Putanga – Life on the Road

Stories from my journeys around the world…

Travel, Travel, Travel

Posted by Monica Johansen on July 11, 2011

OK, time is flying away faster than a Ferrari on Autobahn these days. After my visit to Japan in the beginning of June I had to go back to Australia for another three weeks. The first two weeks was in Canberra, and at this time of year the Australian capital is anything but pleasant. It was freezing cold, between 1 and 5 degrees Celsius in the morning, and despite bringing my warmest winter jacket and having the customer put the heater on maximum I was still cold all the time. It was actually quite depressing, and after two weeks I was starting to question the meaning of life.

Brisbane city center

But, above the clouds the sky is always blue etc, etc, and the last week in Australia was spent in sunny Brisbane. The moment I got out of the airport and I felt the warm air and I saw the palm trees my mood rapidly increased, and in the taxi to the hotel I was smiling again. The week in Brisbane was pleasant. I stayed at a very nice hotel called Oaks Festival Towers, which is located in the city center two blocks from the main shopping area. Although I had booked just a standard room, they gave me a two bedroom apartment with a river view and I didn’t have to pay any extra.

I came home from Brisbane early in the morning on Saturday, July 2, and already the same evening, after just 16 hours in Singapore, I had to fly back to Japan. This time I didn’t go anywhere else than Nagoya, but since I arrived on Sunday morning, and my hotel room wasn’t ready yet, I went out to the Nagoya Castle, which I hadn’t had a chance to see the last time I was there. Outside the castle I met a very nice old Japanese man who asked me in English if I was a tourist. I told him that I was on a business trip but I was taking any opportunity to do some sightseeing. The old man then wanted to show me a traditional Japanese theatre next to the castle, and he ended up giving me a guided tour and telling me a lot about Japanese art and culture.

Nagoya Castle

I must admit that at first I couldn’t help wondering what he wanted from me, because I am so used to locals in Asian countries stopping me and trying to get money from me somehow. But after a while I realized that this nice old man just wanted to practice his English. So while he practiced his English I took the opportunity to practice my Japanese. Unfortunately, I am still a beginner, but it is fun trying anyway.

My trip to Japan only lasted for a couple of days. I was back in Singapore already on Wednesday afternoon, and I have been home since. It was great to spend an entire weekend at home for once, although I was rather busy doing customer documentation, laundry and cleaning my apartment. Nevertheless, there is no place like home.

Tonight I am heading out on a new adventure. I am flying to Rome in Italy, and I will be on holiday for almost two weeks. Frankly, I can’t remember the last time I had that many days off from work, and right now I can’t wait to jump on that plane. Europe, here I come! 😀


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