Tuesday, 12 November 2013

10 things I've learned in Asia

Asia is a weird and wonderful place. I had the best time travelling across Thailand, Cambodia,Vietnam and Bali for the past 8 weeks. Unfortunately, 8 weeks wasn't long enough for me as I could have done and seen so much more (a good excuse to head back though!)

Rather than getting annoyed,you have to expect cultural differences, even when they are silly little things that would seem so simple at home - the Asians do things differently!

1. Food never comes at the same time - starters arrive with mains, sometimes the wait between meals arriving can be well over half an hour - your meal arrives, you start eating

2. 'Same same but different'  - you will hear this constantly and it will only make sense if you have been or are in SE Asia

3. Transport is always late - arrival of transport and the length of time you will be going somewhere - our sleeper buses often arrived over an hour late and took at least one to two hours extra to get there.

4. Sleep is a rarity and should be embraced when possible - the roads are shocking, you will not be sleeping properly on those buses.

5. People will stare - it's natural but something I didn't expect as SE Asia has so many tourists and backpackers, yet they will still be fascinated and quite often take a picture of you or with you.

6. You will be able to get typical 'backpacker' things at markets in every country - floaty trousers etc - DO NOT worry if you don't get something somewhere for some reason; you will see it or something similar again.

7. You can party EVERYWHERE - backpacking is like first year at Uni or maybe freshers, depending how hard you go.

8. You'll get ripped off at least once - be it on markets, with travel costs, even with people giving you wrong directions for no reason whatsoever.

9. Toilets are never nice - baby wipes, toilet roll, tissues are essential - and wear trousers and flipflops for sleeper buses - holes in the ground are common, toilets with seats are not.

10. You will get sick of rice and noodles at some point, yet always be able to eat more

Oh and another. You will LOVE 7/11 in Thailand - amazing sandwiches and sesame nuts that I wish I had stocked up on. 


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