Wednesday, June 30, 2010

to have a baby!

(please bear that it is 14.41 poland time and I am a bit drunk)

20/06/10

Life is really fun. I dont know why but I just felt so, at least up to now, even some bad things happened, but was just that they meant to happen.

Was attending a party last night with Tyce. You know it is so common to go for a party in europe, everything is consider a party, even without alcohol or dance. We went to a folk dance party, one of the best party I have, a lot of Polish folk music and folk dance, a lot of spinning and spinning and spinning, reminded me on Sufi dance. It was terribly cool!

And we met Venorica for breakfast today. To the railway track, we brought bread, cheese, sausages and beer. And it is afternoon. Before leaving the house, we have red wine, from Purtugal. Side track a bit, that day while we were walking on the track, I was telling Tyce that my first time walking on the train track was while I was in Hanoi, the education back home is you might get hit by a train if you walk on the train track. It is so horrible those propaganda and education that limiting us from so may things and we dont even realise it!

We have some good chat last night, about people who see and who dont. About stupidity and wise. There are not many people that see but it doesnt really matter, we judge a bit but just because we are human being. Then the cousin came back and we talk about having baby. He said that he wanted to have baby to change the world. haha. He said the world is too shitty and by educating his child to be a better person he will change the world. He said his child must learn instrument, learn more than one language and must travel abroad. It makes me laugh.

haha.

It was a nice chat though, I enjoy that.

Leaving Warsaw tomorrow. I will miss all the parties and the invitations to grill, breakfast and party. It is nothing significant, just enjoying the time spent together. Simply it is rare to meet people who are conscious and see, and once meet one it is preciously appreciated ;)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

taking flight

29/06/10

I dont know.. I think it is kind of annoying and awful to purchase a flight ticket.. may be some will expect it this way but I am not used to take flight, so the trick annoyed me a bit.

After thinking of going Norway, I started to check the plane ticket from Baltic area to Norway, found one for 6 euro, flying from Riga. Last night it changed to 10 euro. Without hesitation, I started filling the form for purchasing.. check in luggage costs 15 euro, online check in cost 5 euro, airport check in costs 10. So it will ended up at least 30 euro, which is of course, not really expensive, but I dropped the idea of taking plane. I will take ship instead, at least with the similar amount of money, I still have my flexibility of time.

So, it seems like up to this moment, I am so certain in challenging the most expensive countries in the world. Finland and Norway. I must be crazy.

Let's see how.

blackride Berlin, U bann and S bann

I shall say how.. I mean how to blackride train in Berlin, although it isnt sound ethical at all.

The ticket controller are usually wearing vest, they look strong, well you can consider them fat. I met twice, both of the times, they are men.

Each time they will come in in 2 or 3 person to prevent you sneak away from the other end. They will stand at the bar not moving in seeking for seat. They have one machine, usually they put it in their vest. They dont carry anything with them other than the machine and their identity card.

So it is not that difficult now. Those with bicycle, dog, kid, trolley, luggage, plastic bags, backpacks, those eating, drinking, talking in groups are most probably not ticket controller.

I met them twice, I mean the ticket controller. Blackride for 3 days and the forth day was invited by Theresa for lunch. I was late so I bought a day ticket to take the bus. Usually I dont take bus because I thought you cant blackride bus (which after that I realised that I was wrong), so usually I walk for 30 minutes to get from my host house to the train station. That day when I bought the day ticket (6.1Euro), I got checked, that was the first time I see the controller and try to categorized them (as what human being always do).

Friday, I got checked again on the train. Hell it is 6.1 euro I am not buying the ticket for the second time. So I changed the ticket date myself. But what I wanted to say is not I change the ticket date, but before they show their ID saying that they are ticket controller, I already knew they are! So although they are not in uniform, you are still able to recognise them, they put their hand in the pocket preparing to show the card once the train door shut, all you need to do is just to be observant enough, you can slip out the train before the door is closed!

=====================================================
So far, there is no train gate (city train) for Germany and Czech Republic. There are train gates in Amsterdam but they were opened all the time.

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Well, to blackride bus in Berlin, just take any old ticket, the driver dont even look at it!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Helmut Newton

Got the chance to visit the Museum for Photography in Berlin. It was an exhibition of Helmut Newton, the German photographer, famous for take women in nudity. Halls of beautifully erotic pictures, extraordinary gorgeous.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

same same

25/06/10

Shared host with two Latin Americans, they are from Agentina. We were walking and chatting last night after the concert.

Agentina is very dangerous?
Yes.
Pickpocket or rob?
Rob, they took knife and point at you to get money.
Oh, same same Malaysia. But Malaysia is more dangerous, they hit you until injured so that you cannot fight back before they get your money.
Oh? Then is same same Argentina.

In Argentina, if you stand at the road side and send text (sms), someone will runover and grabbed your handphone.
Oh, same same Malaysia.

In Malaysia if you put your cellphone or wallet on the table, the next second it will be gone.
Oh, same same Argentina.

In Argentina you cannot put your valuable in the outer part of your backpack and you always need to carry your backpack in front, or your valuable will be stole.
Oh, same same Malaysia.

In Malaysia we dont feel comfortable walking on the street if it is late.
Oh, same same Argentina.

Then you can go to Argentina, no problem for you.
Yea, you also can come to Malaysia!

Friday, June 25, 2010

moving no where

23/06/10

The same World Press Photo exhibition that I was rejected entrance with the journalist card in Amsterdam is in Berlin now, and the entrance is free for everyone, but world press photo is nothing close to entertaining, and not for everyone.

Before leaving, the computer catalogue show some of the winning press photo since 1950, flipped over and found that after half a century passed, the world is still nothing better than before, pretty ironic. Still war and hunger.

We are moving no where.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dream

23/06/10

There was an old man in the house when I reached my host place that day. He was her father, and we started to chat.

He told me a story. Long long time ago, when he was still a 12 years old boy, he watched a movie (it was black and white at that time) and saw someone diving in the sea wearing a pair of fin. He dreamed of having a pair of the fin but at that time, the fin costs 35Mark and his pocket money is half a cent Mark. If he were to save the half a cent mark for the fin, it will take almost 2 years time. After half a year time, he finally has the thing he wanted, by studying the materials and the techniques to turn rubber into fin, he self made one.

The same kind of effort can be seen in the wall museum, which shown how people self made whatever kind of simple plane with propeller, dig tunnel, using hot air balloon, all sorts of creativity, just to escape from the east to the west. Amazing huh.

That day when the old man finished telling me the story, I asked myself what if the same situation happened in the modern world. I guess for the majority, if the thing is out of reach or need too much effort to achieve, we probably will just dropped the idea. Or the society will ask you to drop the idea.

How pity.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Travel with drug dealer

21/06/10

A brief update..

After a ride with a murderer in Wales, that day I have a chance to hitch hike with a drug dealer from Prague to the border of Germany. Wahaha. No, he is not a dealer, he planted marijuanafor self consume but get caught in Poland, well he is a Polish. He was arrested and sent to prison for 60 hours, won the case, and travel to Prague to start hisnew life. While I met him, he is on his way to Usti nad labem, a town in Czech Republic near to Germany border, there is a national park, which he wanted to find a lake or river to fish and spend the weekend. He has no money, no home.

He pointed at the back of the car.. see? Marijuana.
I looked back.
Damn.
What if the car stopped by a police, I will be accused as partner, I guessed.

Do you mind if I smoke?
Well I dont.
Do you want to try?
Well I am crossing border later, I better dont.

That day the other driver told me that those traveling from Amsterdam back to Berlin get fine if the blow of their breath contained marijuana. It remained in your body up to a considerably long time, I shouldnt take the risk. And I was checked twice on the street at the border, may be I looked a bit like homeless illegal immigrant.

And I shared him a kit kat bar in the car. He asked me how much. Luckily I shared the chocolate bar or I can induced that he is going to charge me for the ride! haha.

Just a brief story for the day. Have no time/ facility to write that frequent, but a pity that interesting stories just slipped away without writing.

Going to Berlin soon today. Dresden is beautiful, there was a 3 days festival just ended last night. Eastern Germany is so different and I am looking forward to how liberal is Berlin. The weather is not that beautiful though today but anyway..

Visiting friends in Warsaw soon.. so much looking forward to it!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Looking for Travel Companion

I am not sure if anyone out there think it is cool to travel like me or with me, well in case anyone interested to travel together, below is my drafted route:

Czech Republic (Cesky Krumlov - Prague) - Germany (Dresden - Berlin) - Poland (Poznan - Warsaw) - Lithuania (Vilnius, Siauliai, Kaunas) - Latvia (Riga) - Poland (Warsaw - Krakow) - Slovakia - Hungary - Austria - Slovenia

Travel style, mainly couchsurfing and completely hitchhiking. If we travel together, you will stay with the host I stayed with. And in any case we cant find a host, it is always sleeping outside than in the hotel/ hostel (so you need a sleeping bag).

You dont need a lot of money other than getting yourself into Europe, the monthly budget is 300USD, with this you can get bread, ham and cheese from the supermarket, you can get vegetables and fruits as well, chocolates, biscuits, including the daily use e.g. toiletries and sometimes a glass of beer in the pub!

The estimation of the destination according to above route: 1-2 days in small town/city, 3-5 days in big city (Berlin, Prague). Estimated to reached Berlin by 21 June. The rest you can figure out yourself, I am happy to adjust my route a bit to fit yours.

Well I dont do much sighseeing though, I go to museum sometimes but not castles. I love old towns and markets, love seeing people in their everyday life. I am more than happy that we travel together but not sticked together.

And the reason I am looking for travel partner, probably is because I need new challenge! That was a weird feeling that day while I was walking in the old town of Salzburg, Austria. The day was too hot and I covered my head with the map that given by the tourist office. I found that I can stick the map on my cheeks because I was sweating and sticky. I found it funny and would like to share it with somebody, that was the reason I started to think about a travel companion.

However, you shall know that traveling and meeting people is a serious thing that I like to do in my life and I treated both seriously (well you may not believe me since I am so lazy and easygoing, but it is true), and my travel style is my personal choice. Too bad that in most situation, I wont spend money for conveniency, not because I dont have money or I have plenty of life to waste, but I simply believe that nothing is wasted. Time wasted while hitchhiking can be patience gain, it is the perspective that matters.

Anyone who think you would like to try/ learn this kind of traveling style, perhaps once in a lifetime, feel free to drop me a mail. And yes, it costs nothing, I dont charge.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Well taken care of

13/06/10

First of all, I dont like the new layout of my blogspot and I dont know how to change it back.. :-(

Next, recently I was quite well taken care of, especially after staying with Astrid in Vaihingen/ENZ, good things keep happening..

First, it was a 'first time day' in Vaihingen/ENZ. First time wearing bikini, first time swimming in a lake (I always think if you swim in the lake, you will surely drown), first time sun tanning (I always think it is stupid), not first time eating German sausage but first time barbeque it myself, but first time eating barbeque onion and barbeque banana with honey and coconut paste (yummy).

Secondly, I met Csabi in Stuttgart. Three of us: a_tham, Astrid and Csabi having breakfast in Stuttgart park. It was a bit strange as we met in Mar Musa Syria last Christmas and meet again in Germany! Not because the world is small but because we do make our effort to meet up with each other, that is always what valuable more.

Thirdly, I got picked up by a 59 years old lady somewhere near Stuttgart airport within 5 minutes after Astrid dropped me off, and discovered she is a couchsurfer! She invited me back to her house in Geislingen Steige and I have loads of fun chatting and drinking with her friends and friends and friends.. they are all after 50s or so with a cheerful and big heart. Of course, I do drink a lot.. champaign, sparkling red, most (alcohol from apple), beer.. keep 'porst(ing)' and lots of laughters. It was incredible.. and Gudrun (name of the lady) even offer to drive me to Ulm and Augsburg (somewhere > 100km away) the next day! I thought it was the best thing that happened in my travel. Many stories shared, some are so unbelievable to call life! But life is unbelievable. And we ate some intestine in Ulm, which seems to be the local delicacy, and beer and beer and beer.. but it were dark, and I love dark beer.

Forthly, I got to Salzburg because I wanted to meet Mr. Ung, who was my secondary school physics teacher. Stayed with Ursula who is another amazing lady, cook simply delicious food, so serene and matured. She can tolerate almost everything and perhaps she is more tao than me. I insisted to clean her blinds although the dirt was too stubborn it looked no different after cleaning, but I am happy not because I helped her (because she said she doesnt want it to be cleaned) but I wanted to find something to do.

Fiftly of course, I met my teacher in Salzburg. He was 'amazed' (I believed so) by the way I am traveling and wanted to give me a day of real tourist feeling here. So he kindly invited me for the trip to Eagle Nest and Königsee Lake. It was very 'tourist' I cant denied it, feeling a bit weird while the whole public bus is occupied by visitors, but definitely thank him for the offer, or I wont have the chance to have the feeling of surrounded by Alps, it was simply fantastic. ANd of course, drinking with his friends and teasing on him was fun, as we used to teased him even during our school time, and he will laugh and scold us back humbly. It is just incredible and unimagineble when you tell someone you are meeting up with your teacher in a foriegn country I guess.. I must have done some good thing in life that deserves it.

Sixly, my Salzburg host introduced me another interesting person in Burghausen, somewhere in Germany, which I am going to visit her tomorrow. Will let you know the story ;-)

And well, if there is one negative thing happened in between, it was I copied wrongly my host number in Munich. Called him plenty of times but seems like he switched the phone off. I waited until the day started to turned cold and look for anywhere to sleep nearby. Tried the last time pressing the bell in this student apartment and his flatmate open the door. Initially I think it is not nice occupying (it wasnt locked) his room before his consent, but hell who cares. So I invaded into his territory, taken shower and prapre my sleeping bag. And he came back, we said hi and sat down and started to chat like old friends. Of course, I found out that I have dialed the number wrongly, and he didnt mind that I was in the room without his permission. Luckily an easy person.

So it didnt turn out bad either :)

By the way, I was also well taken care of in Bochum, great food, good laugher and real friendship, extremely amazing chat late into the night, thanks to a_zhu, Eric and Leon!! I shall see you again before we turned 50 ;p

Well after this, the route will be through Czech Republic, into Germany again (Dresden and Berlin), and then Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. Too bad I will missed 2 friends who will be in Europe soon (KH in Zurich and Mimi in Paris) as I am heading east.. So are you nearby? Just drop me a mail.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Turkish

Again. The Turkish.

Had a really bad time a few days ago when I tried to get from Bochum to Vaihingen(ENZ). After a few hours waiting at the roadside changing sign from Karlsruhe to Frankfurt to Koln, I decided to take a train out of this area. The train ticket from Bochum directly to Vaihingen cost somewhere 80-90 euros, 4 hours. siao. After much consideration, I bought a cheapest ticket to Essen, 4.5 euro, well at that time I have no idea what can I do at Essen, I only knew that I am heading south.

I didnt alight at Essen, there wasnt a conductor to check ticket. While the conductor came, I have missed Essen and already arriving at Duisburg. From Duisburg to Koln was not difficult, 2 rides and I was there, but the time was already almost 7pm. Waiting at Koln for such a long time and a car stopped. I saw the two faces in the car, young guys with big beard. Well.. I climbed into the car.

Where are you from?
Turkey.
Damn!

They didnt bother me, they were listening to some Islamic song. Allah Akbar.
It was around 200km if I remember correctly, they didnt try to talk or what, and I was too tired as well.

They put me down at Frankfurt airport gas station, handing me an Islamic book written in Arabic and German, with 10 Euro notes in it. I pull out the money and returned them the book (wahaha it was the other way, I took the book and returned the money), it was a hassle free Turkish ride. Alhamdullilah.

And from there I get a direct ride to Pforzheim, where my friend Astrid picked me up from the service station. A nearly 12 hours on the road, record breaking.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

原来

在阿姆斯特丹的梵高博物院内看见拥挤的人群,在每一幅画前伫立良久,感觉前所未有的新鲜。原来每个人都是鉴赏家。

With new mother a zhu


@ Bochum, Germany

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Black Monday

01/06/10

Yesterday was my black Monday. You cant imagine how black it was.

It took 5 rides to get from Amsterdam to Bochum, a distance required 2.5 hours ended up with 10 hours in total.

First, I went to the hitchhiking point in Amsterdam at 11am, it took me less than 3 minutes to get on a car.
Hey what a lucky day! I thought.
After drove for 500 meters or so, we realized that we are actually going on a dirrent highway. So the lady dropped me at a gas station and I walked 500 meters back to the hitchhiking point.

Waiting waiting waiting.

After quite a long time I cant remember how long, a car stopped.
He is a deliver driver going to send kitchen stuff to the customers. I was thinking hell since it took me such a long time for a ride, why dont I just follow him to deliver, may be it is arranged by god for me to see something special.
I hopped on the car, we went around the city, around another city and around another city.
I helped him to carry the products during delivery to speed up the process. Until he dropped me at another gas station, it is already 4pm.

The gas station was a small one, not many car stop here. I waited for quite sometime before a guy stopped by and said he can send me somewhere near the next gas station. It could be better for me, he said. I accepted the offer and went on car.

I got dropped off at a gas station outside the highway. This is holy shit. It is always difficult to get out of one city, and it is the first hitchhiking rule that always stay on highway! Now I am out of highway :-( not funny.

Stood beside the gas station, eat peanuts, waiting for a car to stop. No one stop because no one going to Germany. There are a few German cars passed, no one stop, they dont even look at me. I was thinking that the park opposite the gas station looks nice and may be I can overnight there, but the weather is not too good.

One German car slipped into the gas station, not for me but for the petrol. I took the chance to approach the driver.
Well, I can drop you at the border. The German guy said.

So I was at the border. Already over 6pm. Looking for another vehicle.
Most of the truck drivers at that service station were prepared to sleep, not going to travel anymore. One truck driver said he might passby Bochum and can give me a lift.
Gladly I climbed up the truck.
And then, he said he is a Turkish.
ARGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!
Damn it!

When he went to the service station to pay the ticket, I put my pepper spray in my right pocket, put the high beep alarm in my left pocket, put the safety pin that can be use to pinch in the outer part of my bag for easy assessment. It has been such a long time I never be so nervous. I dont have good feeling at all even before the journey depart, but I didnt get out as well because there isnt much traffic I am not sure if I can get a next ride easily.

Without surprise, after 10 minutes ride, he asked for sex.

He wasnt like that turkish driver drove me across to France, when I said NO he apologized; after I said no to this one, he keep persuading me until I show that I am really angry. Then he stopped.

Was thinking if I shall get out of the car but was too afraid I cant get to Bochum and have no way to contact my friend. I stayed on the truck until the Bochum sign appeared. Said that he is not going into the town, the driver dropped me at the highway!! Another hitchhiking rule number 1 is never get drop at the highway! Imagine German highway has no speed limit and everyone drive pass you without having time to see your face.

The day is turning dark and I have no idea on which direction to the town. I walked pass a highway and it is another highway. I was trapped. I ran with my thumb up and mouth saying HELP. I walked beside the highway waiving waiving waiving, holding my BOCHUM signboard. Finally a car stopped, a Tunisian who worked as a translator in Bochum, he is on his way to Holland, but kind enough to send me into the town, gave a call to my friend and dropped me at the train station.


And thus I arrived at Bochum safely. All the bad luck is to have meet a kind man at the end of the day, and my friend smiling and telling me she is good here in this foreign country, and her baby who has such a beautiful smile.

What a beautiful life.