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Top 12 Travel Tips!

Chuck Thu, 2017-06-29 12:38
I’ve got a new business idea. It came to me when I spied a dog walker wrangling half a dozen of his charges down the sidewalk here in Atlanta. I figure if a dog owner is willing to pay someone to walk their pets, some people might be willing to pay us to take their vacations for them. The pitch would go like this: “Why be hassled with all the planning and airports and annoying hotel check-ins? Pay Chuck and Lori to take your vacations for you! Just TELL your friends you went to Fiji! Act now and Chuck and Lori will take 1,000 free photos for you!” I’ll have to get to work on that website… But...
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Travel On, Blog...Eventually

Travel Bloggers Chuck and Lori with Grandbaby Felix
Chuck Fri, 2017-06-23 10:43
There's a famous bit from Seinfeld where Jerry and Elaine are at the rental car counter and there are no cars to fulfill his reservation: "You know how to take the reservation, you just don't know how to hold the reservation, and that's really the most important part..." Something similar could be said of my travel blogging lately, but at least I'm getting the most important part--the actual travel--pretty right. Despite none too few travel bloggers out there on the interwebs who copiously blog of spurious travel, our travel has been getting in the way of almost any amount of actual writing...

Thailand, Florida of the East

Bang Por Beach, Koh Samui, Thailand
Chuck Fri, 2017-03-24 11:48
We've been staying the last 12 days on Bang Por Beach on the north shore of the Thai island of Koh Samui. Look it up on Google Maps , if you want. It's a nice, peaceful, and gentle beach devoid of the kind of surf we've relished in the Bahamas before, with coarse pinkish sand and turquoise tinted water. The water is so calm, it's like a swimming pool tucked into one corner of the Gulf of Thailand. From the peacefulness of our beach blankets, it's wildly easy to observe the tides here: as the moon arcs overhead, tides go out and water flows west. The moon circumnavigates the earth, much as we...

The Rescue

The Rescue
Chuck Sat, 2017-03-11 04:55
Lakyim—her name in Thai means “dimples”—is taken from her parents just before her third birthday. They are shot trying to protect her and left for dead. Uncooperative and combative adults are useless, but the young ones, they can be molded, they can be trained to be valuable, they can be crushed into subservience. Lakyim is loaded into the back of a truck. Time passes, she doesn’t know how long. She arrives disoriented, sickened, and weakened from the trip and the ordeal of being taken from her parents. The men drag her into the woods; when she resists she is beaten with a metal-studded stick...

Travel: So Easy, Any Moron Can Do It

Air Asia A320 Loading
Chuck Thu, 2017-03-09 03:31
There used to be a time when you'd land in a foreign airport disoriented, jet lagged, unable to speak the language, where your precious greenbacks were pretty well useless, and the only way to let loved ones back home know you made it (at least without incurring a second mortgage to make a--gasp!--international call) was to mail a postcard that would arrive precisely two weeks after your return home. Travel sure has gotten easier. We noticed this recently when we landed in Bangkok--dude, that's in THAILAND, an oriental city where the city don't know that the city is getting the creme de la...

Time For Some Culture In Hong Kong, But Not What You Expect

View of Hong Kong from Victoria Peak
Chuck Tue, 2017-02-28 23:35
Does going to Hong Kong mean we can say we’ve been to China? A while back we decided that “going to” a country requires, among a few other qualifications, that we have a stamp in our passports from that country. This means, for example, that we can’t claim to have been to Japan since we only connected through the Tokyo airport on our way to the Philippines. But even though we spent four nights in Hong Kong and trekked around plenty of the city’s sights, we don’t have a stamp from China in our passports. The reasons for this go back a century and a half to Hong Kong’s days as a British colony...

Bali: So Many Bars, So Little Time

Barung Dancer, Bali
Chuck Sun, 2017-02-26 03:27
Travel is learning. And what we've learned this week is that Bali is actually an acronym for "Bunch of Australians on a Little Island". We're just joshing! If that were true, the acronym would really be BDALI, for "Bunch of Drunk Australians on a Little Island". All kidding--and our general fondness for Aussies--aside, life lessons learned while on the Indonesian island of Bali include the following: A pool with a swim-up bar is the true way God intended man to enjoy swimming. The best swim stroke for conveying a beer across a pool is the side stroke. Monkeys are not cute. They are evil, evil...

Three Days in Singapore

The Singapore Skyline At Night From The River
Chuck Sat, 2017-02-18 01:22
It’s mandatory to wear Bermuda shorts and those British colonial military hats that look like fried eggs whilst visiting the city of Singapore. It is also recommended you use words like “whilst” and that you proceed “chin-up” into the heat and humidity of this former British colony that still very much feels like a British colony. If you do not do these things, the British tourists you will inevitably find yourself surrounded by may regard you with a discomforting curiosity. All the global public image of an over-the-top strictly regulated city—no spitting in public, no chewing of gum, no jay...

Farewell (For Now), Philippines

Barangay Boat, Honda Bay, Philippines
Chuck Fri, 2017-02-10 20:00
There's something bizarrely appealing about a country where it's not uncommon to spot men peeing on fences as you drive by in the comfort of your Uber car. It'd be considerably more interesting if you could spot women doing the same, but a people can only be so appealing. By the time you read this, we'll have flown on to Singapore, our welcome--that is to say, our visa--in the Philippines having expired. We Americans are spoiled by relatively lengthy visas, but in the Philippines the standard tourist visa for Americans is 30 days. We've read it's not too challenging to get an extension, but...

Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines

Children in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines
Chuck Sat, 2017-02-04 00:40
Today’s blog is short on the normal array of pictures for such a visually interesting destination as we’ve experienced the last week and a half. The reason is that Internet service has been such that the approximately 1,000 pictures we’ve taken are stuck on our local devices, unable to sync to Dropbox on the Internet-over-hemp-vine service we are enjoying here on the island of Palawan in the Philippines. Dodgy Internet service, however, goes hand-in-hand with visually interesting destinations, so you will simply have to rely more than usual on my stunning wit to spark your imagination...

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