Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentines day

There are some people who live in a dream world, and there are some who face reality; and then there are those who turn one into the other.
- Douglas H. Everett
I think I'm slowly becoming a seasoned traveler, as I've noticed a lot of subtle changes in the way I do things now, compared to earlier on in my travels. For instance, when I get to a hostel and ask for a room, I've noticed that Thai hostel owners don't like to advertise their cheap rooms until the rest are full. Ordinarily I would be at the end of my rope and just give in and say ok fine, I'll take it, sight un-seen. Now I have noticed that such behavior is out of the question, and it has saved me a ton of chingy. What kind of self proclaimed backpacker of the world doesn't sort out his options and find the cheapest route? A bad one that's who! Yesterday, the hostel manager in Trat showed me all available rooms, upon my insisting, then when I said no thank you, she showed me some more that where the exact same size, minus a bathroom, for about $5 a night. When I made it clear to her that I was in no hurry, and there where 5 more guest houses on the block, she all the sudden had some empty rooms, that weren't $10 or $15 a night. It was tempting however, it always is, to just take the first thing you see, after a 5 hour bus ride (imagine the 15 hour ones then). Taxis are also very tempting. They can take you straight there, find you a place to stay etc etc. But biting the bullet and taking the bus saved me about $100 today.
Back in Bangkok I once again decided to review my backpack situation and do some upgrading. It's probably the third time this trip, but I like to get it just right. Your backpack and you need to have a perfect relationship on long trips, I've found, considering you will be putting everything you own in this world in her and hoping shes reliable. My new baby has double or triple stitching everywhere, almost guaranteeing she wont rip open when I toss her into a bus, or strap her onto a train luggage rack, or hurl it into the back of a truck. It comes with only zipper openings, not drawstrings like my old one, making them impossible to lock shut. On that note, I also bought three combination locks, and put them to good use. The new bag also came with a nice rain cover that doubles as a "you can't see what I have, so don't try to steal it" cover. It also came with another must for any serious backpacker: An internal frame. It's hard to have buyers remorse when all of this glory comes together with only a $40 price tag. Small price to pay for such an upgrade in the professional nomad status

1 comment:

  1. You really are getting to be a pro! You never would have bargained with someone like that here. :) I do love the quote you have there - it is very fitting of your life now, and that makes me very happy!