What’s up down under?

I’m boarding a plane again next week.  Cartographists, sailors and (I’m hoping) pilots will say I’m heading east. And as time lines go, I’ll be getting ahead of myself.  It’s nothing new, I tend to be ahead of myself most of the time, saying things I shouldn’t.  I’m visiting two of the countries stuck in the bottom right corner of the map.  Places down under where they like cricket and attempt to play rugby. Where winter arrives in June and men have an  inexplicable fondness for a certain farm animal.  Where they consider a playstation to be a sheep tied to a tree.

My first stop will be Middle Earth where Hobbits and Elves roam free.   Continue reading

8 US Cities in 11 Days (Post Mortem)

Contrary to popular belief, I also had some time to take a few pics of the two landmarks I got to see during my stint in the USA. (All taken with my smart phone, I let you know.) Based on the hundreds of photo’s I took, I consider these 3 to be some of my favourites, so I thought I’d do the decent thing and share them with you.  I wanted to post one of my selfies, but the fact that my face is on it, ruins the whole composition.  And some of you still need to eat today.

Wow, what a pretty, little rainbow...

Wow, what a pretty, little rainbow…

Continue reading

8 US Cities in 11 Days (Part 3)

I did something I never thought I would,  I rented a car and drove myself from Houston Airport.  It was nice to sit in a car that didn’t have a funky smell.  I miss New York…

The challenge was to drive on the wrong side of the road.  Americans drive on the right side but South Africans drive on the correct side. I got myself a nice big car ya’ll,  so I would be safe in case someone finds themselves on the left side of the road with me approaching. It’s all about self-preservation.  It was dark and it was raining so things got really interesting.  It was better once I turned on the headlights.  The hooting stopped as well. The GPS lady was slightly annoying,  insisting that I’m exceeding the speed limit.  I don’t know what her problem was,  I never even got to a 100.  Oh wait, you guys use miles right? Shit. Continue reading

8 US Cities in 11 days (Part 2)

I started writing this even before I arrived in New York, as I had to stay in Pittsburgh a little longer than planned.  The plane wasn’t there.  I might as well watched paint dry but there was no time, I needed to get on another plane, as my flight got cancelled without my permission.  Some freak storm/hurricane-lady-thing was making its way through the sky and like all men know when it comes to bitches, just move out of the way.

Getting a seat on another flight is almost as nerve racking and stressfull as it sounds but only because it’s worse, considering I had checked bags.  I was convinced I was never going to see that greyish black suitcase of mine again.  It all adds to the fun and my high blood pressure.  The Wife was more concerned about my welfare, so she made me understand why I was not flying.  I don’t board a commercial plane with a parachute, after all.  She has a unique ability to calm me down.   Continue reading

8 US Cities in 11 Days (Part 1)

(A successful blogger once said that one should never assume that people have read posts already published, so to enlighten those reading this, I suggest the prelude.)

I connected through Atlanta from Johannesburg, which was pretty standard as far as landing and disembarkation goes, only to revel in the patience of custom officials.  There was a queue eleven miles long, some of the people was still standing on the runway.  The officials were extremely unsympathetic towards passengers with connection flights, thereby redefining my understanding of not giving a shit.  We all know that in these frustrating times, the best thing to do is to keep your mouth shut, get that stamp and run like hell to the next terminal. Continue reading

8 Cities, 11 Days (Prelude)

I was hoping to have more time and write a spectacular post as a preview to my next adventure.  Unfortunately time didn’t do me any favours.  And unlike Matthew in that awfully confusing movie, Interstellar, I don’t stay the same age as days go by.  I only have so much time allocated in the daily 8 hours of work, and sometimes, just sometimes, blogging needs to take a back seat.

I was extremely busy, putting together my itinerary for an unplanned trip.  Or in layman’s terms, I was putting together a ridiculous travel schedule, organising plane tickets that probably makes me the most hated human being in the eyes of my travel agent, planning awkward meeting dates and corresponding hotel bookings, with that inevitable car rental. Continue reading

And all these machines?

One of the promises I made to myself in January was to commit to a twelve week fitness and diet regime that kicked off about four weeks ago. Why?  Well, let’s just say I was expanding and I don’t earn enough money to replace my whole wardrobe.  I needed to up my game.

Besides, gaining weight is not all my fault.  I blame Christmas.  And the holidays.  And the heaps of easy accessible, great food.  And the wine!  Yes, I know it’s blasphemy, but I blame the gods of red wine too! Then there’s the fact that I’m forty-ONE, which is not doing me any favours.  Everyone knows that when middle-age walks through the front door, metabolism moves out.  And then you’re stuck with that unpleasant, strange roommate whom you should, but don’t, recognise. Continue reading

I’ve got an idea, let’s use a mannequin!

It’s something we’ve all seen before.  Some of us have clearly not seen enough of it.  It’s something we all hate for the inconvenience it causes.  Like a visit to the dentist. We understands why it happens, we understand the need for it, we deal with it, but we certainly do not like it.

It’s all about road maintenance and the subsequent traffic congestion.

Being stuck in traffic in Oman is exactly the same as being stuck in traffic anywhere else in the world.  It sucks and it causes the same reaction from different types of people.  Continue reading

Sir, which knife do you prefer?

Strolled into a steakhouse in Dubai, aptly called “Hunters” as the Italian restaurant only started serving food at seven.  It was 18h15 and I was hungry.  Sue me. No pasta then.

The waiter asked if I was on my own as he couldn’t see my imaginary friend. It’s a hippo in a tutu and her name is Angelique.  (I’ve been alone for four days.) He directed me to a small table and insulted my hippo girlfriend further by removing her placemat.  Now I not only felt sad, I looked the part too. Fortunately there was no one in close proximity of where I was being forced to sit. Continue reading

The day the music died

The King of Saudi Arabia passed away yesterday at the age of 90.  Today some ex-pats are about to celebrate Australia day, which commemorates the first British fleet to arrive at the BIG island, more specifically Port Jackson in 1788.

So what does these two have days have in common?  Absolutely nothing.  Unless you are in Dubai.

The clash of cultures are evident in the way these two countries choose to remember the events. Continue reading