So Im now 5 days into my travels, I would love to share some photos but I can’t transfer them from my camera here in Kiev. When i am able to grab them (most likely in 2 weeks) I will. But I thought I could update you on some happenings and thoughts so far.
I went to Tokyo first up and thought staying up all night would be the best idea, obviously it was not and probably sits alongside Bush’s war in Iraq, Not totally pointless, but has taken its toll on the body count. After roaming around the airport trying to find out where we could leave our bags for the night, we headed into the city on the crazy metro system which has like 3 or 4 different private owners, hundreds of different lines and thousands of people squashed into each carriage. One good thing is that you have to turn your phone on silent and not take calls whilst on the metro, which is great cause on the metro in London, I had an experience that made me understand why this is. With terrible pop ringtones, which they let ring a few times at some rediculous level, they spoke at unbearably high volume and pitch. Luckily I speak english and could only pick up every third word of whatever they were trying to communicate in their pomy, west london carribean english.
To be honest I was expecting more from Tokyo, yet it was still fun. Walking through Shinjuku at night is quite an experience, rather like walking through The Cross on a Friday, the only difference was that it was Monday and the pushers were big black guys from the Carribean, who thought they could offer the world to you at a nudie bar.
After sleeping on the 6am metro back to the airport then a few more hours in the airport, I was feeling awake yet less keen about my 12 hour flight to London on a packed 747. But God is good (or others might call it luck). My seat didn’t stay in the upright posistion (the one it needs to be in for take off and landing) so I got upgraded to the only seat left in the plane in Club (which is a half way house between business and frist, I had a full recliner) which was just amazing. I didnt sleep much because I watched 3 movies and enjoyed two 3 course meals.
So i spent the evening in London, and will share more after my second trip there in 2 weeks, but then flew out to Kiev on Wednesday. The Ukraine is a beautiful country, and although the city can be in some ways dirty, it is also a lovly place to be, with the exception of one thing. SMOKING!! They problem is, that it hasn’t lost its cool factor here and many people smoke everywhere, so I feel as if I have returned to the packed pokie room at Monas, when it was restricted to one room and I cant get out (currently smoke fills my nose as it floats in from outside). This was also an issue in Japan too.
I am taking pictures of my volleys as I travel, which could easily be cons, but I’m not talking that kind of Cons. Today as Dad and I walked down one of the busiest streets here in Kiev, a man dropped a neat bundel of american notes, like what 50 cent would carry around in his back poket yet with one’s not hundred’s. I picked it up and called out like any respectable citizen, he quickly turned around, and was mildly thankful. We then went down into an alley to check out a bar, he followed us down claiming he had dropped two bundels and that we had obviously kept one of them. This is mosly in english, with some Ukrainian thrown in. Then some guy ‘hears’ the word ‘problem’ and claims he is secret service or something like that by flashing some badge, which looked suspect. Dad was with it and worked out these guys were trying to con us as tourists and grab some of our american or euro money. Dad spoke in ukrainian to them and said he wanted to ask the real police about it, they didnt like this and soon gave up. In a way it was lucky we were aussie and didnt have euros or greenbacks on us.
Anyway, dont have much time left, will post another day and Its getting long now anway.