alex tells me sundays are when the harajuku girls and boys come out and play dress up. i'll keep that in mind. i also want to wake up before dawn and go see the tsukiji fish market, where fishermen haul frozen fish the size of logs and auction them off. i minored in japanese during college, but unfortunately i've forgotten most of it, so i have to brush up on my nihongo the next few weeks.
i want to try betel nuts and hang out with the girls who sell them. although i'm afraid of heights, i want to go up the taipei 101, the new tallest building in the world (and the only "supertall" to be built on an active earthquake region).
the man mo temple in sheung wan district, to see suspended incense coils.
the islands of halong bay are similar to those in phuket (thailand) and guilin (china), but in the order of thousands. i might take the reunification train from hanoi to hué, about an 11 hour overnight journey, then take a bus or rent a motorcycle to danang and hoi an. the train trip from danang to ho chi minh city (saigon) takes 16 hours; if i have the money i just might take a plane (too much vietnam, i don't want to spend almost a whole day on a train). i want to try cha ca in saigon, i hear good things. the border crossing of moc bai takes me to cambodia.
a day (and maybe a night) in the capital of phnom penh before spending a week in siem reap visiting angkor. leaving via the poipet border crossing into thailand (a 5 hours bus ride to the crossing, another 5 hours bus ride to bangkok, if flights are cheap i'll take a plane).
i'm actually visiting thailand twice, southern thailand into laos and back out to northern thailand. bangkok to ayuthaya to pak chon to spend a few days at the khao yai national park: this place feels like the southeast asian version of costa rica's corcovado, with such exotics as wild elephants and tigers in the forest. did i mention leeches? from there i head to sukhothai, then phitsanulok, which is close to phu kradung national park, rich in tropical pitcher plants. through khon kaen i go north to the border crossing of nong khai into laos.
a brief stay at the capital of vientiane before traveling north via bus (10 hrs) to luang prabang. originally i wanted to take the slow boat to the border crossing of huay xai, but that takes 2 days on a crowded craft, and i think i'd probably go crazy. fortunately, there are flights from luang prabang to chiang mai so i think i just might splurge.
chiang mai to see the hill tribes, particularly a stop at mae hong son to see the padauang women. when it's time to leave, a flight to mandalay in burma.