Sailing from island to island across the blue and turquoise waters. Cool breeze blowing through tropical sea air 🙂
A meal fit for a king! In one of the more beautiful, warm, and inviting places on Earth 🙂
There are a lot of cool rock formations jutting out of the water and islands around El Nido. The steep, grey cliffs look beautiful against the turquoise water 🙂
Taking a quick break from snorkeling before lunch. The start of a beautiful sunset in El Nido 🙂
I went snorkeling at this beautiful island off of El Nido!! We hopped around to 4 different islands, swimming in the ocean, snorkeling, kayaking, and having a great time 🙂
FurnishedHome.com work retreat 2017! Above is my business manager Isara and her Thai friends w/ all of us out drinking and dancing. Later, my Indian assistant and her husband joined us. This is our first work retreat for my furnished rental business, the SF Bay Area enterprise that funds my travel around the world 😉
The four of us taking a break for lunch in beautiful Rawaii Beach 😉 My business manager, Isara, lives in Phuket. So I flew out to meet her in person, after working together on Skype for months. Shipra lives in Southern India, and had never left the country before! She always wanted to go to Thailand, so I flew her and her husband out for a couple weeks of work retreat, and some paid vacation to visit Pataya and Bangkok 🙂
Phuket “town,” the actual city of Phuket on Phuket island, has all kinds of interesting colonial style architecture, along with a mix of old buildings and crumbling, industrial-style warehouses. There’s also some cool street art. Nice juxtaposition of both in this shot.. That’s a little restaurant on the corner of the lot between the two buildings..
A delicious traditional Thai meal in Phuket town with my business manager. This meal was sooooo good!! Delicious noodles, curry, some marinated pork coming later, and of course, some scotch 🙂A beautifully concocted old fashioned. They twisted the lemon peel into the ice cube. Nice zest 😉
Party night out with Isara and her friends in Phuket. We went to this funky bar in Rawaii Beach called the Sunshine Bar 🙂 It has a stripper pole and all the “waitresses” are lady-boys. (The girls in the picture above are not). They include tiaras, crowns, and bunny ears for all guests 🙂 Don’t I like cute with a tiara? (OK, not as good as the rest of them lol)
Here’s a shot of the bar and pole, which most of Isara’s friends were able to climb, and ring the bell at the top 😉
This guy was hitting on me a good chunk of the night, so I pretended to give him a kiss at the end of the night.
Isara and I having a drink before getting the party started.
One of our work locations during Furnished Home Retreat 2017! We worked at a bunch of different cafes, bars, and resorts around the island during the week. F*ck working in an office! The internet is all over! 😉Isara’s friend Abby came out to Phuket for her birthday. So we went out to party in Patong, a dirty little town about a half hour from Rawaii Beach. Lots of wild bars, women, and shows you don’t even want to hear about!
This was a cool little bar I ran across when riding a scooter around town. I just loved the mish mash of “found item” art, knick knacks, metal, and that old school shack feel that is so prominent in Rawaii Beach 🙂
There is quite a bit of open space in Rawaii Beach on the outskirts of town, beautiful palm trees, and in this case, some livestock grazing the fields..
I got a pool villa for our work retreat. This was a 3 bedroom, 3 bath detached single family home with a pool, for about $100USD/night. Lots of value out in Thailand! And yes, the Furnished Home team gets to drink while working! 😉
HANOI, VIETNAM – Last-minute Trip.
VIETNAM AFTER REAL ESTATE SUMMIT
So after getting done with my big Real Estate Summit in Oakland on 8/27 & 8/28, it was time to take a break. Either head to Burning Man – or visit Jen in Hanoi. This is a combo business trip (writing my business plan, having logo created, turning my real estate stuff into a true business) – and having some fun! Thanks to everyone who came out to the Summit! It kicked ass! I love real estate because I get to meet awesome people, and travel to beautiful places like this while growing my business 🙂
The restaurant above had about 20 different stalls of delicious Vietnamese street food to choose from. Since many tiny stalls on the street typically focus on and only make 1 dish, it’s a fantastic way to try everything 🙂 Beautiful view with lanterns and the street from the balcony of the second floor where we were eating.
There are a bunch of motorbike “taxis” and even Uberbikes to get around. This guy was driving like a madman while on his cell phone. But made it through! I figured, if this guy could get through without dying, so could I! (maybe 😉
Many women roam the street hawking fresh fruits & vegetables, dried meats, toys, etc. Bicycles and scooters are the workhorse of choice.
TRAVEL LIKE A LOCAL
After hopping on the back of a stranger’s scooter when I first arrived in Hanoi, I knew I’d have to go rent one. There are petrol stations on the major loop around the city, and an attendant pumps for you and resets for each person. Probably a lot like many decades ago in the US. While most items are relatively inexpensive in Vietnam, I believe the gas was about $20K dong (VND) per liter.
With the exchange rate of $1USD = ~$22k VND, and almost 4 liters per gallon, it’s almost $4/gallon for gas. More than the US! (And probably one of the few things more expensive than the US). When I was in Amsterdam, I rented a bike to get around. In Vietnam, “land of 5 billion scooters,” it’s the only way to get down the clogged streets and alleys without sweating your ass off walking all day.. Traffic and 4-way intersections are a madhouse/free for all!!*WE ALL SCREAM FOR ICE KEM!*
Guess what is just as delicious on a warm, muggy evening in Hanoi? Kem! aka Ice Cream 🙂 We rode the newly rented scooter around the lake, and took a quick ice cream break at these decorative dragon boats on the lake. Bats were flying everywhere!YUMMY
Rice noodles, basil (my fav!), egg, pork dumplings, tomato, lime, & fish sauce. More food to come! This is from the restaurant above..
WASTE NOT, WANT NOT
Nothing goes unused or to waste in Vietnam. Street peddlers go around fixing and patching up old sandals. And when they get too worn or broken to wear on your feet, they may just become the brakes on your next bicycle!
Jen and I spinning around at the night market. An autumn festival is coming up, and they’re selling brightly colored noisy toys all over. Hard to tell, but there are tons of bubbles in the background also! 🙂
HOAN KIEM LAKE
This is the walkway up to the Temple of the Jade Mountain, which has a bridge going out to a small island in the middle of Hoan Kiem lake, in central Hanoi. We stayed not far from here, and is a beautiful spot – reminds me of beautiful Lake Merritt in Oakland! 🙂
Some foods are different in Vietnam. Some foods are VERY different in Vietnam. Don’t tell Old Yeller what they’re up to out here!! :-/ *I have not had any dog.. not sure if I can bring myself to it :-/
MASSAGE OF COURSE!
Of course had to get a massage! Before I get a billion emails, no – this was just a REGULAR massage lol I plan on coming back to get a 2-4 person massage at once! Treat yo self! 😉
WHERE BIZ IS DONE
90% of business in Hanoi seems to be done on the streets or sidewalks. Your food is chopped/cleaned/slaughtered/purchased/eaten right on the sidewalk or street you walk down every day. Whether it be some local fruits, and entire pig, or a dog. Scooters are fixed on the street. Many women still wear the traditional Vietnamese hats you have seen in movies for years in the rice paddies. Some things here are a blast from the past. Old bicycles. Carrying heavy loads with a home-fashioned wooden yolk & baskets. I wonder if you would know the difference if you were dropped in this same market 50 years ago…?
Welding, grinding – no matter what work you’re doing, it all goes down on the street and sidewalks..
Bonnaroo 2016!!! This trip was awesome!! 4 days of camping, music, art, eating, drinking, and meeting some really awesome people!!! I flew my sister out from Phoenix for her dirty 30 Birthday, and had an awesome time!! I can’t believe she’d NEVER been to a music festival before! Quite the eye-opener for her! (and it wasn’t even Burning Man!! lol)
Rocking late-night concert. Performances are all-out, with light shows, fog, fire, blasting speakers, late into the morning.. 🙂
This night was madness!!! After a bit of drinking and what not, we ended up meeting one crazy dude with a Yoshi costume and an RV!! He had lots of supplies, so we spent a few hours chatting, laughing, and trying to help him get his Yoshi costume on.. Can’t even tell you how hilarious this was.. Good times!!
Fire blowing out of the stage in the expansive music festival area with the late-night crowd.
Cooling off under the mushroom waterfall in the blazing hot day!
The water was nice and cold! 🙂
Another late-night party, with dancers spinning poi, huge crowd, and epic stage!!