Posts tagged ‘postaday2011’

What we need in the Salsa World

 

I plan to go salsa dancing at least once in each of the city we visit.  Salsa dancing has just sprouted in many Asian countries over the last 5 years and with USA’s close proximity to the Latin/Spanish community, I wonder how much of it has infiltrated the country.  I do not expect to find a club full of good salsa dancers in every city.  I just want to go have a good time dancing with the locals and perhaps make a friend or two!

I rely on the internet to find out if there’s any salsa groups, socials or clubs in each city.  It is a challenge because a lot of time is wasted having to toggle back and forth from map to websites, to find out how far it is from where I am and to verify if the information is current and accurate by comparing with other websites like urbanspoon and yelp, etc. and eventually calling the club direct.  Often I find most of the websites not very user friendly and too cluttered with lengthy descriptions and loads of poorly taken pictures which makes the whole research process a little confusing after a while. 

One website often pops up and it seems to have a pretty good coverage on a lot of cities but of course, we always need to find out if the club is still in business or that they’ve not changed the schedule.  http://www.salsapower.com

I’ve formulated a Salsa wish list for the world and hope that there’ll be improvements in time to come. 

  1. Websites to be clear and organized, clutter-free with a handful of good pictures.
  2. Regularly updated information on salsa nights and venues so that travelers like us will not travel a good 20mins to find the place not in operation. 
  3. Start a WORLDWIDE SALSA LOCATOR WEBSITE !  It will bring all salsa dancers in the world together! 
  4. An APP for current salsa club search anywhere in the world. It needs to be constantly updated hence probably require participation from salsa pioneers in each city to update regularly and objectively. Includes maps, addresses and contacts, how to go, mode of transport, etc.

Ok now, the word is out… there’s a need for more sophisticatication in the Salsa World!  

January 10, 2011 at 8:08 am Leave a comment

Dance is a form of communication and self expression; Salsa is the language

I started salsa dancing years ago in Singapore.  It was quite a new thing then and to date, the salsa scene in Singapore has grown.  I see new faces whenever I return for a dance in Union Square  in Singapore after my travels.  Yes that’s the place to go and its the longest standing salsa club in Singapore!  (http://www.unionsquare.com.sg)

Salsa is a great social activity because you’ll get to meet people in different fields; from lawyers, doctors and accountants to housewives to singers, dancers and actors.  Another good thing about it is, you don’t need to go with a bunch of people as like going to a dance club.  It’s usually safe and quite common for girls to go to a salsa club alone and not be bothered by unwanted attention.  Well I’m speaking from experience as I do that all the time.  So far, I’ve danced in London, Barcelona, Shanghai, Beijing, Sydney, Malaysia, etc. and many cities in the US like Portland OR, San Diego CA, Pittsburgh PA, Louisville KY, Raleigh NC and many more… Yes I go to the clubs on my own. 

Salsa is a fantastic form of exercise for all ages.  It’s a total cardio workout with loads of fun!  It also helps to develop your coordination and rhythm, increase your self-esteem and confidence as well as work on your posture grace and flow.  For those who likes to perform for others but don’t have the chance to do it on stage or has stage fright, the salsa dance floor is a great place to show off your moves!

January 9, 2011 at 7:21 am Leave a comment

Cooking while on the road

At the start of the tour, I was tempted to travel a rice cooker so that I can make my own food.  The advantageous: 

  1. Low cost – eating out every meal can be an expensive activity.
  2. Healthier with the use of fresh ingredients.
  3. A solution to curb my Asian cravings.

With zero knowledge of what is available in each city, I decided to start small… first by acquiring the necessary cutlery:

  1. Chopsticks
  2. Soup spoon (the chinese type that is deep enough for you to hold soup and noodles in it.)
  3. A microwaveable plastic container about 6′ by 6′ and 2-3′ deep
  4. A Swiss Army Knife

After a month, I realised that the items above are a great start and especially useful when you can request for a  microwave to be sent to the hotel room.  That is the amazing thing about hotels in the US.  Microwaves has never been an option in all the hotels I’ve stayed in Asia.  Well… excluding rooms that comes with a kitchenette. 

As I venture into the world of ‘Cooking in hotel rooms’, my collection of condiments and cooking essentials inevitably started to grow.  I had to be innovative with what I make and need so that I dont end up travelling from city to city weekly with a larder.  Starter kit (preferably in plastic containers for weight concerns) includes:

  1. Sea salt
  2. Olive Oil
  3. Organic Soya Sauce
  4. Shichimi (Japanese condiment – mixture of sesame seeds, seaweed, chilli flakes and sometimes bonito flakes.)
  5. Spicy Sesame Oil 

Shichimi - Japanese Condiment

I was pretty excited about working with the limitations and managed to make up a bunch of simple dishes that are both easy and quick to make and healthy!  Stay tuned as I start to roll out the list so that it will be a no brainer should you decide to cook while on the road!

January 8, 2011 at 5:42 pm Leave a comment

Daily / Weekly Blog 2011

I started this blog with hope to write everyday or at least once a week; to record my experiences and to share them with my family, friends and everyone out there!  I am definitely inspired by my partner who participated in project 365 – A photo a day, and a poem a week, for 2010. It takes a lot of perseverance and determination to follow that through. A round of applause for him!

For 2011, WordPress threw out a challenge – To encourage everyone to blog everyday or at least once a week. Since it’s in line with what I have in mind, I’m taking up the challenge…

(I can feel my knees shaking and sweat breaking… yes I’m scared… Fingers crossed!)

January 7, 2011 at 9:04 pm 2 comments

The American Tour

I’m currently in the middle of a 9 months working contract in the US that requires a lot of travelling.  I’ve been checking in and out of hotels in a different city each week since 5 Sept 2010.  This will come up to 32 cities and hotels excluding the ones I visited during our week off from work.  This is my first  time  travelling in the USA and I’m really fortunate to be visiting so many cities at one go!  Below is the map indicating the states that I would have visited by the end of the tour.

The hotels booked by the company are usually situated in downtown near to the work place.  Some downtowns are great with loads of food selection at different times of the day but some are as quiet as a park at night.  Hence, finding restaurants and eateries with good affordable food and variety (other than the hotel) and places for me to go salsa in those cities can be a challenge. 

My plan for this tour other than to do well at work (of course!  that’s important! 🙂 ! ) is:

  1. See at least 1 interesting spot or attraction in each city.
  2. Try out the local dishes that are unique to each place or state.
  3. Go salsa dancing at least once in each city.

Since I’ve started this tour 4 months ago, I will backtrack and write about some of the interesting incidents and experiences I’ve had in the last few cities.  It will be based on my personal judgement and understanding at that point in time.  Comments and exchanges of ideas are always welcomed and who knows, you may become a part of my American experience!

January 7, 2011 at 8:29 pm Leave a comment

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