Sawadee kap, dear blog followers!

This is my 3rd day in Bangkok and after I have overcome severe trouble with a water damaged camera two times, things look better now and my initial, rather negative view on this crazy city changed a bit in its favour. The extensive Singapore and Bangkok reviews will take a while. I just booked a cheap accommodation in Chiang Mai (Tara Guesthouse) and changed my mind about attending a massage class because I found a website of private Thai massage teachers who offer one on one courses for reasonable prices. This seems to be more effective and a quicker way to develop skills. I will leave Bangkok tomorrow evening and return about six weeks later for another couple of days before the next chapter of my journey will begin: New Zeeland!

Photoshoot @ University of QLD Campus (05.04.2013): This day was a true photography day with three different locations and hours of picture taking. The following report covers the first location on which I arrived noon-ish (the addition of “ish” especially behind estimated time specifications was often used by Daniel, my former housemate, who announced to be back from work or the climbing hall around seven-ish or eight-ish or nine-ish.). Brisbane has a botanical garden and a zoo, too. But if you want to save time and money you could just visit the University of Queensland campus in St.Lucia. Okay, this might be slightly exaggerated but seriously, this campus is so beautiful that I considered to start studying again. The students read books on sloping greens and stroll over wooden bridges with the view on idyllic lakes containing small turtles, big eels and other huge fishes. The whole area is a designed park with lots of old trees, sheltering masses of cockatoos and other birds. Furthermore the park is home for tons of insects like dragonflies and butterflies as well as many exotic animals like Eastern Water Dragons…they all live unfenced in harmony with the students and don`t seemed to be too shy. More than that, the animals sometimes only move to avoid a collision with a human who is not willing to give way or walk detour. The best motive that day were definitely the Eastern Water Dragons. They sat exactly at the same spot where I had seen them at my last visit when my camera battery power was exhausted. I observed their behaviour and interaction with students for a while, took normal close-ups and went on for a real challenge: I mounted my macro lens and approached slowly. The male with the red spot on his neck escaped when I scratched the 30 cm distance mark but the smaller female held still and I managed to reach the necessary 12 cm distance to take one of my best photos in 2013 – the eye of a Water Dragon! These creatures are not aggressive but you should be careful because their claws are sharp like razor blades and can cause life-long memories on your skin. For that reason I only stretched my arms in front of my body to keep bigger range between my and her torso. To keep an eye on the camera screen and watch at the same time if the dragon would show any evidence of discomfort was not an easy task. To maintain a stable position required for an unshaky picture was the second problem. However – it worked out great and the macro photo of the dragon`s eye made my day.