Las Vegas – The best 30th birthday

I’ve been dying to write this one, I don’t even have notes to go off I am going to have to write it all from memory. It’s coming up to a year since we went so it seems like as good as time as any. Despite spending a lot of time drunk, one time in particular, I have almost full recollection of the trip. Those of you reading this who went feel free to comment with your favourite memories.

Las Vegas really needs no introduction, for years I had been told what to expect and I thought it sounded like a place I would love. I didn’t think it would be one of my favourite places in the world, it’s hard to say if it was because of the company, the location, the activities we did, Rose-tinted expectations or a combination of all of this. I’m not even sure how I am going to write this obviously with the Non South America related blogs I usually pick out one or two highlights and talk you through what I did. Vegas deserves a full blow by blow, so apologies this could get long. Get comfortable, I will try to include lots of pictures so it doesn’t feel like a news report.

One last thing before I start, when I am writing this I have a massive smile on my face and reminds me why I even bother writing these and have 10 people read them, it’s cathartic and let’s me kind of re-live memories.

Carolina and I had a couple of days planned in Los Angeles before heading to Las Vegas, this was a financial decision more than anything else, it’s cheaper to go to LA then it is to go directly to Las Vegas. We decided that it we’d spend a couple of nights here before driving to Las Vegas. Los Angeles is huge and a result we only managed to do a few things in LA in our short time there. We visited the Hollywood sign, or at least viewed it on a short walk from the observatory. We went to muscle beach and saw Hollywood Boulevard where we saw George Clooney.

Showing off my muscle….beach picture

We were staying in an Air BnB right in the middle of El Segunda it was walking distance to the airport, that was all well and good but it was not walking distance to anything else. Location aside it was such a nice apartment on a residential complex and the few nights we spent there were very comfortable.

Action shot on the pier

There were going to be a total of 11 of us in Las Vegas, my friends were arriving at different times from various locations. We met Sam and Sian one night had a drink at an Irish bar on Hollywood Boulevard (that was the night we saw George Clooney) and I got mugged for a dollar from an up and coming rap artist who forced me to buy his signed CD ‘to Russ’. They’d made their way down the west coast from San Fransisco to LA before making their way to Vegas the day before us.

The second night we met with Jack and Drozzy and went to a comedy club. WestSide Comedy Club. The first act didn’t really do it for me, I don’t think it did it for the rest of the group either, it was an Improv Group and it was all a bit stifled and frankly not that funny to me….loads of other people were laughing. Perhaps it’s the American sense of humour. Now, the comedy could have got better or I could have got more drunk either way as the night progressed things were much funnier and we were all cracking up by the end of the night. Apparently it’s the comedy club where epic rap battles begun, Carolina had met the guys from ERB years and one of the guys told her where to go In LA. We didn’t stay out terribly late, we had a long drive in the morning the four hours from LA to Vegas. We’d hired the car that day and I was driving us four in the morning.

We’d arrived and I was so excited.

The first casino we went to was Flamingo’s we chose this one because it was next door to Drai’s Nightclub which is where Nelly was performing that evening and we were going to try and get in later on. Before that all started though we had some gambling to do, now I won’t go through every bet anyone had but I remember Katie being the first one to walk away from a machine “up”. The rumours about Las Vegas were not all true and I am going to debunk one now, if you are gambling people do come around with free drinks, this is no way to get drunk the waiting staff do not come round nearly frequently enough and so your forced to attend the bar to get your groove on and that can end up being expensive!

Anyway Katie was up and we’d met Sam and and Sian and Jon and Danielle so it was time to go to Drai’s.

Nelly was good. The club was packed and we had to move around to find some space to breath. Once we had done that it was such a good night some of my friends made their way to front of the Dance floor and were within touching distance of Nelly, one (Katie) even claimed to touch his shoelace. With good music, our first night in Vegas, good friends what more can you wish for. The night drew to a close and I knew that Vegas was a place I’d love. On reflection I wish I had stayed closer to the stage with the guys but I don’t like being too far from the bar and I don’t like being too packed in so I had my enjoyment from a far.

See, they were pretty close

The next day after a few hours spent in the bill we headed to the Stratosphere, one of the first Casinos in Vegas and definitely the tallest. Famous for its views across the strip and spaceship shape, our plan was to head to the top get some pictures and ride the rides at the top of Casino. My day didn’t start off great, I dropped my phone the screen smashed and I had no access to photos, social media, banking it was a bit of a pain but I wasn’t going to let that ruin my holiday. When we got to the top which was high I got other people to take my pictures and I didn’t need my phone to ride the rides. I’m usually not afraid on rides, or if I’m not hungover I’m not scared of heights. The combination of the slight anxiety hangover and the rides being so high up did give me small palpitations but didn’t stop me from getting on them. Whilst we went up, Carolina don Alex stayed down in the casino and spent what I am told was a lifetime waiting for an old yank to check their IDs against a big book of authentic IDs. Once that was done they played wheel of fortune until we came back down, wheel of fortune quickly became Carolina’s favourite game. Before we left the Stratosphere we did see a new bride and groom, the bride was errmm “falling” or maybe even cascading out of her dress, some of you may think oh typical man to notice that, it was hard not to notice when the bride was shouting “look how good my tits look” to anyone who would pay attention.

Another day we went to a pool party. It was being held at a hotel/casino called Encore, just based purely on the exterior it was one of my favourite hotels. We spent the morning at the Villa having some drinks, Jon and Danielle came to join us and I think we left for the hotel at about 12.

The DJ for the day was David Guetta and unfortunately I didn’t get to see him perform, I managed to have a couple of hours in the pool party, where I enjoyed spending 70 dollars on a drink….that drink must have been worth the money because it wasn’t long before I sort of “come round” and I was outside the pool party being told I couldn’t go back in because I was too drunk. I was lucky enough to catch a glimpse of David Guetta before being too drunk to remember what I saw. As you’ll know my phone was broke, Carolina was holding all my money and cards I couldn’t get a cab home because i didn’t know our address which is why I couldn’t walk either. I was told I could re enter the pool party but I’d have to pay again I tried explaining that I’d love to pay again but all my money was in the pool party this fell on deaf ears with the bouncers, my only option was to sit around and wait for someone to come out. Jon and Danielle came out first and rather than panic my friends I just told them to go back to their hotel and I was sure someone else would come out eventually, thankfully about an hour later people came out of the pool party filling me with stories of the bits I missed and explaining how they spent the time looking for me. Despite being kicked out the pool party it was still a great day the weather was nice, the bits of the party I experienced were good and it was at my favourite hotel. All in all a good day and pool party is definitely on my list of recommendations.

The plan for the rest of the night was to return to the Villa and then rest up and go back out. We went to a club called 1Oak clearly still drunk from earlier in the day they wouldn’t let me in. My friends went in and I went and got a coffee, by the time I finished the coffee Carolina had come out. We decided to call it a night.

I owe an apology to Jon, Sam, Danielle and Sian as we I was supposed to drive a second car to Grand Canyon one day but i woke up feeling a bit worse for wear after the night before and so I had to bail, promising you drive the others the following day. Despite letting people down I was happy I didn’t go in the end and I shall expand on why….

I was happy because we went to a casino, and both Alex and I won we celebrated with lunch, winning at a casino happens to a few people but I won in the strangest fashion and you’ll think I am exaggerating!

Alex was playing roulette, we were all watching. Alex had played for about 30 minutes and was up by about 500 dollars and I kept telling him I said it will be “zero” soon obviously this is completely random but still….Alex said that the next spin was going to be his last whether he won or lost so I said “ok well if it doesn’t come in Zero I will put my Daily gambling limit on Zero” ….zero didn’t come in and Alex collected his money as I took his place at the table….right at the last minute I bottled it and took some money off zero but still left around 10 dollars on it, the ball span and as the wheel come to a slow the ball settled at the Zero number, we went wild as if I’d won thousands but it was just shock that I said it, called it and bet it and it all come in. It’s the most excited I’ve been over 300 dollars in my life. It paid for our lunch. (Well mine and Carolina’s)

No trip to Vegas, in my opinion, is complete without a trip to the Grand Canyon. It was absolutely one of the highlights of the trip. It’s about a four hour drive, which is quite pleasant because of the scenery, from Las Vegas. Get to take in a few stereotypically arid American towns along the way such as Dolan Springs home to Hot Dog restaurant to the stars “Hot Diggity Dog” which was unfortunately shut when we drove past. We must have looked a bit of a spectacle when we stopped to get petrol, all five of us in the car were completely flummoxed by the complexities of the American petrol pump, all five of us had a go trying to “fill our tank with gas” we even convinced ourself it was the pump until we changed pump and found ourselves equally perplexed….eventually 5 peoples efforts and 20 minutes of time spent petrol started coming out of our pump which meant we could continue our journey. I’m convinced that had we not worked out how to do it we would all be working full time jobs in Hot Diggity Dog, lost to the outside world and forgotten by our loved ones, as it was we got petrol and that didn’t happen….

I’ve digressed, The Grand Canyon, I mean I know all 8 of you reading this so I know you all know what it looks like. On my way there I knew what it looked like but my god it is massive. I couldn’t really comprehend how big it was when I was looking at it because there is no point of reference, someone needs to hold a one pound coin up constantly to give some scale. The only way you can really appreciate the size is to watch the helicopters and you can see how long it takes them to cross the Canyon. I’ve put some pictures below because I like them but until you go there you won’t be convinced by the size.

No scale, but it is large and beautiful

The Grand Canyon was a highlight and that is still the case even though it’s is home what I’m convinced is criminal activity. You’ll learn now that I am very lazy writer, the part of the Canyon we visited belongs to a Native American tribe, I don’t know what they are called I could look it up but I refuse to accept them as genuine they charged us nearly 60 dollars to “get in” and when I say get in I mean drive us from the car park to the canyon.

They say that it is sacred land but to be honest it all feels a bit like a scam, and I am fairly sure of you were prepared to walk across the desert you can reach the canyon and get just as spectacular views. Despite being conned for the second time on this trip the Grand Canyon was one of my favourite activities.

I can’t remember if it was the night after the Grand Canyon or another night be Alex had organised for us to go to Omnia Nightclub which is a club with a rooftop located inside Ceasers Palace casino. It was all organised a bit last minute and ended up being a great night. I don’t want to keep mentioning the price of things but the water in this club was 13 dollars but they played good music and had some great views over the strip, what started as an impromptu night started to get serious when we left Omnia, in a predicament of what to do we stood outside hoping plans would fall in to our lap, and they did.

A man approached us and said he could take us to a strip club, limo there and back, initially we turned him down thinking we could make other plans but with no one able to make a decision we called the man back over and started our negotiation. The deal was twenty dollar entry and you get a free dance, a drink and as stated earlier a limousine to and from the strip. We were sold and we agreed and waited for our limousine…..which turned out to be a mini van. When we got to the venue Alex enquired about the limo, they said we would definitely get one back to the strip. We had a few drinks in the strip bar and then ordered our limo……which came for one night and one night only we were ballers!!

Another night Alex, Drozzy and I headed to Fremont Street or Vegas old town. It was our last night and had we found this place sooner we definitely would have came here more often, this is where the wait staff do come round often for you to get drunk something we couldn’t really make the most of because we had an early start the next day but we had a few beers and played some cards. Headed back to the Villa where Grant and Carolina were sitting up the only two who hadn’t succumbed to sleep.

There was another comedic moment when we were all at the Villa, 7 of us and a few other boys towering over Six foot. A man clearly over the age of 50 and no bigger than Grant was trying to get in our back garden. We ask him what he is doing and there were clear communication difficulties and looking back I’m really not sure why we were so sceptical but we really and we really didn’t want to let him in our garden, we did though and it turns out he was the pool cleaner! Madness.

I think our fear had foundations in various conflicting stories from our Uber drivers telling us our area where we were staying was or wasn’t safe, to this day I am convinced it was safe.

I had the best time in Vegas and it might have even been the best holiday I have ever been on and I look forward to returning. There are so many other stories I could have told you, Ben the pool cleaner if you’re reading this why don’t you give us your version of events. Or if you came to Vegas why not share your favourite story….perhaps it was Droz ordering peach cobbler, or four breakfasts at the diner?

So anyway yeah that was Vegas.

30 before 30

I was 28 and I had just come back from a Trip around South America, a trip I’d been keen to do for years and then after the trip I saw that I was close to visiting 30 countries so I decided that I wanted to get to reach that landmark before I turned 30. Now I’ve turned thirty I get to relive it all by writing it out and bore all four of you reading it.

I promise to make hardly any of it informative and I promise even less of it will be funny.

A big thing worth mentioning is, I was young for some of these trips and so if you’re expecting long detailed accounts of every trip you’re going to be disappointed, in fact, if you’re expecting anything more than a glorified diary with some personal anecdotes then you will likely be disappointed. In fact disappointment will be a running theme.

Now the low expectations have been set and I’ve mitigated any of the abuse I’ll get from my friends we can get started.

Here are the 30 countries that I visited before I was 30.

One final disclaimer, in order to record the countries I have been too I used the “been” app, some of the countries listed on there aren’t recognised UN nations, I’ll get over it I’m sure you will too.

  • Portugal
  • France
  • Spain
  • USA
  • Andorra
  • Bulgaria
  • Denmark
  • England
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Luxembourg
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Scotland
  • Sweden
  • Germany
  • Vatican City
  • Wales
  • India
  • Bahamas
  • Mexico
  • Saint Martin (French side)
  • Sint Maarten (Dutch side)
  • Argentina
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Peru
  • Uruguay

This list started when I was about 6, my parents took me to Portugal, this is where my first ever clear memories came from, questionable parenting lead me to being taught how to swim at four in the morning in the hotel pool. I was really lucky because my parents took me to other places as well like Spain and Greece so I had loads of great holidays when I was a kid and though it was lost on me then I was crossing off countries. Then I got to 18 and the holidays with my friends started.

I think the most enjoyable thing for me to do is pick out a couple of highlights from certain places then I’ll answer some specific questions….that I asked my self.

France

My parents took us to Disneyland Paris when we were kids, it was a surprise, we knew we were going somewhere and then in the morning our parents told us to wake up as we had to go and get on the coach because we were going Disneyland, I probably cried with excitement. I remember loads about the trip. We stayed in a cowboy hotel, we watched a firework display, my parents watched the Disney parade whilst me and my brother went on Thunder mountain 7 times. It really was amazing, even if I was too small too go on Space Mountain!! (I probably cried at this point as well). We went on a coach with a load of my Dads mates and their kids just a quality long weekend away.

That’s the kind of insight in to locations you’re gonna get so if you’re looking for actual insight on hotels and shit…..you’ve definitely come to the wrong place (glorified diary, remember).

Andorra

So this one was a school trip I think I was in year 9 or 10, it took forever to get there on the bus! The teachers made me sit down with them…..probably cos they knew I’d be the most entertaining over the rest of the kids, I’ll tell myself that’s the reason at least! I learnt how to Ski on this holiday …..well snow plough. Years later when I went skiing again with my girlfriend and her family I naturally thought you snow ploughed down every hill, FYI you don’t, my girlfriend and her family found my technique questionable! It was a trip that stuck out in my mind just cos it was something I’d never done before. Lovely place though! And skiing is quality.

Netherlands

More specifically Amsterdam, been a few times now.

It’s such a weird place, everything is so “in your face” the drugs, the sex, the drinking……i might sound like an actual pretentious writer here but the city has sooo much more to it. It’s so pretty. One time we woke up and my mate smoked with breakfast and I just took him out on a walk we walked so far out of the city, we walked for so long that my friend sobered up and got annoyed that we’d gone so far. I was pleased we did it though as I got to take in more of the city than I usually do on trips to Amsterdam, the architecture, the culture is so much more than just a decent stag do location. If you’re prepared to slum it you can get flights and hotel from London for a midweek stay for well under a hundred quid.

I think everyone should go there once despite it being expensive when you get there.

India

Me and my mates done a quality trip in India we went to Delhi, Goa and Mumbai. I need to split these out

Delhi

It is the most crowded place I have ever been in…..my……life. We got on the underground and it was empty….we turned up at Delhi station and I laughed out loud. It was RIDIC!!! Picture the scene of kids trying to get on their school bus all that pushing and shoving, it was like that just out in the open.

It seemed like every man and his dog was telling us we needed a security pass and to go to “Connaught place” which it turns out is a hot bed of conmen and excursion outlets. Thankfully a cab driver took pity on us after our will had finally been worn down and we were about to hand over some money to the conmen just to get them off our backs. The taxi driver took us to our hotel which was still standing despite multiple accounts from the conmen saying that it was “burnt down”.

The Locals had an odd trait of asking for pictures with us but to take them with our own phones…..here is an example –

The picture was taken at the Jama Masjid mosque in Delhi, one of the largest mosques in India. Well worth a visit it’s a proper impressive building.

I will probably go in to more detail about India at a later date but key points are it is Cheap and it is busy!!!!!

Goa

This was probably the best beach holiday I have ever been on. We stayed a few nights in the north of Goa then went south for a few days. There are so many beaches there you can just go to a different beach every day some of which you’ll turn up to and be the only people on the beach…..the only people….surrounded by cows and dogs.

I didn’t actually realise how big Goa was before I went I naively believed we could just stay Central and get a cab north and south as necessary but that was not the case hence the split in the trip. The good news is the cabs were like 40 quid for a 2 hour drive so not bad at all.

The north has more bars and clubs and when you think “Englishman abroad” this is more their location I think a massive plus to the North is the ability to get naan breads in the nightclubs at 3am if you really want and tbh you really should!!!!

In the North we turned up at our “hotel”, for want of a better word and after the hotel manager painfully slowly counted our money four times he led us to our rooms. We’d paid for two twin rooms, a fact which was lost on Jabba the Hutt. (Pictured below)

This man was so greedy, the way he fingered our notes as his counted them still gives me the creeps to this day. I think it’s safe to say that Grant HATED this man, much of our holiday was made up of listening to Grant rant about how much he hated him.

Anyway Jabba opens the door to our room, and we find two beds and two mattresses and we were like “nah nah nah, not in this heat” we need two twins. So he proceeded to knock on the next door neighbours room and tell them they needed to get out the room as we needed it. Rightly so, the other guests were confused and refused, giving Jabba an even bigger headache. Then he opened a third door and there was an empty room, why didn’t give us this room before trying to kick the Russians out is a mystery I don’t think we will ever get to the bottom of.

The south was much more chilled out just days spent on the beach then nights in a beach bar, the more spiritual amongst us can partake in Yoga and there are a few activities you can do in land like visiting the elephants.

Watch out for Crabs (they nip, don’t they Grant).

There’s a funny anecdote in the South of Goa, and it’s a bit of an inside joke but it ended with me with egg on my face after paying for Grant’s taxi.

Mumbai

The most cosmopolitan city. It was busy but no way near as busy as Delhi.

There were a few stand out parts to the trip to Mumbai and the number one stand out part was the hotel staff, Hotel Apollo.

Sorry to skip right to the end of the trip but it was a highlight. When we left the hotel a fight almost broke out over who would take our bags, we didn’t really understand what was happening until we got downstairs when the entire staff on this hotels payroll were standing at the bottom of the stairs in a “give me a tips” arms outstretched position waiting for us to put notes and coins in their greedy hands. Running out of money made it harder to keep track of who I had and hadn’t given money too! Then when we got in our taxi they were all standing in the road waving us off. For us this was very odd behaviour!!

Shorts were banned at one of the bars we went to. Alex and Jack were wearing shorts and the workers made them borrow trousers from the hotel and they were the worse fitting trousers ever, why none of us have a picture I’ll never know so instead –

Here’s a lovely picture of us doubling our entire holiday spend by buying one cocktail at the Four Season Mumbai.

Grant is taking the picture

Saint Martin

Famous for its beach by the airport runway and the colourful town Phillipsburg St Martin is a very nice island. I went last year with my girlfriend Carolina.

On the island You get around by “bus” or it’s more like a shuttle service-ish….these minibuses just pick you up on the side of the road. At the beginning it is very difficult to navigate these buses but once you get the hang of it you can get round the island for well cheap. The minibuses get very crowded with locals and the greedy drivers will fill their buses as if they’re trying to beat some sort of world record.

There is loads to do on the island and some of the beaches are ridiculously nice.

I would recommend staying on the Dutch side of the island as the French side was decimated by hurricane Katrina. There is a rebuild in progress but the people we spoke to have said there is not enough money to do it properly apparently the French government isn’t giving them any money……surprise suprise fucking French 😛

One town on the French side that didn’t get destroyed was Marigot, there is a really short (but steep) walk up to Fort Louie and you can get some great panoramic shots of the town. Instead of doing that I took a bang average photo as seen below.

On the walk up this Fort both Carolina and I were cat called by a bunch of community service workers. They were trying to be helpful but only came across sinister!

South America

There is so much to say about South America. I wrote notes on the who trip so I’m gonna put that in a different blog so fully expect that.

Answers to questions that no one has ever asked me.

What’s your favourite ever city break?

What a convenient Segway to talk about my favourite city in the world……Florence. I first went there about 8 years ago, I thought it looked quality. Old school buildings, famous history, places to go out and small enough to walk around. It’s somewhere I think you could as a couple, alone or as a group of friends. I would happily go back again and again and I am sure I’d always discover something new.

Not only did the place look amazing I found myself intrigued by the history of the place, we grow up learning so much European history and I thought to myself that considering Florence had such an important part of that history we learn so little about it. So many famous people of history we know about today lived or visited Florence! I won’t bore you because you’re likely not as interested as me but research Florence when you have a chance.

Things to do there can be quite expensive but if your after cheap then it’s worth going and just looking round at all the buildings the big churches, the buildings that are now museums, you can go to neighbouring towns Sienna, Pisa which also have things to do and if you are there long enough you can easier do a train journey to Rome for the day.

At night there is plenty to do. My friends were skeptical when I suggested it as a venue for our holiday and were all pleasantly superprised by how good it was for food and drink at night.

It helped that our AirBnb was located in an amazing location right by the famous bridge ponte vecchio which made getting around so convenient.

I massively recommend this place.

Favourite “activity” holiday?

I was eleven we went to Florida, is that enough explanation?

Seriously though it was good of my parents to take us there I absolutely loved it and I am part of that creepy group of people that wants to go back there before I have kids…..then get moaned about by other adults on social media “ThE qUeUe WaS sO lOnG aNd It WaS aLl ChIlDlEsS aDuLtS”….yeah and what Monica? Just tell Tarquin and Erica they’ll have to wait, I wanna go on Thunder Mountain.

We stayed on International drive and had buffet for breakfast every day and steak every night. Hi America, the English have arrived.

So many of my most vivid early memories are from here, if you have kids (and there is two sad facts here 1) the people reading this are only ever gonna be my friends 2) I’m getting older so those friends have kids) then you have to go here start saving now!!!

What’s your favourite ever holiday?

So, I wanna say South America or India BUT for my 30th birthday we went to Vegas and it was the bollocks. I absolutely loved it people say “you’ll love it when you go there ” and “it’s amazing” and you go there with high hopes and think you can only be let down but you won’t be it was everything I wanted and more, if I was rich I’d go back again and again.

There was 11 of us 7 in a House 10 minutes away from the strip and 4 of us in hotels on the strip. The house was booked on air bnb and for how nice and how big it was it was so cheap I think we paid 300 each for five nights or something like. I loved staying in the house it was a highlight of the trip to spend so much time with my friends but I was envious of the guys staying in the hotels I suppose it felt like that we’re getting a more authentic Vegas holiday. Looking back though I don’t feel like I missed out at all maybe if I go back in a smaller group I’d stay in the hotels instead.

There is so much to do there for gamblers (obviously) non gamblers, drinkers and non drinkers, all types of musics, food entertainment just so much you won’t know until you go.

My favourite hotel/casino was probably New York New York on the inside but from the outside it was the Encore which is where my friends were staying.

One thing I hadn’t accounted for was how BIG the place was. It was so big! You go there thinking ahh we’ll spend the day walking up and down the strip popping in to hotels and casinos and such……you won’t you might be able to get to three maybe four a day if you whizz round them!

We took a day out of the trip to go to the Grand Canyon, it was probably the highlight of the trip. It’s mind blowing how big the place is. We went to the West ridge as it was a closer drive than the more popular South Ridge, I didn’t feel like we missed out though.

In England we would have fences up all over the place and you wouldn’t be allowed close to the edge, here though you can walk right up to the edge no barriers it was madness and sent my anxiety through the roof! All completely worthwhile. I loved it.

Get yourself to Vegas and to the Grand Canyon it’s a trip of a life time. Or perhaps I felt that way because of the company I keep, who knows.

I keep notes on most of my holidays so I think I am going to post this once or twice a month. Hope to keep myself entertained and hopefully not come across too cringey to the 8 people (it’s gone up four) that read this. My plan is too work my way down the list in a bit more detail probably break it up with the South America blog at some point as that’s already written 🙂

Other places you can see my ramblings are my twitter and facebook @dukeross and Ross Tunnicliffe