Yay. I'm going travelling

Yes, again. Welcome... travel... aaah... most people would die for an opportunity to spit on other cultures, gawk at weird tribes and live like a king in developing countries where they earn US$1 per day. Where official corruption makes up for personal incompetence. Yes, lovely, all this and more.

D (-1), H (-24h50min), Monday, 11 April, 0830. 27 Coronation Road. A room in Singapore.

Timings look impressive and professional, and give the impression of miltary precision. Also gets the adrenaline going, because we all know how exciting it is to rush from place to place and be known as a "very busy person".

I thought it would be appropriate to start this way, because a good characteristic of any traveller is arrogance. And arrogance is when you think you can complete most of your preparations in 1 day. Au naturel.

Packing status : 0% complete

D (-1), H (-24), Monday, 11 April, 0920. 10 Leedon Park. Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Right. Thanks for the visa. Fucking lackey...from a company specializing in visas, running of and convincing me I had to get a visa done although I'm from an ASEAN country. Oh yeah, be safe, not sorry. And no run-ins with border guards. Nice embassy. Almost feel bad the ambassador has so many visitors each day. Ok... I have everyone's passports. Paranoid about losing 1.

Packing status : Still 0%

D (-1), H (-23h50min), Monday, 11 April, 0930. Back home.

Where the f*** is my green card. F***ing shite. Merde. F***ing Murphy. F*** his law. Ok.... fine... I guess I still have my re-entry permit. Should be fine. I'm calm, cool and collected. Message Alex. Check his car. Could have left it there again. Know I should have done all this rubbish earlier. F*** it. I'm walking to Leedon...

A nice person with a cat offered to pick me up.

Left-hand column: "Are you going to drive me to a quiet place in Bin Tong Park, beat me with a stick, and take away all my money."
"Is it the pink shirt I'm wearing?"

Official reason: He's a nice person sending his cat to the vet and going to his grandmother's place. He's watched me walk for the past 5 minutes and is going to take pity on me.

yay! my life is lovely. tomorrrow i will get married and live happily ever after.

didn't find the green card at embassy. (knows deep down supposed to be packing but... shit happens.)

Packing status: 0.00%

D (-1), H (-21h50min), Monday, 11 April, 1130. Coronation Plaza.

Get hair cut: Check. So won't look like a hippy after a month. Maybe it's nice, but I doubt so. I love my priorities.

Get photos taken: To please the border guards, in case they'd like to arbitrarily reject my visa.

Shop at NTUC: New toothbrush. Check. Hey... these wet wipes look nice... we could get dirty.... ok check. hmm... might as well get small shampoo.... and body foam.... check... check.... check.

Also: Have to get DVD for grandma working. The show "Big Fish" is not co-operating. She asks, "So, did the guy catch the fish?" How do you answer that? I've watched it at least twice.
It's not original, but they could raid my house now it's on public domain.

Packing status: More stuff, less packed: 0.00%

D (-1), H (-20h50min), Monday, 11 April, 1230. Coronation Plaza.

My green card and passport cover are found. Hallelujah!

D (-1), H (-19h50min), Monday, 11 April, 1330. Harbourfront.

Are there McDonald's restaurants in Vietnam? Or Cambodia, for that matter. I'm still in Singapore. Mistook 1300 for 1330, bad mistake. Had to spend money on cab. Yes, still had to settle my work, although I'm yes what's that number again yes 0.00% packed and sleep-deprived because of Spanish La Liga TV schedules. And work. And Tiger Woods winning at Augusta. Ok.

D (-1), H (-17h50min), Monday, 11 April, 1530. Lucky Plaza.

I have money to change. Speak to me. Give me your best rate. I have a lotta money to spend. What? You don't have enough USD? Lousy rate for baht? Fine. I'm changing this much (XXX) money. I'll survive on it. Okay. Some money. Check. Lunch. Check. SD card? Aaah fuck too expensive.

D (-1), H (-17h20min), Monday, 11 April, 1530. Plaza Singapura.

I like the cubes for packing because they make everything so neat and tidy but I haven't packed yet so how am I to know? And a waterbottle I guess, because I have a compartment at the side of my backpack for one and I guess I'd like to add it. Was thinking of adding LP: Vietnam (ooooh product placement) to LP: SEA on a shoestring, then decided to forget it.

Packing: soon, soon! We can be ops ready at short notice, anyway.

D (-1), H (-15h20min), Monday, 11 April, 1730. My bed.

I'm sleeping.... zzzz.... too little sleep. packing.... 0%

D (-1), H (-12h20min), Monday, 11 April, 2030. Still at home, yes.

Phenomenal progress. I've for my travel documents photocopied, in case shit happens. Like getting robbed by restive natives. I've made sure I've got my tickets (well, it's an e-ticket anyway), licenses, passports etc. I hope I didn't forget anything. I even have travel insurance in case I step on a landmine. Travel is dangerous you know. Called to confirm transport arrangements for tomorrow. Alex is going to walk to my place. sonofabitch. route march at 6. I've packed everything in cubes.... see... 90% done! shirts, socks, every damn thing. good thing is my backpack isn't bursting at the seams yet.

D (-1), H (-10h20min), Monday, 11 April, 2230. Still at home, yes.

Settling stuff... yes... must dutifully inform the army. Check mail... last stuff... blog... check if I have my roaming on.... and ready to sleep. Adjust straps of backpack. Pack all odds and ends. Charge camera battery. There. 99.5% FUCK YEAH! Let's go! sleep.

to be continued....

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