Month: March 2014

Where to start?

Every week a situation arises and I don’t know where to start, whether its a project at work or looking at old travelling material, but there is a very easy and obvious solution…..the beginning!

As ridiculous as it sounds…its true, sometimes we fill our mind with so much stuff and try and tackle everything at once but we cant, so write it down step by step and start at the beginning. Not only will you work through it systematically but you’ll also gain great pleasure by physically ‘ticking it off’ and seeing yourself getting closer to your end goal.

As some of you may know i’ve started a youtube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/bradrichardfrankel) for a number reasons, one to talk about my life but most importantly to document my travels. With over 50hrs worth off footage, thousands of photos and around 30 countries visited, it seemed silly not too. I didn’t know where to start with so many different mediums but I’m going to start with blogging and photos, and as time progresses (more on youtube) we’ll have some cool video’s to upload, but first I need to work out how to use Final Cut Pro. 

My round the world trip started in May 2007 and after planning my escape for over a year, the only thing that kept me sane at work were the savings I put into my account each month. Whatever your goal is, big or small, you need to plan it effectively and make sure you do something each day to achieve it. These things take time and you need to be patient, but with the end goal in mind, step by step you’ll get there….

The goodbye at the airport was an emotional one, everyone almost holding it together but as the first one shed a tear that was it, everyone was at it, tears all over the place and then we both had those horrible headaches, after you’ve been crying, for the plane journey…so we were off to a good start. Then, after customs and baggage we were looking forward to riding the magnetic train into the city but no-one would let us buy a ticket, they just looked at us and shook their heads. We thought our denominations were too big but it wasn’t until everyone turned us down that we knew something was wrong and realised that we had changed our money into Yen instead of Yuan, which is the difference of about 500 miles across the East China Sea. After finally buying our train tickets, in Chinese Yuan, we made it into Shanghai city centre to find our hostel but wasn’t sure how much we should pay for the taxi, it seemed a little high and when he drove off with the car boot still up we knew we’d been ‘done’. It turned out to be 10x the price, which he achieved by saying the decimal place was in the wrong place, so we we’re off to a good start but they say things happen in 3’s and with the crying, the currency and the cab I think our bad fortune had passed…

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Goodbyes at the airport…before the tears!

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Finally bought our train tickets!

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The Magnetic train into Shanghai!

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The food in China was awesome…I love my meat but I could have been a vegetarian out there as it all tasted sooooo good!

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View across the Huangpu River on a misty night!

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So crazy to see modern buildings being built using bamboo scaffolding!

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Our new friends…little did we know that Asker and Jonas would keep appearing 😉

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We then showed China how to breakdance…except….we cant breakdance…but they thought we could and loved it!

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Xiaolongbao (dumplings) in Shanghai were probably my favourite dish!

Sunday lunch

Last week we took a little adventure out of London…just 25 mins from Marylebone took us to a beautiful little village accompanied with an awesome Sunday roast. You always know it’s going to be good when they ask you how you like your roast beef cooked #rare

We seem to take our own location for granted, as being on our door step, we always put it off and look further afield. However, travel plans over the last few years have changed as a result of people being more careful with their spending, and you’ll be surprised at how many ‘attractions’ are close-by with a little research. Check out local sites, see what’s happening in your area and get involved. It’s always nice to feel part of a community which you can sometimes lose living in a big city like London. It’s full of tiny little hubs, which you can become part of quite quickly but nothing like getting out in the sticks. Denham was a beautiful little village but another one that you have to visit is Arundel on the South coast, about 20mins west of Brighton. I’m there in a few weeks so will be sure to share some pics and videos of a beautiful little town and, if not to hungover, a lovely little run through the South Downs.

So get involved with your local community and be part of something!

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Sunday morning East London markets

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Short and sweet video blog this morning – but looking forward to the written word later!

Video blogging is quite a new thing for me and something I’m certainly adjusting to, whether its the fact that I can see myself whilst blogging, or knowing that people can see my face and know who I am, it makes it a lot harder, as you can partially hide your identity behind a written blog, unless you want to be known and heard!

I’m sure as time continues its something I will adapt to, as the truth is I’ve been blogging most of my adult life, but usually talking about experiences and documenting places of travel..to sit in front of a computer is a lot harder to engage an audience as why do people want to listen to me, or watch me speak about something? I’m sure as time goes on, through trial and experiment, I’ll understand what captures an audience as there is so much that I want to document but its just knowing where to start.

So, hopefully through this journey you’ll experience a fairly ‘normal’ guy, raised in Essex, travelled the world, loves friends, family, food and photography, learn the art of blogging and how to document his life and create a following!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uW-uaIOAL3E

Big year. Big month. Big day

Before you know it the day has flown by and before you know it you’re at the end of the month, and (yes, you guessed it) before you know it, we’re celebrating NYE!

It’s quite scary how quick time can go…I now work in an office where they think 30 is old (for the jury I’m 30) yet I don’t think I even started yet. So many of us conform to what I call ‘societal pressure’ – study, work, settle, family. The generic kind of time line that many of us get scared to stray away from but why? Is it because we’re scared? Is it because we care too much about what other people think? Maybe it’s just easier to stick to the plan? I’m not saying there is anything wrong with the plan. In fact the plan is pretty great, if that’s what you’re ready for but if you’re not, don’t feel pressured. 

Every now and then someone comes along and likes to mess with the plan a little. Why should we all stick to the same plan? We are all so different. Why should we feel so pressured by society? Individuality is what makes the best friends, the most exciting journeys, and interesting cities. 

You need to be a strong character to break away from the mould but for all those ‘only fools and horses fans’ – ” he who dares Rodney, he who dares…”

As I’ve said before, and you’ll continue to hear me say, I never really know where these blogs are going to take me. I start with a blank canvass and just write, sometimes it just flows and I don’t even want to get off the train to stop writing, as I’m in a rhythm, but other times I stare at a blank sheet not knowing where to begin. That’s the beauty if it! Who knows what’s going to come from it? In the same way who knows what ‘s going to come from an alternative plan!

Today’s thought is don’t wait, do what you want to do, do what makes you happy and do it now!

“To be happy in what we do is to do what makes us happy”