Now that I’m back in Singapore, I can finally take a break from travelling and take a good look at my 4.5-month round-the-world trip.
My friend M asked me to summarize my trip in a list of Top 5 best and worst things about my RTW. Since it’s an interesting way to summarize the trip, I will share with you my two Top 5 list today and next week.
Since I’m a “bad news first” kind of person, we’ll be looking at the worst things things that happened during the trip. In one of the next posts, I’ll share the other side of the trip: the Top 5 worst things that happened.
5. Crazy insect bites in Arequipa, Peru
In Peru, I was bitten by what seemed to be mosquitoes. The problem was, the bites didn’t subdue by a week. Instead they became hard lumps that didn’t fade until after my trip, which was more than a month afterwards.
The bite starts out as a little bump. It felt like there was pus inside but when I scratched the skin bloody, there wasn’t any. Then the scan would harden and the tissue inside harden.
For a while I thought that it might be one of those insect bites where a baby insect would pop out after a while. Thankfully, there wasn’t any.
4. Doing laundry by hand and drying them in a room with 5 other people
One of the things that I miss about being home in Sabah is sun-dried laundry. While on the road, I didn’t always have the privilege of drying my clothes in the sun so most of the time it was air dried in my hostel room.
I would wash my clothes in the basin and dry them by rolling them up in a layer of towel. Then I hung the clothes on a laundry line which I hook up to the railing of the bunk bed above me.
I once had the awkward incident of a guy looking into my lower bunk bed and seeing all my underclothes drying on the line.
3. Having my period while on the road
This is something that applies only to ladies. And it gets a bit TMI (too much information)!
In general, periods are great because it signifies that I am able to carry a human person inside of me should I want to. However, most of my periods begin with pain that feels like something is stabbing me in my lower stomach. Also, because of prostaglandins, I need to visit the toilet very often while having my period.
Having my period also means depleting my supply of underwear much faster than usual. Because… um blood?
So even though my periods will follow me till the end of my reproductive period. It gets a mention as one of the Top 5 worst things about my RTW.
2. Bus sick in Peru
My second-worst experience was throwing up everything I had in my stomach while on an overnight bus ride from Cusco to Nasca.
The bus swayed from left to right, making me nauseous. After vomiting everything into plastic bags, I took sips of water to rehydrate. But all the tiny sips came back up my throat, mixed with bile.
It was very horrible.
1. Harassed by strange men
But thank goodness, there was only one incident of physical harrassment by–believe it or not–an old wrinkled man dressed in a monk robe.
Of course this wouldn’t stop me from travelling since there are many other places in the world where women are treated with equal respect. (OK, maybe not that many but you get the idea.)