Thoughts while traveling…part 1

So I was thinking of maybe documenting some interesting thoughts or things we reflect on while we are traveling. I am not sure if this will stick, but lets see…

  • How did people travel before google maps and ride sharing services?!? I am happy to be doing this trip with those apps my phone. That being said, I find myself too attached to google reviews for restaurants…maybe we need a more local gossip approach but who knows how that even works when we are staying in places by ourselves.
  • We had a conversation with a grab driver in Penang about MYR to USD and he was very surprised to learn how far the US dollar went. He commented that he would have to drive around a whole afternoon to afford one meal in the US. It got me thinking that you really don’t see tourists from southeast Asian countries in the US and it could be because of this enormous difference in economy.
  • Coronavirus fear is strong in Southeast Asia at the moment. The student guides we had for our food tour in Saigon even got a week extension on their new year holiday due to fears of it spreading through campus once everyone returns. I try not to get too caught up in it and considering I am a worst case scenario human, I think I am doing alright. We are being cautious but not letting it interfere too much with our travel choices or excursions. We will have to wait and see how it all pans out.
  • Pollution here in Southeast Asia is at a level I have never experienced. The US is a seriously clean country compared to most of the places we have been. Even Singapore had its fair share of polluted waterways. Matt thinks its likely because they are about a decade behind us industrially and it shows in the pollution in the creeks, rivers, and streets of the countries we have visited. When we were biking through Penang, I wanted to just start collecting the trash or organize a river clean up effort because it distressed me so much. It is one of the things that I have had to just look past but also do my best not to contribute to during our travels with more single use plastic waste.



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