“Everyone should go at least once”

“Everyone should go at least once”

A friend of mine who’s a regular in India says; “everyone should go at least once” and I agree with that wholeheartedly. He doesn’t even like cricket really, but God, if you do, there isn’t a better place in the world to be. This was my second trip to India, but the first to experience cricket, I have to say it was definitely in my top few holiday experiences; cricket loaded adventure. So much is owed to the Aussie Cricket Team as without their efforts early on in the series, I wouldn’t have gone. I booked one way flights months earlier but had intentions to ditch it if we were getting walloped. At 1-1 and right in the contest, the deep buried love for my boys arose to the surface. My excitement fired up “Dave” on Reddit, an Aussie expat living in Saigon. Didn’t think he would actually turn up. That was emphasised by me writing him off when he first mentioned it on the thread:

Reddit thread with Dave Barbeler

No accommodation, no travel insurance, no medical shots, no worries. Bec’s a big planner when going on holidays so I took this opportunity to plan as little as possible. All I had was flights when I left, I booked an AirBnB for Kolkata during my stopover in Kuala Lumpur. The accommodation was basic in furnishings, but a fully self contained top level apartment at only $22 a night, you’d have to be high maintenance to complain. Joydeep the host was a fucking “ledge” too, only 3 levels down in the same building he was extremely accommodating, checking me in at the absurd time of 2.00am. I was up early the next morning checking out what Kolkata had to offer. A 10 INR ($0.20), 6 stop metro ride to “Esplanade” had me in the heartbeat of the city. Being a cricket trip, the first thing I noticed was the big lights of the famous Eden Gardens. As an Aussie Eden Gardens is probably more infamous than famous, regardless, it got the cricket juices flowing. Got some help from a local guy who took me to a little restaurant for breakfast. Told him “I don’t care what it is, I’ll try it, I just want to eat where locals eat”. He didn’t let me down, I had two plates of “Chana” including a couple of “Paratha“, bottle of water and it was all under $2.50.

 

Being mostly “planless” I wandered over towards Eden Gardens. Wasn’t very far down the road when I saw the mighty “Sukchar U. F. C.” cricket club warming up for their match and ducked over to inspect the facilities. As usual it was fucking dry as a Nun’s cunt and looked like it would rag at right angles from ball one. I bowled a few and whacked a few down the ground before moving on to Eden Gardens to see if I could have a peek inside. The security were nice enough to let me get in there and have a sticky beak. Quite weird being the only patron in the stands of a big ground like that, got to check out the facilities just roaming around until I got the boot. Shame that I couldn’t get to ground level as probably would have pushed the limits and gone out on the hallowed turf.

 

In the shadows of Eden Gardens there were tonnes of cricket clubs. From memory it was a Wednesday and there were hundreds of young (some school aged) men playing cricket. It wasn’t school holidays, they were allowed to have the day off to play, lucky cunts. I pulled up a chair to watch some 2nd grade “Cricket Club of Bhawanipor” action. The boys were interested to know what I was doing. We chatted for a while as their match was delayed due to a wet outfield. Umpires called an early lunch, the captain and coach offered for me to have lunch with them which I couldn’t turn it down. @Relaxer_ said it looked like shit, that’s because he eats caviar everyday #ballerlife. Personally I thought it was quite good, free feeds always taste that bit better too. I had to head off before the end of the days play but the boys had their opposition reeling after sending them in on dust bowl 5/45, hope they got the job done.

 

Had a round of golf at Tollygunge Club in Kolkata. Like a lot of things in India it was fuck around just to get on the course. I had to hire cart, pay green fees, hire clubs, buy balls, buy tees and load a food and drink card in 5 different places rather than at one counter. After almost giving up, I got out there with my caddy that I was forced to hire. I found out he was worth the $7 though when on the 4th tee I “shanked” one hard left in the water and he ran off after it, meeting me 10 mins later on the green with my lost ball. I was lucky enough to join with a member of Tollygunge just before my second shot on the 5th. He was an investment banker who spent 3 years in Melbourne. It was excellent to play with him as he knew and had access to members benefits; fresh coconut water on holes 6 and 15, lunch and lemon drink at the halfway club house.

 

On to the Ranchi and what I came for, cricket! I met up with Dave from Reddit who was already in town and had met another Aussie couple Jay & Ruby. We ate at what would turn out to be our favourite restaurant in Ranchi “Kathi Kabab“. We had a couple of beers down the road to get acquainted with one another but hit the hay early to get up for day 1 in Ranchi. Upon arrival at the ground, it was a fuck around to get tickets (standard) as there was only one box office. If your gate entry wasn’t near the box office you had a bit of a hike each morning. Knowing there was no grog inside, we snuck copious amounts in to mix with our Sprite and Pepsi’s. I thought it was all over when one of the Ushers from the ground said “this is not good” as he watched me pouring Vodka into a Sprite cup from 2 meters away. In the end though, I don’t think he wanted to make it his problem to kick out the white guy.

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Being only 4 years old, JSCA International Stadium has very nice facilities, spacious and clean. Winning the toss and getting on top early I was pretty vocal and it wasn’t long before my chanting and arm waving for boundaries had the locals firing back with some very poor banter of their own. Mostly though, they just wanted to sit near us and take not so subtle photos of us to show to their family and friends later. They could have just asked, we would have said “yes” to a photo majority of the time anyway. It sounds fucked, but we found out pretty quick that white skin will get you a long way in Ranchi. Lunch day 1 and a few of us were able to walk through multiple security access points without passes to have a buffet lunch in a corporate box. This became a daily thing on days 2-5 and we barely got a sideways look at any stage.

 

“I want a photo with Sudhir” was one of my brainwaves. A thrive of activity compared to where we were, the “cheap seats” where Sudhir was frequenting, didn’t stop cheering all day even though we were winning the battle on the field. We were told by guards “its not safe for you in there” upon trying to enter but forced our way into the action anyway. It was so much fun in with the locals, it’s the closest Ruby, Jay, John and I will be to feeling famous. We were mobbed, I reckon I took over 150 selfies in about 15 minutes, it was peaking. Pushing through to get to Sudhir, I got the shot I needed with him and after shouting “AUSTRALIAAAAAAA” a few times to whip the crowd into a frenzy I was out of there.

 

Next part in Ranchi is best summarised by the still frames I got.

 

So is this the last part of Ranchi too…

 

Draw, 1-1 still, on to Dharamsala we go with all series results in play. I don’t think you could pick two more different Indian cities than Ranchi and Dharamsala. One had barely seen any tourism in its time, the other was thriving with jet setters. With the cricket in town it was “Aussie cricket Bogans” meets “Buddhists on a spiritual journey”. I had drinks with Daniel who is a scorer for the BBC after we shared a cab from the airport earlier that day. Mel Farrell, Jarrod Kimber, Arya Yuyutsu and Adam Collins joined us and we cricket “nuffied” it up, chatting all sorts about the game played in heaven. Finding out we both had plans to climb Triund Hill, Adam and I teed up a trip together the next morning. It was every bit as good as TripAdvisor suggests.

 

Peter Lalor was really the catalyst for this trip after he assured me that “Dharamsala and Cape Town” were two grounds a cricket lover must get to. I’m yet to go to Cape Town but he was fucking bang on with Dharasmala, what an incredible venue to watch cricket. The security was a lot tighter there, no sneaking into corporate boxes, Christ I had to leave my hotel key and coins outside the ground. They tried to make me leave my phone and charger too, but I got shitty and the white skin played its part again as the locals didn’t get the reprieve I did with this issue.

 

Traveling with Dave was great. He’s one of those people that just talks to randoms and befriends them. It made for having a good crew and in Dharamsala our crew grew by 5 when John, Jess, Mac, Jem & Brian joined the ranks. For the whole trip we had a good crew rolling which definitely made the experience all the more enjoyable. All in all this rates in my top few trips away overseas, I love India, I love cricket and that probably helps, but even if you don’t love cricket; “everyone should go at least once”.

 

Cheers Mac

“Why would you leave the summer and go to the winter”?

I got asked this a lot and the answer is for love. Makes you do some crazy things. Bec had been offered a marketing internship in Essen just outside of Dusseldorf, I had the flexibility to pick up and go over so I did. You have to remember that for me, seeing snow and experiencing the cold was something new. Growing up mostly in Queensland or 90% of places in Australia for that matter, you can’t have those experiences. Was it too cold? Fucking oath it was, but still, I have fond memories of the experience already.

It was a 12 week trip in all, so I’ll be mindful to keep it short and punchy as possible.

I connected with Bec in Paris as her two week break commenced, shortly before Christmas. Paris was ok, I’m not sure but I think it’s around 20 countries I’ve visited now and Paris was the first time I had felt unsafe. I wasn’t sure why, but it just didn’t feel right and I told Bec to hold her handbag tight. That instinctive feeling was right when 15 minutes later we watched a lady have her phone stolen from her. It was literally taken from her hand, the thief casually walked away. He picked the wrong bitch to mess with though. This woman was 5 foot high, seemingly from a rough part of the US and she staunched the cunt. The thief returned her phone just to shut her up and stop the slapping to the head.

Paris had all the sights and things you expected but nothing really wowed me. When I went to Agra to see the Taj Mahal, I had expectations, but it wowed me. The Eiffel Tower and it’s friends didn’t. The people for the most part were a bunch of snotty nosed tools, with a few helpful, locals mixed in. Also if I’m honest, wine, cheese and bread aren’t three of my favourite things so I couldn’t really get into the cuisine either. One of the funnier times was on the walk to the Eiffel Tower, where a shady looking ‘shell game’ was being run. There were quite a few people playing though, lots of noise and being a confirmed “sicko on the punt”, it peaked my interest. The turnover of Euros and cheering from the people playing seemed fishy. Why would these people keep playing a game where they are likely to lose and on top of that be betting 50 or 100 Euros at a time (then again Pokies players do this in their droves)? 5 or 10 Euros, ok, I understand, but there was big cash being turned over here. Something wasn’t right. What really gave it away was Bec and I could see which cup the ball was under, yet these people at 50 Euros a hit would pick the wrong cup repeatedly. Bec and I have good eyes but how can we both be seeing it and the people paying and playing can’t? I decided to walk away from the game and watch from 25 meters away, almost instantly they stopped playing, until another tourist came along and BOOM, the game would take off again. It was clear that they were all in on it at this point. I later found out that many people have been stung playing this in Paris and other areas of Europe (I thought I was sick, read some of the stories in the comments).

I must give an honourable mention to Palace of Versailles though. Thanks to @armodan for putting us on to it. It was a bit of a shame not to see the gardens in full flight of summer, but still this was certainly worth the 45 minute train ride each way, very cool. Paris overall is one of those places that I can say; “been there, done that”, highly unlikely to visit again though.

 

White Christmas in Vienna. No, not the “Devil’s Dandruff”, actual snow was forecast which for a couple of Aussie’s was exciting to think about. We stayed in an AirBnB smack bang in the middle of the action. The pebble stoned roads and Renaissance style buildings were quite attractive on the eye. Our options for food were thin night 1 as it was the night before Christmas Eve. In Austria they have their Christmas celebrations on Christmas Eve, weirdos. Additionally we had a Vegetarian out with us this night which made restaurant selection more difficult. We ate at Morris Restaurant & Bar, what a fucking shit hole. There is nothing good you could say about it (see some of the scathing reviews here), not even the drinks were good, well, they just didn’t come at all so it was hard to tell. To the waiter’s credit he came to the table and said “I made a mistake, I’ll kill myself later”, sadly, I saw him the next day serving tables and he wasn’t dead. Other than that culinary experience, Vienna was beautiful. I really loved it and would like to see more of Austria one day.

I had been to Prague once before with four mates. Once I saw the itinerary was missing the “four floors of whores club”, I knew it would be a different trip from the last. News to me that Prague has a castle, was that there when I was here 7 years ago? The castle was a good site to see actually, I get into that sort of shit and we had a great view of the city at the end of our walk through. Pro tip; get the bus up to the top and walk down the hill through the castle, particularly good if you’re lazy like me. News.com.au listed the Astronomical Clock as the worst tourist attraction in Europe and our free walking tour guide said people are often let down by the hourly show. But the most let down are the people who show up at 11pm daily to watch. The clock only does an hourly show from 9am-10pm. Having a sadistic streak, I made sure I was there at 11pm one night to watch the disappointment on the tourists faces, pleasing stuff. Legend has it that Master Hanuš; creator of the clock had his eyes pulled out by the King so he couldn’t make another clock like it. So to fuck them up, he threw himself into the cogs of the clock, broke the clock and committed suicide at the same time. Being the only one that knew how to make/ fix it, the clock remained unused for 100 years I think it was. What a savage cunt. Ate great food in Prague, our favourite was Lokal, place was fucking amazing. We got told “if you eat somewhere where it feels like the waitress is about to punch you in the face and beer is less than 50 korunas then you’re in the right place”. Lokal definitely ticked all those boxes.

Berlin, against seemingly all other points of view, I didn’t rate. One of my best mates lives there so thats a credit to it, but other than that, pretty ordinary joint. I mean the war stuff was quite interesting, in a horrifyingly confronting way. After a while though, it’s like “ok Hitler was a cunt, I get it”. Did spend New Years there which turned out to be a flop because Bec got lost from the group we were with and I spent 45 mins including while the countdown was on looking for her. Fearing the worst, I was running around like Liam fucking Neeson in ‘Taken’, having visions of her being drugged, rapped and organs sold on the freezing streets of Berlin somewhere. Needless to say when she was found, she had all her organs.

Home was in Essen, just outside Dusseldorf. Pretty sure I was the first tourist to come to Essen because the number one thing to do on TripAdvisor was to go to the shopping centre. Fuck me, this place was about as shit as it comes for things to do. There were some good places around to visit, apparently. I didn’t go, I just couldn’t deal with the weather all in all, just wore me down. The whole thing of putting on 50 items of clothing to go get a Döner was doing my fucking nut in. Living in the cold sucks, good to visit, but living there was mostly shit, we have it so good in Australia, made me realise that. Bec and I shared her University accommodation for 10 weeks, I think a good real estate agent would have described the space as “cosy”. It was mostly self contained though, with a shared kitchen. Was good for me as I got to stay rent free as the cost was already covered in Bec’s internship costing. The best thing about Essen was the trips on the Autobahn when we went too and from Berlin each time. Got something with a little more power for the 2nd trip and had it sailing along at 240 k’s which was fun.

Got over to the land of Fosters beer and terrible teeth. Was good fun actually, caught up with a few boys from Twitter. It’s a strange feeling actually, meeting someone you’ve chatted to a lot online, feels like you’ve known them a long time despite never having met. I started out in London where the great man @EWThief145 took me into his home. While there caught up with a few other boys from Twitter including; @ravi_layer@SimUKCricket@Ben_E89 & The Universe Mong @WoakesBravo4lyf . NFL playoffs were happening while I was there, so one night we all got together at ‘The Hippodrome’ in London. They have a filth setup there where you can watch the game on a big screen in a theatre type setup. The view from the top was exceptional, the beers and wings weren’t bad either. After the game, @WoakesBravo4lyf and I hit the Blackjack tables, not sure how he went but I was launching in like any “BIG STRONG AUSSIE” would and did my fucking conkers. HOUSE ALWAYS WINS!

After a few more nights on the town, pissing up around London, I caught the coach up to ‘the Toon’ to see @JM5portsAnalyst. I scored a good deal on a room through @JM5portsAnalyst, a typical truck stop type motel setup, basic but got what you need, bed, bathroom and TV. As we walked off with the key the lady behind the counter said “have fun youse two”, fuck sake, she thinks we’re about to plot each other. @JM5portsAnalyst would be so lucky, believe you me. Ducked up the road later for a few bevies, the drunker this cunt got, the harder it was to understand him. It was like he was speaking another language, later I found out he was, kept talking about “the Ben”, “the Ben” this, “the Ben” that. Not to be rude I’m thinking “Ben” must be his brother in law or a mate he was talking about earlier. I didn’t say anything until I was so lost and asked “who is Ben”? “The Bairn, my daughter, thats what we call a kid up here”. Mental patients these Northerner’s how the fuck do you get “bairn” from “baby”.

Got out to a Toon, FA Cup replay, fuck the city was rocking that night. I quite liked Newcastle actually, was something charming about the place, sort of small town vibe, but clearly very established. The locals turned out in their droves for the match, incredible scenes. We went to a few bars before hand for an authentic night out, cheap piss, no fucking around, genuine experience. Chinese dinner before the game too, but no discount for the work @JM5portsAnalyst  had done at the shop 6 months back had him absolutely seething. No piss allowed at the football, fucking what? Never heard of such a thing, how come all these fights and things happening but everyone is sober? Sniffed some out at half time though down under the stands. Few songs were sung by ‘the Toon’ supporters about Dwight Yorke and his retarded kid and most importantly the home side got the win!

There was one more trip back to Berlin, mainly went back because of my mate who lives there. He wasn’t there last time we visited. There’s not much to say I didn’t already say, shit hole to me, but some would love it.

Aix-en-Provence was an absolute highlight of the holiday. This place was incredible. I absolutely loved it! I’m told the whole southern part of France is amazing, sadly didn’t have much time to explore it this time but I will be back. The way the trip to “Aix” came about was a one in a million really. Hobart, Australia v South Africa, 3rd test, I was there for the cricket and stayed in an AirBnB with 5 other guests. Truth is, the place wasn’t really fit for 7 of us (5 guests and 2 hosts), but there was no room in Hobart. With the test on (and something else I can’t remember), everything was booked. Making the most of it, I suggested that we all go out for dinner together. We all got on great and when Dom and Mon found out I was coming to Europe they said I really should come and see Aix-en-Provence. Fast forward 4 months and we had arrived in “Aix”.

I’m so glad we made it over there on a weekend trip. The whole experience was made particularly special by the fact that Dom and Mon lived in an 18th century mansion. This place was huge and still very much in its original form inside and out. The kitchen had been re-done, but other than that, you didn’t have to imagine how this would have looked when it was built. The garden grounds were beautifully manicured and considering the vacinity to the city centre, quite large. We stayed in our own wing with a bathroom, bedroom and sitting area. It was magnificent. The city itself was beautiful, quite quaint, yet it still had a modern edge. The shopping there was extremely high end, all the big brands there in original architecture. Food incredible and the weather is great 99% of the year I’m told, mind you we did hit one day of rain whilst there. We will definitely be back to explore the coastline in the near future.

Brugge was the last stop before beginning the trek home. It was like a cleaner version of Amsterdam to me. I liked it without being in love with it. I think by this stage I’d seen a lot of similar type cities already. Got to see the first stock exchange ever created, think to this day it still runs out of the same building. Did share an experience with Bec one night where we split a “dip, sip, trip” chocolate drink. Fucking near killed me, the head movies I was having were not healthy. Will never forget it mind you, was quite the “trip”.

It was cheaper to stop in Japan on the way home, having heard nothing but great things, we decided to stay for a few weeks. It was really cool to be able to connect with Bec’s two sisters and their partners on this leg of the trip. Most of them hadn’t left Australia before so it was always going to be great to share that moment with them. We started out in Tokyo and as typically happens when on tour somewhere, everyone got a bit excited early and really gave the piss and karaoke a good nudge in Golden Gai. We got to the fish market and auction which wasn’t as good as I’d hoped, but the exclusivity of the auction gave it some importance I guess. Would have been cool if there was a way to know how much the Tuna was being sold for.

A bullet train (which was an absolute experience) up to Iiyama Station was the next leg of the Japan adventure. From there a bus up the range to our accommodation at Nozawaonsen. Just like everything else in Japan, the snow had been talked up massively to me. Like everything else in Japan, it lived up to the hype. Wow. What a great little city with amazing snow falls. We only had 4 nights and 5 days there but in that time, managed to get an overnight fall of FOUR METERS OF SNOW! Expecting a big fall the night before I remember looking at a 7 meter tree outside our room window with about 1 meter of the stump covered. In the morning I could see around 1 meter of the top of the tree only. The fields were excellent, well maintained and our accommodation had a private Onsen. After a big day on the slopes, come home, put your stuff in the dry room downstairs and then jump straight into your private Onsen, incredible. Nozawaonsen is home to some snow monkeys too which I had to see. Seen tonnes of monkeys in my travels over the years, but never ones that chill in Onsens in the snow.

Honourable mention to Kyoto. Definitely enjoyed it, quite original and authentic in its ways. Got to the Golden Temple (Kinkaku-ji) which was a highlight. Seen so many temples they’re coming out of my “boonty”. But special ones like that are a must see.

 

Cheers Mac

 

“Hello, Vietnam, one more”

“Hello, Vietnam, one more”

 

I’m back and I’m hungrier than ever. That trip has had just the affect that I had hoped and that Bec promised it would. I’m feeling relaxed, my mind has been away (not totally I must admit) from trading and sports for nearly three weeks. Stepping back gave me not only time to think but clear my mind, make some plans and get ready to rip into a big portion of 2016. I have some goals, I read some books on the trip and I’m feeling more equipped than ever to move forward with my trading. I feel a big mental shift in the way that I’m going to be approaching things, it excites me.

 

How to tell your driver you need to pee when he doesn't speak English

From the holiday, I’ve decided to list some stories and the rest for those that are interested will be in captions in the photos. There is too much to cover really and I like to keep the posts as short as possible. So let’s get right into the first little story. This adventure kicked off in the south and after landing in Ho Chi Minh we took a car 4 hours to Cần Thơ. The driver barely spoke a bar of English, so when Bec needed to stop for the bathroom, it was time for a game of charades. The driver wasn’t picking up what we were putting down, I told Bec; “you’re in trouble, you might have to hold it”, with two hours left, that wasn’t reasonable. The driver had a pen and paper so I did my best, “perfectly scaled” drawing of what needed to happen.

 

Snake rice wine in Can Tho, Vietnam

We stayed in a home stay and it was perfection. I will give them a little plug (Green Village Home Stay) as this place was seriously brilliant. One of the staff there had taught herself  five words; “hello”, “Vietnam”, “one more”and “no”. Although it doesn’t sound like much you always knew what she was trying to get across. One night she ripped out this “snake rice wine“, I put my hand up to try it, after 10 seconds of not foaming at the mouth 6 of the other 8 guests at dinner had a crack at. It tasted pretty “snakey”, one of those things where you can say you tried it. Unless of course you were the 65+ y.o David Attenborough type who was adamant that it was delicious and with our friend yelling “hello, Vietnam, one more”, holding another shot of it up he swooped in, dropped to one knee and chopped the fuck out of that shot glass, what a man (he didn’t actually drop to one knee but he did have another shot).

 

Never one to shirk the chance to step outside the comfort zone with the food; rat, frog and snake was some distance outside the zone. Bec is petrified and I mean petrified of rats, so it was an absolute credit to her for trying it. Truth was though, it was delicious, texture and presentation reminded me of a small bird like a quail and the flavour was similar. Frog was by far and away the best of the three, it was seriously like my three favourite meats rolled into one. Taste like chicken, flesh texture like fish and skin texture and taste like pork crackling. It was so good I ordered a plate for myself after the first lot was done. Snake was shit, the inside was scooped out, mixed with spices, rerolled in the skin, then fried. The outside skin was crunchy but the taste and texture on the inside was pretty rank. It was served with raw fermented fish sauce, which smelt and tasted like the name suggests, feral.

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While out with Becs cousin Chris who lives in Hanoi we tried “Funky Balloon”. In fact the whole bar was doing it and I really had no idea what was about to happen. I was told to take the balloon, inhale it, exhale it back into the balloon and repeat. I got to about the 4th time of doing it and stood up thinking “this isn’t doing anything”, then boom it hit me. The music echoed through my head and time stood still, something wasn’t right and then I blacked out. When I came to everyone was pissing themselves laughing and my hand was wet. I asked “what the fuck was that and what just happened?”. “You drooled on yourself” said Bec, my jumper had a massive drool patch on the front of it and my hand was fairly covered too. Seems the “funky balloon” which is loaded with “happy gas” made me a vegetable for a little bit, got to be good for the brain, right?

 

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The H’Mong people (local minority) work hard for a dollar, they follow you in the most awful hiking gear for kilometres at a time just to try and sell you something. Everything started with; “hello, what your name”? “Where you from”? Minh explained that they didn’t understand my responses, they just ask it over and over. I tested out his theory after being asked for the 10th time; “where you from” to which I replied;  “my mum’s vagina”, Bec laughed, then I laughed, then the lady laughed.

Gambling for each others marbles in Vietnam

Kids punting for marbles in the village. Most of Asia has some sort of ban on gambling. There is exceptions to that rule, but mostly the gambling is done ‘underground’. We managed to see a variation of ‘heads or tails’ being played by some of the boys in Ta Van. They had three little squares of plastic on a plate, the solid bowl goes over the top, shake, shake, shake, put down your cash and take turns in calling “white” or “blue” (majority wins). The boys were all under 10 so they were playing each other for their marble collection instead of money. I did slip the boys a cheeky 10,000 VND each so they could get themselves a treat. All three slammed it in the pocket just in time before their mum came outside. Sugar Cane all round at the local corner store for those boys.

 

Outside Bruce and Cowboys in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia
Outside Bruce and Cowboys. No one believed me that I had the “Golden Arches” on my ass.

Last stop; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This is always a fun way to start or end any trip. My friend from Australia has been teaching English there for the last 8 years and lives there with his wife. Things always get pretty loose and this time around was no exception. We started at a non gay bar (despite the name) called “Bruce & Cowboys. The name is an affectionate one created by the locals as the owners are two Indians; one named Bruce and the other who wears a cowboy hat. There is one barrel out the front, no chairs and we basically bought this cheap Korean beer called “Hite” (very tasty drop mind you) for $1 AUD a beer and got plastered.

The crew of 4 decided that a new watering hole would be shrewd. The pool table at the new bar was a nice touch, however when I thought we had been beaten by 7 balls, I did “the right thing” and went pants down around the table. Muslims don’t really like that and Pip was quick to call for “the cheque please”. The rest of the night was filled with drinking, randoms, food and drunk chat.

The next day one of the lads from the night before, went back to Bruce and Cowboys and Bruce had this to say about me:

“I respect your people, but Bret’s friend, last night, he’s not very well in the head”.

It’s like Brucey has known me for a whole lifetime.

On the trading front, I did do a very small bit here and there on the cricket. I’ll update everything in the way of money won and lost etc in a separate post soon. As always, thanks for reading and if you enjoy this blog please share it with anyone that you think might enjoy it too.

Cheers Luke