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Dec
07
2013

One of my favorite parts of travel is how a place (and the people in that place) can surprise you, especially if you can find a way to get beneath the surface. Kota Kinabalu by all accounts, isn’t a very exciting city, but when Steph & I plunged into the fragrant, smokey labyrinth of the Filipino market we walked into another part of a very different town. Wandering the sun-dappled aisles of the local market the next day was a similar experience, one that felt very removed from the few tourist zones of the city. These markets weren’t especially large or flashy, but they were filled with local people simply living their lives before us and it was a beautiful thing to behold. We felt a very real sense of honor as we joked with the locals and exchanged smiles with the vendors, honor that we had so been so easily accepted into this weekly ritual with welcoming smiles and good-natured curiosity. I think we’ve said it before, and it remains true: the people are the places. And if you ever want to see the heart of an Asian city, find its local market and jump in with both feet. The sights, the sounds, the smells and the smiles… they’ll combine to give you an experience you won’t soon forget.

Nov
18
2013

Five Days in Melaka

Written by Tony November 18, 2013
Posted in Malaysia, Photography

Melaka is a city of many faces. Its culture is so diverse, in fact, that there isn’t even a good consensus on how to spell the name of the place. For the sake of consistency, I’ll stick with “Melaka,” but I’ve seen several other forms on signs all over the city. While the different spelling may confound some, what is really interesting is the city itself: everything that Malaysia is, or was, can be found in Melaka. Straits Chinese, Indians, Malays and the remnants of British and Dutch Colonialism all struggle for space on the crowded streets of the old town. Swirling around the outside of the old city is the “new” Melaka, the kind of Malay city that can be seen anywhere else in the country. While the new town has much to recommend itself (especially for the Malays living there), old Melaka is the real star of the show for the visitor, and is where Steph and I spent five days wandering the streets, eating the food, gazing at the buildings and trying to avoid the oppressive heat and humidity.

Nov
04
2013

Time and again I hear other travelers bemoan their lack of confidence when it comes to taking pictures of people they meet along the way. Finding the courage to break that barrier and get a really great shot of a stranger is one of the hardest parts of photography, but also one of the most rewarding. Many times I’ve found that a place is really interesting not due to any intrinsic qualities it may posses, but because of the people who live and work there, so being able to photograph them is critical to capturing the “feel” of a location.

Oct
02
2013

Our 2013 Capture the Colour Entries

Written by Tony October 2, 2013
Posted in Photography

When we heard that Travel Supermarket was holding their Capture the Colour contest again this year, we were excited. Last year, when the contest rolled around, we had only been on the road for a little over three weeks. We had a brand new blog and a few photos from an unfinished visit to ONE country to choose from. Still, despite all of that, we managed to land a second place spot in the Green category.

Aug
16
2013

Chewing the Fat With Hecktic Travels

Written by Tony August 16, 2013
Posted in Chewing the Fat

It’s another installment of Chewing the Fat, and this week we’re lucky to have snagged some table time with the power blogging couple behind Hecktic Travels! Dalene and Pete Heck have been traveling all over the world non-stop since 2009. They gave up their corporate lifestyle in exchange for a couple of backpacks and have visited over 30 countries together.

Jul
26
2013

The Ultimate Taiwan Bubble Tea Challenge

Written by Tony July 26, 2013
Posted in Food, Taiwan

Six years ago at the tender age 24, I took my first trip out of the United States. Granted, it was only a trip up to Steph’s hometown of Toronto, Canada, but it was my first stamp in my first passport. Turns out, it was a trip of many firsts, as that was also when I had my very first bubble tea. Before I left for Toronto, Steph had told me about this drink she used to get when she was in university from a shop called Bubble Tease (how much do you want to bet that it was the pun that first got her through the door?): a sweet tea-based concoction that came in lots of different flavors—from lychee to green apple—and had tapioca pearls (or jellies, or both!) at the bottom. I’d never heard of it, but was game to give it a shot.

After one cup I was hooked.

Jul
14
2013

Sunday Sketchup: Stuck in Pai

Written by Tony July 14, 2013
Posted in Sunday Sketch

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

Jul
07
2013

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

Jun
30
2013

Sunday Sketchup: Time for a Landscape

Written by Tony June 30, 2013
Posted in Sunday Sketch

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

Jun
19
2013

The Sights and Sounds of Taipei

Written by Tony June 19, 2013
Posted in Taiwan

The end of November in Taipei is gray, cold and rainy. Winter monsoons sweep across lower Asia and blanket Taiwan’s north coast in a haze of low clouds and nearly perpetual drizzle. Despite this, Taipei bustles. No one leaves their home without an oversized poncho and the street markets are a sea of umbrellas and canvas awnings. During moments when the rain abates the streets are choked with people rushing to get their business done before the rain begins anew.

Jun
16
2013

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

Jun
09
2013

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

Jun
02
2013

It’s Sunday Sketchup time! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

May
26
2013

Sunday Sketchup: Cambodian Collage

Written by Tony May 26, 2013
Posted in Sunday Sketch

Welcome to another new feature here on Twenty Years Hence! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.

May
19
2013

Welcome to another new feature here on Twenty Years Hence! Every Sunday I plan on putting up something I’ve drawn, in one form or another, on the blog. The content will be whatever has moved me during the previous week, and this may not always be travel-related.