The collected writings of a Renegade Tourist

Month January 2014

Metro train near Alvik, 1:28 pm

The world outside the window is bleak and grey. The bare tree trunks form grey shadows against the milky white sky, the thin branches radiating skywards like so many fingers. The buildings in the distance look deserted, like empty shells. We pass over some water but it is inky black, not a ripple on the surface, with sheets of broken ice floating dismally by the edge. The ground, clear of snow and ice despite the season is either a naked soil black or covered in sickly yellow grass. The dead world outside mirrors the emptiness inside me, a desolation of … Read the rest

Air over Amsterdam 8:46 am

We have just passed through the clouds, and so too, apparently, has the sun. For when you leave the colorful sunrise behind and come down beneath the cloud cover, you kind of expect the day to be dreary and grey. What a surprise then to be greeted, as you leave the layer of mist behind, by a brilliant, dazzling golden light that fills up the otherwise dismal world with warmth and brightness. A fleeting moment of bliss that dissipates as the golden glow fades.… Read the rest

More skiing and back to work

Today I woke up bright and early, and after a hearty breakfast, headed out in the slopes.

I spent the morning exploring different parts of the system than yesterday, and found plenty of untouched powder just a short distance from the main track. The weather was good, only light clouds scudding across the sky and I had plenty of fun.

Just before lunch I stopped off at the local igloo village. The igloo was not quite as impressive as the ice hotel in Jokkmokk but still pretty good. I also checked out the nearby snow mobile park, but it was … Read the rest

Titlis glacier 1:52 pm

The view from up here is magnificent; all around in the distance the stupendous mountains of the Swiss Alps, snow-clad broken tips and bare cliff faces. The sky is overcast but lively and and on the horizon, just above the mountain tops, is a gap in the clouds showing a strip of azure blue. The weather however is bad, my provisional winter clothes that have worked well so far, are insufficient to withstand the cold. The wind blows icy needles into my face that sting my eyes and my hands quickly turn to frozen lumps. I cannot remain here. No … Read the rest

Skiing in Switzerland

My company has sent me to Switzerland to do some work on a machine. So far I have mostly just seen the factory where the machine is, and a bit of local sightseeing in the small town where I live, so not very much to write about.

A bit of local tourism in Bads├Ąckingen

Now that it is weekend however, I took the chance to go skiing. I took an early morning train from my little town near Basel to Engelberg. There I dropped my bags at the hotel, a pretty shoddy military barracks style of dormitory hostel, then went … Read the rest

Trip to the east part two, Taroko Gorge

Yini had to go back home and work but us five boys continued our exploration of Taiwan’s east coast. Our train arrived in Hualien on Sunday evening, we found a hotel a stone’s throw from the train station, then went out for dinner and bought a few strange snacks to share in the hotel room.
On Monday morning we rented a couple of scooters, then rode out of town to famous tourist destination Taroko Gorge. Axel and I have been there before, but the spectacular lime stone cliffs, rivers and waterfalls make it well worth another visit.

Collecting a map … Read the rest

To the east with some friends

A couple of friends have come to visit me during the new year. After a very nice new year celebration, we decided to go explore the rest of the country for a bit. The eastern part being generally nicer, we decided to go there.

On Friday morning, me and my friends Anton, Axel, Marcus and Robert took the high speed rail south to Kaohsiung, then crossed to Taidong in the east by normal train. After we found a hotel, we borrowed a couple of bikes and rode around by the seaside.

Read the rest

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