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Showing posts from August, 2011

Canberra ain't Japan: relearning other destinations

The cherry trees were in blossom, but it wasn't Japan. I need to relearn how to visit destinations outside of Asia. At night as I sat in the apartment  I had to remember that I couldn't just duck out into the corridor to grab something from a vending machine or pick up some dessert from a convenience store outside. Canberra isn't Asia and especially isn't Japan. I rather like Canberra. There's a freshness of air, a melding of urban and rural landscapes, a sense of life but also of solitude. There have been many changes since I lived there for three years, back in the early nineties. So many shops empty in Garema Place, so many of my familiar haunts moved or gone altogether: Impact Records, Kingsley's Chicken under Canberra Place, Woodstock Steak & Pizza House , Dymocks, and others. I suspect that some have just moved a little, across to the shinier and newer shopping mall that rings the centre of Civic or continue on elsewhere. Others have gone for good

A hotel for all reasons

I used to think that business people who stayed in bland chain hotels and ate room service dinners without exploring the city outside were plain silly. Now I understand. It's funny, I was looking for accommodation in Prague for the upcoming family holiday there. I found one apartment hotel where the interiors looked like they were decked out with cheap items from Fantastic Furniture, but it was supposed to be convenient and kid friendly, so I was happy. Yet, when it came to booking accommodation for a work trip to Canberra I found myself mentally rejecting such places and instead wishing for a standard modern business hotel. Unfortunately, they are rather thin on the ground and tend to be expensive (at least if you are forced to book via our corporate system). And all I could imagine myself doing (apart from meeting up with a friend) was returning to the hotel at the end of the day, having a quick dinner, then retreating to my room to relax. Don't get me wrong, I love Can

Prague model trains

Thanks to this thread on I found some interesting model railway related "sights" in Prague. One suggested accommodation was the Ibis Hotel Mala Strana . Close by is Railroad Kingdom . My Googling also found the Vytopna Restaurant in Prague where the drinks are served by model trains.

Sorry London

I hereby wish to apologise for causing the London riots. If you want a riot or natural disaster for your country please feel free to invite my family in for a holiday.