Monday, June 18, 2007
So, after all the drama of the last few weeks, we're at a point where Ruth is going to stay in England to work and I'm going to keep on travelling. This is pretty sad because a) she's basically been a constant in my life for the last few years both as my partner and friend, b) I'll probably head back to Australia when I run out of money so we'll be on the other side of the planet unless I mooch off her social worker salary in London and c) travelling by myself is scary because if it wasn't for Ruth, I'd probably still be walking around the backstreets of Chiang Mai looking for our hotel. So this is the blog to honour Ruth. I'm guessing everyone will stop reading the blog now because the beautiful eye candy part of it is leaving.
If you know Ruth she is incredibly picky about her clothes but being a fair skinned red head under the harsh SE Asian sun meant that practicality had to overcome fashion. Ruth ended up buying this red polo shirt which she hated but had to wear to protect her from sunburn. But you'll notice, even though she wore this a lot in Thailand, there's no photos of her wearing it on the blog until now. Why? She wouldn't let me put any photos of her up in a shirt that didn't meet her aesthetic standards haha!
Thailand is filled with a lot of oily fried food so when we stumbled across this vegan restaurant in Chiang Mai, Ruth had one of her favourite meals of our trip, some sort of brown rice/eggpplant dish which came in a close second to her other favourite Asian dish...
...waffles with chocolate sauce.
A couple of shots around Mae Hong Son, our favourite place in Thailand.
This photo is just to reassure Ruth's old housemates that she did actually read the book you bought for her.
This photo is taken in Siem Reap on top of a temple as we watched the sunset which sounds great but it was after an exhausting day of looking at wats in bullshit hot weather. Just when we wanted to go home, our guide made us walk up the only hill in Siem Reap with literally thousands of people to watch the sunset. I was pretty grumpy about it but Ruth was serene as ever.
Ruth wearing her Cambodian krami and I think she looks kinda cool. When I wore mine like that, people (particularly children) laughed hysterically while Ruth pulled it off with style.
Hanging at a roof top bar in Saigon.
This was from the beach section of the holiday at Mui Ne in Vietnam. Ruth and I aren't really beach people but we were that week. It was a part of the trip where we kind of did nothing except swim (well, I waded), watch the ocean and drink cocktails. Ahh good times...
Ruth and our new friend Mumtaz went for a day trip around Dalat with some easyriders, local motorbike tour guides. This was one of the most special and enjoyable days of Ruth's trip as I think she felt truly free and liberated being a bikie chick. Nah, the tour was incredible as her guides really engaged with them and gave them a real taste of local life. It was one of Ruth's favourite part of the Vietnam trip.
That night, the guides took us all out for buffalo (three different dishes, one suspicously groin like) and local rice wine. We then went for coffees with the tour guide's family. Ruth had baileys in coffee, a drink she hasn't stopped talking about since.
Battling the elements at Halong Bay wearing every warm item of clothing she owns.
More red faced shots after climbing an island hill in Halong Bay.
Ruth with the locals in Sapa who followed us everywhere we went and we just couldn't shake them.
One of the best things was the people we met on the trip. After doing the bike trip in Dalat with Mumtaz, Ruth and her became great friends so it was cool to meet up with her again in Sapa... and drink wine from the hugest wine glasses I've ever seen. Literally, they were the size of our heads.
Also, it was brilliant meeting up with my old friend Tim who Ruth hadn't really met before. The week we spent in Kunming was one of the most enjoyable of the trip and it made me happy to see two of my dearest friends get on so well.
One thing about China, their ice blocks have weird textures. Really weird but we still ate them.
These two old people are hustlers. Sure they look harmless but when we wandered by they latched onto Ruth and demanded we take a photo with them. Then they demanded money which is a pretty common thing in Asia but after I gave them some they started complaining that it wasn't enough even though I'd given them heaps. Funny thing was, as tourists all look alike, we walked past them the next day and they were beckoning us to come over again. They were hilarious in their shameless hustling octogenarian ways...
Chilling at a restaurant in Lijiang. This might be Ruth's least favourite place because she got food poisoning there... twice. Ahh China...
So this is the end of it. Its like the band is being slit up. I don't know who is Hall and who is Oates but it ain't Hall and Oates anymore. No more Beatles. No more Fugazi. No more Destiny's Child. The band is split up... for now. I guess we can do one of those shitty reunion shows in a few years that nobody wants to see when we run out of money (I'm talking 90's grunge bands here. Seriously does anyone want to see the Smashing Pumpkins reform? But I'll make an exception for Chris Cornell, now that abomination called Audioslave is done with, stop making crap solo albums and reform Soundgarden already). Seriously though, this trip wouldn't have happened without Ruth and its going to be hard to go on without her. I'm missing her already and she hasn't actually gone yet. So, Ruth fans, lament, the beautiful pictures quotiant is going to fall dramtically and it'll just be my ugly mug. Bummer.
Love you Ruth.