Thursday, August 21, 2014

Off Again--Malaysia 2014

Yup, it's that time again...I couldn't let a summer get by without picking up at least one new country.  And this one is important, at least for me--this will complete my 30 X 30 goal.  Now, I first said thirty countries by the time I turned thirty, which I had planned out to do.  However, when I got around to seriously looking at airfare for the summer, including the trip to the US, I quickly found that July is a terrible month to be in the air if you're on a budget, or at least if you're booking somewhat last minute, as I tend to do these days (the more I travel, the less I plan ahead...).  If I made the trip to the US in June and returned in August, I could save four hundred dollars, or more, than if I traveled to Malaysia first and made the overseas trek in mid-July.  I had intended to do the Malaysian bit first so it would fall before my birthday in July, but it was easier to redefine a bit my 30 X 30 plan (after all, I'm still making it to number 30 while I'm thirty) than to pay that much more.  So...Malaysia in August it is.



If I've discussed my travel plans with you before,  you might remember (or not, no one cares all that much about someone else's itinerary) that my original intent was to go first to Brunei and let that be my thirtieth country, as it seemed a bit more exotic to go someplace no one back home in Tennessee could find on a map, then continue to poke around a bit in Borneo and return to peninsular Malaysia for the second half.  However, my beloved Canon G9 that has been my faithful companion for the past six years and three continents, finally retired.  It needed major repairs, and it seemed it would be better to put the money toward an upgrade--so now I have a new best friend, a Canon Rebel SL1.  I've long wanted a DSLR to step up my photography a bit, but as a backpacker I wasn't sure if I really wanted the weight and intrusiveness (sometimes when traveling I prefer to not obtrusively stick a camera in the locals' business).  I finally chose this model because it was touted as the lightest and smallest DSLR, so it seemed a reasonable compromise.  It is still quite a bit larger than I'm used to, but I'm adjusting well.  And these days many travelers carry them, so it no longer seems quite so obvious.  I love it and I'm really looking forward to seeing the results from this trip!  However, due to that unexpected expense, I decided that Brunei and Borneo would have to wait, and am sticking with peninsular Malaysia.  

So, off to the airport...

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