Just touched down in the Qantas business lounge at Sydney airport. I have a panoramic view of the city and ringside seat to see the planes take off. Is there anywhere more exciting to be than an airport?

I have a huge sense of anticipation about what lies ahead – good times, probably some bad ones, too. Hopefully a lot of fun and adventure and lots to learn about myself and the world.

The sights, sounds and smells of Bangkok await me. I land there 730pm local time, so will be thrown straight into the cultural lions den. Watch this space…

2013 travel plans…

So the last two days have been spent locked in a darkened office at Dan’s place trying to organise the Asian leg of my grand tour. I seem to be making progress. I leave for Bangkok tomorrow and have a long weekend there with accommodation booked. I’m going for the flashpacker option.

Then on 8 January I fly to Rangoon and out again on 28 January. I’m hoping while I am there to take in the capital city, the golden boulder at Mt Kyaitiyo, do the 2-4 day trek from Kalaw to Lake Inle, head up to Mandalay, take a boat from there to Bagan, fly over the temples of Bagan in a hot air balloon, and then if there is time fit in a few days on the Bay of Bengal before flying to Siem Reap in Cambodia on 28 January. Just hope I fit it all in and that Burmese hotels and transport systems are kind to me.

I’m starting to get a little nervous about how difficult it may be to get around and find my feet in Burma. As it’s a cash only economy it’s difficult to book much ahead of time as they have no means of guaranteeing your stay. But a challenge is exactly what I wanted, so I’ll give it my best shot. This is where the quartergapyear adventure really starts – just me, the guitar, some pristine US dollars, and a Lonely Planet guide.