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Archive for July, 2010

Midnight. And I’m in Malaysia!

I kept saying to myself over and over again, as I struggled to find my hostel. I’d landed two hours earlier and the Kuala Lumpur international Airport is very far from the city… like it’s far enough to be another city actually! So with one eye on the street and one on the ticking taxi-meter, I got my first taste of KL.

I usually ensure that I arrive in a new city earlier in the day, but this time around, I didn’t have a choice. But even this late at night, on a Tuesday night to be precise, the streets were teaming with tourists and locals. The only thing I was worried about was the fare racing up, up and away!
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Hindustan Times Article: 25th July 2010

mobility malaysia
Do check out my column in Hindustan Times today about Anthony Arokia in Kuala Lumpur, President and Founding Member of Mobiliti Malaysia, a door to door transport service for people with disabilities.

Also, do you know of any heroes I should cover as I head to Philippines and Indonesia in the coming days?

Tales of Luang Prabang

I left Phonsavanh on 9th morning at 8 a.m. A minibus was recommended as the best option to make it to Luang Prabang. I turned up bright and early for my ride and the driver told me that there was plenty of time and room. So I loaded my Backpack and went off for a quick bite.

Warm Baguettes, some extra strong Laos Coffee- served black with Milkmaid on the side for sweetening and a fried egg. If you’re wondering!

Twenty minutes later, I returned to find a very sheepish looking Mini Bus driver, and a packed bus! The only seat on the bus was the one no one else wanted. The foldable middle-row seat with a springy backrest and the narrowest width! It might have been the coffee, but I didn’t mind terribly. Or so I thought!
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The Thing About Laos…

If you’re going to Laos after a trip to Vietnam and Cambodia, it’s a gentle and calming experience. In my humble opinion of course!

On the odd occasion I did feel a little clawed and cornered in the weeks preceding my arrival to Laos. From the moment I landed at the airport, I found the Loa people to be friendly, very polite and genuinely eager to help out. I found them to be soft spoken and respectful. From the airport to the guesthouse to the random person on the street I stopped to ask for directions; everyone spoke at least functional English and happy to help.
The capital is a quiet little town called Vientiane, spread along the Mekong. The town runs in it’s own sleepy pace and you have no choice but to walk a little slower and make time for a two hour lunch!
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Life Post Trip: Part 1

Another country, another currency in my pocket, another language on the internet café’s key board!

I’ve almost made it to the 4 week mark and lived to tell the tale. I’ve been to Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and I’m currently in Laos. The longest I’ve stayed in a place is maybe 3 nights. Time for a round up I guess.
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Savong’s Story

You really have to see it to believe how beautiful rural Cambodia is. Sparsely populated villages made up of a small cluster of wooden houses on stilts, next to a water canal that snakes through the lush green landscape. Ancient temples pop-up out of nowhere to surprise you and big curious smiles greet you everywhere.
Even though the village homes were very basic they were immaculately tidy and housed large families that all live together.

I was hunting for Savong’s School with my Tuk-Tuk driver from Siem Reip, getting blissfully lost in the narrow lanes of the village when I saw a group of young girls on bicycles. They were peddling furiously and I could tell they were late for something. School maybe? We just followed them and they brought us straight to Savong’s School!
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Some Heroes Find Me Instead

I’ve been traveling for precisely three weeks now. And today I can say that I’ve had all the highs and lows that either make you want to travel further or make you want to go home to mommy.

I know my mom’s reading this and will probably freak out, but I promised myself I’d be brutally honest in all my updates. (So, Mom, I swear I’m ok, please don’t freak out. I’m sure you’ll call me when you’re done reading anyway, talk to you then.)
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KK’s Story: Hip-Hop Healing in Cambodia

I wrote about my day at Tiny Toones Youth Drop in Center for my column in Hindustan Times, this week. You can read it here in my very own section on Hindustan Times’ website!

I’ve been traveling like a woman possessed and just haven’t stopped long enough to post an update! I’m staying in Phnom Penh for two days and it’s time to catch up! Boy do I have some crazy stories for you!

So, have I told you that I’ve near perfected the ‘art of getting lost’? Well I have, with a lot of help from the Tu-Tuk drivers here in Cambodia of course. They all seem to have a serious aversion to stopping to ask for directions! They get lost, go around in circles; completely ignore all my attempts at backseat driving and friendly suggestions. Ensuring that I’m either late, pissed off or traumatized by the time I reach my destination. So obviously, I’ve been walking a lot. It’s less painful, often quicker and cheaper for sure!
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