World Tour 2001

Journal of my travel around the world during 2001-2002

Is this work?

Hello family and friends,

It seems like years since I have wrote and contacted you (although you are probably getting tired of my travel journals). The feeling comes from being so far from home but mostly because we just come back from a 14 day trek in the Himalayas mountains of Pakistan. One begin to think of the comforts of home when you are in the mountains camping without shower, toilet and chairs for 14 days!! So much so that when we got back into the big city of Islamabad, Pakistan we sought out any type of refuge of decent food, entertainment and alcohol even. On Friday night, we set our goal on a rumor that the Australian and US embassies have weekly happy hours. Driving around the embassy district and after a few phone calls, we were able to find a "Caribbean Night" at the UN Club with full buffet and alcohol had with purchased tickets. George, Hope and I were silly feasting on the western foods and downing drinks with music of Bob Marley in the background. 10:00pm we started dancing away to let out some accumulated "mountain sickness" I danced and drank so much I got sick at the end of the night!!!

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Hello from Nairobi

Hello from Nairobi,

Well it has been an incredible trip. Have been in Nairobi for a couple of days and will be leaving Africa today. Somewhat saddened to leave as with one month here in mostly Tanzania, I have only seen the tip of the iceberg.

But, I leave here with many wonderful experiences and memories. Mostly, I have climbed to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro at over 19,000feet. I have been having victorious visions and occasionally suffering on the climb not reaching the top. I am glad to say that I made it to the top safely although with much persistence. I am sure I have lost a few brain cells at the high altitude, so please excuse me if the note comes to you in broken sentences. :)

The 6 day hike was incredible, combined with travel through different climate zones. It was amazing to see the surrounding change as we climbed up..from warm lush rainforest, to the summit where nothing survives, and the surrounding just filled with volcanic rocks on the ground and clear blue sky up above. The first three days was relaxing hike but I was nervous as I knew it would get tough. Strangely enough, as I got closer the summit look more overwhelming. Day 4 and 5 were the toughest as we pushed to the summit with about 20 hours climbing in a 30 hour period. The summit was made starting at midnight, hiking 7 hours with a flashlight, toes to the heels of the person in front. We were all so focused on our challenges; the drive to the summit was basically done in silence among the group. There were times I felt drunk and hungover..drunk as my mind was slow and could hardly keep my balance and hung over as I felt dizzy and wanted to throw up. It is incredible what the body does once you set your mind to it. The only way the top was made was by mindlessly putting one foot in front of the other, following to the temp of the heavy breathing and steps of others, while signals that your body tells you to stop. Coincidentally, I read an article about Einstein on this trip, and he said "that by acting on the human mind, it has overcome man's insecurity before himself and before nature" I put so much energy reaching the top, I barely had any energy coming down as my body basically shutdown after reaching its goal.

My trip through Tanzania was filled with other adventures. Before climbing, I went on a 5-day safari including the famous Serengeti National Park. It was so nice to see where a place that man is secondary and is respectful of nature and the animals. But then, it is only smart as the parks were filled with lions! Camping in the Serengeti was so memorable. We heard of stories that bush pigs destroyed tents and that animals will come on the campground to search for food. Sleeping in my tent alone was an experience that I will never forget -- numerous sounds of lions roaring, hyenas yelping, gazelles grazing, lying on the ground with nothing but a piece of nylon from the tent to protect you. Believe me, in such a situation, you learned to respect the animals. We were lucky as we saw basically all that I could ever have dreamed of. Lions, cheetahs, migrating wildebeest, zebras, hyenas on and on.. All were so plentiful and up close. The funniest experience is that we had seven flat tires (Yes, 7!) and one time we could not even get out of the truck to help the driver as there were feeding lions surrounding us. You should have seen the look on his face when he saw a lion come running out of the bushes after the kill!

When I first arrived in Tanzania, I headed straight for the beaches of Zanzibar, the Spice Island. The island was interesting and culturally different from the rest of the country as it is 95% Muslim. Funny, due to the lack of good restaurants, many people gathered after sunset on the beach to dine on the numerous variety of food offered by BBQ stands. It was a great opportunity to sit by the ocean with cool breeze and meet people from all over. Many nights, I sat with the local people and exchanged thoughts. I found out religion is a taken seriously. It is no wonder why many wars are fought and being fought due to religious beliefs. I spent a few nights on the northern coast of Zanzibar, an area with numerous straw bungalows. Our restaurant was basically a straw roof on the beach with the kitchen consisting of a burning wood pile separated by a wooden wall. I had a chance to do a few dives off Memba hoping to swim with the dolphins. The dolphins did not show up, but certainly saw numerous giant Green and Hawksbill Turtles.

Now I am in Nairobi, heading for the airport this afternoon. Nairobi has been what I expected of a big city in a developing country. Funny, one of the biggest expenditures so far is the "tips" and "contributions" given to friend met along the way. Yesterday, I met a refugee Sudanian university student who was waiting to bet his UN refugees papers so that he can go to UC Davis in the States. The people are very nice and outgoing here (once you figure who are the hustlers). It has been interesting to talk to them about the culture and the life that is so different from ours. I look forward to coming back to visiting rest of Africa and learn more about its diverse cultures.

For now, I am off to Dubai for a couple nights stopover, then off to Pakistan to meet up with George and Hope on their way down from China. K2 here we come...

Well, I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the summer (except those of you down under). Again, if anybody has traveling plans would love to meet up with you and share the adventures together.

Check out the new photos on the web at

Best wishes


On the Road Again

Hello Friends and Family,

I guess you will not be surprised if I told you that I was strapping on the backpack again and seeing the world. It is funny, once you get to travel, it is something that you can not avoid for very long.

I have left Taiwan and am now in the States preparing for my longest backpacking trip yet. For the last three years, I have been in Taiwan working with my father's business. I enjoyed the experience..Although, there was some ups and downs during the time, overall I enjoyed the greatly valued the experience. I had the opportunity to spend more time with my family and live in Taiwan, something that I have not had growing up moving around. It was deeply valuable to spend time with my father and sister to manage a company that I only naively knew by name. I learned a lot about my family and culture that I will always hold close to my heart and memories..

But, anybody that knows me well, I have backpacked ever since I was a teenager and have done it regularly like a spawning salmon always returning to the call of the river. I am excited about this upcoming trip as I am traveling to regions of the world that I know very little about and hold a lot curiosity to me..And on this trip, I will try to seek many physical challenges that always drives me.. And most significant is that this trip I plan to travel for many months with no particular self-imposed deadline to get back to the regular working world. I believe that the world has so much to offer in variety of experiences and cultures that I am excited to be able to have this opportunity to "freely" see the world with an open mind.

My present itinerary includes

Tanzania, Kenya

Zanzibar Island, Serengeti National Park, Mt. Kilimajaro (over 5800m) and then fly out of Nairobi


Meet up with a childhood friend who is taking a year to travel around the world with his wife and we will be hiking the area of K2 Mountain area, there is even a chance that we may go to the base camp of the K2 mountain with a professional mountaineer who is climbing Mt. Everest right now and we may tag along to go to K2 base camp when he pursues the summit of K2.

Nepal and Tibet

Traveling around the countries and also around the base of Mount Everest.

As the later part of the trip, I do not have any definite plans but will be traveling to where my spirit takes me.

So I invite you to share in my travel adventures during my trip as I will stay in touch through emails and periodically updating my website with photos taken along the trip. My web site is: And of course, if anybody has the time and the free spirit to meet up with me along the trip, I would be happy to join up and share this great experience together.. As I travel the world, I am sure I will miss my friends and family back at home and look forward to your stories through occassional calls and emails. So although I will not be able to easily hear your voices through phone calls, I hope to receive your emails.

During this trip, I hope to be better about staying in touch with you either through emails or maybe somehow missing a turn on the road and ending up on your doorstep!! I apologize to people who I have been terrible about staying in touch and leaving Taiwan without much preparation. But, I am sure that we will have opportunities to catch up in the near future.

Until next time, I wish you all healthy and happily experiencing your lives with your friends and family.

Your friend


Adventurer in Life
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