Is it nice..?

Hamburg

Posted in Is it Nice..?, Photoblog! by Ade Chong on October 27, 2011

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Hamburg was probably the first point where I started to feel a little lonely traveling alone. Compared to the bustling, crowded, Amsterdam, Hamburg was like the pretty, quiet cousin. Even the hostel was tucked away and uneventful. Spent most of my time wandering around the city by foot, which was actually quite enjoyable.

(A really cool donation spot for unwanted clothes)

Amsterdam

Posted in Is it Nice..?, Photoblog! by Ade Chong on October 27, 2011

So, a full day of work, a 12-hour flight and two hours of navigating the airport and rail system later and I’d finally arrived in Amsterdam city. It wasn’t too bad really, I did get off at the wrong train station at one point, but I made it to the hostel in one piece. Mei had just arrived about 15 minutes before me. The hostel was cool, right in the middle of the red-light district. There was a pub downstairs full of people drinking at 9am. Like.

Amsterdam was great. Mei and I spent Saturday cycling around the city on our Yellow Bikes and lying in the sun in Vondelpark. The weather was amazing too, a clear sunny sky and 24 degrees, we gladly ditched our warm clothes for shorts. The sky was so blue, and the park was alive with all kinds of people, topless, sun-tanning groups, families having picnics and barbecues. And the smell of weed was just omnipresent everywhere you went.

Amsterdam was like a prettier Venice, with gorgeous canals filled with people just cruising along in their boats, beers in hand and on-board barbecues lit. It’s really quite a lovely place.

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(Westergasfabrik, a disused gas fabric plant converted into a club)

(Droog)

(Cafes in the Nine Streets)

(Shops everywhere selling weed, shrooms and herbal drugs)

(The Amsterdam public library)

(Lunch in the designer-y north Amsterdam with Leon Dijkstra)

(FEBO, where you can buy meals out of vending machines O_O)

(The boys arrived on Sunday from London!)

(SWAAANS)

The Heygate Estate

Posted in Is it Nice..?, Photoblog! by Ade Chong on October 27, 2011

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In the past two weeks living at Elephant & Castle, I’ve really come to enjoy my scenic detours through the abandoned Heygate Estate between Patrick & Afsar’s house and the underground station. The first couplea times coming home after dark I was literally shitting myself walking through here alone. My sister and I even nicknamed this the Death Route. After awhile though, I kinda realised that I was just being a scared, sheltered, Singaporean.

I love how quiet this place is. It’s almost like a tiny tiny glimpse into what Chernobyl would look like – or how I imagined it to look like – abandoned, empty and haphazardly packed up. Little bits of household objects and rubbish litter the place, giving some perspective to the previous inhabitants.

The Heygate Estate, once notorious for crime and gang activity, was the first council estate built in England in the 1970s. Now, 1200 deserted homes remain, waiting to be torn down. I hope they don’t though.

The Metric System

Posted in Infographics, Is it Nice..? by Ade Chong on October 17, 2011

I never did get a hang of conversions.

Courtesy of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, via swissmiss.

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