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Spending money on gifts and presents. Groceries

Eat healthy while you travel

One of the things I find most difficult when exploring is to eat healthy while you travel. A balanced nutritional diet is fairly important to keep your energy levels up and brain active.

A farmers market in Santa Monica

The problem wasn’t always the cost of buying the food, other things like storing fresh food and sourcing it in some places could prevent me from making better food choices. Continue reading Eat healthy while you travel

Thailand: Walking street market day in Chiang Mai

It’s a sunny Sunday here in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand and Sunday means Walking Street market day.  This is when the locals get to show off their trading and manufacturing skills.  Each area is tasked with producing and specialising in certain crafts, they all come here on the Sunday to sell their stuff.

The big difference here is that there is no Thai price, so foreigners can get a real bargain here, and often much higher quality stuff than the markets usually just selling knock off goods.

This was a great opportunity for me to practise some of the new photography skills I had been learning on YouTube.  What a great resource it is for tutorials.  In particular a guy called Gavin Hoey from England who is very engaging and knowledgeable.

I head to town for some lunch at Juicy 4 U which is number 8 on TripAdvisor.  It’s an organic veggie restaurant close to walking street.  It’s still to early to head for the market so I head back to Vanilla Place to relax until 4pm when I walk back to the market.  Most stalls are only just setting up.  I head to the temple grounds as I know they will have food at them.  I go to a few different ones.  First I get a veggie pad Thai and then a twisted potato which reminds me of a long twisted Pringle.

I walk the entire length of walking street and have a look at more temples, at 6pm everyone pauses for the Thai national anthem.  I am knackered by around 7pm so walk back to the guest house.  I then realise that Ireland are playing Wales in the rugby tonight so get a tuk tuk to the U.N. Irish bar which seems to be mostly full of British and American sexpatriats.

We lose against Wales and I decide to call it a night at that stage.

St Stephen’s Day on the weekend

How glad am I that I didn’t over do things yesterday?  I think a lot of people have been fatigued by the celebrations and are seriously considering some abstinence from the drink for a while.

Andy gets back from Fitzroy after a few days over there. A big tasty Woolshed dinner is in order and some discussion about what went on over the weekend.  I used the rest of yesterday to not just reflect on the weekend, but also on my entire time in Cairns.  There are loads of things I love about the place, but some disturbing things that I think have almost damaged me and who I am. It’s not all paradise in paradise.

Others haven’t been so lucky and are still caught up in it all. I decide that I have to move on from this and make some changes. I will be sad to leave some really great people here, but glad to be getting back on the road to some new experiences hopefully. And a few big adventures are on the cards before I finally say goodbye to Australia.

I head home and read more of my latest Bill Bryson purchase for my Kindle. Hopefully I can pick up a few writing tips from Bill.

Happy Mojito Day from Cairns!

I’ve had an amazing day today with Helen Du Cros making great Mojitos and relaxing at her new place on the balcony, just enjoying some of the simple things in life.

First we had to go shopping to get all the ingredients.  They are as follows:

  • Light Rum (we used Bacardi)
  • Sugar
  • Soda Water
  • Limes
  • Fresh Mint Leaves
  • Strawberries
  • Water

After the shopping was done we headed back to Helen’s place to make the drinks.  First we had to put a cup of sugar in a pot and heat it for each cup of water we put in the pot.  We used 2 cups of sugar and 2 cups of water and added some fresh mint leaves.  This was to make the syrup.  Here is the method I used for the entire process, although we added strawberries to our mix as well as the limes.

Homemade Strawberry Mojito with iceSadly we had no muddler to muddle the mint leaves so I used the handle end of a potato masher.  We also didn’t have ice blades to crush the ice, so instead we just used ice cubes

The results were great.  Looking forward to drinking this on Christmas Day!

She sucked hard in the Tim Tam and liked it!

It was time for an experiment, one that I had been longing to carry out since a previous equipment failure.  I found a partner to help me this time.  Kerri was well up for it.  It would involve some hot liquid and some hard sucking.

We were going to try the Tim Tam Explosion!  After preparing a couple of chai lattes the double choc Tim Tams came out.

Getting ready to take on the Tim Tam challengeI used the incorrect method of biting two corners off and then dunking.  Kerri was more adventurous.  She bit both ends off and dipped one end into the tea and sucked hard.  It didn’t work the first time.  But on the second attempt she had a massive explosion of pleasure in her mouth.

I have yet to give the new method a chance so another chai latte later this afternoon.

Helen Got Too Excited!Now Helen has come back from lunch it’s time for me to really give this thing  go.  We have the three chai lattes and the remaining three Tim Tams.  There is no room for error this time.  I ask Kerri to lead.  Myself and Helen follow the instructions closely.  I suck my chai latte through the biscuit which makes it melt.  It’s messy, but it’s good.  I have been converted.

More shockingly.  Helen is in a state of ecstasy as she sucks the biscuit and it explodes inside her mouth.  She gets so excited that the chai latte splashes from the cup.

This has been a day I will not forget with these two girls.

Teaser: Coming tomorrow!  Learn how to fold a towel into the shape of a bow in our special video tutorial.