Saturday, June 11, 2005

from bangkok to bangalore

thai airways is a pleasure. great food, drinks and service. though we left and arrived late. at 11pm i'm in the bangalore airport, and i'm tired, because it's really 12:30 with the time change. there are long lines to get through immigration, but this is ok, because i reckon at least our bags should be though baggage claim by the time we're done. nope. bags trickle out of baggage claim at a rate so slow i get the feeling they are going back out to the plane for each bag. i emerge from the tiny airport and find a rare treat: a man standing there holding a sign with my name on it. he runs off to find his car and takes me into the city center.

it's a longer ride than i thought. i arrive at my expensive hotel, where the gruff man behind the counter checks me in. for $35 a night (3x more than i've paid anywhere in 4 months of travel), i was hoping for something a bit more inviting. i head out into the surprisingly mild evening in search of a bottle of water, but instead encounter hordes of indian youth milling about in the dusty darkness, while all businesses, including bars, seem to be closed. this seems to voilate all business common sense--all of those customers with no one to serve them. beggars are still on patrol however, and begin their aggressive pursuit. i duck back into the hotel, having failed in my quest and am forced to use room service to quench my thirst.

i'm hoping bangalore proves more inviting in the morning.

Friday, June 10, 2005

change of plans

i was in my 4th month of a year long asia backpacking adventure (see my other blog). i hit china, laos, vietnam, malaysia, and singapore. in vietnam, i hurt my ankle. in fact, the first "doctor" i saw told me it was broken and saddled me with a cast extending from toe to knee. hmm, there must be out some way i could avoid going home... then it hit me. my company has an office in bangalore, india. after a few emails with the boss, we agreed i'd work there for 4 months and then continue my travels. on the way to arranging my visa, i stopped in at a fancy western clinic in ho chi minh city for a second opinion. more x-rays were taken, and the doc said my ankle wasn't broken at all, and removed my cast. but the ball was already rolling on this bangalore stint, and while i can now walk around without much of a problem, i'm still not ready to climb mt. kinabulu. so i'm headed to india to heal and to work and to see what happens.