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Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Stefan Reads: Great Railway Journeys in Australia and New Zewland

 


By David Bowden

 … fully revised, revitalised and refreshed

His revised book on 35 classic railway journeys in both countries has just been released by John Beaufoy Publishing (UK) and includes a few new railway journeys including the Mary River Rattler (Queensland) and the Coastal Pacific (New Zealand). This 160-page book has numerous photos of the railways and the journey and is the perfect guide for those who would love to set off to discover both Australia and New Zealand. 

Covering both long and short distances, steam and diesel-driven trains, commuter and tourist routes, this book provides a fascinating overview of rail travel and great railway journeys in both countries. 

Each journey includes photographs, points of interest, railway history, details on the train and a route map to assist in experiencing the journey for those planning a trip or those travelling virtually from the comfort of their own lounge chair.

With Christmas just a few months away, I couldn’t think of a better gift for those who love travel; especially rail travel. 


Sunday, September 13, 2020

No Choice

 Having made a trip to the wine shop to replenish the bar, I asked the missus:

"Do you want beer, wine or whiskey tonight??"

She said "Yes!"

Friday, September 4, 2020

Maybe not Everything has Changed, but Staycations are Certainly not the Same!

Stefan Pertz, who is based in Malaysia, wanted a break from the routine but was hoping for more from his staycation. He had hope that the current situation had sparked innovative ways to meet guests needs and expectations, rather than watered down offerings.

The “Before and After” could not be more drastic than what a staycation used to be like and what it is nowadays with restrictions still in place to help in the fight against the pandemic.

I like a Staycation. For various reasons. Sometimes just for a change of scenery or for the convenience when attending an event where there is alcohol served and I don’t want to deal with how to get home. Breakfast is important for me and sometimes it’s nice to have someone prepare it and handle the aftermath once I am done. I keep some hotels in mind in case visitors need a recommendation.

Full article here: https://asianjourneys.com.sg/04-Sep-2020/maybe-not-everything-has-changed-but-staycations-are-certainly-not-the-same 

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Make Up Your Minds About Rich People

 As I am trying to do less and less on Facebook (Cos I don't like the content there no more), I noticed that there are now 2 types of people. And I am not talking about behaviour in the shower.

There are those that condemn rich people for not giving enough back to society. How much is enough and is it up to them to decide what to do with their wealth? I am in no position to judge that. I think we all need to give back, but how and how much is something that I wouldn't know how to measure.

The others are the ones that think Bill Gates has a lizard army waiting and that he is trying to enslave us all with vaccine. Look here now: that fella does not NEED to use his money to do any charity work or to set up any foundation. As I see it, he just felt he has enough and is going to give back. He decided to do so with whatever he does. And I think in his mind that is what the world needs right now.

Just push these ultra rich people a lil more and I guess they gonna say "You know what.. Then I spend it all on stupid things if you don't appreciate me trying to help ya'll".

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Power of Items Engineered to Last

 

I am about to hit 47 years of age. Which means that the amplifier shown here has been with me for something like 30 years. Having saved up money from jobs in pubs, nightclubs and lawn mowing, I put down the cash for the Technics SUA900 Amp, which was the toppest of the range from Technics at that time. It says Mos Class AA on it. Class AA is indeed a (Matsushita invented) name for an amplifier topology consisting of both a class A stage as a voltage control amplifier as well as a class B stage for the current drive—plus a so-called "Class AA Bridge" which links together the two amp stages.

Last year the left channel stopped pumping out sound. And for the past months I have been trying to find someone to help me fix it. Finally, I found a shop in Puchong. Naturally, the technician is an old timer. Someone that grew up with this type of equipment. Old school: Fix what can be fixed, don't just throw it away. 

And today I picked it up. You think I am excited most of the times. You should have seen the owner of the shop! He had that thing in his showroom, blasting away.... Beaming like a child on Christmas.. "Oh, this one SUCH A GREEEEAAAAT sound!" One could tell that this beast still have a lot of anger in it and that it will continue to smash sounds once hooked up to the speakers.

Just seems that they don't make them like that anymore. Show me any type of gear these days that you can lug around 3 continents, running it in heat, cold and day in and day out without a hitch for 30 years!

Now, If you would excuse me, I would need to play some music! As for me, I am as excited to power this up as I was when I first unboxed it in Germany some three decades ago.


Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Haunted by the Golden Rider

 


This thing is haunting me! When I did my army service back in 1993, I was depending on my trusted motorbike to get me around. Seeing how the winter was approaching and 130 kilometres between barracks and home are no joke when it rains or in snow, I went to see the local car dealer. The only thing that was within my range was a "Sand Metallic" Polo, much like this model car. 

I should have either saved more or gotten a car much sooner than 3 days before checking in for my basic training. People still talk about the Golden Rider...

Monday, August 3, 2020

Winner Winner Staycation Dinner

Thank you to everyone who entered Asian Journeys / Accor Hotels staycation contest for a staycation at the very lovely Fairmont Singapore.

Congratulations to D. Fantgting.

For those who didn't win, perhaps you would like to enter our Fun With Masks contest and an opportunity to win a stay at Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua.

We are in the group that likes to have Fun With Masks. People have come to use them as an expression of their individuality or to convey something of their personality Some are very artistic. Some are silly, and yours could win you a staycation at Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua Beach Resort: https://sofitel.accor.com/hotel/9078/index.en.shtml


Send a picture of yourself wearing your mask - or just of the mask itself and if there is a story behind your mask, share a few words with us. We will pick out the one that appeals to us the most. The winner gets to stay in Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua Beach Resort and entrants will be posted on Asian Journeys’ website: www.asianjourneys.com.sg

Send your entry to Floyd Cowan at fcowanmedia@gmail.com with the subject line "Masked with Stefan".