April – May 2003

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Intro

So this trip is not what it was originally supposed to be.  I bought a “Circle Pacific” fare, which allows you a certain maximum number of miles to cover during a certain time period, for a fixed price.  So, I was supposed to go to all the countries of the Pacific Rim that were available using this fare:  Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, China, South Korea and Japan.  Well, with travel, things rarely go according to plan…

Especially when it’s 2003, and SARS decides to hit most of the countries on your itinerary.  I held out until the final week, when Taiwan suddenly issued an edict that all travelers going through Taipei would be quarantined at the airport for 15 days.  What?!  That’s almost my whole trip!  So, 3 days before leaving, with surgical masks purchased, packed and ready for use – I was forced to change my plans, cutting out all SARS-affected countries, and leaving me with a trip to SARS-free Australia, New Zealand, South Korea and Japan.

The crazy part was changing everything literally three days before my trip – cancelling flights, rebooking flights, cancelling hotels, rebooking hotels, etc.   I was on the phone for hours every night after work getting it all settled.  The good part was that I was able to spend more time in those four countries, and looking back on it, I’m glad that I did.

Journey Map

    LocationArrivalDeparture
    1Auckland, New ZealandApril 30, 2003May 1, 2003
    2Hamilton, New ZealandMay 1, 2003May 1, 2003
    3Auckland, New ZealandMay 1, 2003May 2, 2003
    4Sydney, AustraliaMay 2, 2003May 5, 2003
    5Parramatta, AustraliaMay 5, 2003May 5, 2003
    6Katoomba, AustraliaMay 5, 2003May 5, 2003
    7Bathurst, AustraliaMay 5, 2003May 5, 2003
    8Canberra, AustraliaMay 5, 2003May 5, 2003
    9Albury, AustraliaMay 5, 2003May 6, 2003
    10Wodonga, AustraliaMay 6, 2003May 6, 2003
    11Melbourne, AustraliaMay 6, 2003May 8, 2003
    12Alice Springs, AustraliaMay 8, 2003May 8, 2003
    13Uluṟu, AustraliaMay 8, 2003May 10, 2003
    14Perth, AustraliaMay 10, 2003May 11, 2003
    15Fremantle, AustraliaMay 11, 2003May 11, 2003
    16Perth, AustraliaMay 11, 2003May 11, 2003
    17Sydney, AustraliaMay 11, 2003May 12, 2003
    18Auckland, New ZealandMay 12, 2003May 13, 2003
    19Osaka, JapanMay 13, 2003May 14, 2003
    20Kobe, JapanMay 14, 2003May 14, 2003
    21Himeji, JapanMay 14, 2003May 14, 2003
    22Osaka, JapanMay 14, 2003May 15, 2003
    23Seoul, South KoreaMay 15, 2003May 17, 2003
    24Tokyo, JapanMay 17, 2003May 18, 2003
    25Yokohama, JapanMay 18, 2003May 18, 2003
    26Tokyo, JapanMay 18, 2003May 20, 2003

    Featured Image

    Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney, Australia

    Somehow I got duped into climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge with “Bridgeclimb”. Mind you, I’m deathly afraid of heights. Yes, I was attached to the bridge by a safety cable — in case I slipped and fell to my certain death, I would in fact be bungeed back to life. But… that would not be fun. The views from up there though — wow, priceless!

    Featured Video

    Sketches

    click here for more Sketches

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