unfinished

unfinished blogs – no. 17 – The best of Peninsular Malaysia in one trip

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

I really should finish this particular blog sometime.

October 22nd, 2014

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Include round Malaysia trip last October, plus KL, Pankor Is, Penang, Langkawi, Perhentian

It’s easy enough to do a circle of Malaysia by car, but if you don’t go out to some islands you miss the best parts, which means you will have to either access the ports by public transportation, leave your rental car unused for your time on the island or in some cases fly there.

If you take your own car, then you have to return to it – you can’t leave it and catch a train further, without returning to pick up your car.  So mixed mode is difficult.

Mixed mode: KUL – LGW- PEN by plane, car via Kuala Besar & to Perhentian, other islands? http://www.pulaidesaru.com/ – s-e nr Singapore

By car

By train

By plane

 

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unfinished blogs – no. 16 – Planning travel in Africa – Part II

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

March 3rd, 2014

This trip has fallen through  – it was supposed to be in September 2014.

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PART I

Apart from North Africa, I haven’t seen any of the continent.  But it’s not easy, or so safe, so I started to work out some parameters on where I would consider visiting. Parameters such as : diseases, location, crime, safety, visa cost, railway travel possibility, flight availability.

Firstly I decided to eliminate any country with a Yellow Fever risk. Actually, that eliminates a vast swathe of Africa.  In north Africa that leaves basically Morocco, as I have visited Egypt and Tunisia.  And in southern Africa, Madagascar, South Africa, Lesotho, Swaziland, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique.

Next, I looked at the homicide statistics:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate

The statistics show everywhere is so dangerous, one should stay at home.  The UK, Australia, and most of Western Europe are about 1 person per 100,000 of population. Malaysia is 2.3, Thailand 4.8.  But South Africa 31.8! Zimbabwe 14.3.  Morocco is 1.4, so about the safest of the lot.

OK, so I can’t use this statistic and still travel.  As for road accident deaths:

Namibia is the worst in the world.  53.4 deaths per 100,000 of population. UK is 4.8, Australia is 6.8: Malaysia at 34.5 is pretty bad. Morocco is 19.3.
So, as far as possible travel by train or first world airline, but I still have the same list of countries.
Then I read the Lonely Planet guide, Seat 61, Wikitravel and Trip Advisor, with a view to crime against tourists in each country.  It seems muggings and robbery are common in most, with walking in daytime dangerous in some, even.  The police in Mozambique are depicted as thugs in uniforms, and an extra danger, on top of the muggers and robbers.  This leads me to eliminate Mozambique, Lesotho, and Swaziland.  Johannesburg can’t be eliminated as it is the travel hub I’ll have to use, but one must be very careful.
Madagascar is not so easy for me to get to, and Botswana would take up too much time, so they are off the list, due to location.

Now, South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe are the only countries left in the south, and Morocco in the north.  This looks like two separate trips, so I will leave Morocco out of the planning for now.

In these three countries one can do some, but not all, travel by train.  Flights on first world airlines are also available. Many of the eliminated countries charge outrageously for visas, but they are free except for Zimbabwe in the remaining ones.

So, that deals with my parameters, and eliminates as many of the risks as I could.

Next I have to decide how to get there from Malaysia, what to see, and then what route to take.  This will depend in part on where trains run. I will use the aforementioned guide and sites initially.

PART II

So, I have to decide how to get there from Malaysia, what to see, and then what route to take.

These are airlines I can use that fly to Africa:

AF.-AIR FRANCE
SA.-SOUTH AFRICAN A W
BA.-BRITISH AIRWAYS
TK.-TURKISH AIRLINES
KL.-ROYAL DUTCH AIR
EK.-EMIRATES
CX.-CATHAY PACIFIC
UL.-SRILANKAN AIR
RJ.-ROYAL JORDANIAN
AB.-AIR BERLIN
QR.-QATAR AIRWAYS

I will choose later, but initially CX PEN – HKG – JNB seems easiest from Penang.

What my friend and I want to do is the following: catch some trains, see some wildlife in the wild, do some walks, see some wineries, and see some of the South African Coast – particularly Cape Town.

Before I meet my friend, I am thinking of a side trip to Namibia, where I would fly into Windhoek, and then catch the night train down to Swakopmund, a German beach town.  Then catch the train back to Windhoek.  Then either fly from Windhoek back to JNB and on to Victoria Falls, or catch the bus to Victoria falls.  The (dis)advantage of the latter is that one passes though Zambia, so can see Victoria Falls from that side too, but then one officially requires a Yellow Fever vaccination certificate – which is not often checked on entering South Africa, but it could be.

So, the current plan is to meet up in Victoria Falls, and after a couple of days there, go to Huange National Park for some wildlife viewing.  Then catch the train to Bulawayo, where there is a nice train museum, I read.  From Bulawayo catch the bus, or bus and train, down to Jo’burg.  Then the night train down to Capetown, where we see the wineries and explore some of the coast.

This seems reasonable so far, so next is to find out the finer details.

unfinished blogs – no. 15 – a few growing tips

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

June 15th, 2014

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  • when you harvest something that has seeds – collect some seeds from the best fruit or the best looking, healthiest plants to use for your next planting
  • if you wish, before planting seeds lick them or put them briefly in your mouth so that the plant will do its best to supply what your body is lacking
  • use your current soil to mix in with your compost while making it
  • when germinating seeds also use your own soil, or at least some of it – especially if the seed had come from that soil

unfinished blogs – no. 14 – Dissatisfaction with life in Malaysia and how to improve things

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

 

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March 21st, 2014

Generally I try to be positive, but there is nowhere perfect, and one should be aware of drawbacks, and evaluate if one’s choices are still the best. Many things are getting better, such as the cleanliness and state of repair of George Town, the English ability of Malaysians – even the standard of driving. But some things are disappointing, so here are some dissatisfactions…

Recently the rapidly rising prices concern me. These are both from governments increasing taxes and charges, and from companies doing likewise. With the government acting as it is it is no longer possible to plan your housing or local investments as they increase taxes whenever they feel like it.

The Internet speed is still as slow as years ago, and you are still paying the same amount – it is not getting cheaper as in most countries – for the same slow Internet. I pay RM 140 per month for 4mbps speed. I note in the UK with TalkTalk you pay £2.50 (RM12.50) per month for 16mbps, with unlimited allowance. Four times the speed, 1/11th the price of Malaysia.

A great many Internet services are available in other countries, but Malaysia is way behind. Not only in Internet shopping, but in other innovative services.

It is still hard to get many things that are slightly less common.

This last problem is compounded by the total lack of knowledge about anything by almost anyone in retail and services. And their lack of interest in actually finding out for next time a customer asks.

Dengue seems to be an increasing problem.  Try as you might you can’t avoid all mosquito bites, only decrease the possibility of getting bitten.

unfinished blogs – no. 13 – the Future if you let it

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

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February 18th, 2014

You’ll be replaced by a robot. If you continue to allow the world’s resources to be distributed by governments and the idea of a job – well, you’ll starve.

The government’s enforcement arm, the police, will become ever more brutal and unaccountable – and so clueless they won’t realise that ultimately they too are expendable.

Your pension will be nationalised “for fairness” and you’ll get the same as everyone else – no matter how much you sacrificed to get a comfortable retirement

Money will be electronic and issued by an international body – and you will only be able to use it with an chip implanted in you.  If you voice any opposition to the world government or any other “authority” then your bank accounts will be frozen or wiped, and you will be unable to buy (or sell) anything.

You will have to pay to live – for shelter, food, water and air

Distribution of the world’s wealth by working is no longer fair or effective.  See http://www.mondopolitico.com/library/socialcredit/socialcredit.htm

unfinished blogs – no. 12 – I survived without Windows for over a month – so wonder what operating system I should have on my next PC.

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

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October 12th, 2013

Having learnt of the evil that Bill Gates perpetrates, having learnt how Microsoft built in a back door allowing the US government to spy on us using Windows, having learnt how Bill Gates got (took from others) the idea from Windows in the first place and was backed by his family’s contacts and not for his ideas – but denounces anyone else doing the same (he calls it piracy if others do what he did) – who wouldn’t want to move to another platform.

But I had a Windows phone, and a Windows PC.  For years. They synchronised with each other so data was safe. Contacts, emails etc. Sure, synchronising often didn’t go smoothly, or even work at all, but sometimes it did.

But Windows phones lost the plot.  Plus the most useful app, Outlook, suddenly became very expensive. It wasn’t included in the basic Office program you could buy.

Apple has their own back doors for the US government, exploits people in China we are told, is proprietary and expensive.  Android comes along and looks better.  Not that Google is perfect – not sure about their Israel connections – which Microsoft also seems to have.  But their operating system is free, and is frequently updated, and easy to use.

So end up with an Android phone and an Android tablet.  I have been away for almost two months and haven’t touched Windows.  And survived.  It just stores my old emails in Outlook, and some Office files.  That is about all.  Windows 8 is certainly nothing magnificent – I bought it when it came out, and am still unimpressed.  If the latest version is a free upgrade I guess I will get it. But on my old PC – it’s seventh birthday will be coming up in the new year.

For years I have been playing with Ubuntu – but some things are still difficult to do.  I remember entering obscure commands to the system when managing a call centre’s Linux / Unix system.  And although they say Ubuntu or Linux is undemanding on computer resources, it is still too demanding for a netbook I installed it on.  I feel you still need a reasonable specification of PC for Linux.

So, for a new computer, what are my choices?  Windows 8 1/2 or whatever, Apple Mac, some flavour of Linux – but only available on a limited number of PC’s;  or buy one and install on it what I wish.  The problem being the availability of drivers and the difficulty installing them.

unfinished blogs – no. 11 – What health ideas have worked for me and what haven’t

I’ve been writing this blog for three years this month, and have accumulated many partially written blogs that remain unpublished. I may as well just publish them as is, and if I ever feel inspired to finish any, do so later.

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June 26th, 2013

Everyone is different, and what works for one person may not work for another.  This article is about what works for me.

fasting –
cupping – https://tropicalexpat.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/cupping/
PLR, acupuncture, reiki – https://tropicalexpat.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/roller-blades-to-reiki-my-spiritual-journey/
colloidal silver – https://tropicalexpat.wordpress.com/2012/12/01/colloidal-silver-natural-disinfectant-and-antibiotic-making-it-at-home/
sun gazing – http://www.naturalnews.com/040944_sungazing_ancient_practices_energy_medicine.html

oil pulling – https://tropicalexpat.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/oil-pulling/

orgones

exercise

diet