Archive for the year 2012

Day 589 (Sydney, Australia)

OSpent half a week in Melbourne before going on to Sydney where I am now. Melbourne was nice but I didn’t do too much, my sleep schedule was very messed up from a time change plus a very late flight. Been hanging out in Sydney this week, did a tour with some friends a few days ago and got a bit of history about Sydney which was neat. Made Kangaroo meat burritos on Wednesday which were really good. Also got to practice my chess skills with a German guy who likes playing chess and had a board of his own. It’s a really nice hostel but not having free WiFi in Australian hostels is annoying.

Day 568 (Perth, Australia)

OWell things have not gone as well in Perth as I had hoped. I was looking for a job in my field that I have skill in and I have not had any luck. Most jobs on offer are 3-6 month contracts which would be perfect for my visa but I found out quickly that the companies offering those jobs want people that they can bring on permanently after the contract ends which my visa does not include. I got a job in early August as a glassie/busboy for a nice restaurant downtown but even then the hours were horrible and have yet to change. Also things at my apartment are tense most days because my roommates and I don’t get along which is too bad but they are mostly Chinese and keep to there own group exclusively.

With all that in mind, I decided recently to leave Perth and try my luck somewhere else. I will be visiting Melbourne on October 3rd and from there going to Sydney. I gave my 2 week notice at work and at my apartment recently and I will be leaving Perth in less than 12 days which I am very excited about. I did eventually make some friends with my co-workers but the job is very demanding and it’s made socializing difficult. Also my lack of money has made going out and having fun harder. But still I had some good times here and I will miss a few people that I hope to see again someday.

My weight loss is still going great except I was sick last week and the job hours have been getting to me so September has been a bit more slack than July-August were for my diet and working out. Still I have lost roughly 12 lbs and currently weigh 149 lb which is the lowest I have been in a very very long time. My final weight goal is around 143-145 lb before I start to focus on building muscle and increasing endurance. I hope to get down to that before Halloween, and hopefully get a tan on some of the beaches in the near future.

Day 509 (Perth, Australia)

KI have arrived in Perth! It took over 16 months of travel to get to Australia which was decided as my rest stop since before I started this trip. I am here to live on and off for the next 10-12 months. I have a Working Holiday Visa which I am now using as I attempt to find a job which has been difficult but I have only been trying for 2 weeks so I have a good feeling about this upcoming week showing some results. I moved into a room share with 8 other people in a very nice new apartment in the center of the city. It is actually not very crowded for 9 people living in a 3 bedroom apartment as everyone works so I see them rarely. I’ve also got a SIM card (Vodafone), bank account (Westpac) and tax file number.

KMy plan is to find a job very soon (before August) and work until November at which time I am planning to visit my girlfriend in the Cardiff until after New Years. At which point I will come back to Australia and work again, possibly for a bit longer this time and possibly in a different city. Then travel Australia for the remaining 1-2 months of my visa before making my way back to Canada slowly via the States. I have also started a diet and exercise program that I am hoping will yield great results before I fly to the UK. If it works the way I want I will definitely post my results on the blog. I am confident things will work out and if so then when I arrive back in Canada I should have enough money to fund my South America trip as well.

Besides job hunting I have barely done anything in Perth. My first week here was in a hostel and I made some friends that I have gone and seen on the weekends. Also my roommate and I went to a wildlife park outside of Perth that lets you pet Koala’s and play with Kangaroo’s. It’s actually a very nice place and it was well worth the trip. I had my roller blades shipped here to Perth from Canada and plan to do some more roller blading once the weather warms up and I am in better shape. I will do a post in a few weeks with the progress of both my job hunt and fitness plan.

Day 488 (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

AI’m sorry for not posting in over 2 months. I was living with my girlfriend after my Japan trip. She just went back to her home country yesterday as she is now done schooling in Malaysia. I am also leaving Malaysia today for Australia to begin working my bank account in the other direction and hopefully getting in better physical shape. I had a great final week in Japan going to the fish market and hanging out with a cool couch surfer in Osaka who had lots of good friends and things to do. I miss Japan as a place but it was very expensive and the weather was not great during my visit. I would love to go back someday during summer and spend more time outside the big cities. I was in a bit of a travel low during parts of my Japan trip, partly because of the weather, but still I made some good friends and had a good times.

RThis last week my girlfriend and I went to Langkawi which is a beach resort type of island with lots of fun things to do. We rented a scooter and stayed at a fancy hotel near the airport. We had a really great time and it was a great ending to our time in Malaysia. We also took a day trip to Genting the week before Langkawi and did some bowling which I enjoyed. We had been rather busy before and during this time because there was a bit of work required to move her out of her apartment and sell all of her old furniture. I’ve moved houses many times in my life so it was easy to do and I hope I was able to help her move more smoothly and with less stress. The food in Malaysia that we ate was mostly Western cuisine but it was all very good and is a big reason why I need to get to working out again to get into better shape.

I don’t have any accommodations or a job setup in Australia yet so that along with my lack of a tax or phone number means I have my work cut out for me once I arrive. I am not going to worry and will just take it one step at a time. I have enough money to go jobless for a month or 2 in Perth so it’s not exactly an emergency.

Day 415 (Tokyo, Japan)

CBeen in Japan for 3 weeks now and have a little over a week left before flying back to Kuala Lumpur. I am going to live there until at least the end of June and then likely will be moving on to Australia, unless plans change again. My first week in Japan was an interesting one, the capsule hotel in Osaka had a policy of locking out it’s guest from 10 AM till 5 PM which caused some trouble. Some nights if I got home late enough from partying I would only get an hour or 2 of sleep which gave me the horrible idea to just keep drinking to avoid the hangover. I had several groups of people throughout the week to hang out with and it was actually a really good time, although it got tiring after a while. I made some good friends and hope to see them again in the future, some of them I have seen several times more throughout my Japan travels. Also while in Osaka I visited the Aquarium, went to a CS meeting near the castle and did a day trip to Nara to see the deer.

BFrom Osaka I went to Kyoto for a few days with no real plan and ended up resting in my hostel most of the time. It was a good hostel to relax in and is rated #5 in Asia on Hostel World. I met some good people there also but never really did anything except go to a few temples and walk around. It was a good chance to see the cherry blossoms (Hanami) which were perfectly bloomed when I was there, which made finding a hostel quite difficult. I ran into several people I had met in Osaka and got to do things with both of them which was pretty cool. To save some money I took the bus from Kyoto to Tokyo which was almost 3 times less than taking the bullet train so I think was well worth it.

DNow I have been in Tokyo for over a week and spent equal amounts of time in a hostel and with a couch surfer. I was happy to get back into couch surfing as I haven’t done it in almost half a year since I was in Israel. The hostel I stayed at was even more compact than the capsule hotel but the owner was very friendly and it had a lively common room sometimes. The people I met here were a mixed bag of cool and annoying and I never really clicked with them as well as I did in the other 2 hostels. Most of my time in Tokyo has been spent walking around and just checking things out, which has gotten tiring and now I feel the need to actually do some of the things I had planned. Going to Yoyogi park on Sunday to see the craziness of people was a real treat and everyone in the park seemed so happy.

GTomorrow I get a tattoo under my left arm on my ribs which will hurt quite a bit. I have planned to go out to a fancy club right after getting the tattoo which I may later regret but it’s my second last day in Tokyo and I want to go to a proper party. I went to a so so one last Thursday and it was not very good. After the club which will be an all night thing, I may try and go visit the fish market which is best to do early in the morning so it should work out well, assuming I have any energy left. After all that I take a rest day and then go to Yokohama the next day to visit another couch surfer. Then it’s back to Osaka to catch my flight to Kuala Lumpur. Wish me luck on the all nighter.