The Sakaiminato Mustard Smuggler

It’s snowing on and off as we arrive in Sakaiminato which surprises me after experiencing a Spring like South Korea. After a rough night in my “cruel cabin” the crew are friendly and calm my mood somewhat. The Purser, who is Phillipino and speaks good English, helped me as much as he could last night. This included the slightly surreal experience of a ship engineer working on the ceiling vent in the total darkness of my cabin whilst people toss and turn in their fruitless attempts to sleep. I suspect that the crew get quite a lot of stick from […]

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My stay in South Korea is planned to be for just 24 hours. The Eastern Dream is breaking with its usual schedule and stoping here overnight. I’m guessing this is to let the crew have a night off for New Year. I have booked to stay in a hotel that is an hour away from the port. It’s famous in Korea for its view of the sunrise each day, and I’m staying here for the biggest sunrise of the year – bringing in the New Year. Oh, and yes it’s also a ship, built on a cliff. The problem with my plan […]

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Kings of the Wild Frontier

The Eastern Dream is a Japanese built ship run by a South Korean company. It’s a small ship carrying mixed freight and passengers, I would guess 200 or so of us. That is probably 150 Koreans, 49 Russians and one Englishman. It’s not an uncomfortable boat to be a passenger on, but the accommodation is rather spartan and hugely expensive. My bunk is in a room shared with seven other Russians (they seem to segregate nationalities) at a cost of $350 USD. Most people are in dormitory rooms of 30 or so, some in bunks, some sleeping on mats on […]

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The Columbus Club

So today is the day of days, as I’m finally on the move towards Tokyo. I am doing my best to adjust my mental state to being on the move, living in the moment and trying to stop worrying about things that I simply can’t control. It normally takes me a couple of days to get properly into this state as the problems of everyday home and work life recede in the distance behind me. So by the time I reach Warsaw (later this week) I hope to have my train mojo sorted out. I read a great blog from […]

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