Why I can’t stand most backpackers

I’m not sure if I’m a ‘real’ backpacker, or traveler. I certainly spend most of my money on these little self indulgent adventures of mine, but I wouldn’t consider myself an expert, an authority, or even somebody whose opinions are particularly valid.

In my travels I’ve came across many many people who feel like it’s their duty to a) inform other backpackers of what they’re doing wrong, and b) look down on people who aren’t particularly interested in travel.

This is total BS. There is no right way to travel. I don’t like taking tours, I prefer going solo. I like couchsurfing and hostels more than hotels. I always take the train over flying. none of these make me a better traveller than anybody else.

It is flat out obnoxious to think you’ve mastered backpacking, and the monicker of how many countries you’ve been to means NOTHING. I’ve been to 25 countries (27 if you count Hong Kong and Vatican City, 28 if you include South Korea at the DMZ). I take ‘credit’ for maybe 20 of those, IE, countries that i’ve visited off my own back, not part of a family holiday when i was 2. But it means nothing, I spent 3 days in Hungary, and 2 in Croatia, I got the most fleeting experience possible. Wheres somebody who spends 6 months interrailing through Spain and Italy probably had a much more immersive experience. It is flat out arrogant to assume that your number has any bearing on how ‘good’ of a backpacker you are.

My main beef with backpackers though is this: just because somebody isn’t into travel does not mean you are better than them. I love backpacking, I do, it’s a great hobby and it brings more more satisfaction than anything else. The best memories I have are of times on the road, Being taught chinese chess on an overnight train by a North Korean soldier who didn’t speak a word of english, Shrooms in the Philippines, Ice cream in the Cinque Terre (Italy). But that’s just me. There’s lots of people who don’t like backpacking, they say it’s dangerous, they don’t get it. That’s cool. I don’t get art. I find most art galleries boring, but that doesn’t mean somebody who really loves art is in anyway better than me. 

witty conclusion goes here. 

You never see any adverts in North Korea. No coca cola logos, no golden arches, no massive billboard of Leonardo Decaprio awkwardly wearing an expensive watch.  It’s actually kind of disconcerting to be in a place where people aren’t constantly persuading you to give them money for stuff you don’t need.

Instead we get this, overt anti-western propaganda. Much more interesting. Most of it is providing motivation for people to work hard, or inspire pride in their country and loyalty towards their leaders.

You never see any adverts in North Korea. No coca cola logos, no golden arches, no massive billboard of Leonardo Decaprio awkwardly wearing an expensive watch.  It’s actually kind of disconcerting to be in a place where people aren’t constantly persuading you to give them money for stuff you don’t need.

Instead we get this, overt anti-western propaganda. Much more interesting. Most of it is providing motivation for people to work hard, or inspire pride in their country and loyalty towards their leaders.

Pyongyang Circus, DPRK, June 2013.
It’s interesting how as soon as people see animal cruelty like this, they immediately forget the suffering and inhumane treatment of the people of North Korea, all rationality vanishes and is replaced with “HOLY FUCK, LET THE BEAR GO FOR CHRIST’S SAKE”.
About halfway through the act the bear pissed himself.

Pyongyang Circus, DPRK, June 2013.

It’s interesting how as soon as people see animal cruelty like this, they immediately forget the suffering and inhumane treatment of the people of North Korea, all rationality vanishes and is replaced with “HOLY FUCK, LET THE BEAR GO FOR CHRIST’S SAKE”.

About halfway through the act the bear pissed himself.

a-voice-at-the-end-of-the-line:

Got stoned.

Spoke to friend on facebook who used the phrase ‘famous last words’

…fast forward 2 mins…

Starts watching old MCR music videos.

Starts loving watching old MCR videos.

Decides to watch all them twice.

…I’m so high.

This exact thing happened to me like a week ago. Possibly on the same day as this.

Great intoxicated minds think alike

Aaaaaaaaand………we’re back.

Oh hey tumblr. Long time no see.

UPDATES.

So it’s been a pretty long haitus. 

Still at uni, kinda, took a year out to live in China. I want to write about North Korea in my final year, so I found a company in China which would allow me to go and visit. Moved to Xi’an, and ended up going twice.

PHOTOS OR IT DIDNT HAPPEN:

March 2013

June 2013

I have so so so much to say about North Korea, but I’ll save that for later.

So tomorrow I leave China for good (kinda), flying to Bangkok - gonna be extremely hedonistic for the next six weeks. Little money, even less plans. Taking nothing but a bag of clothes smaller than my schoolbag. No idea where I’m gonna end up, probably dead on some roadside. ADVENTURE

Thoughts on gay marriage

I’m probably a bit biased, but I honestly believe were I not an abomination i’d be of the same mindset. Marriage is what culture dictates it to be, nothing like what happened in genesis. All god did was create a 2 people with interlocking parts, he saw adam was only and created him a companion in eve, not a wife, a companion. There was no concept of marriage when Moses wrote genesis, it developed after as a kind of easy political & legal agreement for controlling land. From what I understand of the bible, the overarching theme is “the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: love ones neighbour as thyself”, it makes sense, you can’t break any of the other laws without breaking that one. I personally don’t think 2 people being gay is at all contrary to that law, it doesn’t hurt anyone. But maybe homosexuality is wrong, and maybe it isn’t, but it’s not up to the legislature to decide who ca and cannot get married. Preventing benders from getting married isn’t an expression of religious freedom, it’s an express of religious oppression. And religious oppression isn’t just when Catholics decide to have crusades, It’s whenever someone of one faith tries to make someone of another set of beliefs do something their way - AKA when a state prevents gays from getting married because it goes against the bible, it goes against the whole idea of freedom, and the separation of church and state. And you know what will happen when gays are allowed to get married? Some Gays will get married. That’s it. It doesn’t diminish anybody elses marriage, in the same way that one couple getting divorced doesn’t. I agree that people should be allowed to be antigaymarriage, that’s cool with me. But it’s not up to those people to decide that others have to share their opinion. I know this is turning into an essay but if you look at the actual proposals you’ll notice that the Church of England isn’t being forced to ordain gays, or to even approve of them. Look, I’m an atheist, even if I was straight I probably wouldn’t want to get married, I think it’s wrong for me to seek approval of a god I don’t believe in - But I really do strongly feel for those gay theists who want to celebrate their love and to call it marriage.

I am absolutely terrified of growing up

community101:

The Best of Dean Pelton - Web Exclusive

THIS SHOW.

Great Wall of China Mutianyu. I’m trying to get good at taking photos. 

fun fact: you can’t see the great wall of china from space.

Great Wall of China Mutianyu. I’m trying to get good at taking photos. 

fun fact: you can’t see the great wall of china from space.

Revolting Children.

This is honestly the best piece of theatre I have ever seen. I know everybody says it’s perfect, it’s not, but it’s the closest to a perfect piece of theatre i’ve ever seen.