I consider myself lucky to get along with my cousin so much that I can call him friend, moreover fellow companion for my quirkiest travel ideas.
Few months ago, around my birthday to be more specific, I started wanting badly to change my life. Or something of it. Or everything of it. I spent last birthday completely on my own, and even the most stubborn or individualistic ones might understand how painful that feels. Especially after I also spent NYE alone, not on purpose. Avoiding Facebook and thoughts painted in black, I booked myself on a day adventure, to a tropical island in a German hangar, in the middle of Brandenburg forest. In that crazy place ( https://www.tropical-islands.de/en/ if you want to check it out)…That’s where and when leaving the city and my situation for a holiday looked like a bloody good idea. Traveling defines me, and I’m good at it. I no longer wanted to be stuck in my miserable state of…being the worst version of me.
I started fantasizing about Seoul, because since Hong Kong 2013, the city was at the top of my list. I spoke with my cousin about. Is it doable? We’re not really swimming in gold, lately. Even if we might have the attitude when we are together, a fashionable bunch of colonialists at heart with a serious mixology addiction. To understand, I once told him “rooftops make me look thinner”…. Anyway, once I explained the idea, we roughly calculate the fare. Too much. Darn.
What to do? Change destination!
Go to SEA, feel the warm weather, explore urban jungles and ancient cities! Who says no to that, right? From there, it was quite easy to draft the itinerary, spanned in a three week time. And money-wise, affordable.
First things firsts: the flight tickets. It’s fair to say that few months in advance (4 for us) we got the best deal for a multi-city ticket with Qatar. Spoiler: I flew to Asia with Emirates before, and it was way, way better, so that’s my first advice.
Secondarily, the internal flights with low cost Asian companies also was quite easy step, a 3 months in advance booking also helped us sparing essential money. I used skyscanner.com, as per usual, to find the cheapest airlines (Airasia, anyway, is the easiest one, with infinite destinations).
I spent the last 2 months focusing on accommodation, clothing and camera gears.
Oh, and working three jobs to afford it, while Berlin was having the best summer ever. Best decision ever, the good weather helped me heaps.
On the Accommodation front, we wanted to experience everything, from living with a family to hostel, to basic hotel until luxury ones, where affordable. I spent lots of weekend finding the perfect spots, and I think we got it, quite proudly I might state. Not a single place was the same from the other, and that kept the tour fascinating too.
Talking about clothing, I went classic: white to win, cotton and viscose the only way. That didn’t stop my sweating and sunburning, but hey, I’m a whitey with freckles…
Now, talking about cameras and camera gear. I extra worked in order to afford my new baby, a Panasonic LX100. Small, light mirrorless with the soul of a Tiger. Winning choice for the adventure. I paired it up with some necessary gears, like a wristband strap and Solar filters.
After the preparation and few skype call with cuz, it was time to go. Next stop: Singapore. More about that in the next chapter, as I hear from the radio podcasts “The story continues. Stay with us”
P.S. I’m writing this prequel from a rooftop, river view bar in Bangkok. This is what I see. Ace. (If you read typos, I’m sorry, I’m writing on a smallish screen!)