I’m obsessively fascinated by planes.

My new job takes me to a business park each morning. To be fair, it’s nothing fancy, and to be brutally honest, it’s in the arsehole of nowhere. The only way to get there by public transport means crossing an utterly depressing suburb of 1960s architectual malfunction. However, what makes things seriously interesting for me – the park is near the airport.

You’d think that someone who lives in the flight path of a half-decent international airport would be fed up with planes. I’m not. I love them struggling in extreme weather conditions. (Trust me, that allows for some seriously funny cross-wind approaches!). Besides, we’ve all been in cross-wind approaches before, we just didn’t notice – unless you fly Emirates with their nose-gear camera and you see your fellow travellers nearing heart failure as the plane heads towards a 45 degree sector right off the runway.

Anyhow, one of my options to get to work includes a bus that runs parallel to one of the lesser used runways at Hamburg-Fuhlsbüttel Airport. Well, not exactly parallel, but parallel to its imagined extension, if you know what I mean.

It’s a strange sight. A BIG 777 taking off to Dubai (one of two intercontinental destinations out of Hamburg) racing my Metrobus 23 on my way to Barmbek-Süd .  (I do acknowledge this might only amuse people familiar with Hamburg’s socio-geographic infrastructure). But it’s such a stunning sight (the bus isn’t doing too bad!!) I’m trying to pretend to be bored while this is happening. But I fail badly.

It’s true. Go with the flow (of public transport!).

I have not abandoned the blog. I’ve just taken holidays to the extreme. Besides, internet was relatively expensive in the islands, and who or what could possibly compete with my own little island paradise?

The plane safely brought me back to Hamburg this afternoon (mind you, it took me no less than eight take-offs to get over my anxiety after my excessive fascination with plane crash documentaries last autumn…). The pilot’s little innocent comment made me quite happy about coming home: “The weather in Hamburg is moderate, and there has been no forecast of rain for the last three hours.” Whether or not that was meant to be funny, I couldn’t resist a giggle.

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(Okay, you have either heard of this spot watching The Beach or Tsunami vids on youtube, but that’s where I’ve ended up.)

Compared to Railay this place almost feels incredibly cheap. Internet, on the other hand, is very pricey, so I’ll keep this one short (ish). (more…)

Well, I said, there are not many non-tourist things to do in Thailand.

I suppose it depends on which way you look at it. (more…)

Okay, so we’ve moved up a notch on the Baht scale.

After a rather cheapish two weeks between Bangkok and Chiang Mai I figured money buys you a little time. So I hopped on a 747 for a 50 minute flight into the capital city, from there on a slightly smaller plane to Krabi in Thailand’s south. Krabi is an international airport and serves daily flights to Bangkok and Helsinki (yep). I personally believe the local government pays Finnair to come here for international recognition, the airport is little more than a dirt track and a concrete slab. (I hear they use bamboo huts for security over in Phuket). (more…)

I’ve arrived. Chiang Mai (almost in the very north of the country) was one corner stone in my “plans”. It ranks second to Bangkok in the number of guest houses and tuk-tuk scams. I was barely out of the train and dragged to information desks and touts. But, I’ve found a fairly cheap and somewhat clean place without being forced to sign up for a hill trek immediately (this is how cheap hostels usually make their money).

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One of the main reasons to actually stay in Sukhothai beyond a day’s visit to its historical park was the raving review in the Lonely Planet about a hostel in town. Said to be the ultra-friendly place to stay (more…)

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