Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, December 23rd: a year after.

Today marks the anniversary of Erica and I strolling around KL for a wondrous day of museum visits, food, and the preeminent attraction of the area, the Petronas Towers. As I like to do, I opted for the less obvious and more fulfilling experience, and skipped the ride up the Petronas proper, but rather went to the view room atop the KL Tower, at a meager 355 meters up its 421 meter total height, affording me an eye level POV of the 85th floor of the twins.

I have some video editing I can do for this post, but I'll have to tackle that at a different time. Here are a couple cool shots that I can post for this anniversary moment.

At the base of Miss KL

Kuala Lumpur at dusk.
I timed my adventure to span the sunset hour. A storm rolled in and offered me much more than I asked for, as rain and lightning peppered the backdrop until the city lights took over.

Remember, I have more to come for this post. And, as always, open the photo in a new tab for full resolution.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Remembering when...

After being back in the USA longer than I was gone, I've decided I really should just post all these fantastic pictures from Malaysia, Koh Kood and Siem Reap. I think I'll break it out into a few posts. The writing will be minimal, I'll explain when I feel it's needed.


 Because beer.

You can tell it worked because I have yet to die.
 Cenang beach
You can tell it was delicious because it 1 - was photographed and 2 - ended up on Erica's forehead.
 George Town, Penang. A tropical Portland, OR (translation: awesome).
 First ever head shave by a barber. This dude knew his business. Didn't even need shave cream. I was left chasing the barber dragon for the rest of my stay in Asia after this...

 Peranakan Mansion, George Town

Mmm...deer butt

Happy turtle in the turtle pond, Kek Lok Si temple

Kek Lok Si, largest temple in SE Asia. This is just the entryway...

SO, at this point, it's very obvious to me I want to, and should break these events down and do them all justice. We spent days in George Town alone. I'll do my work on this and deliver the rest in the fashion that they deserve.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

School/protest update


I do indeed plan on following through blogging the rest of my travels. I got the pics from Erica to do it properly, but life has its ways, as they say. So, here's a little more on those ways that life is having:

I find myself inexorably torn between Bangkok and home. Protests carry on directly in my path to school every day. It's a major inconvenience, as the roads down which the buses I used to ride have been blockaded by humans, stages, tents and vendor booths, I now have the joy of walking to and from school as my best option of transit. I have a constant battle in my head over how these protests are in the right spirit for those seeking change, how it's a pain in my ass and all I want is a bus ride - the only thing that's actually blocked anymore, as they have pretty much given up on stopping car traffic - and how I am a bastard for not caring about the protesters' plight, and just plain not caring, or wishing I was somewhere else.

Then I think about being home, about hanging out with the furbeast:

I think about having ales with amigos and fishing the best waters in Idaho and riffing out on the geetar and etc etc etc...

And then I remember I would actually not be home, but instead in Moscow where there are like 72 feet of snow and it's negative something outside...but they have a bad ass gym that isn't closed from shootings at protest riots...

And then I think of all the homework I have for this ridonkulous dream-come-true of a design studio I have for my final, yes FINAL semester of college, wherein I am learning such disgustingly awesome things as:
Parametric brick design
3D paneling and pattern manipulation over complex surfaces
Freeform masonry vault design


And so on and so on, and then I am once again glad I am where I am.

And then I have to walk to school and sweat my ass off at 8 am again...

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Travel log part 3

   On this lovely morning, we set sail (or rather, fired up engines) for Malaysia. What began as a trip of convenience, to avoid buses and a possibly problematic Thai/Malaysian border, proved to be a trip highlight. Nine hours of relaxing on the open air roof of a speed ferry, cruising on the Andaman sea, skirting tropical islands was nothing short of spectacular. The final leg from Koh Lipe to Langkawi, Malaysia was in a small speedboat with an incredible sunset, just to polish off a perfect day.

Sea gypsy house, mostly they live out of their boats.

Bisecting Koh Lanta

Note the longtail in front of the island for scale.

Pulling up to a tiny fishing village for lunch. 

Lunch was great. It was hot enough out for me to make this face. Remember, it's the cold season.

Langkawi, our first glimpse of Malaysia.

   The immigration into Malaysia was easy as pie. That guy in the boat was Bernie, from Austria, a guy that reminded me of my old friend Ian, was working on a PhD in biophysics, and got a mean drink on with us that evening. As Langkawi is a tax haven in a Muslim nation, this was the last vestige of cheap drinks we were to see in weeks, so we took advantage of the German imports for 3-5 ringgit each (~ $0.66 - $1.66).

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Winter break travel log part 2

  Day two on Koh Phi Phi found me wandering around the beach of Tonsai bay, the southern of the twin bays at this abundantly beautiful, yet completely partied-out island. It was a strange place to be, where the natural wonders of the world were so vibrant and clear, and yet the crowd inhabiting the place was heavily skewed toward the 20-23 year old Greek house set, who seemed far more interested in getting flippant bamboo tattoos and pounding buckets than admiring the turquoise seas over white sand on a magically dual-bayed island of frighteningly abrupt limestone karsts.

This is the life of an architect(ure student), always chronicling the interesting tidbits for future recycling. That is not wood.

A remnant boat from the 2004 tsunami.

"The Cliff."

   The day proved most relaxing, as we generally just took it easy and got our bearings. Plans were carved out for our other full day on the islands - a trip by longtail boat around the nearby Phi Phi Ley island that included cliff jumping, a visit to famous Maya bay and swimming with phosphorescent plankton.

An early morning hike above our bungalow revealed to me some astounding views. Phi Phi Ley is seen in the distance to the left, with Tonsai bay, The Cliff and Loh Dalam bay consecutively closer in view.

A photo of what we are riding in, from what we are riding in. Whoa.

Preparing to climb some limestone razors.

Pileh bay.

The 100m cliffs of Phi Phi Ley

To me, one of the most defining photos from our whole trip.

   This Friday the 13th evening concluded with some tasty Margaritas, a hooka of shisha and the best fire dace Erica or I had ever seen, all at a small open air restaurant on the beach along Tonsai bay.

Lighting Erica's cig with a spinning fireball. Somewhere there exists a shot of me in the hotseat doing the same...somewhere (hint: it's in Erica's camera and she's still in Borneo.)