Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

silly sporks

They’re spoons and they’re forks. They’re sporks! And they’re broken. These ones are made by a company called Lightmyfire.

TIP: avoid using in jars of crunchy peanut butter.

in action killing bacteria and viruses

The Steripen is a handy little device for sterilizing water. It uses AA batteries to power a UV light bulb which kills 99% of bacteria and viruses. It’s really simple to use and only takes a minute or so to do a litre of water.

We’ve been using our Steripen wherever possible to reduce our consumption of plastic water bottles. Between the two of us, we could easily drink 3L of water a day, or 3 big water bottles. Over a year, that’s an insane amount of water and waste, especially in these parts of the world where waste management and recycling is severely lacking.

It works great providing the water is clear to begin with. Clarity does not always mean clean and tasty, however. To get around foul-tasting water we often mix in some drink crystals. Temperature is also dependent on what comes from the tap. When we’re traveling in scorching heat, sometimes a nice cool beverage is on order so we do still purchase water from time to time.

The upfront cost of the Steripen was about $100. We’re hoping it will have paid for itself by the end. It’s definitely reassuring to have on hand just in case. It’s also something we’ll definitely keep on hand when we go back-country camping. We’ll probably never bother with a filtre pump again.

buddha secret

Taking the slow road has been immensely rewarding for all the reasons we’ve discussed previously. But it can also be immensely trying; a test of will-power and patience. So far nearly 20% of our total time has been spent in-transit, on long train rides, bus rides and boat rides, with facilities that are a far cry from the Queen Mary II. If we’re lucky to have a toilet on-board, it’s often nothing more than a hole through to the outside world. Aim is especially difficult when you’re bouncing around from side to side, and the evidence is written on the walls (and sometimes ceilings). The big problem is: when you gotta go, you gotta go.

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Rudy Project Zyons — so cool

One of the most essential pieces of gear that any traveler must carry with them is a decent pair of sunglasses. Having the right pair provides you with much more than simply an elevated “cool” factor — good sunglasses protect your eyes from sun, wind, sand and dust while you explore beaches, mountain tops, glaciers, jungles, and more. The right pair should be comfortable, lightweight and durable. They should be as functional on a mountain bike as they are on a beach. It’s a lot to ask from a single pair.

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Giovanni’s Home, Naples

Giovanni

We spent four nights in Naples, and I need to write about the place we stayed. The hostel was called Giovanni’s Home, quite literally because that’s what it was. It’s a dorm-style hostel with bunkbeds. It has a well equipped kitchen, although it’s really small. None of the toilets have toilet seats. The showers have hardly any water pressure and very little hot water. It’s on the third floor in a building on a small street, with a staircase that’s steep and tiring no matter how many times you go up it. And it was the most enjoyble, most fun hostel that we’ve stayed in yet.

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Me and my iPhone

Now that we’ve put in a few good weeks of travel, we’ve had a chance to evaluate the pros and cons of bringing the iPhone with us on our wanderings. I’ve had a couple of people ask me whether or not I was getting any use from it abroad, so here’s the answer! As I wrote in an earlier post, I’ve removed the sim card from the iPhone to disable its cell phone and 3G data capabilities. You don’t even want to know the rates that Fido would charge to use the iPhone normally over here. We’d be bankrupt already. I’ve also decided against jailbreaking the phone, even though this would allow us to buy a local sim card and drop it in, turning it into a local pay-as-you-go iPhone. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, it makes it a real pain any time Apple releases a new iPhone software update, as it usually requires waiting for a new jailbreak to come out as well. It also voids the warranty (a minor inconvenience, really). But finally, there’s actually something nice about not having a phone in my pocket — there’s something romantic about being unreachable when you’re out exploring new places. That being said, we have found many great uses and applications for the iPhone, and here they are.

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Comfy footwear

As we get further along in our travels, we will be posting reviews of some of the gear that we brought with us. Since putting together our packing list was one of my main obsessions before we left, I hope that these reviews will prove interesting and helpful to any future wanderers, or even to any other gear-heads out there like me!

These Holey Soles are one of the two pairs of footwear that I brought with me. They are the Canadian version of the more well-known brand Crocs. The differences between the two brands are very slight. Holey Soles seem to use a very slightly softer and more flexible foam/rubber material than Crocs, and the shoe is slightly narrower. Other than that, they are almost identical in terms of design and look. In fact, I almost always refer to them as Crocs anyways, even though that’s a disservice to the Canadian company. It’s just easier to say, and then people know what you’re talking about.

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Confession

I flew. I do not look forward to doing it again any time soon.

My sister’s hen party took place in Berlin, as planned by her friend Charlotte. It was a surprise. In order for things to work out without her getting suspicious it was ‘easiest’ to fly. The exception was made because, well, it’s my sisters wedding and I’m her maid of honour. It’s a nasty blip on the breadcrumb, there and back. Now I would like to rant about my experience flying Easyjet:

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Review: QM2

butter

5/5. “This is the life”, I kept repeating to Mark’s annoyance. We may have shot ourselves in the foot by starting our journey on the Queen Mary because the bar was set high. Really high.

In no way am I a travel expert, especially when it comes to luxury cruise liners, but I like what I like and so these reviews will be completely biased and weigh heavily on the quality of food, especially dessert. (I’ll try to keep this short, but sometimes my mind and stomach gets carried away).

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