100 Rickshaws by Moi!
2014 is behind me now!
Just a short note, people. Many happenings on this front, but not a lot of time to write. 2015 is shaping up to be a big year, with books, movies, and all that good stuff happening round these parts.
I am posting a link here to the first of what shall be an ongoing series. As most of you know, it is my ongoing desire to be the most creative man on the planet. I am coming up on finishing my Video of the Day project, and for the coming year, I am endeavoring to make 52 films in 52 weeks. I have already made the first film about where I live. It’s just a stroll around the block outside my house here in Dhaka, Bangladesh:
Enjoy! YouTube might take it down because of the song, but if they do, I’ll upload one with a regular soundtrack. I’ll try to post these when I can. I don’t promise that I will be able to do it, but I shall at least try!
Greetings from Penang!
Rainy Vacation Days Mean Group Emails!
I’m on the island of Penang, in a small resort town called Batu Ferringhi. We are staying at the Park Royal hotel, which is a nice hotel. It is raining cats and dogs outside on the “beach and swimming pool” part of our vacation. My daughters do not seem to mind, considering they are enjoying the sunny confines of Minecraft over on the bed beside me.
I guess I should have done more research when it came to Malaysian weather. I thought everywhere in Southeast Asia was sunny at this time of the year. Obviously not. We are four days into our Malaysian jaunt and it seems that it has rained every day. It deters us not.
We arrived in Kuala Lumpur last Friday. I had never been to Kuala Lumpur, so I was completely surprised at how “modern” it is. Our initial thought was to take this vacation so that we could experience something “first-world”, considering that we live in Bangladesh, but it took about thirty minutes in the busiest mall that I’ve ever seen for me to realize that I don’t need to be hanging out in malls for the entirety of our vacation.
Still, an adventure was to be had. We stayed with some friends for the first part of the vacation, then we were off to Penang (where we are now). However, being hard-headed and ignoring the sage advice of my wife, I decided that we must take “The Train” to Penang, which meant that we were in a second class sleeper car on an overnight journey.
We boarded the train at 10 PM on Sunday night, got our individual bunks, then we were off. A Malaysian man in the bunk across the car from me insisted on playing a video game on his phone with the sound turned up for about an hour and an Indian man below him spent a good thirty minutes horking up the largest ball of phlegm in history, but after they settled themselves, I managed to fall asleep. Tracey was out well before I was and the girls had to be forced to sleep.
Then, I was up at 4 AM, paranoid that we would miss our station at 5:30. We did not. A bleary Ramsey/Girdner family emerged from the train and walked over to catch the ferry to Penang. Joining the tired, early-morning masses, we made the short boat-ride across the water before the sun came up, then emerged onto the island, waiting to go to the hotel.
A very helpful Malaysian woman saw us looking around, absolutely confused about what to do next. Our eyes were on the taxis, but she quickly poo-pooed that idea. “You don’t want to take a taxi,” she said. “They charge you double. Take the bus with us.” She was right. It cost us approximately $1 for all of us to take the bus. Unfortunately, that bus ride was forty-minutes of standing on the curviest roads in Malaysia. The girls were barely staying awake and Tracey watched our luggage fly across the bus on one particularly tight curve. Plus, there was the fact that I didn’t know where, exactly, the hotel was, so I was constantly on the lookout for where we were going.
We arrived at the hotel at 7 AM. Check in was at 1 PM. We had a bit of time to kill, so we slept on the folding chairs by the pool and tried to keep ourselves occupied.
Eventually, we checked in and got settled into our rooms. We awoke the next morning to rain, which did not deter Abbey and I, who sat at the pool most of the morning. We built sandcastles in the rain. We ate Indian food. All is well.
Next, we are headed to the other side of Penang, to a place called Georgetown. There, we will stay at the world famous Eastern & Oriental Hotel, which is supposedly legendary (and not-supposedly very expensive). From there, we take another train to Singapore! Good times!
I think there are some intellectual property issues with this shirt.
And for now, I shall sign-off! More soon!
Dispatch from Dhaka!
In which Mr. G counts down his days until winter break…
It’s hard to imagine that it is winter in the rest of the world, considering temperatures in Dhaka are hovering around 29 C every day here, but I guess other people are having a hard time. I would laugh at all of you poor suckers suffering through horrible cold, but I know that the joke will be on me in April, when the temperatures here will hover around 40 C until September, with massive thunderstorms happening daily. Oh, well…
Things are going well in Dhaka. They have not fired me as of yet, which is surprising, considering what I did to that student. Still, it was all in “self-defense” and I really shouldn’t be prosecuted for crimes committed in “self-defense” so please let us never talk about it again.
We are getting ready for winter break and we have a lovely trip planned. We shall fly into Kuala Lumpur, whereupon we will see some friends, and then board an overnight train to Penang. There, we will lounge upon the beach and be incredibly lazy. After that, we take a huge train ride from the top of Malaysia to the bottom, where we will then visit Singapore. We plan to shop, see movies, visit Universal Studios, and eat lots of food. I shall put back on all of the weight that I have lost here. Good times.
If you consider me to be your friend at all, you will have watched the new Star Wars trailer. My friends and I were talking about it just yesterday. I was thoroughly underwhelmed at first, but then I realized that it was STAR WARS with THE ORIGINAL CAST and I got excited. It still does weird me out that Harrison Ford, in his old age, looks strikingly similar to how my father looked. My father was definitely not the Han Solo-type, so there’s a bit of a disconnect.
Anyway, if you want some REAL Star Wars weirdness, check out THIS column in The Guardian. Plans were in place for this film for a while, I guess.
What about me, creatively? Well, I finished a third draft of my “Princes” screenplay just yesterday. You’ll all be sad to know that I have eliminated ALL zombies from the film. Sad, I know, but it had to be done. Now, I will start editing “Ingrid Strongheart vs. the Army of Nosferatu” and when that is done, I will either begin a new Boyd McCloyd book or work on book 4 of “The Wizard”.
And yes, I am looking at an early 2015 release for “The Wizard of New York City”. I’ll let everyone know when it happens.
THINGS I’M WATCHING:
- If you have an attention span, you should see “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford”. SUCH a good film. But it’s slow. VERY slow. I love it.
- Our family is religiously watching “The Flash”. I don’t normally like comic book shows, but this one hits the mark for me. Love it.
- My favorite team was eliminated from “The Amazing Race” last night, so I will be disappointed in the final, no doubt. Sigh.
ARTICLES 4 U:
That’s it from this end. Enjoy your day and write me back to tell me what’s happening in your life!