The end is nigh. The darkness cometh, and shall engulf us all. A blog-free world awaits.
Reading between the lines, I think that means we’re coming home. After almost a year on the road, it’s time to wrap things up for now. If you’re lucky, this might be the last collection of pointless ramblings you’ll have to read for a while.
This is theoretically the time that conclusions are drawn, lessons are learnt, and the immense tangled web of worldly nonsense is dramatically resolved. I have, however, learned nothing and am, if anything, more confused than ever, so… bugger, I guess.
But for the benefit of my loyal readership, here is a summary of how I managed to still have stuff to complain about on our semi-epic adventure through a small part of this insignificant blue speck we call Earth.
One of our (many) favourites, and probably the most highly recommended destination on this list. We were fresh, energised and ready to adventure, but even if we weren’t (which we’re now not) it would have been impossible not to enjoy the exotic wildlife, stupidly beautiful landscapes and all sorts of other crap I can’t think of original adjectives to describe with. Home to what is still the most incredible dive site I’ve ever experienced (Batu Bolong, Komodo/Flores). 10/10 would recommend.
Less remote than Indonesia, and therefore better wifi and more reliable transport, but still bloody good. Epic beaches and delicious food on the coasts, tea plantations and ancient jungle in the middle. The Penang Posse 2016 will live forever in our collective minds, bless you all. An underrated jewel of SE Asia, 9/10 would recommend.
Expensive af, but very cool. Especially if you’re a planner – see here. Two days was all we had, and probably all we needed, but if you’re passing through or have significantly more money than we do (it’s probably not hard), there’s plenty of good food and fancy hotels. 7/10 would recommend, primarily for the cuisine.
A little bit ruined by the amount of people like me passing through before actual me, but we still had plenty of good times. Canyoning in Da Lat was a highlight, but Vietnamese food deserves its own fucking encyclopaedia. Would have only received a 6, but gets an 8/10 simply for blowing my tastebuds all the way up to atheist heaven, wherever that is. Probably Walmart or some shit.
Fuck, where to start. An absolute favourite and a riotously good time, and the least highly recommended on this list. Shit is hard. There are only 6 paved roads outside Ulaanbaatar and fermented horse milk is a thing. That’s probably all you need to know. If you really are interested and want to know more, then you’re crazy. Message me. 10/10 would not recommend.
Encompassed 5 days on a train through Siberia and 2 in Moscow. What we saw was fantastic, can’t wait to return. Russian people are weird, but not in the stabby kind of way you’re probably thinking. 8/10 haven’t seen enough to recommend, but I’m going back.
London only, really. Saw my family in Southend, so that was nice, and lots of friends. Was too expensive for us to have a proper good time though, plus I had to work. Great fried chicken though. 7/10
Dutch people are crazy, and I love them all. If you’re Dutch and you’re reading this, I’m glad you’re in my life. Your country is great too. Well, I only saw Amsterdam and Utrecht, but they were definitely great. Bitterballen is a delicious and not at all healthy snack. 8/10 would recommend.
An epic New Years excursion. Sisyphos is the kind of club people dream about while simultaneously having nightmares. Just go. Will be returning to see the rest of Germany. Guten tag Eren, you suck. 8/10 would recommend.
Surprisingly awesome. Polish people are equal parts lovely and crazy, and drinking vodka on a frozen lake will be one of my favourite memories for a long time. 8/10 would recommend, just bring several jackets. And a fur coat. And gloves. And a portable fire.
Czech Republic (Prague)
Beautiful, stunning, gorgeous, etc. 8/10
Big, grey, expensive. 5/10
Delicious, diverse and smells of fish. 8/10
Fucking excellent. Even though we managed to remember exactly no Spanish at all. Special thank you to Annette, Manuel and Alice for hosting us and keeping us entertained. Pintxos should be a thing everywhere. 9/10 highly recommend.
India (the south)
Not as chaotic as I was lead to believe (maybe that’s just the north), and annoyingly (for selfish travellers at least) the Indian economy is booming, so not as cheap as a few years ago. But fuck me, the fooooooood. Unbelievable. I had no idea you could make so many different kinds of bread. 8/10, to be revisited.
There. Now none of you have to ask any questions in person, all the answers are right here. Good. Special thanks to everyone who gave us food, shelter, welcoming hugs or just a good laugh over the last year, you know who you are and I love you. If we ever manage to afford a house, which is admittedly unlikely, we will return the favour.
Strange and probably unnerving as it will be, returning home will be nice, primarily because I get to eat Eden Noodle and play football again. But hopefully we’ll be somewhere else again in a year or so.
Until then, if anyone wants to employ me, I promise I’m not as hare-brained and deranged as this blog may have at times made me appear. I have also, due to a complicated set of circumstances that are both annoying and irrelevant, accidentally renewed this domain name and subscription for another year. So, if anyone has some pointless natterings they wish to publish on the internet without drawing too much attention to themselves (this is a deceptively dark and quiet corner of the ether), please be my guest poster. Similarly, if you have a topic you would enjoy reading me be annoyed/annoying about, requests will be considered, although ultimately probably ignored.
So long, and thanks for all the fish.