Well I think I’ve found all the WordPress plugins we might possibly need now, and so after a weekend and a day this travel journal is about ready to be used in anger (as they say – although who “they” are and why they say that I have no idea). Maps, twitter, spam-filters and the theme – all in place and ready for us to hit the road, er, tracks.
Which is not to say that we are ready to hit the tracks, not by a long shot. Thanks to Dee’s hard work on the weekend, we have a good idea of times and trains for the “Orient Express” leg, all the way from London to Moscow; the “Asia” leg is somewhat more … flexible. Not just because it’s my task and I was too busy mucking about with a website, but also because (from what we read) you can’t buy China train tickets more than 10 days in advance, unless you want to pay a premium (sometimes double) to a Chinese travel agency. Which we don’t, have you SEEN the exchange rate for the pound at the moment?!
Working out where we go in China is the next step, obviously, and while I’m doing that Dee is comparing the prices of individual tickets versus a Eurail pass. Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia is mostly a set route, copied from every package tour ever run (Ha noi, Hue, Ho Chi Minh City … Vietnam is a thin little slice of countryside, so there’s not really any other way to go), while we still need to confirm the flight/ship back to Australia — Dee just got a response from the freighter people who said the ship is all booked out for the rest of the year. She also said that everyone online seems to know a guy named Hamish who organises this kind of thing…
We also need to finalise shipping our stuff back down-under. The idea is to get a container, or part there-of, and fill it with those few items we own (and Dayna’s Wii if we can pack it before she notices ;-)). By the time we get home, then, it’s waiting for us somewhere – mostly probably at Mum’s (Ann) or at Mum’s (Tricia), but we should probably get the okay from them before a bunch of boxes show up on their doorstep I guess. The packing/shipping gives me a chance to write a little home inventory web-app, since all the open source ones seem to be lacking in some way. It’s mostly working now (for a single user with access to the database), but I’ll polish it up and drop it on SourceForge before we go.
Meanwhile, it was an early start this morning, with a 5am incident call for Dee (ongoing). We will not be missing these, that’s for sure.