Theme Song for My South American Experience

So, all through Argentina and Chile, this is what I’ve been hearing and watching people get very excited over (apart from songs about Maradona). I’ve never managed to figure out the title until… I’M HERE IN BULGARIA.

It’s been quite random here in the Balkans.

The other day, I asked for directions to a bus station and the following happened-

Guy: Parlez francais?

Me: Uh… un peu….?

<silence>

Me: Et vous?

Guy: Non. Hehehe

No, I don’t quite understand either.

Today, I got on a bus with a couple of Spanish people and it seems the driver speaks Spanish but not a lot of English which is fine because all I needed was time and directions. The other day on the bus from Skopje, I spent half of the 5h ride listening to Enrique Iglesias. I now have enough pickup lines for Spanish-speaking college girls.

Anyway back to the song. So I got back to my hostel and surprise, they’re playing the song that’s been played so often through my South American hiatus it’s in my head for the last half a year. It seems to be the go-to song when drinking and when partying.

I do like the album though and I hope you do too.

 

How to Pack Light, Very Light

One of my earlier trips involving unicycles (ie. heavy metal objects) was to New Zealand. I still have no idea how I managed it but I guess that’s what youth does. I travelled with a trolley luggage to Wellington via Auckland with not just one but TWO unicycles – a 20″ trials and a 29″ cross-terrain uni – and I wiped most of the details of how I got from point A to B from memory. It was an amazingly fun trip and to make it more challenging (cos, youth), one of my pals managed to convince me that the key to surviving a 20h flight back is to get drunk and sleep through your flight. It’s not a bad idea EXCEPT the part where you have to make your way, drunk, from your hostel with all the above crap you’re lugging around to the airport. I can assure you I’ve never been more sober in a shorter time as when I was chasing down the bus.

Never again. Read the rest of this entry »

Okinawa and the Joys of Cleaning Poop

I might be the only person who goes on a beach holiday and worked on a farm without getting a tan. Perhaps October isn’t the best season to visit but I thought it’d be less crowded that way.

beach

On the days I went to the beach, the skies looked like that. It’s not terrible though – the showers are sporadic and clears up every half hour. It’s also a nice tropical climate so it’s not like you’d suffer hypothermia.

Speaking of seas, they are completely gorgeous. The pictures don’t do it justice because in real life, they’re turquoise clear and you can snorkel off the shore and swim with a whole bunch of fish. Read the rest of this entry »

Blast from the Past – Steampunk Unicycle

I’m going to jumpstart the ‘Making Stuff’ part of this blog by talking about a project I really loved from a couple of years ago. It’s a steampunk unicycle mod!

Since this was some years back, I haven’t many pics of the work in progress but I’ll show what I can.

I used a Qu-Ax Profi unicycle for this because I wanted a chunkier flat-crown frame and also it comes with a perfect white tyre… well mine is brown-ish from age and use but hey, it adds to the theme! The restrictions of designing for a unicycle is that your legs are going to be in the way of the frame so that limits the type of mods you can have around the frame. I wanted features that were practical and not merely ornamental and settled on tail lights and a horn.

Here’s how a stock Profi looks.

profi

This is a cheap $2 plastic horn from Daiso that is spray-painted bronze, then dry-brushed with black and dark brown. I started with the horn so I can work with a smaller object to get a feel of the colors before moving onto the frame. Read the rest of this entry »

The W Trek – Torres del Paine

Contrary to what it seems, I’m not that huge a fitness nerd. I make it a point to stay fit enough to be able to run a comfortable 10km anytime I want to because, apparently, I’ve learnt that I’m quite vulnerable to spontaneous calls to adventure. That is the story here.

IMG_2038

Casually-placed mountain on the trek

While in South America, I had plans to make it to Ushuaia which claims to be the southern-most city in the world. Somehow, I ended up on Puerto Natales where every vaguely outdoorsy person sojourns to trek the Torres del Paine. The W-trek, a 5-day circuit that covers most of the scenic spots, is touted as one of the most spectacular treks in the world. After talking to a bunch of people, I found myself caught up in their excitement and decided that since it’s not every day I’m in Patagonia, I should definitely be trekking too! Carpe diem! Read the rest of this entry »