Wednesday, December 26, 2007

BAAAH Humbug!


Well, as Christmas winds down here in Tallinn, Estonia, we must admit it has been a very enjoyable, yet slightly disappointing Christmas. Slightly disappointing for the sole reason that it DID NOT SNOW! Baaaah, humbug!! However, finally being reunited with Blue and Bec has been a truly magical experience, and surprisingly short on head pats.

On the first day we wandered through Raekoja Plats (Town Hall square) that was filled with yet another Christmas market; we saw funny hats, mulled wine, a large Christmas tree and Father Christmas. In the market Dave and Jarratt did a fantastic job at looking like big tourists consulting every map and book to decide on our next location. We ended up deciding on heading onwards and upwards to Toompea Hill where we visited the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Toompea Castel, Pikk Hermann and a number of the viewing platforms that look over the lower town of Tallinn. We then headed back to the market where we all got a warm wiener into us and spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the city museum. We ended the night in a traditional Austrian beer hall trying a variety of the local ales and being ignored by the wenches.

The following day we explored the remaining sites in the lower town of Tallinn. Jarratt and his fantastic navigational skills managed to walk us straight past the Puhavaimu kirik clock.... twice. We also visited Fat Margaret’s, the Maritime Museum, and the broken line memorial which Blue originally mistook for a skate jump. We then had lunch at Honky Tonk Texas pub as Bec was desperately craving a burger. Afterwards we wandered past the former KGB Headquarters and headed home for a fantastic dinner a-la Jarratt.

The next day had a lazy start, but soon we were skating on thin ice. Well, three of us were... Blue was there to document the occasion. With two out of three skating with no previous experience and the third not being in skates for over 5 years, falls were running at high odds. But we are chuffed to report not one person fell.... although there were a few close calls that caused great amusement for all. Afterwards we all felt very 'Christmas-y' and rewarded ourselves with dinner at Estonia's first pub. Which turned a little messy... but what happens on tour stays on tour ;) Because of our drinking efforts Christmas eve was spent catching up and when we eventually headed out, we didnt venture too far. We wandered the Town Hall Square and had our first cup of mulled wine and.... YUK! Dont EVER do it! YUK! Later in the night, Jarratt and I headed out to midnight mass that was entirely in latin! Bec was very impressed to here all the ladies behind her in the pews singing the hymns and reciting the lamb of god in LATIN, joke was on her when she saw they were all nuns!

Today was Christmas (!), we woke late, opened our presents, spoke to you all at home and headed out to the pepper sack for a medieval dinner. Tomorrow we are off to Riga by bus and are looking forward to more cheap eats, drinking and relaxing with friends. Hope you all had a fantastic Christmas! Lots of love, Bec

Seriously... who would buy it? One of the funny hats in the Town Hall Square.

Us at the viewing platform on Toompea Hill.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

Jarratt at the Ice Rink.

Us at the Pepper Sack for Christmas Dinner.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

What a Shakespearenice!

As the famous William Shakespeare once wrote in his play Julius Caesar.... Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears! (Act 3, scene 2, 74). After our trip to Stratford-upon-avon it is fair to say we were injected with the Shakespeare bug. It's everywhere up there!!! With 3 theatres dedicated to putting on Shakespeare performances and every shop, cafe and even stationary (!) having some reference to him, or his plays it felt like the whole world had gone Shakespeare mad.

After checking into our delightful B&B we were greeted by our warm, however overwhelming hostess, who henceforth referred to us as Jarratt and Beckie, and we all know how much I love that!! After we dumped our bags we headed into the market square where we saw ANOTHER Christmas market and bought the best lunch ever! A pork roll, complete with stuffing, apple sauce and crackling! Afterwards we headed to 3 of the 5 Shakespeare houses that are located in and around Stratford. The first we visited was Shakespeares birthplace, then Nash House and the site of New Place, finishing in Halls Croft. Each house visited had a guide member done up in traditional victorian dress who gave information about the room they were assigned to. At Halls Croft the gentleman assigned to give a brief overview of the house was a particular highlight. He was full of idioms, irony and sarcastic quips that managed to really amuse him, but not many others.

We then headed to Shakespeares burial site, Holy Trinity Church, where we entered through the wrong entrance and managed to avoid paying the viewing fee. Whoops! Anne Hathaway, Thomas Nash, Suzannah Shakespeare and John Hall are also buried there. There is also a copy of the register showing the baptism and burial dates of Shakespeare himself. After leaving the church we wander down the Avon, past the Courtyard and Swan Theatres. We then spent time strolling the Christmas-lit streets, before having dinner and heading to the Civic Hall. At the Civic Hall we had front row, centre seats to a performance entitled "Noughts and Crosses", a modern adaptation of Romeo and Juliet.

Our final day in Stratford was spent trying to hurdle our MASSIVE B&B breakfast, seeing Anne Hathaways Cottage and maze garden, as well as having a private viewing of "Shakespearenice". We then headed to the train station and onwards to Peter Garcia and Suzies for an orphan's Christmas dinner we will never forget!!!

Bec and the best lunch ever!

Us at Shakespeare's birthplace.

Shakespeare's burial site.


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Our Canterbury Tale

Since our last blog we have been busy little bees... We've attended the Australia vs Nigeria (friendly) soccer match... yes! Soccer, NOT football, despite everyone trying to correct us. It was an awesome day, Australia won 1-0. On our way to the game we were swamped with leftlets advertising the (then) upcoming election. I think our favourite would have to be the gentleman dressed in a white t-shirt outside Putney Tube chanting "Kevin, for 0-7!" We also met up with Benny Dirks for drinks after the game, who was sporting a beautiful merv-style mo in the spirit of mo-vember! All in all it was an awesome experience.

Between drinks we have been working hard for the money, and have managed to dip down to Kent for a weekend away. We visited Canterbury and Whitstable. In Canterbury we saw the AMAZING Canterbury Cathedral, home to the famed Thomas Beckett's martyrdom. Its such a beautiful place and Jarratt considered it the highlight of the weekend. Whereas Bec, whilst impressed with the Canterbury Cathedral, was just as moved by the animated showing of Geoffery Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. She even went as far to buy (in addition to the magnet) an abridged version of the famous Tales. We even did a quick spin around the St Augustines Abbey before the cold weather got the better of us. We headed in for an early drink and dinner via Kings College and the Norman Staircase. After a refreshing local ale we went on a ghost tour of Canterbury. Amusing at first, however after an hour and a half the penguin of a guide was getting on both our nerves.

The next morning we raced around for MORE photos (in better weather) and headed out to Whitstable for their world renowned oysters, which we enjoyed. Jarratt was even brave enough to trial a local stout known as Oyster Beer, which arrived at the table looking like tar. Tasted quite refreshing, but took a fair bit of conviencing to first swallow it. Then it was home again, home again, jiggity-jig!

Canterbury Cathedral

Us at the Cathedral.

Bec on The Norman Staircase in Kings College.

Bec at the Canterbury Tales (Pa, would be so proud!)

Jarratt being the cultured scholar outside the hotel where Charles Dickens stayed during a tour of Kent.... just so happens that Jarratt is reading Oliver Twist at the moment. Coincidence?

Bec and the succulent oysters at Whitstable.

Our lunch... and Jarratts dirty looking Oyster Beer.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Our House.... in the middle of our street!

Hi there strangers, sorry it has been so long between entries. London life is just so hectic!!! Since returning from Poland we have: moved house, Jarratts changed jobs...twice, adopted a room mate, and drank ALOT!!!! All and all its been quite a busy time.

Our new house is FANTASTIC! Basically its 100 metres down the road from our old place, so we are still in Angel and moving wasnt THAT big of a deal. Its a two storey, victoria period terrace and it is Beau-ti-ful! We're so excited! We were worried about covering the whole place's rent on our own til the arrival of Blue and Bec, but have luckily found a friend of Bec's to move in for a month.

Jarratts also found a new job since returning from Poland. The past week he has been refitting HSBC branches and starting Monday he is back on a construction site. Bec is still teaching her little angels in Hackney. She had the brave job today, of nursing them while they had a injection against measles, which there is an outbreak of at the moment. She is still loving the whole teaching thing and is wondering why she never wanted the young ones to begin with. Its just like hanging out with Leilani and Tayla ALL DAY!

Tomorrow we're heading down to Fulham to watch Australia vs Nigeria in a soccer match (NOT football!!!); should be an awesome game, all the big names are in. Next weekend we are taking our first weekender trip, thinking of heading to Canterbury or Devon. Nothings booked yet though.

And now, finally for a tour of our new home...

Welcome... this is our entrance. That window is our bedroom window. The window below is the Kitchen/Dining room window.

Dining Room... Just out of shot to the right of this picture is our front window and entrance. The left side would lead into the Kitchen, ahead (as you can see) is the Living room.

Living Room... The doors in the middle lead out to our own garden and just out of shot to the left is the staircase to go upstairs. There is storage under the stairs that is used for a laundry area.

Kitchen.... pretty obvious, the front entrance is just left of this picture.

Bathroom...this is on like, the half floor, the stair case up to the bedrooms doubles back on itself and at the first landing is the bathroom.... does that make sense?

Our bedroom... One of two bedrooms on the upper floor. Across the road is a beautiful park... we're very lucky with the view.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Pigs Bum anyone?

After a dusty 3 hour train ride from Warsaw we arrived in Krakow. We spent most of the first day attending to business, including our lease agreement and new shoes for bec. Her 4 pound primark ballet slippers proved less of a bargain under the terrain of Polish weather. With that out of the way we explored part of the Old Market Square and started the hunt for a traditional polish dinner. After no help with directions from our hostel staff we came across a quaint lil cafe/bar style place that served a variety of Polish dishes. Bec had Perogi again, while Jarratt (the more adventurous of the pair) proudly ordered Pigs Bum. Both full we opted for an early night....

The next day fuelled on bum, Jarratt scrapped Bec out of bed to brave the mist of an early morning in Krakow. To then travel the advertised 1 and a half hours by bus out to Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp. An hour and a half turned into just over 2 and we arrived shortly before 11am, just in time for the English documentry film and tour. Auschwitz, and Birkenau for that matter, are places that need to be seen to believe. Words can not describe the emotion and heart ache you feel standing in a place that took over a million lives. We had both been to concentration camps before but agreed that neither was as harrowing or as moving as Auschwitz-Birkenau. After we had finished our 4 hour tour of the area we headed back to Krakow this time it took just over 3 hours... and while Poland's public transport system is claimed to be the cheapest, it sure isnt the fastest!! More Polish food was eaten for dinner and washed down with a cold beer... or two ;)

Saturday saw us adventuring through the Jewish Quarter where we saw remains of the Ghetto Walls, a memorial to lost lives and various synagogues. We visited Wawel Hill, which includes Krakow Castel, Cathedral and a dragons den. After a polish kebab-y lunch we explored the Old Town and surrounding areas. We were also lucky enough to catch a brief peak at a wedding at the Gothic Church of St Marys. We ended the day with a lavish meal, where much to Bec's shock Jarratt ordered wine for two!!!!

On Sunday we decided on a sleep in before heading out to the Wieliczka salt mines. We slept in til 9am, had breakfast and headed to the train station to catch our 10:10 train to the mines. On the walk up we noticed that the hostel clock was wrong, the clock tower ...wrong, the town hall clock... wrong.... the train station clock.... wrong?! Unbeknown to us, daylight savings had just ended and we were an hour early for our train. Bec, amused once we figured it all out, was also upset that she could have snuck in another hour of sleep! The salt mines were good, but nothing to write home about.... so we wont! Haha!

We ended our time in Krakow with a late polish lunch which included (beet)Root Soup and Pork/Cabbage Wrap for Jarratt and a schab pieczony (roast loin of pork seasoned with herbs) for Bec. Afterwards we zipped out to the Airport on the express train and we boarded our plane around 7pm.
The end :)

CD J on the Train.

Between the electric fences at Auschwitz Concentration Camp

Birkenau Concentration Camp

Looking through the fence to the Barracks at Birkenau

Bec on the streets of the Old Market "Polish Style"

Bec hearts the Krakow Dragon!

Jarratt at the Krakow Cathedral on Wawell Hill

The Old Market Square
(St Marys Gothic Church is in the background)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wodkas all round!

Wow, if Poland's Autumn is anything to judge London's Winter by, aren't we in for a royal old shock!!!

We arrived late Tuesday into Warsaw airport and began our trip with the easy task of getting a taxi. However, finding an actually taxi proved to be harder than expected. Firstly, we weren't sure where to stand, or what to say and mafia-looking men in long jackets kept asking us (in thick polish accents) to get in their car. In the end Jarratt flagged down the most docile looking driver to take us to our hostel.

We rose early the next morning, much to the dismay of Bec, who still fails to understand why on a HOLIDAY Jarratt feels the need to get up before dawn!!! Dawn may or may not actually translate to roughly 7:30am. However, rugged up and ready to battle the conditions we headed out. Firstly along the Royal Way, or to the polish "Krakowski Przedmiescie" (try pronouncing that after a few drinks lost on a Wednesday morning at 5am drunk!.... not that, that ever actually happened) On our walk we passed by the Church of the Holy Cross the place that houses Chopin's Heart; Radziwill Palace and ended at The Monument to Sigismund III Vasa just outside the Old Town.

Once in the Old Town many a photo were taken, as Bec fell in love with all the "cute, colourful" houses. We took a tour of the Royal Castle and were quickly bored by one throne room after another, that remarkably looked just the same as the last three. Regardless, we pushed on as Bec was keen to see the Rembrandts. So keen that when she finally reached them she set off the alarm for getting too close. To avoid being escorted by the heavily armed guards that appeared at the sound of the alarm we decided to make a quick exit. Once outside the Castle we headed to the Market Square where we visited the Warsaw Historical Muesum. At the muesum we saw a film documenting the invasion of Poland by the Nazi's and read some pretty horrific stories about the treatment of children during the invasion. Afterwards we explored the old town walls and headed to the Palace of Culture and Science, a gift to Poland from Stalin, with amazing views from the top. Almost exhausted we headed to Chopin's museum, where Bec played tour guide and read 8 pages of A4 notes that we were given at the entrance to explain the exhibition. We ended the day with a night out drinking and eating, polish style!!! Perogi, beer and wodka - a fun time was had by all!!!

The next morning we took a dusty train ride out to Krakow..... which we will enlighten you all about in the next post! In the meantime... here are some happy snaps! SAY CHEESE!!!

Us in the Old Town

Market Square

Church of the Holy Cross (where Chopin's Heart is)

Artists in Market Square

Out on the Town.... Wodka anyone?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I'm in London still....

Well for you commited readers you'll know its been over two weeks since our last post, terribly sorry to all those who have been hanging out for a 'fix' of the Bec and J goodness. Truth be told we've been super busy and well, dave and bec are more exciting than sitting in front of the computer posting on our blog. That or we've lost a week to boozing... hahaha.

Our meet and greet time is off and racing, with more dinners and 'catch-ups' than you can poke a stick at. We now both have favourite pubs and eateries, so the important stuff is covered. And we have that many dream trips in the pipeline we can't choose one from the other. BUT, christmas is now booked, 10ish days living up in the Balitics and Finland. Through no fault of my own, lithuania has been booted.... Ask J about visas and mishaps are bound to follow. But we are sorted now and everyone (including the blue eagel and young sparrow) are on board for the Christmas Festivities!!!

The last weekend has been spent keeping Bluey and Bec alive, awake and not regretting their decision about the move to London. The weather at the moment is enough to put anyone off.... its like 7 degrees in the morning!!!!!!! For an Australian thats just stupid! So we've been taking them out to the sanctuary of warming places... mainly pubs like the walkabout and camden head. As well as a catch up at the Royal National Pub last night to farewell Stevie B, aka Guns....for reasons that will not be mentioned. But seriously, who wears a snap button shirt out for a drinking night on contiki.... honestly! Tonight we're heading into Leicester Square to watch the Vegemite Tales, a 'friends'-like comedy about Australians in London, should be good fun.... will let you know in the next post.

But with holidays around the corner we're looking forward to some MUCH deserved time off to sleep and ... maybe, just maybe, visit portugal... if we can get our bottoms into line!!!

But enough about us... what are you up to?
xoxoxo, Us.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Mind the Gap

.... AND pay attention to which direction the train is heading. STEVE!

Well another eventful week has passed and BOY! do we have some tales to tell. Firstly shopping on a Saturday in Oxford Street is RI-DIC-U-LOUS! After already spending over an hour exploring top shop and an additionally 40 minutes in H&M, Bec managed to convince the VERY exhausted Jarratt to stroll down to Primark in the hunt for some ballet slippers. Much to her delight she found a very stunning pair for 4 pound and promptly lost her mind snapping up an additional three pairs in different colours. She then put Jarratt in a line that snaked around the entire second level of the department store for 45 minutes to buy them, while she hunted out some bargain towels and blankets. In the end Bec won some bargain shoes but nearly lost her boyfriend in the process.

Sunday saw the arrival of the lovely Mr and Mrs Wyatt, after a brief mix up in Liverpool Street vs Liverpool Road they arrived. Before heading to the pub for dinner, the Wyatts had two months of holiday snaps forced upon them. But they didnt seem to complain any. The following evenings saw many a restaurant visited, numerous bottles of wine drank and one pretty amazing musical watched. We also had a rather eventful evening with Vander, Deano's Auntie, while the Wyatts were in ol' London town. What a HOOT! All in all a lovely time was had by all and it was very sad to say goodbye late Thursday evening.

We're currently debating over holiday destinations for the October school holidays and Christmas - with the Baltics, Austria and Portugal all being hot faves. But with London a stones throw from most places, the world is really our oyster and we could end up anywhere! We'll let you know in the next entralling entry of Where are they now?

Love to you all, Us!!!

PS - Who should we expect as the next lot of visitors? hehe.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Have hit the motherland!!!

Hey there campers....

Well after an initial rough patch we have finally found our feet in London. The property market in London at the moment is extremely cut-throat and we were having a difficult time securing a place. And the catch 22 here is, you can't get a place without a job, or a job without a place - so it did make for a few headaches. Anyways we have ended up finding a very decent place in Angel; a trendy area in zone 1 that is quite like Paddington in Sydney. We have signed a short term lease of one month and are hoping to stick out a solid 3 months here til the lovely Bluey and Bec arrive. Keep your fingers crossed for us.

We also have both secured good paying jobs which are very close to our place in Angel. Jarratt is working on a construction site as a mechanical electrician, bit different to the work back home. Bec is working full time on a kinder class (well the equivalent age group of kinder to Australia) and is also finding the work a bit different to home. We are feeling incredibly over qualified for our jobs, but its easy money so who are we to complain.

We are also starting to plan our next few trips, we're thinking somewhere in scandinavia for Christmas, like Norwary, Sweden, Finland or so on. But will need to nut it out more in coming weeks. We also have to decide where we want to travel to during the half term break (October 20 - 29). Since it is such a long stretch of time we're thinking maybe Egypt... but its still early days. It is a tough life... hahaha.

The last few days have been a blast with Stevie B in town, next come Mr and Mrs Wyatt, then not too far behind them is the arrival of the Master Chief and Defacto. We are both very much looking forward to the visitors!

And last but not least we must say big thanks to Garcy for putting up with us as long as he did. As well as taking us out day dot and introducing us to all his mates who kept us awake with the encouraging catch phrase "just keep drinking". We do appreciate it.

Til next time, take care of yourself.... (hahaha).... and each other.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Business to Dubai

On the plane heading to Dubai there was a mix up in seats, with both our seats being assigned to another couple. Since we were the first to be assigned the seats we thought the other two would just simply be upgraded. However, we were quickly told to get up from our seats... it was us that was to be upgraded!! 8 hours in Business on an Emirates flight is very hard work. Particularly when the Australian hostess takes a real shine to you and decides to write up a dodgy receipt and send you off with a bottle of wine and chocolates! The whole experience was superb and really kicked our trip off in Dubai.

We arrived at 12pm, which is really 2pm China time - after being up since 3am. So we decided to crash for an hour once we got to the hotel apartment we had rented. Probably not the best idea as we both felt worse for it. Afterwards we went grocery shopping, much to the delight of Bec. And we had a home cooked dinner for the first time in two months. For those of you familiar with Jarratt it wouldn't be too hard to guess what it was.... haha.

On the following day we went on a city tour where we visited a gold souk, the dubai museum, dubai creek, the worlds tallest building and the Burj Al Arab (the only 7 star hotel in the world). Unfortunately we couldnt get into the hotel, which was a shame as it is the only place (other than in a helicopter) that you can see the palm islands projects from and the world. In the evening we went on the highly recommended Desert Safari. We were picked up at roughly 5pm and driven out into the desert for some sand dune bashing, camel riding, belly dancing and an arabian feast.

Today we wandered the electronics street and Jarratt invested in a pretty flash laptop that we are now writting this blog on. The next plan is to post some much requested pictures. So stay tuned as we have much more coming right up :)

Love us.

PS- Happy Birthday to big Deano!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Have you been drinking?

We still cant get our brains around the fact that in less than a year it is THIS city that will be hosting the Olympics! The organisation and craziness is mind boggling! Dont get us wrong we've had an amazing time exploring the sights and making many a sales girl angry with fierce bargaining but the Olympics....seriously?

Day one: we arrived at the airport and smoothly found our way to the city shuttle bus but for the life of us once in downtown Beijing could not get a cab to our hostel. We tired everything... evenutally J found one lingering in a side street and in broken chinese and exchanges of notes we finally managed to get to our hostel. At our hostel we booked in for a night at the Kung Fu Mastery Show. Which was in a word, amazing! The things some of the men could do ... crazy! The height they can jump and spin to in the air would make you think they were on strings!!! Plus the weapons used during the second half of the show... wow! They were smashing their heads against what you would swear was lead! AND in one act one gentleman laid down on sharp blades and had a bed of nails placed on his stomach which another man laid on and then with a plank of wood across his stomach another man smashed it with a sledge hammer! But perhaps the funniest thing of the evening was racing the little chinese women for good seats! you see in China you are not assigned a seat number for shows you just buy your ticket as early as possible and then its every man for himself as the doors open! ..... we got great seats! hahahaha

Day two: The Great Wall!!!! WHAT AN EXPERIENCE!!!! Waking up at the ridiculous hour of 5:30am and boarding a bus we drove 2 hours out to Mutianyu. An amazingly section of the wall comprising of both restored and unrestored sections, numerous watchtowers and steep climbs! When we arrived we took the chair lift to the wall and were the only people on the wall for MILES! The benefits of getting up early are two-fold, no one is on the wall at that time AND the hot chinese sun is not out yet! We had three hours on the wall and climbed roughly 7kms. Very exhausting!!! That evening we headed to the Acrobats, which was quite disappointing - it really was nothing like we had seen earlier in Guilin!

Day three: we walked rounghly 30kms covering the forbidden city, tiananmen square, mao's resting place, the bell tower, drum tower and the famous hutong area of Beijing! The forbidden city was amazing, despite the fact that large sections where engulfed by scaffolding! In the evening we had a great street meal. A hotpot of chicken, vegetables and rice - which fast became the best meal we'd had the entire trip!

Day four we visited the Lama Temple, which for all the hype was really just another temple, with another oversized buddha! We also spent a very painful hour on a boat trying to get to the summer palace!!!! Which had come so highly recommended. Disappointed with the Summer palace and the sworms of Chinese tour groups we decided to head home via bus... which was twice as long and just as painful as the boat! Crowded, smelly and blantant being stared at which we paid 2.5 yuan each for the pleasure! And yes, the Olympics are being held here in LESS THAN A YEAR! Should be interesting....

Day five and six we possibly spent more money than on our entire trip! But we did shop up a storm!!! Jarratt is one fierce bargaining and Bec plays a good second (support) fiddle. That is when she isnt giggling at the whole situation! But picture this..... One rip off designer bag starts at 1250 yuan, so J in a countering move throws out a ridiculous 20 yuan.... when you have seen the expression on the sale girls face first hand and are able to not laugh I'll be impressed. The BEST bit is that without blinking J manages to get the bag for 80!!! WHY OH WHY DO THEY START SO HIGH!!!!!! Over the days of shopping we became a very good team and left many a miserable sales girl in our wake!!! While weaving through the markets we became all to familiar with the following choice phrases when throwing out our 'best price' for things such as: "You're Killing Me!"; "In which money? Euro?"; "No joking price, Serious now!" and Bec's personal favourite for when J counter with 20 yuan for a polo when the "special price" was 240 yuan the girl shouted "Have you been drinking?" At the end of day five J was told by one VERY impressed Sales girl that he is a 'better bargainer than most asians!'

Tomorrow we are getting up at 3am to leave our hostel at 3:30am to arrive at the airport at 4:30am to check in at 5am for our 7am flight to Dubai... and boy!!!! are we thrilled at the idea!!!
Talk soon,
Bec and J.

PS - apologise to all, stamps are a bit of a novelty here in China and incredibly hard to find - unless you want the collectable kind. So while we have the postcards (in our VERY packed backpacks now) they will most likely be sent from London!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Your teeth are lovely!

Xi'an has proved to be a real highlight in the crown that is China.

We arrived here late on day one and had a rather uneventful night in which we headed straight to bed and slept! On day two we got on a day tour out to the WWF Rescue Centre, where we saw PANDAS!!!! After being heartbroken at the fact that we had to miss Chengdu breeding centre due to lack of time, Bec was extremely excited! Apart from the Pandas the rescue centre is also home to golden monkeys, black bears, takins (like Yaks), deers and one angry leopard! The centre is a conservation effort (of sorts), where animals that are sick or injured are brought to be given treatment before moving onto the breeding program. Some Panda's looked quite sick and unhappy in their dingy cages when we first arrived, but after seeing their feeding session and the fact that they had better air-conditioning than most places in China we didn't feel so bad anymore.

In the evening we went to a dumpling banquet where we ate more food than we have on the entire trip!!! We also took in the world famous Tang Dynasty Show, which has acts of traditional Chinese Music and Dancing. We had been promised 'good seats' only to be behind the man with the BIGGEST head we have ever seen... we promptly moved to a side area and sat on bench where the view was MUCH better! After the show we headed out to 'club salsa' where not only was J denied entry for wearing thongs (even though everyone else got in with them on) and was forced to return to the hostel and change shoes, once inside we were disgusted to find that as foreigners it cost 400 Yuan (roughly 60Bucks) to just sit down and 580 Yuan for a pot of beer!!!! Appalled, we left!

Day three we decided to have a bit of a sleep in (8am) and explore the city, before lunch we visited the Drum Tower, Bell Tower, Great Mosque and the Muslim Quarter Markets - where we met a woman whose (yellow, rotten) teeth were lovely and another who was not sure what to do with her chess set in the winter time. After lunch we rode around the 14kms of cobble stoned city walls on bicycles in a record time of 1 hour and 20 minutes! Needless to say our bottoms were quite numb at the end of it all. In the evening we went to the Big wild goose pagoda to watch the light and water show (for free!) A large scale fountain display done to music with different coloured lights. Perhaps the most amusing thing was the number of young Chinese children running in and out as the water shot up into the sky. We also had the pleasure of teaching English to a father and son (as well as some eavesdropping students); in return the son gave Bec his jade necklace and the father bought us both glow sticks! It truly restored Bec's waning faith in the Chinese after the previous night of being asked for 400yuan to sit down in a nightclub!

Day four, very tired we woke up early and headed via local bus to the Terracotta Warriors! The experience of finding the first of two buses was incredibly successful, the second however was a little more tedious. Being the very well prepared tourists we are, we had a plethora of Chinese words written down to help us in asking for directions. This was of little value when each time we asked a friendly local they pointed in a different direction to the last. With fingers flying in all directions we finally found the transit officers the most reliable and within 20 minutes of wandering around we found our second bus at pretty much the location we started at! ARGH! An hour and a half bus ride later we were at the Terracotta Warriors and it was all worth it as we watched groups upon groups of people being rushed through their 'tour' like cattle. Many pictures were taken and the ritually magnet was bought. All in all it was a great day!!!

Tomorrow we are heading to Beijing by plane (how posh are we!) We'll let you know how the adventures go.
Xiexie for reading, Bec and J.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

and I thought I had this chopstick thing mastered....

Welcome to Shanghai, the Paris of the east. Or it wants to be. Hong Kong's little bro. We arrived from our 3 day cruise quite late at night, and settled into our 10 room dorm. We meet up with a nice English chap and planned our time in Shanghai with his advice.

Day Two saw us head to the Shanghai's history museum were we spent 3 hours trying to gain some knowledge. We then headed to Renmin People's Square and Park. After Lunch we walked down Nanjing street, Where "local students" tried to "practice" their English with us. After being approached by numerous students, the scam became quite obvious and very annoying. So much so Jarratt pretended he couldn't speak English, but got caught out when they could speak French as well. At the end of Nanjing road we hit the Bund. The main part of Shanghai on the Huangpu river. We walked down the Bund and into Yuyuan Night Bazaar in the old town. There we sampled some local food (supicious looking meat on a stick) and were accosted by local salesmen. Offering bags, shoes, watches... everything and anything just to get you into their shops! They even admitted to having boomerangs, after being prompted by Bec!! I'm sure if you asked them if they had chicken pox, they'd have that too!

Day Three we visited Pudong, the business side of Shanghai. We went up Jinmao Tower, the tallest building in china and 5th in the world. At the 88th level you get a great view of Shanghai and an inside view of the Grand Hyatt. We strolled around Pudong finding most things overpriced, especially the Bund sight-seeing tunnel. We just couldn't justify spending 35yuan for a train ride with flashing lights, when we could spend 3yuan sans the lights. For the rest of the afternoon/evening we chilled out in our room watching tv and eating chinese lollies. Venturing out once for dinner, during which Bec managed to spill a slippery piece of meat from the serving plate, to her dinner plate to her lap, in one fluid motion - A very impressive feat! To which she cried "And I thought I had this chopstick thing mastered...."

Our final day we road the Maglev train (the bullet train) to the airport. The train reaches a crazy 430 km an hour, 30km in 8 minutes. The scenary is but a blur in the window. After a delay of AN HOUR at the Airport we have arrived at Xi'an.

Will write again soon, Us.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Dam mozzies!!!!

Its been too long between drinks and we are sorry. We've been far too busy living it up on a 4 star cruise down the Yangzi River. Now before you all loose your minds at the idea of how much a 4 star cruise would cost in Australia, just remember we are in China!

The cruise was amazing, we spent about 3 days cruising down the river from Chongqing to Yichang. For those unfamiliar this is a projecxt spanning 17years and has caused much upcry from environmentalists and locals alike. Many people have needed to be relocated and mother nature isnt getting the best treatment. However the pros (from what we understood) heavily outweight the cons. Once completed central China will be completely powered by the dam and the thousands of lives that are lost every few years will be prevented as the river flow becomes more controlled. It was fascinating, so much so Jarratt bought a book! Ha! We also visitied all three gorges, travelled upstream on a smaller boat, visted feng du (a ghost city) and the dam itself. The tour of the dam was very funny, as our local guide alice introduced herself. "Hello, My name is Alice and I'll be your Dam Guide". The trip all and all was wonderful, met some great people and the only downside was the attack on Bec from Mozzies. She was that itchy she was nearly hitting her head against the Dam wall!!!

Once we finished up on the cruise we boarded a plane and headed to lovely Shanghai. Although we have been here for 2 and a bit days we dont have the time to elaborate now. So stay tuned for more Bj adventures!!!!

All our love, Us.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

How hot are we! Boo Boo Boo (No No No)

So we arrived in GuiLin and the weather seams to be getting hotter!!!! We're also getting far more attention then ANYWHERE else we've been. Jarratt is getting giggling chinese girls taking pictures of him on their phone. And every man is stopping him to tell him how BEAUTIFUL his girlfriend is. Turns out white skin and small noses are huge hits in China so we're both gorgeous here! hahahaha!

GuiLin is a very picturesque town. We arrived by plane at about 7pm and made our way to our hostel via bus and taxi - very interesting! We had been told to expect NO English in China but thought people were exaggerating. But there is NO English in China! Menus, Signs, Tour Guides (although promised to be in English) are all in Chinese. But how awful does that sound we ARE in China after all, how ignorant are we! We've picked up the important words though: Hello - Knee how; Thank You - XieXie and NO! Boo Boo Boo Boo Boo!!

GuiLin has been amazing! So much so bec bought a book full of just pictures! The chick was asking for 100Yuan, Bec got it for 40Yuan.... turns out we're getting good at this negotiating price business. We have spent the past few days really exploring the city and surrounding areas. The first day we travelled out to Longfield to see another minoriy group known as the Long haired women. They keep all their hair, even the parts they comb out and all their haircuts, they then spin it into a long plait like style and twirl it into a bun on top of their head. The villages are also amazing where they live. Words do not describe so heres a picture:

The 'steps' are actually rice and corn crops staggered and create the effect of miles and miles of stairs. Its pretty impressive! We ended the day with a fantastic performace of acrobatics and ballet - even Jarratt enjoyed it!

The following day we explored the city and surrounding areas. Including the Solitary peak, Reed Flute Cave, Yao Mao Mountain and organised a cruise down the Li River for the following day. The Li River was a bit of a let down. It was great scenery but the cruise was poor. The only real highlight was that Jarratt managed to get two photos that he'd been chasing for a couple of weeks. One of a water buffalo (even though the ones bec took were MUCH better - haha), and the other of a fishing man and his birds! The cruise ended in Yangshu which is really just one big market surrounded by pretty mountains. We spend about two hours wandering around, drinking a coffee shake and watch a pretty impressive trademan balance on tippy toes as he removed tiles from a slanty roof without a harness. Another thing to go on our list of 'stuff that would NEVER happen in Australia!'. We then headed back to GuiLin.

Today we're spending the day doing absolutely nothing!!!! And Bec is loving it!!!! Tomorrow we head off to Chongqing to commence our 4star cruise down the Yangtzi River (3 gorge dam). Unfortunately we're fast running out of time and as a result Bec has to give up on her Pandas! She is heart broken!! Well till next time kids!

Take Care of yourselves! Love Us.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Oh Mickey!

Alright, obviously Bec wants to jump right in and tell you all about Disneyland!!! But lets start at the very beginning of our Hong Kong visit (Its a very good place to start! Hahaha)

We arrived from Vietnam at about 2pm and headed straight into downtown Hong Kong on the very affordable Bus from the Airport. We quickly learnt that Hong Kong is alot like Bec... extremely expensive and anally organised! We arrived at Chungking Mansions and swindled a very good deal for a room. Straight away we jumped on a ferry and headed over to central and up to The Peak. Caught the tram to the top of the Mountain racing up 550m at a 45 degree angle, took all of about 10minutes! The view from the top was amazing! We had planned to watch the Symphony of Lights from atop the Peak but quickly realised we were on the wrong side. We decided to bail early to 'avoid the rush' but ended up running into about a million people who had the exact same idea! So instead, we had a GENIUS idea of walking down the hill. An hour later we were back at the ferry port. Very funny stuff!

The next day we spent wandering the city, the Avenue of Stars, the Cultural Centre and Clock Tower, Kowloon Gardens and Temple Street Markets. Jarratt bought an extremely flash camera and bec bought her magnets! Ha! We also organised some transport things. Flights to China and Ferry to Macau. We also managed to catch the Symphony of Lights (from the correct viewing point this time) and on Saturday nights the show is accompanied by fireworks. Lucky us!

The following day we headed to Macau. We arrived on a ferry from Hong Kong at about 10:45 and jumped on a highlights tour of the island for which they paid us 300 Hong Kong dollars. We believe there was a mix up in cash and well who are we to complain! We visited Macau tower, The ruins of St Pauls Church, a few muesums (including the wine and grand prix muesum) and Taipa!

Yesterday we visited the Magical land of Disney! Where Bec lost her mind!!! We got the MTR there (Hong Kongs train system) and EVERYTHING was mickey! The handles were shaped like micky mouse, the windows shaped like mickey mouse... there was even statues in the train for each famous disney character! When we got to Disneyland, we enjoyed the rides and shows and topped it all off with fireworks over sleeping beauty's castle. The funniest part of the day was when we were having our photo taken with Mickey and Minnie, both respective mouses grabbed us and went for a massive pash!

Today we end our visit to Hong Kong and head to Guilin. We have had an amazing time here! Not looking forward to being misunderstood in China and struggling with that whole language thing. But, Guilin is suppose to be beautiful and should be a great introduction to the country!

Hope you are all well.
Lots of Love, Bec and Jarratt.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Same Same, But Better!

Good Morning (and Farewell) Vietnam!

After a rough start, Vietnam has turned it on in its final days! We have just spent the past 2 days floating around in beautiful Halong Bay aboard what the Vietnamese affectionately refer to as a 'Junk'. To modern day Australians this 'junk' would also be know as a cruise ship! For the bargain price of $35 we spent two amazing days and one night on board. We were also treated to kayaking, cave exploration and more food than we have eaten in the ENTIRE trip! The highlight of the voyage would have to be the night spent aboard; when after dinner our guides whipped out a karaoke machine! Together, we did a lovely take on Olivia Newton-John and John Travoltas 'You're the One that I want'. While Bec did a version of Piano Man (with a shout out to young A'sy) that would have bought tears to his eyes!

Tonight we wandered around the Old Quarter Area of Hanoi, treated ourselves to some pretty amazing fresh spring rolls and ended with a performance at the Water Puppetry Theatre! A VERY nice (cultural) way to cap off our rather rocky visit to Vietnam! Tomorrow we are on a flight over to very expensive Hong Kong. Excited to be starting in a new country but sad that now we are about half way through our trip!

Hope you are all well
Love Bec and J.

PS - Happy Birthdays need to go out to Carly (28th) and Keeylann (1st). Hope you both had wonderfully wonderful days! xoxo

Monday, July 30, 2007

Bec and Book Belly battle the Bus!

Where did those last three days in Nha Trang go? Seriously! We have just finished a lazy, sleepy and on occassions very drunk stint at a costal town called Nha Trang. After arriving on our first (very hellish) overnight bus at about 6am (!), we headed straight for the beach! When we got there we got ourselves some beach beds under a nice beach hut and proceeded to sleep and read our books. Some of us *cough*Jarratt*cough* managed to fall asleep under the shelter with his book on his stomach and wake a few hours later to find a sunburnt imprint of his book. Bec has affectionately been referring to him as book belly ever since.

We are now in Hoi an, and are quite happy to be here. We got another overnight bus from Nha Trang, 12 hours on a packed bus with NO toilet. PLUS the bus had an accident, two hours in!!! So we are all piled off the bus, with no idea of what is happening or how long we will be stuck for. The drivers just stood around for just under an hour before realising they can still drive the thing (in addition to being paid a large wad of cash by the truck that hit them!). But Hey?! Thats Vietnam for you!!!

We have found quite a nice hostel, with an indoor pool (SCORE!) and managed to jump on a half day tour of 'My Son'; cham temples built in the 7th century. Quiet nice but nothing on Ankor Wat!!! Plus most were destroyed during the Vietnam war by the American bombs. Our guide (like all our other guides) was all too happy to talk down the Americans. Does anybody like the Americans? Anybody? Seriously....

But other than been stuffed on a cramped bus and sweltering in the heat we are both doing well! We have been eating a fair bit of western food lately, but have promised to jump back into trying the local food tonight. Tomorrow, we're heading into the old town of Hoi An and then tomorrow night we're on a flight to Hanoi! No more buses! Yay! Well thats it folks! Love Us.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Crazy Saigon!


So, Saigon is one crazy city! With 9 million people in the city and 4 million motorbikes, crossing the road is like gambling with your life! Between us we have had many near death experiences, ok... well, Bec more than Jarratt! It is worst than Bangkok, The Arc de Triumph in Paris and (Laura, Lin) the roads of Rome have nothing on Saigon!!!

We arrived late on the first day and quickly organised a half day to the Cu Chi Tunnels for the following day. Our trip to the tunnels was amazing! The Cu Chi tunnels are an underground network of tunnels used during French and American invasions on Vietnam. The tunnels are incredibly small, with us hunching over the whole way through and on occassions needing to crawl through them. It was quite a claustropobic feeling to be in for about 10 minutes let alone 10 years like those poor Vietnamese! We thought the past of Cambodia was pretty horrific, but Vietnam is just as bad (if not worse!). We also visited a handicraft factory where the employees were all suffering from some form of disability brought on by Agent Orange! We finsihed the day with a stroll past the Reunification Palace and a visit the War Muesum. The muesum was quite one-sided, but all true, and very confronting! The museum contained graphic pictures of the torture on the Vietnamese and images of children affected by Agent Orange.

Today (Day three) was much cruisey. We had a boat ride through the Mekong Delta. Visiting 2 of the 12 provinces; Ben Tre and Mytho. Both were about as exciting as the other (note: sarcasm!) and the day was a little bit of a let down. We are about to board an overnight BUS to Nha Trang, should involve little to no sleep - but boy! are we excited!!! haha. Once in Nha Trang we plan to lay on a beach for 2-3 days and relax, Jealous?

Hope Australia's winter is treatin you all well :P
Love Us.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

4000 Cambodian riels = ONE US dollar!!!

Phnom Penh, the Capital of Cambodia has been a rushed and busy visit. We have only spent a grand total of a day exploring and two half days chillin out. On our exploring day we rode a tuk tuk around to see the killing fields and its accompanying museum. It was horrific! The history of this country is so sad and standing in the place of 86 mass graves really hit home with us. The killing fields also had a massive stupa filled with 17 levels of more than 8000 skulls sorted by age and gender. Clothes and bones are also embedded in the pathway you walk through out the fields.

We also visited a VERY dodgy shooting range for all of about 5 seconds where we were told no photos could be taken of the 'shooting' menu. Prices included and AK-47 for a round of 25 bullets ... it would cost you the BARGIN price of 30 USD. We also visited the central and russian markets, extremely quickly, as they were VERY smelly and crowded places. As well as the Royal Palace, for a ridiculous 6.50 USD. We also visited the National Museum, for FREE. We ran into some fellow backpackers from our hostel and did a ticket switch and they got into the royal palace for nothing and we got into the National Museum for nothing. Pretty sneaky huh?

We ended our busy day with a very relaxing dinner on the Tonle Sap harbour. We ate Amok, a fish dish and Water Buffalo (?!!?!). We washed it down with beer and wine and laughed alot at how we just spent more on dinner than our two nights accommodation! Ha!

We're about to board a VIP bus to Saigon for a rivoting 6hours including a border crossing!
Hope everyone is well,
Love bec and j.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

I'll tell you (Angkor) Wat!

Cambodia is great! Hot as hell but amazing nonetheless!

We have so far spent three and a half days in Siem Reap. Home of Angkor Wat. For those of you unfamiliar google it now, if not sooner. hehehe. We have spent three days on a personalised guided tour thing. For about 250bucks we got our own tuk tuk, personal guide, passes to the temples and a boat ride through the floating village.

The temples of Angkor Wat are amazing! You need to see them to fully appreciate and understand them. And the bas-reliefs on the walls, dont get me started! Our guide (Rin) had a particularly fun and long-winded story about EACH of the engravings on EACH wall of EVERY temple! Bec was over it by the 6th wall/story. But, Rin was particularly funny when he was practising his English on us. Casino and Beautician were words that caused him much difficulty. We taught him words like booger, hopstock and boombox! He also continually quizzed myself and "Mr J"about all things Khmer. We now have engrained in our brains the Four Buddhist noble truths = Charity, Compassion, Equality and Sympathy.

On the final day of our three day adventure he took us to met his family in his village located IN Angkor Wat!! It was very sweet, he introduced his children and wife to us and tried to involve us in his casino (a group of men gambling on a siamese fighting fish match!)

Overall Siem Reap has been lots of fun! We're looking forward to our VIP bus ride to Phomn Penh tomorrow - leaves at 7:30am!!!

Will write again soon,
Love Us.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Oh (Chiang) Mai!

Greetings from Chiang Mai... the prettiest place in thailand - or so we've been told. Whilst we have been travelling around thailand EVERYONE has been telling us how relaxed and beautiful Chiang Mai is. And whilst we admit it IS pretty and relaxed it's well... not that amazing! Sorry!

We started our visit here arriving very early on the overnight train from Bangkok. As soon as we arrived at our hostel we organised ourselves to get onboard a 'long neck and hill tribe village' one day tour. Crazy stuff!!! In the first few villages (palong, lathu and akha) we were absolutely embraced by the locals. So much so that two little girls dug there hands deep into Jarratts pockets looking for loose change! We also visited the longneck and big earred women of the karen tribe. They are so beautiful but we felt so wrong. You pretty much wander through their homes as they put themselves on display. Kinda horrible really. We were much nicer about it then a couple of russians who pointed and laughed during there photos with the ladies. Just awful!

Then it was trekking time! On the following day we went trekking into the jungle. We started our 'nature walk' at about 500m above sea level, after 6kms and 3hours we were at 1400m about sea level... and wait for it - it rained for part of it! For those of you really bad at maths... thats a pretty steep climb - particularly in thongs ;) Once we reached the top it was (to sound cliched) very magical. Jarratt and I spent about 2 hours playing with all these local children - SO CUTE! Had a wonderful dinner and slept like logs!!! The following day was alot more fun as we hiked DOWN the mountain! haha! We also got to ride elephant, part-take in white water rafting and bamboo rafting!!!! We also experienced our first night of Thai boxing!!! WOW is that a full on sport!!! We bought tickets for 400 baht and sat ringside. We overheard fellow Australians saying they paid 1500baht for similar seats! So we were pretty stoked!

Today is a little more boring, woke up late and are now wandering around inside the 'old city' walls and looking at the temples. Tonight we are on another overnight train to Bangkok and tomorrow afternoon we fly to Cambodia (Siem Reap).

But enough about us.... how are you all doing?

Friday, July 13, 2007

More BANG for your buck!

well well well, isnt Bangkok one interesting place! Those Thai ladies can do anything...and we mean ANYTHING! First night in Bangkok we headed to Patpong Markets and unwittingly wandered into a ping pong show, felt like big perves, but it was like a car accident you couldnt look away. Afterwards we wandered the markets and had dinner. We both had difficulty ordering a coke, based on one of the performances from the show; the banana pancakes were also avoided for the following day as a result of the show!

The following day we visitied the floating markets, the bridge over the river kwai and played with tigers at the tiger temple. As seen on getaway!!!

Today we headed to the very grand palace and had a wander around, took some great pictures (which we will show you all later). Tonight we head to Chiang Mai, which is meant to be beautiful, on an overnight train!

Note to those planning to come to Bangkok - there are so many con men!!!!!!!!! Jarratt and I can't walk more than 20 metres without being told the monument we are heading to is shut for the day and we should jump in this lovely tuk-tuk for a drive around to see the 'lucky buddha' for an hour for the great price of between 20-1baht!!!! For those playing at home there is no lucky buddha and NOTHING is shut over lunch! Keep that in mind if you travel here!

Anyways we're off to drink beer - 2 for 99Baht! About 3bucks Australian! Not that we are trying to rub it in - cause we're not ;)

Much Love, us!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Lobster... GOING CHEAP!

Hi again!

We've just left Koh Samui, land of beautiful beaches, GREAT foot massages and plenty of dirty ol' men chasing young thai ladies! Whilst we were in lovely Koh Samui we relaxed, drank, ate and went on a safari!

Our safari was a very 'funny day'. We started at two phallic looking rock formations known as Grandfather and Grandmother rock... I'll leave the greater details to your imagination. Afterwards we saw a mummified monk, elephant show, monkey show and crocodile show. Then we were in for a BIG treat of an elephant trek/ride! SOOOOO much fun! We finished with sunset at the Big Buddha, I am seriously thinking oversized buddhas are to thailand what churches are to italy! Ha!

We also slurged and had lobster on the beach one night. It cost next to nothing (180 Baht for Lobster, about 6 bucks Australian) which we attempted to make both sets of parents jealous about.

We are currently in Bangkok and will update you after we've done some shopping, pingpong shows and seen one grand palace.

Look forward to your comments and hearing what you are all up to!!!!
Miss you all lots, Love Bec and J.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

No I dont want a Suit, Tuk Tuk or Massage!

Hey There Bloggers!

Well it has been a fantastic 4 days in Phuket! Day one we arrived very late at our hostel, the VERY lovely phuket backpacker. For a crazy 14 bucks we get FREE internet, a private room with air conditioning and our own bathroom!!! Crazily cheap here! In the following days we've seen and done some amazing things!!! Heres a rough run down of what has happened in the BJ adventures thus far!


We were picked up at our hostel at 8am and taken to the ferry pier to get on a boat and head the 40kms out to Phi Phi. Bec, unfortunately didnt realise the receipt doubled as a ticket (which she had stored safely in her bag ... back at the hostel!) Bec stood very anxiously at the pier whilst the driver negotiated with the ferry staff for us to board the boat. Finally after much discussion we were let aboard and headed out to Phi Phi. An hour and a half later we arrived to snorkle with the tropical fish in Maya Bay. We saw where 'the beach' was filmed and a seafood lunch at Phi Phi Don. Jarratt and I then had a few hours to explore the island where we went through the markets and laid on the beach for a few lazy hours! Then we boarded our boat to head back, it was a very rocky ride with many sick asians! GROSS!

In the evening we headed to Simon Cabaret! The show was amazing, the most beautiful showgirls we've seen and they are .... ALLLLLLLLLLL boys!!! Unbelievable!!!


Today decided we were very clever and brave enough to battle the phuket bus, after bargaining a FANTASTIC tuk-tuk deal the night before (A trip which had cost a fellow hostel go-er 500 we got for 300! YAY!). We boarded a bus (20 BAHT!) and headed to Wat Chalong, a temple dedicated to buddhist monks who fought back the chinese invasion for tin. Very beautiful! We also saw a little bus full of monks! We then headed to Patong Beach where we negotiated and bargained at the markets for sunglasses for bec and tickets to Fantasea Show and Dinner! Was a very funny experience in the markets at patong. It was like Bec was invisible, all these men and women would talk through Bec to Jarratt. Poor, polite Jarratt would at first acknowledge and shake hands but after a few hours was snapping out fantastic calls that made Bec laugh. Jarratt and I also treated ourselves to a luxurious foot massage. SOOOO GOOD! The ladies in the massage place told Jarratt and I that we were 'lovely'... I secretly think they wanted to take Jarratt aside for a special massage! Hahahaha! They're only female, of course!

At night we headed to the Fantasea Show. Fantasea was amazing! Fantasea is a show full of fireworks, acrobats, performing elephants, singing, dancing and is known as thailands MUST SEE attraction!!! When we walked through the gates we realised we only had 100 Baht on us.... the equivalent of 3ish bucks! Hahahaa. So not much was done or bought! Unfortunately there are 'no photos or V.D.O (video)' during the show and the only way to get one is to buy the 500 Baht book. Since we had no money on us Bec was extra sneaky and put her camera in a 'special place' and snuck it in. She took one photo, NO FLASH, and boom! A little thai woman was beside her asking for her to NOT TAKE PHOTOS! hahaha.


We headed out to Phang Nga National Park today! First stop was a monkey beach, where Bec and Jarratt paid 16Baht for the pleasure to feeding about 2 dozen bananas to very aggressive monkeys! Was awesome fun though! We also visited the Suwankuha Temple, where there is a MASSIVE reclining buddha and a bat cave that we explored together.

Second Stop was Sight-seeing around Phang Nga Bay by tail boat. We went through an intricate sea cave and then headed to Khao Tapoo and Khao Ping-Kan also known as James Bond Island. We took HEAPS of photos and did all the 'silly' photos like holding the island up and trying to push it over! We then headed to a muslim slit fishing village for lunch. The village is built on slits and is quite like a shanty town. Jarratt and I ran into the most adorable little kids, we took photos of them on the digital camera then showed them their photos, their faces were priceless!!! So cute!!! Afterwards we headed back to the pier and then home via a cashew factory and the worlds largest jewellery store.

Tonight we have just wandered around and organised ourselves for Samui tomorrow.
Hope you are all well... we are having great fun and missing you all.
Love Bec and Jarratt.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

We have arrived....

Just to let everyone know we have safely arrived in Phuket!

The weather is muggy, but we've got ourselves on a day trip to phi phi tomorrow and plan on swimming up a storm!!!!

Wish you were here ;)

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Scooby Dooby Doo....

For those of you that missed the festivities at the Intersection and by popular demand..............................
I give you, Jarratt!... in a scooby suit!!!
Special thanks needs to go to Jess for the fantastic idea of bringing the suit along... well done Blessica!!! MWAH!

Friday, June 29, 2007

The Last Hoorah!

Greetings bloggers!

Just a reminder that the last horrah will be taking place at the Intersection Tavern in Ramsgate on Monday the 2nd of July. For those non-alcoholics and less knowledgable, click the link above for more information about the Taverns location and menu! We will be there from 5pm til late; be sure to pop in as it may be Bec and J's last appearance in years!

We look forward to seeing you all there.

Furthermore we'd like to do a BIG shout out to all our removalists! In order of appearance, BIG thank you's go to: Bluey, Ben, Mr and Mrs Wyatt, Mr and Mrs Tandek and young Tayla Lousie. We really appreciate all the help!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Leavin on a jet plane...don't know when we'll be back again!

Can you believe it?

We leave in a week!!! Oh gosh, the planning, the saving and the stress is about to pay off.

For those of you unaware, Jarratt and I are leaving the country and heading to make a home in the motherland. Its a big step and we're both very excited about our adventure, although one of us is also a little scared. I'll leave you to figure out which is which. hehe!

On our way to the motherland we are going via South-east Asia and China!!! We've got a full on 2-ish months planned, however, if anyone has any must see places please let us know! We'll be starting in Thailand and working through to Cambodia, Vietnam and China. I won't bore you too much with the itinerary but thats the basic jist of it!

We'll be using this blog to keep you posted on all the happenings of the BJ Adventures, so be sure to visit from time to time.

Till the next post! Same bat-time, same bat-channel.