USA: Zen near the Can in Houston Hobby Airport, 20 March 2016

Houston Hobby Airport

06 00: I dropped our keys into the express check-out box, we hopped onto the shuttle, and went to San Diego Terminal 1 for our flight to Houston Hobby. The mister has a bad tummy ache.

12 00 – 19 00: Hobby airport is really good for connections – simple and hassle-free. We didn’t head out, because mister’s tummy ache has devolved into a situation that requires proximity to the bathroom.

20 00: Rowdy drunk spring breakers on our flight, ugh!. Thankfully, our flight is quite empty, and we had the last three rows to ourselves, easing mister’s discomfort.

23 00: Immigration was quick. Many taxi drivers clamoring outside – very glad I pre-booked our transportation to the hotel. P.S. Costa Rica has Uber! ZZZ


USA – Houston, 26 September 2010

Last day of my trip before the Fall quarter involved going around the Ks’ routine, which was great for me, as I was just there to hang out.

We went to a dog park, which was huge. I guess this is one of the things that I do like about the US – the amount of recreation spaces. That is the one thing that Singapore seriously lacks, well, partly due to space limits, but I also suspect due to the lack of will to accommodate all things non-commercial.

After Ramsey got his time at the dog park, we went to an Asian supermart. It does feel like we are back in Asia. I can see my grandma walking down one of the aisles, and not feeling out of place, except her friends won’t be there with her.

Lastly, we had lunch at a Vietnamese place. As R noted, we were surrounded by Vietnamese who seem to have known each other forever, and they simply brought their way of life from Vietnam, and moved it to the US. It was pretty eye-opening for me, and in some ways, I guess I felt a little sad for them, and even more emotional attachment to what I am studying.

All manners of sauces

Joss paper for sale

Guatemala to USA – Guatemala City to Houston, 25 September 2010

Last morning in Guatemala – there is an exit tax of about 3 USD. I didn’t get an exit stamp on my passport. Hopefully this is normal!

Since Houston is a hub and transit point for Continental, and I have some friends living in Houston, I decided to drop by for a visit. Camera died, though, so no real pictures from this.

Houston seems pretty spread out, with a small downtown. It also reminds me of the suburbs of Seattle, in that the malls are spaced out. As K was driving me around, I couldn’t really get a sense of the geography. But based on the informative drive, it is kinda divided into neighbourhoods, and he was living somewhat near the Asian neighbourhoods.

Seeing all of it fleetingly, what struck me the most was the number of Republic of Vietnam flags, and other statues dedicated to the regime. It seems as if this regime from 35 years ago (fell 1975) just imported itself into this part of the US, and settled there, living out the nation’s life in the territory of another. It was very interesting for me, since this is what I study, and this just made me want to study it more.

It was also museum day, so all museums were free, which resulted in crowds. Guess Singaporeans are not the only ones who go to museums when they are free! We ended up going for an exhibition on Central Asian mummies in the Museum of Natural Science. It was pretty fascinating, though baby mummies do creep me out (especially if they are blue in colour!)

On to the topic of food, K brought me to this deli where they serve beef brisket. I never had a liking for beef brisket done in Chinese style (well, Crystal Jade style), but I definitely loved the brisket done in this deli. We also had ribs, which was excellent. Thank you Rs for being such wonderful hosts! I enjoyed chilling out at their house, just watching silly movies like Sharktopus. (mutant animal movies just got better as the night went on)

Upcoming: Mexico-Belize-Guatemala, 11-25 September 2010

Tentative Itinerary:

11 September 2010: Cancun

12 September 2010: Cancun – Chichen Itza – Cancun (bus)

13 September 2010: Cancun

14 September 2010: Cancun – Playa Del Carmen (bus)

15 September 2010: Playa Del Carmen – Tulum – Playa Del Carmen (bus)

16 September 2010: Playa Del Carmen – Chetzumal – San Pedro Town (bus, ferry)

17 September 2010: San Pedro Town – Caye Caulker (ferry)

18 September 2010: Caye Caulker – Belize City – Flores (ferry, bus)

19 September 2010: Fores – Tikal – Flores (bus)

20 September 2010: Flores – Guatemala City  – Antigua (bus)

21 September 2010: Antigua

22 September 2010: Antigua

23 September 2010: Antigua – Guatemala City (shuttle)

24 September: Guatemala City

25 September: Guatemala City – Houston (plane)