D-Day

Today, 6th June, is the 76th anniversary of the D-Day Landings. The weather that day was similar (slightly worse) to today. At 06:30 some 156,000 American, British, Canadian & Commonwealth forces landed on five beaches along a 50-mile stretch of the heavily fortified coast of France’s Normandy region. The courage and fortitude of those involved …

Your personal computer can help scientists fight COVID-19

If you're reading this on any kind of computer, there is something that you can do that actually provides concrete, actual help in the battle against COVID-19. There is no commitment of money or time. By installing a tiny Folding@Home app on your computer that will run calculations of complex protein computer modelling using the …

Do you really need ZOOM?

So here we all are in lockdown and suddenly, everyone is talking about ZOOM, the video conferencing software. ZOOM itself has seen their market cap stretched beyond $40.3 billion, worth more than Uber and Lyft combined. This exponential growth has been driven not only by business use when working from home, but also by the explosion …

I met a girl who sang the blues, And I asked her for some happy news, But she just smiled and turned away…

Not much has been posted on here recently, for reasons that are hopefully obvious. I was reviewing this blog and thinking about some of the Tours that I've done while listening to some of my music. My mind went back to one of my favourite Tours, Tracks of the Deep South, or, as I prefer …

It, Me, We, Us & Them

It ... is of course COVID-19, the Coronavirus Me How is it affecting me? So far, it's not a good news story. I've now had two China Tours cancelled, and this represents a significant financial hit, which could be as much as 30% of my annual income. As things stand, I have no work for …

Angkor’s Away

Sorry about that but I couldn’t resist. I have 2 hours left in Cambodia before the Tour ends and I think I’m getting De-Mob happy - as the Vietnam troops used to say, I’m on short time. Yesterday, and this morning we visited the Temples at the Angkor Wat complex. A mixture of Hindu & …

Lotus, Spiders, Kids & Sticky Rice

Another early start for the long days drive to Siem Reap from Phnom Penh. Our Local Guide, Lim (on the left) and driver Hing were waiting for us and after the bags were checked (me) and loaded (somebody else) we set off. A great Team to look after us. Driving in Cambodia (actually Kampuchea) is …

Phnom Penh & Year Zero

A busy and very complex day today. We started with a morning visit to the Royal Palace. Not only is this a beautiful building but it’s also immaculately maintained. Inside the palace the French erected a statue of Napoleon the third mounted on a horse. When French rule ended and Cambodia became independent Kampuchea they …

Like Floating Waitrose…

We woke up early, at zero dark 30, to visit the floating market at Cai Rang And then the sun rose... The floating market is kind of like a supermarket, only instead of going to Aisle six for a pineapple, you go to boat three. Dozens of boats, small and large, mill around, drinking and …

Mekong-ing

Yesterday we travelled from Sai Gon to the Mekong River Delta and spent the day learning more about how people live in the area. The river is 2,700 miles long, the 12th longest in the world. Starting in Tibet is passes through China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia & Vietnam. To exist in the river delta …

RIP ‘Bravo’ the Water Buffalo (A Rant)

These opinions are my own and do not in any way represent those of any other person or company. Last night we arrived at the beautiful Victoria Hotel, Cần Thơ, This has long been my favourite hotel on the Tour and thank goodness GRJ have now reshuffled the Tour days to allow clients to enjoy …

Tank 834… and George

We left our Sai Gon Hotel early to visit the Viet Cong Tunnel complex at Cu Chi. An extraordinary and extensive system of tunnels that existed literally under the feet of the Americans and that is now a centre for Tourists keen to understand more about the American War. It’s a fascinating morning, but unfortunately …

“I’m still only in Saigon”

It doesn’t quite fit, but at this stage of the Tour it’s not that far off! 😁😁😁😁😁 https://youtu.be/2-bvNttwAUc

End of the line… Sai Gon

Today we travelled to Sai Gon from Nha Trang. Just under 8 hours but we’ve now completed our journey from Hà Nội and that makes 1726 km in total https://videopress.com/v/YNhT9iwd?preloadContent=metadata I got to take another picture for my collection of great conductors hats of the world. It’s a little small but you have to work …

Back on the train again

So today was day one of our long two day journey to Saigon. Da Nang to Nha Trang Where I am now. Tomorrow onto Saigon itself. I thought today I just put up a few pictures to give you a rough idea of what life is like on our Vietnam train. The train is quite …

Hoi An by Day & Night

Hoi An by day is a pretty little town on a river in central Vietnam. The famous Japanese bridge is shown in the header photo above. We walked through the town in the morning and visited the Chinese meeting house. You buy an incense coil, write a wish hang it up and go for burn. …

TimOnTheTrain is back on the train

Today was another train day, and the most scenic part of our train journey, from Hue to Da Nang. The line climbs and winds through the mountains of the central highlands while hugging the coast.  Despite being single line track for a lot of the journey, we arrived early after 2 1/2 hours. Da …

Hue

So, we made it to Hue and we're now staying in one of my favourite hotels, the excellent Indochine Palace. This afternoon we visited the Imperial City and Citadel, the national seat of power for many years and the site of one of the bloodiest battles of the American War (as they refer to it). …

Good Morning Vietnam…

Sorry. Had to be done.

Dong Hoi and early morning Café Viet

It's 05:30 and I've sort of slept on the train. KInd of. I'm not sure how long for since my fitbit gets confused by the motion of the train and thinks I haven't slept at all. Also, a sadistic carriage attendant has turned the aircon to the icebox setting (if you're doing this journey bring …