Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My idiotic pre-conceived ideas about South East Asia and that.

It’s very tempting when writing about travel to give the impression that you are a worldly-wise right little know-it-all. This is the reason the majority of travel writing is so infuriatingly smug;

“As a seasoned traveller I was certain that the earthy and indigenous gentle folk of Clacton-on-Sea would welcome me into their midst as long as I got totally ratted on Friday night and tried to frisk up an over weight slapper…”

I am not the least bit worldly wise and consider myself to be fundamentally thick and/ or naïve when it comes to places other than Worcestershire and East Sussex (and I’m not much of an expert on East Sussex). 

Despite all the information I have read I do still have a lot of odd/ ignorant/ ridiculous pre-conceived ideas about the places I am about to travel to. And despite telling everyone I knew that I was going without any expectations I actually had some crazy ideas about both Cape Town and Johannesburg in South Africa, both of which proved to be entirely inaccurate. 

Typically, I would keep these daft ideas to myself for fear of ridicule, however, that really wouldn’t be much fun would it?

So here they are:

(I may at a later date return to these ideas and compare them to my actual experiences thus proving what is already highly suspected, I am a nobber).

The freighter – I am a bit worried about getting held hostage by pirates

Malaysia – Nice, but junglely (not Roni Size)

Singapore – Very western and clean. No chewing gum.

Vietnam – Lots of paddy fields and a bit scary.

Cambodia – A bit depressing and scary. 

Laos – Basic, bad toilet facilities, lots of mozzies.

Thailand – Touristy, like Blackpool but with more convincing transsexuals.

Philippines – Very scary.

Indonesia – Packed, like Oxford Street on xmas eve, less stabby though, I hope.

East Timor – Scary, war torn, people with arms off and stuff.

Papua New Guinea – Junglely.

Australia – Noice, noice, different, unusual.

New Zealand – Hobbitty.

Hmm… this really demonstrate what a total ignoramus I am. 

Let’s hope travel does broaden the mind, at least a bit.


Craig said...

I do particularly enjoy the difference between this and any other travel blog. In fact, most other travel blogs make me end up wanting to strangle the authors with their own sense of sense of world-wide awareness.

And if there is one thing that the fourth season of Lost has taught me, it is that freighters and all people aboard them are to be feared.

Herge Smith said...

Oh yes Craig, fear the freighter people, they mean nothing but harm.

MJ said...

I tried to contact you about this when I won The Freakin’ Green Elf Shorts but you were away at the time.

You can see all the winners by reading The Definitive History of the Freakin’ Green Elf Shorts.

garfer said...

What you need to bear in mind is that abroad is beastly, full of untrustworthy foreigners, and lacks proper drains.

My advice is that you desist from this foolishness and retire to Eastbourne where you can play crown green bowling and bemoan the loss of empire.

Sniffy said...

I wouldn't worry about anything on that list after the freighter because, let's face it, you're not going to survive the pirates.

But if you do, I think you'll find that Cambodia and Vietnam are home to the nicest people on the planet. I don't know whether this should be seen as an advert for ethnic cleansing, but the people left after all the troubles are supposed to be top notch.

Unlike pirates, who'll string you up and rip your gizzards out.

Piggy and Tazzy said...

I hear that pirates enjoy the odd bit of mansex.

Hergey could find himself being adopted as their 'cabin boy'. Oh the joy of that arse-stretching.

Ho, ho, ho. Up your bum with a bottle 'o grog!

Herge Smith said...

P & T - I am open to new experiences, however, getting my bottom ravaged by filthy pirates may be a bit of a stretch.

Garfer - you have a point, although I'd rather have the incident with the pirates than spend time in Eastbourne.

Tina - Really looking forward to Cambodia and Vietnam, the pirates are an issue.

MJ - I'd finally gotten those bloody shorts out of my mind, and here you are, bring it all back...

The horror, the horror....

Piggy and Tazzy said...

We're quite thankful to have (purposely) never 'won' the shorts.

Saying that though, they might gain us some admiring glances at the Metrodome gym.

We're still stunned you know the Metrodome. We're there at least twice a week.

Herge Smith said...

I've been around P & T, I've been around...

Piggy and Tazzy said...

So it appears.

No surprise either.

MJ said...

You wore The Shorts well, it must be said.

pissoff said...

I think your take on those countries is pretty accurate Herge.

If you make it past the freighter and the pirates then you're sure to get it in Papua New Guinea. They would love nothing more than to cook you up in a big pot in the middle of the jungle.