Tag Archives: travel

Lone star state, Texas

Hello again,

Writing this from my suite in Houston. Came back here for another training session on April 9th, on a Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt. 10 hour flight was uneventful, other than a bunch of Germans that got drunk in seats in front of me, so they kind of stank of booze. Well, what can you do, at least after a few hours glass of clinking and cheering they gave up and went to sleep 🙂

Training was interesting as it is every time, but this time I have a good friend with me so we’re having a good time over here. One of the off days (Apr 15th 2017.) we decided to travel 300 something miles up north to Dallas to see the Gas Monkey garage and their bar n grill.

Well it was a pretty uneventful ride up there with lots of green pastures and landscapes. White picket fences, horse and cow farms. A big statue of Sam Houston. Sam Houston led Texas to victory and independence of Texas from Mexico and he also led Texas into the US as a constituent state.

Some funny cars you encounter on the road

Some funny stuff you see in the shops(check out the price).

Dallas looks a bit smaller than Houston (personal observation), but it had some interesting views. I’ll just throw in a few photos from the trip. Ignore the guy in the photos, as I love taking selfies. 😛


Photos below are from the bar n grill. Good burger, but the decoration of the place is brilliant.

We saw the owner of the garage Richard Rawlings, but for a few seconds before he buzzed off.

Went back to Houston the same day.

Today(April 17th 2017.) I had a day off again, so I planned to go visit the state capitol, Austin and also Jacobs well place that jumped out on my Facebook the other day and I got interested.

My buddy had training, so I buzzed toward Austin myself. Early morning 8 o’clock 😀 sat in my Chevy Impala and started my trip west on the 290.

I must say, the drive on the 290 from Houston to Austin was much more interesting than the one to Dallas.

A lot of interesting towns and landscapes to see. My favorite was town called Giddins where I felt the need to click of a couple of photos below.

I passed right through Austin and continued to Jacobs well, which is about an hour out of Austin.

(I took the gray route back (Not the airplane route)).

The well is an interesting place, so is its history. I didn’t go for a swim as I forgot to take my swimming shorts and there were people there 😀

After Jacobs well, went back to Austin to check out downtown as I heard it was something to be seen.

The rain storm was growing stronger but I was dedicated to see as much as I could. Parked the car somewhere on 4th street and Congress Ave.

Parked right here 🙂

And walked rest of the way. Stopped at the Starbucks cafe to get some coffee and internet and continued walking toward the State Capitol building.

Statue of Angelina Eberly.

And here starts the State Capitol building and surroundings. I put photos of statue description plates as they are an interesting read.

Inside of the State Capitol building is quite impressive. Paintings of all state governors are on the walls. And as I heard from one of the tour guides inside, George W Bush is the only Texas governor that became president of USA. How about that.

Anyway, as the weather started to get worse, I decided to head back towards Houston. My plan was to spend the night in some motel half way towards Houston.

As I was driving and got to like an hour and a half to Houston where I was planing to spend the night I figured I could make it back without problems so pushed forward and made it back to Houston same day. I was driving down the I10 east, and the rain storm was in full power, so I couldn’t see anything around me. All of the sudden I saw the Katy water tower and knew I was close. Katy Mills mall is my favorite shopping place in Houston :).

Anyway, good night, I deserve some rest from all this driving today.

Kuala Lumpur, Labuan, Malaysia

New place again. So soon. Man, am I tired. I’ve been more in the air last two days than on ground. Well not really, but I spent quite some time in airport business lounges.

Flew in the morning of 19 March 2017. from Dammam Saudi to Doha Qatar, spent some time in Doha airport, flew to Dubai, picked up my baggage and went straight to check back in for the flight to Kuala Lumpur.

Over Doha of course, I collect miles with Qatar Airways, so always fly over Doha.

So spent some time in Dubai business lounge, went back to Doha and then took a 7 and a half hour flight to Kuala Lumpur.

Now I’m here waiting for the final flight to Labuan, which is as I found out Googling, an island with an interesting history close to Brunei. Once I get to Labuan I’m getting a boat ride to somewhere, still don’t know where.

My initial plan was to visit the Petronas towers and some other stuff before the job as I have a 6 hour layover here, but I don’t want to risk any unexpected events that might interfere with the job. As this should be the last job this hitch, I think I’ll just stay in Kuala Lumpur a day or two longer when the job is done, just to check it out.

What’s the first thing I notice? They’re driving on the wrong side of the road…. Just kidding, they’re driving on the left side of the road. Right? No, left. 🙂

I’ll try to take photos and update this post. If I don’t fall asleep before.


Updating the post with the photos about a month later.

View of Labuan island, close to Brunei
Wrong side buddy 🙂
Travel to the platform.
View from ocean level
Basket ride on and of the platform(next time have to take a video, it’s fun)
Mosquitos in Malaysia 🙂
Working

Pure art photography 😀
Chilling on the helideck, next day going home
Ride home coming
Favorite view is a rig in a rear view mirror, but this is not bad too 🙂

Skydive Dubai

Arrived to Dubai from Cairo on March 4th 2017. As I had a couple of days of work in Dubai and was lucky that a spot opened up, decided to take the opportunity and book a tandem sky dive experience.

Long story short, they fly you up to 4 km altitude, strap a professional to your harness and you jump out of a plane carrying the guy with the parachute on your back.

I must say it is a lifetime experience, for me it was feeling tension up until the moment I let go of everything and jumped. Video provided.. 🙂

Falling down towards the ground at 200 kph one quickly figures out how all the civilian passenger jets create a false sense of security flying inside them while they keep you nice and leveled 30 000 ft in the air.

The city of course looks amazing from the sky. Much better than from the Burj Khalifa. Too bad it lasts only for a couple of minutes. Alas, the plan is to do it again once.

Date of the jump was March 9th, 2017.

After a couple of days in Dubai, on March 10th went cracking forward to my favorite place to save some money, lovely Saudi Arabia.

Egypt

Greeting from the great delta of the river Nile.

Well, first time in Egypt. Arrived from Dubai on February 27th 2017. at around 5 PM. Stayed over night in the Kempinski Maxim hotel which had an extra royal feeling to it.

Kempinski

Left to the work site early next morning. Forgot my LG 360 camera in the room which I never got back. I called the hotel, but seems like somebody got a new free camera with some of my videos on it. Oh well.

Cairo is a gigantic city, and was totally weird looking. I saw thousands of about 5 story apartment buildings that were built out of red bricks and never completed. Nobody living there. Later I heard that was because the political turmoil that was going on there about five years ago.

My trip was from Cairo to the north following the great Nile river. There you can actually see thousands of years of irrigation and agriculture. Amazingly fertile land and amazing lack of environment care as the river and canal banks are filled with plastic trash. But nevertheless, green fields across the horizon.

Well, I spent 4 days on the work site, then went travelling back to Cairo on March 3rd 2017, around 10AM. Arriving to Cairo I stayed at the Le Meridian hotel at the airport.

2 PM I arrived to the hotel, checked in, and guess where I was at 2:15 PM?

In a taxi going to see the pyramids of course. The pyramids gate closes 4PM every day, so you have to enter the site before that time. As it was rush hour and the driver got pulled over on a police checkpoint, he was attempting to break the speed record to make it there on time. I tried telling him it’s not that important as my life, but he assured me not to worry… 🙂

After getting to the Giza I rented a guide and a horse ride to see as much as I can. Later on I felt like carrying the horse as I felt sorry for her. She looked old and a bit tired… 🙂

What to say about the pyramids that hasn’t been said before?

Well my impression… Getting closer to the pyramids the usual feeling that no video or photograph can capture the feeling of seeing them with you own eyes. Looking at those huge stone blocks and trying to figure out how exactly did they transfer and lift them up. My humble opinion goes with the theory that the Nile was flowing much closer to the pyramid location, so they used a lot of water to transfer the blocks and create counter balance to raise them up. Who knows, anyway the pyramids just amaze when you see them up close.


I didn’t have enough time to go inside the pyramids, so I went to check out the sphinx that is a lot smaller than I expected, but still a sight to see as it was carved from a single piece of limestone.

After the pyramid sight seeing was finished, the driver said he’d take me to a tour of Cairo, so I went to see the Nile river bridge,

old Cairo, had some cool freshly squeezed sugar cane juice.

and some kebabs at a local restaurant somewhere in the city that never sleeps (as the driver says).

Anyway, plan is to return to Egypt in a couple of months, but this was a nice first visit.

Left towards Dubai on March 4th.

Dubai/Kuwait

Dubai….. Yeah Dubai. Every time you go back to that place you find roundabouts missing, new overpasses that go from somewhere to somewhere else but still above your head.

Had to go over there to get some paperwork done. In the mean time helped at the workshop, which turned out to be a not such a good idea this time, as I managed to hurt my left hand.

First day
First day

Funny, right? 😀

Don’t worry about it. I was lucky. It was just 5 stitches. No broken bones, no tendon damage. After four weeks, hand is as good as new.

Anyway, I’m babbling. Dubai was nice, went to some cool places like TT Custom Choppers

Terminators

cars

 

But, I’m finally on a job to Kuwait. Haven’t been here in about two years.

The look from the window doesn’t look that bad, but it’s freaking cold and windy outside.

Kuwait

 

Kuwait2

Not sure what happens next, as I’m still here waiting for some permissions to go into the field.

Stay tuned…

Green Bangladesh

Oi there. A new post from a new place under the Sun, on the third little rock. This time about a 100 kilometers east of Dhaka, the capitol of Bangladesh.

What to say about this place? I was travelling here for two days with little sleep, so I could hardly keep my eyes open during the ride from the airport to here. But what I did see is that it is very chaotic. Driving through the towns is extremely stressful as there is absolutely no regard to traffic rules. It is as if you have a bigger vehicle and a stronger horn, you go first.

Big passenger buses dented, scratched hitting each other like those cars in amusement parks, people running across the street, status of the road is like you’re riding off road all the time, jumping left and right up and down, for hours. I don’t know how I managed to sleep all that time, but somehow I did.

Those little three wheel motor bikes or what you call it chaotically going across the road with no regards if they going in their lane or yours, or against incoming traffic.

I only took a few pictures on my way here. As I got a new 360 panorama camera, some of the photos you can pan all the way around.

One is from a REALLY nice hotel that stood out from all the other structures in the area. I took the photo after one hour nap when I had to continue my trip.

PAN AROUND WITH MOUSE!

Other is on the way to my destination when I woke up, probably because I smashed my head on the window again. 🙂

Towns look pretty poor as you can see from the photo, but that is just the way it is I guess. It’s probably getting better as in the rest of the world.

PAN AROUND WITH MOUSE!

Between towns the landscape is beautifully green, with rice fields, lakes and rivers everywhere. The road is raised from all that flooded area so there is water and rice fields everywhere around you.

THIS ONE DOESN’T PAN! 🙂
fotor_147594858326913

I read this is the end of the rainy season, but the rain is coming down pretty strong almost everyday. It is hot, humid, with insects and lizards all around.  Haven’t seen any snakes though.

The area I’m in are rice fields, with some green pastures with cows, goats, chickens, bamboo trees, palms. This is my first time in south Asia so it looks different than anything I’ve seen before.  I need to write it down, maybe I keep the memory.

I plan to take more photos and videos on the way back to Dhaka, so I’ll probably update this post and add them here. Stay tuned…

Why I like Saudi Arabia?

Travelling through Saudi for 900 km, you see a lot of desert. Different types of desert. From big sand dunes, sandy hills that look as they were the bottom of the ocean once to huge flat lands where you don’t see anything on the entire horizon around you.

But some stuff you see really do cheer you up. 🙂

View from workplace
View from workplace
Just hanging out(literally).
Just hanging out(literally).
Stuck in traffic.
Stuck in traffic.
DSC_0400
Just like Mars (with power lines)

Check in from Qatar

Just checking in with my travel log. Well, since my last check in from Kazakhstan in August I’ve been around. From Kazakhstan went to Croatia for a few days, then went to Houston TX in September.

Great times in Houston, spent some time in training, some time working, but also relaxing in Houston parks, restaurants, museums.

Had the lucky opportunity to bring my family with me so it was really great to spend some time with them in Texas.

Anyway, at the end of September, went back to Croatia, for two days, then left of for Saudi Arabia for a month. Saudi is like a second home for me now already. Loved it from the first moment I saw it.

First time I was driving from the Dammam airport to the hotel in Dhahran I had some strange feeling as I’ve seen that road before. Maybe in some previous life or something, but the feeling was definitely there.

So although travelling in Saudi is dangerous, and there is a lot of trash and car tyres besides the road (people don’t seem to care), I simply love the wild desert landscape, the immense heat of the place in the summer, Arabic food, Indian food, water tastes great when you work in the sun :).

Also, when you experience this

it puts some things into perspective. Video is not mine, but I’ve been through a few of these. They’re fun.. 😀

So, went home from Saudi at the end of October, spent a few days home, then left for Qatar on November 10th.

First time in Qatar. That I actually got to get out of Doha airport. What to say about Doha, from what I saw in the few hours I was there. It kind of looks like they’re aspiring to be like Dubai, but they are not there yet. 15 story building across the street from my hotel, that looked relatively in sound state was being teared down, probably they will build a shopping mall or something similar. Stayed at the Grand Regal hotel. Food was very good, bar was also good… 🙂

So now, I’ve been working here for some three weeks, temperature is perfect at around 25 degrees Celsius. It was actually raining for a few days, but I don’t think the desert around me noticed. Working close to Dukhan city, so went there for McDonalds, Dominos pizza… I have to admit, I like Arabic food better… 🙂

Read that Qatar is one of the richest countries in the world. Haven’t noticed it really. Probably that’s because I haven’t been in the right places. Doha seems nice, but not like Dubai.

But there is 4G signal everywhere and the wireless internet is really flying here and it’s not that expensive.

What else…. Nothing really, I leave for home in nine days. This time I hope I’ll get a month of. One can hope… 🙂

Until next time, stay safe!

Kazakhstan, again… :)

Well then. Here I am again. Almost same time as last year. In the mean time, since my last check in I’ve been around. Let’s see.

Last post was in September 2014, at the time I was in USA, after that I went to Kuwait, Congo, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, USA again, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Saudi Arabia again, UAE and now I’m in Kazakhstan, but not in Tengiz, on a different oil field close to Uralsk, in the north west, like 20 km from the Russian border.

Guy chillin out in the business class
Guy chillin out in the business class

So one can say I get around. On my way over here from Dubai, I stopped over night in Almaty, south east Kazakhstan.

There, what I later found out, I got swindled by a cab driver for a taxi ride from the airport to the hotel. I didn’t mind the money he fooled me over for, but the hour and a half ride what should have been a half hour ride.

Anyway, driving through Almaty we turn around a bend and what amazed me were these huge mountains that appeared in front of us. I regret not taking a photo, but you can probably Google it.

(UPDATE: I googled it for you :)) Very nice and impressive to see.

almaty-birds-eye-view-1

They are 5000 meters high and have a all year round snow caps and look really impressive. I believe they belong to the Zailiski Alatau mountain base.

Stayed in a 5 star hotel the Rahat Palace. Hotel looks fair, but those are some old five stars…

Breakfast was brilliant though… 🙂

View from hotel room
View from hotel room
Hotel from inside
Rahat palace inside

Flight to Uralsk had no excitement as the ride that followed.

There was some roadwork so the paved road was closed and the driver concluded to avoid dust from cars in front of us, he drove on the left side service “road”, in the opposite direction. As I am writing this, everything ended good.

OfRoad rage
Off Road rage

Staying at the work site for three weeks had it charms so I’ll describe it in a few photographs.

Some very nice clouds
Some very nice clouds
Some very nice clouds and over ground gas pipeline
Some very nice clouds and over ground gas pipeline
Hitchcock
Hitchcock
Well it aint a quilt, it's a mattress, and that below is plywood
Well it aint a quilt, it’s a mattress, and that below is plywood

 

Anyway, trip to Kazakhstan was colorful and I met some new friends, I’m to leave for home in 4 days so until next time, signing out…

 

Yeeeeha from Houston, Texas

As you can see from the title, currently I’m across the Atlantic in the US of A for some company training.

Actually today I go back to Europe. I stayed in US for the past four weeks.

What is there to say about the US. Wow, what not to say. It has everything, and I mean everything. And lots of everything.

What overwhelmed me in the beginning was the amount of highways, freeways, tollways, side roads. You have alternate routes where ever you need to go…. And ALL of them are full of cars…. 🙂

And nobody is on foot. At least not that I’ve seen in Houston.

What ever you can think of you will find it within 10 miles from your current location, because shops and restaurants just  keep repeating themselves..

Visited the park, zoo, aquarium, had excellent sea food and got pulverized by waves on Galveston beach, checked out museum of natural science.

So a very productive and entertaining four weeks.

Sorry, no photos this time. 🙂