Posts by Jack Noah Rees

Challenging the Path of ‘Normality’

From a very early age, most of our youthful creativity and imagination - our inner child - is trained and taught out of us until we become slaves to grades and test scores. We desperately try to get into a good university so we can get a decent job, climb the career ladder, buy a nice house and car, and start a family. This is the vision of normality, perpetually driven into us by society.

50 American Facts or Fictions?

Having lived in the Unites States of America for ninety days without getting shot, I would like to take this opportunity to dispel, or confirm, fifty myths or misconceptions that I may, or may not, have believed were true before I started this journey. Admittedly, sweeping generalisations are made throughout but most of what I write is based on experiences I had in the states.

Seoul Searching

Many a night was whiled away attempting to conceive a master plan of how I could travel the world and earn dollar at the same time. For some reason, I decided that teaching English to kindergartners was the answer, and shortly after signing up to a recruitment company I was on a one-way flight to South Korea - teaching little kids surely can't be that difficult?

What Tokyo So Long?

The only way to get from Osaka to Tokyo is by bullet train. That isn't strictly true. I mean you could fly, drive, walk or ride on the back of a gibbon if you so wanted - but none are as comfortable as the Shinkansen. The five hundred kilometre journey takes just three and a half hours, and you barely feel as if your moving at all - it is basically the complete opposite of going for a jog after twenty-five sambucas.

Animes of the State

A short train ride south from Kyoto and you arrive in Osaka - and the contrast is remarkable. If Kyoto was one of the most peaceful and calming places I have ever visited, then Osaka very well may be the least. As soon as we abandoned the train, we were sardined into the city centre - with no hope of deciding where our own feet went.

“You’ve Kyoto See This Bamboo!”

After just three weeks of teaching in South Korea, the summer holidays were upon me, and the break couldn't have come any sooner. Attempting to teach hyperactive infants from morn till dusk doesn't half make you want to board a plane and leave the country. Being so close to SK, Japan was always top of my Asian travel list, and Kyoto seemed like a peaceful place to begin our trip.

Beyond the Wall

North Wales - an entirely different animal to its southern counterpart. Taller mountains, longer place names, and a completely unintelligible accent make the north a quite curious place to visit. On the road from the south (there's only really one), it is every tourist's duty to stop at Portmeirion. A village built purely on one man's imagination, it took Sir Clough Williams-Ellis over fifty years to finish his incongruous masterpiece.

Castles, Coasts & Cattle

Welcome to my home: Wales. I come from a small corner of the South-Welsh countryside where the land is beautiful and the sheep even more so. I’m only joking, not all Welsh people are infatuated by sheep, some prefer goats or bullocks. But I do come from the sort of town whereby if a person did proclaim their love for a farmyard animal, nobody would bat an eyelid. It has happened.

Moose or Consequences

Last week, the Voyager made its final journey South to a thunderous wall of water before being put up for sale in Toronto. In a short week seventeen, the very last, a bidder must be found before the journey comes to an abrupt end at an airport terminal in Mississauga.

Niagara’s Walls

Last week, the Voyager achieved its own American dream by reaching Maine, the fiftieth and final state of its journey across the continent. In week sixteen, the endless frozen tundra of Quebec province is left as far behind as is possible as the final destination appears on the frostbitten horizon.

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