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…
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.