very excited about it. Unfortunately - it was Bali... so, imagine a mall down there.
I went approx 8km deep, struggling with my regulator which kept on falling away - i gritted, and bite, it was deep down in the water, only God knows what would've happen if i let go of it.

It was fun - well - slightly more fun than just snorkeling.

KEY HINTS : stay calm, breathe slowly. You'll do fine.

And yes, i found a sea snake down there. First dive, first encounter.

The bear didn't join the trip - but a week after Bali - i went swimming with him , and yes, he floated exactly like that.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Nature shows ...

Stumbled upon this when i was checking out a link forwarded in the e-mail.

If you ever wondered - how a bear and a puppy can realistically (as not in cartoon), can play - cuddle together, this video explains why.

Apparently it happened in North (or South ?!?!) Pole - pardon my geographical knowledge, between huskies and polar bear :) 
*I wonder whether such things will ever happen between a beagle and a Javanese Bear (or Grizzly bear he claimed...)*

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Stupidity in singapore

Hi . Sorry for being away too lonnnngggg .... We - or the puppy had been travelling - after singapore then bali...and then next week to Jogja. So - there will be stories to tell :)

In Singapore - we had a very nice hotel - staying there for conference. It was Mandarin Oriental in Marina. The bear took these pic from there. 

Yea, it was freakingly expensive hotel - though we love all the amenities and also the luxury - but we need to move out :(

And so we moved to Rucksack inn ! It was a hostel - but for a hostel - it is already a haven for us. Check out the homepage - all pictures are true as is - clean, homey, comfy.

Just to sum-up of what happened between the bear and puppy. We didn't do any shopping... (right ?? *glancing at the bear*). Despite of all the things that i wanted to see - there was one stupidity... the bear only brought 1 pair of socks for 4 days  !!!!!!
 So, what happened was - he couldn't wear the socks all day - 4 days straight.... *you can imagine the smell*... So he needed to switch between days - 1 day wearing, and the next day not wearing (because he had to wash it), then the next day he will be wearing it again.

The day when my conference was finished -  I couldn't wait to go and see and try some foods ... however, the bear already got blisters on his feet. He could barely walk, not even to Clarke Quay which was just 5 minutes from our hostels.... *I actually was craving for some Haagen Dazs ice cream and have a sip or glass of beer by the river...*
 Yep - by 8pm we were back in the hotel, doing nothing - so i left the bear to sleep... This was the actual situation - the bear has been rocking the bed throughout the night - apologizing :(

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The art of packing

Different people have different preference when it comes to packing for travelling.
Some prefer to pack lite (keep it minimum and simple) and some others prefer to pack with tons of "what if" questions.

Me ? I prefer to pack lite, but i don't want to look like a shabby homeless guy, i want to look normal and blend in with my destination. (Well, have seen some backpacker "bule" who are travelling really light, probably keep only 1-2 shirts... and look like homeless people).

Well, however, when i go to unfamiliar destination, I prefer to pack with tons of "WHAT IF" questions. Just like the story from previous post - I actually filled out only half of the carrier, but, knowing that we were gonna stay over the sea, I think i need to prepare well (see here for where the puppy and the bear stayed : )

Below are some references on how to pack for backpacking : 

Read this if you don't like to read too much :

Here is an extensive list of what you should pack (and all the considerations) :

And this one if you are a hardcore backpacker... (hiking and camping rather than town or island hopping) :

Pardon me for not summarizing - am away for travelling, and of course, bringing my yellow carrier.... *switching my brain off now :) *